Baking first became an obsession for me growing up as an expat in Uzbekistan. There wasn’t much to do on the weekends, so my best friend and I would peruse the local outdoor bazaars for fresh inspiration to whip up homemade dinners, breakfasts and desserts. It was in this setting that I fell in love with the ingredients themselves. Just as a true artist is obsessed with every component of his medium- the texture of the canvas, the fan of the brush, the quality of the pigment; so I became obsessed with the sprigs of fresh parsley, the large burlap sacks brimming with star anise and intensely yellow saffron, the milk straight from the cow lugged each morning in tarnished metal pails. In Uzbekistan food was often about quantity as much as quality- you honored your guests by literally filling the table with nuts, dried fruit, and freshly baked bread, in addition to the plate de jour.
My sophomore year in college my parents moved to France. They rented out a cute little townhouse in the suburbs of Paris and I quickly learned to appreciate the mores of French cuisine- mainly that less is more. Most importantly that good bread, cheese and wine is all you need to make a superb meal. After graduating, I toyed with the idea of joining my parents in France to study the culinary arts at the Sorbonne, but by some divine twist of fate I ended up in the Paris of the Middle East instead. I am absolutely loving it.
The purpose of this blog is to provide a creative outlet for my baking obsession as well as to highlight the vastly under-appreciated, but grand experience that is living and dining in Beirut, Lebanon.
*Photo Attribution for featured image.