|About the Author|
Shaké Bazoian (shock-ay buz-oy-en)
Beverly Hills, California
Family, tradition and food were the focal point of my large family in Beirut, Lebanon where I grew up. Many hours were spent in the kitchen at my motherís side, watching, learning and assisting her in making traditional Middle Eastern foods and other family favorites. Although I did not do any actual cooking until getting married, it is amazing how much was learned from my mother during my early years in the kitchen with her.
Once I started cooking and baking on my own, trying new recipes and tasting new dishes has been a continuous and pleasurable process. My books are written not only to pass on generations of recipes that I have accumulated, and some that I have created, but also to encourage you to open up the world of cooking to your children.
Most of the ingredients in the books are found in your local markets or specialty food stores. As a mother with my own busy schedule, I am sensitive to the effect that time constraints can have on your motivation and ability to prepare new dishes. I have tried to include, whenever applicable, tips on simplifying preparation without compromising flavor and tips on using modern kitchen equipment to streamline preparation, as well as useful guidelines for storing and freezing the foods you are preparing.
My hope is that you will encourage your children to join in the kitchen with you in preparing new and traditional dishes, to share old family recipes and to create your own versions of the old recipes. The many hours spent in the kitchen with my daughters and grandchildren are the most memorable times of my life. While creating recipes and delicious meals, I have also created a lifetime of rewarding memories, cooking and laughing with children in the kitchen. Please enjoy the books to create your own meals, memories and messes.
I hope the books will bring to your home as much joy as they have given me in preparing them and that you will enjoy them for many years to come.