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Jerusalem: A Cookbook

4.22  ·  Rating details ·  22,306 ratings  ·  408 reviews
A collection of 120 recipes exploring the flavors of Jerusalem from the New York Times bestselling author of Plenty, one of the most lauded cookbooks of 2011.

In Jerusalem, Yotam Ottolenghi and Sami Tamimi explore  the vibrant cuisine of their home city—with its diverse Muslim, Jewish, and Christian communities. Both men were born in Jerusalem in the same year—Tamimi on the
Hardcover, 320 pages
Published October 16th 2012 by Ten Speed Press (first published September 6th 2012)
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Simone As a vegetarian, I'd stick to his two vegetarian cookbooks, Plenty and Plenty More, the recipes in these use many of the same flavours and ingredients…moreAs a vegetarian, I'd stick to his two vegetarian cookbooks, Plenty and Plenty More, the recipes in these use many of the same flavours and ingredients, as the recipes in Jerusalem. Jerusalem has some vegetarian recipes, but also a lot of meat. The difficulty level varies, but many of the recipes are very simple and easy - you may have to hunt around for ingredients a bit.(less)
Melissa I have every one of his cookbooks but I think Jerusalem is my favorite. Nopi is the most difficult.

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One Israeli Breaking Breads and one Palestinian, Palestine on a Plate: cookbook read, now one by an Israeli and a Palestinian. Both were born in Jerusalem in the same year and neither wanted to tell their parents they were gay. They weren't lovers they are friends and business partners in a restaurant in London, and this book is a collaboration of them going home and finding the food of their city. How they met was they were both employed in the same restaurant in London and bonded "over a shar ...more
Carol Smith
Dec 23, 2012 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: food, nonfiction
[ongoing review - 11 recipes made to date]

I have a purely personal, purely artificial rule that it takes at least 10 recipes to say one has read a cookbook. [Corollary rule - any cookbook not worth making 10 recipes from has no place on your bookshelf.]

The Recipes (ongoing)

1. Falafel (ta'amia for my Egyptian friends) (12/22/12): My husband is a falafel guru and I was anticipating comments about how they "aren't like Mahmouds in Queens", weren't crunchy enough, yadda yadda. Nope. They were
Lynne King
When this book arrived in the post this morning, I had this incredible sense of anticipation. I opened the book, was entranced by the photos, the history of the region and the recipes themselves. I'm lost for choice in deciding which one to choose!

I love cooking and I had never heard of this individual before until I read an article by Theresa May, our new PM, on how she much preferred him to Delia Smith.
Dec 27, 2012 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: cookbooks

This is another amazing cookbook from the founders of the Ottolenghi chain of restaurants in London. Yotam Ottolenghi is an Israeli Jew of Italian and German heritage, Sami Tamimi is an Israeli Arab. They were both born and raised in Jerusalem - Ottolenghi in Jewish West Jerusalem and Tamimi in Muslim East Jerusalem - and became friends and business partners in London. In this book, they return to the food of their Jerusalem childhoods and explore the food of the city today, both traditional and
Nov 27, 2012 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: cookbooks
I just received this magnificent book as a birthday present, and I'm loving every single page of it. These are the foods I lived on during my year in Israel. As I read along, I'm tasting every dish on the tip of my tongue. So far, I've made the Israeli salad, the shakshuka, and the chicken with caramelized onions and cardamom rice, and they're all so good that I want to compose a psalm about them.

There are lots of Middle-Eastern recipe books. What is different here, what is unique and special an
Aug 03, 2013 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: 1970-present, food
This book is magnificent.

Jerusalem collects the recipes of Jewish, Israeli Jerusalem and those of Muslim/Christian Arab-Israeli/Palestinian Jerusalem. One chef is Jewish, the other Palestinian.

The lines blur, a fact the writers acknowledge. Few of these dishes have a permanent home. Many have origins far away. Some, the most famous (falafel, hummus), belong originally to neither side. By now, they belong to both. Much more important is that the diverse ethnic backgrounds of both Jewish and Ara
May 04, 2013 rated it it was amazing
I would have purchased this book based on the cover alone (I am completely smitten with baked eggs), but after seeing so many recipes form Jerusalem a Cookbook pop up all over the blogosphere lately, I knew I wanted to try it.

First of all, the book is gorgeous. From it's softly padded cover, to the color laden images inside. Images of rich, mysterious food and bright every day images of markets and life around Jerusalem. It's an incredible cookbook with a coffee table feel. You want to leave th
Jan 12, 2013 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: cooking
This is the kind of cookbook I could reach for again and again. There is plenty to read in relation to the food, environment and culture as well as ample recipes that I can use on a weekly basis. In fact some of the recipes were already familiar to me and show up on the dinner table frequently, such as Butternut Pumpkin, Haloumi, Pine Nut 'hot salad' type recipes.
Living in a hot climate myself I found the fresh food of Jerusalem appealing and have already copied a few recipes down as this is a l
Oct 18, 2012 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Another fantastic Ottolenghi book made even better by the poignant stories he and Sami Tamimi share about growing up in different communities in the same city. The recipes I've tried so far have all been great.

This is more than just a cookbook. It's social anthropology at its best.
Jan 11, 2016 rated it really liked it
I cook a lot, and this book is a perfect example of why I still buy cookbooks while everything is within googling range. Beautiful pictures, engaging short stories, amazing recipes combining Jewish and Arabic traditions - so you can see and almost feel the East European, Tunisian, German, Morroccan tastes mix. Also most recipes adaptable for elimination diets (milk/sugar/gluten free).
Sep 29, 2016 rated it liked it
my favorites, things that made my eyes widen when I tasted them

Chicken with carmelized onion & cardamom rice*
lamb meatballs with barberries, yogurt, and herbs**
Roast chicken with clementines***
Pureed Beets with yogurt & zataar
Roasted Butternut squash & red onion
Chocolate Krantz cake****
Spicy beet, leek, and walnut salad*****
Fried cauliflower with tahini
Sweet Filo Cigars
Kohlrabi Salad
poached pears with cardamom

*"1) By the time the onions are dark go
Maze Branch Oak Park Public Library
Overall our What's Cooking group really enjoyed this book. Our quibbles include...inconsistencies with measurements (combination of weight, measurement and description - we prefer weight and measurement), the font makes discerning between "3" and "5" very difficult, and assuming that readers are more experienced cooks.

We shared the following recipes...

- Maqluba
- Prawns, Scallops and Clams with Tomato and Feta
- Tahini Cookies
- Basmati Rice and Orzo
- Beef and Fava Beans Meatballs
- Latkes
- Cod Cake
May 06, 2013 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: favorites
In lieu of a proper review, I just wanted to point out that I have never previously considered myself a cook at all. This book makes me want to cook. Why? Well that's obviously because the dishes are so amazingly delicious.

I lived in Israel for some seven years during the 1990s and have never really come to terms with the fact that where I live now I can't easily get hold of burekas, or a plate of winter warming phool (fava beans), or a satisfying bowl of fresh hummus scooped up with a hunk of t
May 29, 2014 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: cookbooks
PROS: The cover of the book is representative of how the pictures look throughout the book. I love a cookbook with photos. The dishes were hearty and felt wholesome. The flavors were great. The recipes were easy to follow.

CONS: Make sure you look and see how long the recipes take to make. These are not all quick recipes. They do take time. This isn't truly a con, but a warning.

Overall: Since I first heard about this cookbook and saw its cover, I wanted to add it to my collection. It hasn't made
Oct 17, 2012 rated it really liked it
Recommends it for: Caleb and any others who love to cook and/or read cookbooks
Shelves: food-cookbooks
This book is absolutely gorgeous. I got it today, started reading through it, and couldn't stop. There are many entrancing photographs of the dishes, as well as scenes from the incredible diversity that underlies Jerusalem. The pictures are not are not Martha-Stewart perfect, but earthy - dishes sit on messy stovetops, with dribbles of food spilling over the edges of the pots. The authors - Yotam Ottolenghi, who is Jewish, and Sami Tamimi, who is Muslim - both grew up in Jerusalem. Each recipe i ...more
Mar 01, 2015 rated it really liked it
Full disclosure, I have yet to make one of these recipes. I have perused the entire book, however, and have read much of non-recipe instruction text. The photos are beautiful, the descriptions are nicely detailed, and a lot of cultural background is given, which I especially enjoyed. Some of the recipes call for fairly obscure ingredients, but most are source-able. Downside: not every recipe has a photo - something I personally find helpful in any cookbook, especially one that deals with foods t ...more
Jul 26, 2015 rated it it was amazing
Fantastic! The recipes are great and the history of the city and area of Palestine and Israel is fascinating and informative. I've made a few of the dishes already with great success - the pureed beets with yogurt & za'atar, roasted cauliflower & hazelnut salad, parsley and barley salad, and maqluba are already family favorites. ...more
Lyn Elliott
Dec 21, 2015 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: cooking, favorites
One of my favourite recipe books.
Mar 16, 2019 marked it as cookbooks
Recipes I've tried
1. Mejadra (3/15/19)- nice simple meal to make with things I often have on hand! Might use less coriander seed next time but would definitely make this again.

2. Tomato and barley risotto with marinated feta (3/16/19)-loved this! Wonderful flavor. I cut down on the feta and next time might add eggplant or something to it.

Apr 15, 2016 added it
Shelves: cookery
My 10 recipes

1. Chocolate krantz cakes, aka chocolate babka: Being a Seinfeld fan, I knew this would be one of the first recipes I tried. While it is rather time consuming (a good weekend project), it is not difficult or complicated. I am not the best at making dough, so if I can pull of this recipe, anyone can!

2. Shakshuka: I overcooked the eggs and it was a little too spicy for the kids, but overall a good recipe.

3. Roasted cauliflower and hazelnut salad: This was good, but I didn't love it.

Jan 30, 2013 rated it it was amazing

I made about 7 or 8 different recipes but so many looked mouthwatering. The hummus is divine, as is the recipe for chickpeas (similar to arbis, but seasoned differently). The mejadra was excellent, even though I did not follow the recipe exactly; the seasoning was perfect. Of course, any recipe with eggplant is fantastic! I have found that anything Yotam Ottolenghi puts together, no matter how outlandish the combination may seem, comes out delicious. (Who would think eggplant and sweet potat
Gorgeous pictures, not all of which relate to food. You can almost smell and feel the atmosphere of the city of Jerusalem. Some of the recipes have ingredients that are not readily available, but overall they are do-able and the ones I've tried are satisfying. The recipes reflect a diversity of Jewish culture and incorporate influences that are unique to various locales. The two authors add commentary regarding their personal experience with the food and also the history of the dish. A fine expo ...more
Jan 18, 2013 rated it it was amazing
I give the book five stars because it is simiply an amazing cook book. Full of pictures and history of jerusalme. As someone who lives in northern Ohio with all major cities that might have any access to any of the foods used in the cookbook. It was hard to find anything that I could possibly make. I appreciate the full color pictures of most of the food and I would give this cookbook ans
A++++ for food pornography!
However as an actual cookbook that I would actually make foods out of, i would b
Lindsay Beyerstein
Jan 28, 2013 rated it really liked it
Shelves: cookbooks
Delicious recipes, and beautiful photographs of the food of Jerusalem and its cultural contexts. So far, I've made the butternut squash "hummus," the seared eggplant and mint dip with pomegranate, and the poached pears. Everything I've made so far has been delicious. My only complaint is that the first section of the book (mezze, dips, salads) is organized a little haphazardly.
A really great cookbook but some of the recipes are pretty tricky and take a while.... worth trying though as they are delicious! The recipe notes and other pages of background information are really interesting too.
Feb 27, 2015 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: non-fiction
Jerusalem is a work of art and I feel overwhelmed every time I look at it again. Each description of the food is rich and full of detail, the pictures so lush and decadent. I need someone to plan a dinner party, STAT.
Jun 01, 2017 rated it really liked it
Shelves: cookbooks
The recipes I tried were all great. That being said, some of them could have been written slightly better and I despise when cookbooks don't have pictures of the finished product. However, I have saved and will continue to make a few of these recipes again and again, so, therefore, a winner.
Jan 06, 2013 rated it really liked it
Oh to be in Jerusalem and eating most of this food. A lush read.
May 02, 2013 rated it it was amazing
Wow, I've never been so inspired by a cookbook! Beautiful pictures of Jerusalem as well! Trying to find a restaurant in Portland that sells food like this! Yum!
May 05, 2013 rated it liked it
Shelves: food-and-drink
One of my best cook books. Instructions, text and photographs are very good and the dishes delicious. My favourite? Chicken sofrito.
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Are you spending this season bundling up against the chill or enjoying summery southern hemisphere vibes (in which case we are...
77 likes · 28 comments
“It is more than twenty years since we left the city. This is a serious chunk of time, longer than the years we spent living there. Yet we still think of Jerusalem as our home. Not home in the sense of the place that you conduct your daily life or constantly return to. In fact, Jerusalem is our home almost against our wills. It is our home because it defines us, whether we like it or not.” 4 likes
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