There are many paths to a cookery book, and Joudie Kalla’s Palestine On A Plate evolved from a restaurant, a pop-up supper club and an instagram account, which is how I came across her. In the age of Ottolenghi, the ingredients and flavours in her book are both more familiar and more accessible, which is an entirely good thing, as it’s impossible to read this book without wanting to hurry into the kitchen. I was tempted to choose Kalla’s recipe for Za’atar Buns, which she adapted, flatteringly, from my recipe for Norwegian Cinnamon Buns in Domestic Goddess, turning them into an aromatic and savoury affair, but I plumped for the Fattet Hummus, a warm bowlful of chickpeas, greek yogurt and crisp toasted pita, sprinkled with pine nuts and pomegranate seeds as it is always the first thing I order when I go to any Lebanese restaurant, and have been longing to make my own at home.
From Palestine On A Plate: Memories From My Mother’s Kitchen by Joudie Kalla, photography by Ria Osbourne
Published by Jacqui Small (£25), www.quartoknows.com