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Dates : A Global History

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Description

@font-face { font-family: Times New Roman ; }p.MsoNormal, li.MsoNormal, div.MsoNormal { margin: 0cm 0cm 0.0001pt; font-size: 12pt; font-family: Times New Roman ; }table.MsoNormalTable { font-size: 10pt; font-family: Times New Roman ; }div.Section1 { page: Section1; } In Dates, Nawal Nasrallah draws on her experience of growing up in the lands of ancient Mesopotamia, where the date palm was first cultivated, to explore the history behind the fruit. Dates have an important role in their arid homeland of the Middle East, where they are a dietary staple, consumed fresh or dried, as a snack or a dessert. They are even thought to have aphrodisiac qualities. The ancients said that the date palm had 360 uses: its seeds can be burned for charcoal, its trunk used as an irrigation pipe in fields, its leaves are woven into baskets and its sap can be turned into wine. It is no wonder, then, that it has played such a central role in the economy - and the culture - of the Middle East. The date palm's story follows its journey from its land of origin to the far-flung regions where it is cultivated today, such as Australia, California and Spain. Along the way, Nasrallah weaves many fascinating and humorous anecdotes that explore the etymology, history, culture, religion, myths and legends surrounding dates. She explains how the tree came to be a symbol of the Tree of Life; how it is associated with the fiery phoenix bird, the famous ancient goddess Ishtar and the moon; and lifts the veil on the curious sex life of the date palm. This delightful and unusual book gives a new perspective on the 'bread of the desert', the fruit from this most beautiful and useful of trees.show more

Product details

  • Hardback | 176 pages
  • 127 x 198.12 x 17.78mm | 340.19g
  • Reaktion Books
  • London, United Kingdom
  • English
  • 40 black & white illustrations, 15 colour illustrations
  • 1861897960
  • 9781861897961
  • 620,800

About Nawal Nasrallah

Nawal Nasrallah is an independent researcher and food writer who resides in Salem, New Hampshire. She is a member of the Culinary Historians of Boston, and her recipes have featured in publications such as New York Times, Boston Globe Magazine and Food and Wine. Her cookbook Delights from the Garden of Eden (2003) is regarded as the definitive source on the cuisine of Iraq, and her English translation of the tenth-century Baghdadi cookbook Kitab al-Tabikh, Annals of the Caliphs' Kitchens, was awarded 'Best Translation in the World' and 'Best of the Best of the Past 12 Years' at the Gourmand World Cookbook Awards 2007.show more

Review quote

'These are food memoirs, salacious and exotic, colourful, powdered, sweet, greasy and globe-trotting ... sharp and speedy little reads, spotted with off-kilter illustrations' - Chicago Tribune 'Nasrallah's epic food memoir offers a smorgasbord of date history and fascinating facts topped with a dash of culture and a sprinkling of Arabic myth. Spicy and exotic, Dates: A Global History is also jam-packed with scrumptious date recipes for every occasion. After one read of this book, you'll feel like an honorary member of Nasrallah's huge family: armed and ready to prepare your own Middle Eastern date banquet.' - Etihad In-flightshow more
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