The New Book of Middle Eastern Food by Claudia Roden

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Notes about this book

  • FeastsandFestivals on June 22, 2012

    Claudia Roden reminds us that what we eat tells us more about who we are and where we come from than anything else we might do or say...

  • clare_b74 on July 27, 2010

    American / more recent, and most importantly indexed, imprint of the one I actually have :)

Notes about Recipes in this book

  • Koftit ferakh

    • aniawl on May 29, 2010

      chicken balls

  • Eggah bi eish wa kousa

    • aniawl on May 31, 2010

      eggs should feature on the ingredients list as it is a mainly egg dish

  • Eggah bi korrat

    • wester on April 17, 2010

      Nice "omelette". I did not manage to turn it out into a serving dish, it was a bit messy. But it tasted good.

    • schambers on September 25, 2010

      Use the lesser amount of sugar. Excellent use of leeks and eggs.

  • A rice and chickpea filling

    • wester on April 15, 2010

      Nice but not very brilliant. Could use a bit more spice.

  • Chickpeas with turmeric

    • smtucker on May 16, 2013

      Love this recipe. Made a version without turmeric. cumin, cayenne pepper. finish with cilantro and garden mint, lemon juice. Used Goya chickpeas, well rinsed. Absolutely delicious.

  • Plain bulgur pilaf

    • smtucker on May 16, 2013

      Be careful of how much liquid you add. Needs salt especially when using stock that is salt-less. Have added cubed vegetables with great success.

  • Megadarra

    • britt on April 21, 2011

      I both love this recipe and am frustrated by it because my rice is always either undercooked or gummy. I may give up and cook the rice separately.

    • mama_c on April 20, 2013

      Try the 'boil' technique for rice... add raw rice to boiling liquid, boil down to the point where the water level is even with the top of the rice and 'holes' start to form, then turn down the heat to barely simmer for about 5 minutes (longer for brown rice), then turn very low or off and cover for at least another 5 minutes.

    • CandyB on August 15, 2013

      Delicious, but make sure the onions are caramelised

  • Borani-e bademjan

    • milgwimper on May 08, 2014

      This recipe was very good. I processed the eggplant so my child would eat it. We served it with home made flat bread, another salad of beans and tomatoes and a bowl of mint and parsley, and it was delicious.

  • Shorbet adds

    • okcook on March 27, 2012

      Very nice. Used my hand blender to smooth out the soup before serving and added extra fresh chilies. Placing a slice of lemon at the bottom of each soup would also be good.

  • Tbikha of turnips with spinach and chickpeas

    • MollyB on July 05, 2018

      Lovely early summer dish. I had some very pretty small white turnips from the farmers' market, and this was the perfect recipe to use them. I did use the optional harissa and I cooked my own chickpeas, and used them with a bit of the cooking liquid in the dish.

  • Rice filling

    • chriscooks on November 01, 2015

      This filling works well with mixed summer veg. Arborio rice is too gummy for it.

  • Lamb tagine with peas, preserved lemon, and olives

    • chriscooks on November 01, 2015

      Easy and very good. Also works with chicken thighs, cut up. I have used salted Meyer lemons instead of regular ones, which changes the flavor a bit but not much. The amount of water is way too much unless you want soup. Can use canned tomatoes out of season.

  • Harira

    • chriscooks on March 23, 2019

      This is pretty much the same recipe as the one for "Chickpea and Lentil Soup" in Roden's Arabesque. It is tasty and filling, and allows a lot of variation, if you're willing to consider it as the inspiration for a flavorful lentil soup (e.g., use lamb stock cubes instead of bones, add greens, etc.; I skipped the flour-water thickener). The Arabesque version uses no onions, so the soup is not as sweet as some.

  • Sambousek bel loz

  • Pilaf with currants and pine nuts

    • minerva on May 03, 2014

      Pretty good. Almonds were a fine and cheap sub for pine nuts.

  • Mahshi kousa

    • minerva on May 03, 2014

      Way too bland. Needs serious adjustment before I make this again.

  • Ispanakli pilav

    • minerva on July 11, 2017

      Nothing special, but a perfectly reasonable and tasty way to combine your carb and your vegetables into one side dish.

  • Pan-cooked fish fillet with chermoula sauce

    • minerva on July 11, 2017

      Why is there no salt in this recipe? Definitely add salt, and double the sauce.

  • Roz ou hamud

    • minerva on September 04, 2014

      Bland, and I even used smoked lamb broth. Needs less liquid and more herbs, perhaps.

  • Roasted red peppers with preserved lemon and capers

    • CandyB on August 15, 2013

      Good, although I leave out the capers. This recipe also found in Spain

  • Eggplant caviar

    • CandyB on August 15, 2013

      Delicious!

  • Teradot

    • CandyB on August 15, 2013

      Delicious with fish

  • Hummus bi tahina

    • CandyB on August 15, 2013

      The addition of tahina makes the hummus just a little more subtle - very good

  • Fassoulia beida

    • CandyB on August 15, 2013

      Delicious, but loaded with calories!

  • Cacik

    • CandyB on August 15, 2013

      Yes, good recipe; delicious

  • Tabbouleh

    • CandyB on August 15, 2013

      Good; make sure it is very green, i.e. lots of chopped herbs, and very lemony

  • Grated carrot salad

    • CandyB on August 15, 2013

      Very good taste for a change; good with plain food

  • Orange and olive salad

    • CandyB on August 15, 2013

      Good; works with olive oil

  • Carrot and orange salad

    • CandyB on August 15, 2013

      Good; I like the combination of carrots and oranges

    • Nichill on March 30, 2015

      Very versatile: children enjoyed it, and could be served to guests.

    • Nichill on March 30, 2015

      Very successful. After about half an hour, the flavours melded really well. Used parsely, due to lack of coriander, and added a couple of spring onions, with slightly reduced orange blossom water.

  • Taramosalata

    • CandyB on August 15, 2013

      Very good recipe; tastes delicious

  • Moussaka

    • mharriman on October 24, 2018

      Wonderful! Instructions make this multi step dish easy. For two of us, I cut all of the ingredients in half except for eggplant slices which I reduced by 1/3 and baked in a smaller casserole dish than called for. Other Changes made: used leftover homemade (Marcella Hazen) tomato sauce instead of tomatoes and baked for 35 minutes instead of 45. At 35, white sauce was turning dark brown and beginning to burn. Will tent with foil last 10 minutes next time. Looking forward to the leftovers tonight. Cannot remember a better moussaka!

  • Spinach with raisins and pine nuts

    • mharriman on August 18, 2019

      Delicious. I added broccolini to the pan to add more texture. Easy, healthy, and tasty.

    • ashallen on December 13, 2019

      Very nice dish - rich flavors from the onion and pine nuts and really nice sweetness from the raisins. I like to chop up the raisins or substitute dried currants so their sweetness disperses more evenly throughout the dish. I like the texture of fresh, mature (versus baby) spinach best in this dish - it's harder to overcook (=slimy texture!). Very nice with some fresh lemon juice added just before serving.

  • Madzounov champra porag

    • mharriman on August 03, 2018

      This was good but not great. That could be because I used leftover Moroccan meatballs instead of making the smaller, multiple ones as described in the recipe. The yogurt sauce was interesting but a bit bland. I used large pasta shells which worked well with the larger sized meatballs. My husband’s verdict: it was okay but needed some additional flavors to jazz it up. I think smaller shells and more and smaller meatballs would have worked out better for the sauce and garnish (butter sauce with mint and garlic).

  • Sweet-and-sour eggplant salad

    • mharriman on January 31, 2018

      Tasty. My husband and I enjoyed this healthy salad as an alternative to a green lettuce salad. I added feta cheese crumbles on top which enhanced the other flavors. Served as a side with a winter squash soup. This would be even better in summer with grilled chicken, lamb, or beef kebabs.

  • Pan-cooked fish with preserved lemon, green olives, and capers

    • mharriman on August 18, 2019

      Very good even though it was too salty for us. The effect of the (even though rinsed) preserved lemon, olives, and capers was comment-worthy. I will try this again and reduce the olives and take away the capers.

  • Couscous salad

    • jjankows on November 16, 2015

      Great and versatile recipe that you can make ahead of time. You can use whatever ingredients you have on hand.

  • Ta'amia or falafel

    • Foodycat on March 27, 2019

      Absolutely gorgeous. My first time making falafel from scratch and they were as good as any I have had.

  • Date preserve in syrup

    • Foodycat on October 24, 2019

      This is for fresh dates in syrup. It's absolutely lovely, and subtly clove-y. Really nice with cheese.

  • Chicken sofrito

    • FoodieOne on July 04, 2018

      This a hot weather fave. No grill needed. Good for a cold buffet and really easy, no knife skills needed.

  • Melokheya

    • deboChicago on July 16, 2020

      I have made this a few times. It is a reliable recipe but you can certainly sub your own chicken broth for Roden’s. It is a simple soup and delicious when fresh. Leftovers are not great.

  • Cream of white bean soup

    • ashallen on December 06, 2019

      As you can see from the ingredient list, this is a very simple soup. Given that, I was pleasantly surprised by how much I liked it - not the best soup I've ever had, but very nice. Because it's so simple, the flavor of the stock you use makes a difference - I used a rich homemade chicken stock. I also added the optional lemon juice and parsley.

  • Shorbet becellah

    • ashallen on November 29, 2019

      This soup was OK, but I've had better versions of split pea soup from this region. The acidity from the lemon juice and the toasted pita "croutons" were good. Texture was thick. The flavor from the ground cardamom didn't seem to work well with the other flavors - I'd replace it with ground cumin and/or ground coriander next time.

  • Djaj qdra touimiya

    • ashallen on October 24, 2019

      Hmmm, I didn't have a good experience with this one - I made it a while ago when I had less cooking experience, which didn't help! The recipe doesn't specify what size pot to use or whether or not to cover while it simmers. I tried to cook a 3 lb chicken in an uncovered 6-qt dutch oven but it wasn't big enough to fully submerge the chicken and I ended up turning it repeatedly to get it to cook evenly. Chicken was done after the specified 1.5 hours, but the chickpeas weren't tender like the recipe said they would be (despite having pre-soaked for 24 hours). There was also tons of liquid (there would have been even more had I used a bigger pot!). I continued simmering slowly until chickpeas were soft, removed them, then reduced the liquids a looong time until they were thick and sauce-like. Sauce flavor was just so-so. I've since found another recipe for a similar dish in Saveur (Moroccan Chicken Stew - January 2010) that has better cooking instructions and a flavor I prefer to this one.

  • Sabanekh bel tamatem wal loz

    • ashallen on December 13, 2019

      Very good! I really liked the sweetness and acidity of the tomatoes with the earthiness of the spinach. Great flavor from the onions, too.

  • Booza al loz

    • ashallen on July 03, 2020

      This is an almond ice cream (egg custard style) flavored with orange blossom water. It's thick and creamy with a hauntingly aromatic flavor from the orange blossom water. When I tasted the ice cream mix before freezing, the orange blossom flavor seemed too strong (even though I used the minimum amount recommended in the recipe), but it settled down after freezing (though still too strong for my husband!!). The recipe says to leave the finely ground almonds in the custard and freeze it in a bowl overnight. I froze a small amount this way as a test and decided I didn't like the texture - both gritty from the almond bits and kind of icy. I strained the remaining mix through a fine mesh strainer and froze it in an ice cream machine - much better! I'd ground my almonds to "almond meal" size, so the strainer didn't catch all of the particles - a second straining through a yogurt strainer would probably produce a perfectly smooth ice cream. Yields 1 quart.

  • Ma'amoul

    • ashallen on September 14, 2019

      These are delicious cookies - slightly flaky flour+butter pastry wrapped around a delicious date paste filling. The dough isn't sticky and handles pretty easily for molding around the filling. This recipe doesn't call for salt in the pastry shell - I thought it tasted a bit flat without it and now add ~1/2-1 tsp. And while the date paste filling in the recipe is good, my favorite filling is a mixture of dates and ground walnuts - I substitute 3 c walnuts for half the dates and flavor the mixture with orange zest, cinnamon, and sugar. One of my all time favorite cookies!! I don't have one of the special molds often used for making these cookies and instead form them by hand - so they're not a quick, last-minute kind of cookie - I've read that using a mold makes them go faster. Fortunately, once you've made a pile, they store really well for a couple of weeks (assuming you don't eat them all first!).

  • Havij polow

    • ashallen on October 05, 2019

      I love the excellent flavors in this dish from the large amount of carrots and butter (and a bit of cinnamon) it contains - absolutely delicious!!

  • Sabzi polow

    • ashallen on October 04, 2019

      I like the basic concept for this recipe, but I tried making a half batch on my first try without adjusting the cooking technique in any way and ended up with overcooked, mushy rice. I'll hold off on giving a rating until I make a full batch and get a better sense of how it's intended to come out.

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Reviews about this book

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Reviews about Recipes in this Book

  • Konafa

    • I Made That!

      ...an odd flavor at first, but after a few bites something happens to the taste. I found that it got sweeter (though not too sweet) and the rosewater started to mellow...exactly how I remembered it.

      Full review
  • ISBN 10 0307558568
  • ISBN 13 9780307558565
  • Published Dec 24 2008
  • Page Count 528
  • Language English
  • Countries United States
  • Publisher Knopf Publishing Group
  • Imprint Knopf Publishing Group

Publishers Text

Claudia Roden's seminal book on Middle Eastern cooking, which James Beard called a landmark in the field of cookery when it was first published in 1972, is made new - with additional recipes, extensive variations and new techniques, the fruit of 30 years of travel and research. There are now more than 800 recipes (including variations) from Morocco and Tunisia, Turkey and Greece, Lebanon, Syria, Egypt, Persia, and other Middle Eastern countries. They represent the best of the Middle East and they stress simple dishes, healthful ingredients and time-saving methods, with no sacrifice of extraordinary variety or delectable flavor. Richly infused with Roden's own memories of growing up in Egypt and with stories of her travels, the book is an excursion not merely into the cuisine of the region but into its culture as well. It is a book that both preserves the past and is alive with the present: a masterpiece made even more masterly - the quintessential Middle Eastern cookbook.

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