The Gifts of a Recipe

“I have a recipe for you,” Grandpa announced. I was finishing up college, but it was Christmas break and I’d traveled with my father to his hometown in rural Arkansas. Grandpa waved a scrap of paper in the air encouragingly, so I opened my journal and copied it down: read more

Sephardic Cuisine: Passover on the Bosporus

The story of how a South-Asian American Muslim foodie, a Jewish Latino Literature professor, and an Irish-Catholic physicist, amongst several other hyphenated attendees, gathered for Passover Seder may seem farfetched at first thought. But then again, we’re talking about Byzantium… I mean, Constantinop – ermm, Istanbul! In the king of all crossroads cities, at the terminus of the Silk Road itself- where seekers and nomads were already roaming rife for millennia, it’s not too hard to imagine such a gathering. Many came searching for trade, some came for refuge, while a few others still come to the city for things all-too ethereal for words. At times, they came together – the silk merchant with the pilgrim, the janissary with refugees – partaking in each other’s journeys to the city. I was no different. read more

Food Sovereignty: Sustaining Cultural Identity and Self-reliance

By: Rachael Novak

If you’ve ever been to a powwow, chances are the unmistakable scent of warm fry bread and the temptation to try a “Native American food” lured you to one of the food vendors. It’s far less likely, however, that you learned much about the complex history of this powwow staple, now beloved by so many across Native America and beyond. While fry bread is undeniably delicious, it has contributed to high rates of obesity and diabetes in American Indian communities. In fact, the Federal government has distributed many processed foods that are high in calories and unhealthy fats and low in nutritional value throughout the various waves of physical and cultural displacement of Native peoples over the last 150 years. In particular, the forced movement onto reservations restricted access and connection to the land and food sources that had sustained Native Americans for time immemorial. A century and a half of historical trauma and federal policy has contributed to the prevalence of modern-day “food deserts” in too many Native American communities, equating to a dearth of access to healthy and high quality foods. read more

Damas: A Welcoming Respite On the Aegean Shore

At its nearest, the shores of Turkey are a mere five kilometers away from the Greek island of Lesbos, close enough for the people of Lesbos to witness lines of boats heading towards their island. At first a trickle at the onset of the Syrian Civil War, the flow of refugees – along with other regional migrants from the surrounding nations – swelled to many boatloads, arriving everyday for the past couple of years. For the Strait of Mytilini, however, this is an old story. read more

I Do: Marrying Food with Traditions Worldwide

In an increasingly globalized world, more and more weddings have become multicultural affairs. Guests from multiple continents eat food from varying cuisines, all at the same reception. Whether ceremonies indulge in extravagance or find solace in simplicity, Nilou Nouri ensures cultural traditions are preserved to grant newlyweds the happily-ever-afters of their dreams. read more

Food – A manuscript for America’s Changing Urban Neighborhoods

Author: Clara Ritger
Where you are from is often a good predictor of what you like to eat. Nostalgia for our regional cuisine—“what mom always made”—drives our preferences in the kitchen. Being from the west coast, my jaw dropped when I found out two Southern friends would be bringing mac ‘n’ cheese to our Thanksgiving party. While you would never find mac ‘n’ cheese on my family’s Thanksgiving table, I was told it wouldn’t be Thanksgiving in the South without it. read more

Nazca Mochica – A Peruvian Culinary Fusion

By J. Estevez

I was recently asked by my good friends at NooshTube to interview the culinary brains behind DC’s newest Peruvian restaurant, Nazca Mochica (pronounced: Nas-Ka Moh-chee-ka), one of the recent additions to the booming international restaurant scene in Washington, DC. read more

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