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My cookbook: "Tehran to New York"

On the Norouz day of 2020 spring, I finally published my book. The manuscript is titled: "Tehran to New York: A culinary bridge between Persian and Western cultures" and aims at presenting a unique blend of classic and contemporary Persian recipes, as well as samples of Western-style cuisine, offered in a Persian context. It is important to build bridges between cultures, and not walls. This book aims at constructing a bridge between the Persian and Western cultures. The book may be ordered here:  

Warm Middle Eastern eggplant salad

Presented here is a Middle Eastern salad of eggplant, the favorite vegetable of the region. The salad showcases a beautiful contrast between the cooked, creamy, and rich eggplant and the freshness, grassiness, saltiness, and zestiness of red onions, parsley, pickles, and lemon. A surprisingly delicious salad, simply made of a few ingredients which can be served as an appetizer with fresh bread.  

2.2 pounds (~1 kg or 2 large) Italian eggplants, chopped to medium cubes
¼ cup olive oil
1 TBSP apple cider vinegar
½ TSP cumin
1 TBSP brown sugar
3 cloves of garlic, crushed
10.28 Ounces (~300 gr or 1 large) red bell pepper, cut into thin strips (or use roasted bell peppers form a can)
10.28 Ounces (~300 gr) pickled cucumbers (not the sweet ones), coarsely chopped
3.52 Ounces (~100 gr or ½ medium) red onion, finely chopped
1 medium bunch of parsley, finely chopped
1 lemon
Optional additions:
¼ cup tahini (For a richer salad)
1 TBSP sumac (for a sourer taste)

To a large pan, set on medium high heat, add the oil and eggplant cubes. Add the vinegar and your desired amount of salt. When the cubes are soft, add the sugar and cumin. Cook until the cubes are fully cooked, but still preserving their form. If during this stage the pan feels dry, add more oil one spoon at a time. Remove the eggplant cubes from the pan and add the red pepper strips and sauté until soft. Add a spoon of water and cover the pan and let the pepper soften. When all the water is evaporated, uncover the pan and let the pepper fry in the oil until slightly charred.  

When the eggplant and pepper are being cooked, prepare the chopped parsley, cut the pickles, and dice the onions. Mix all the ingredients and season with salt and the lemon juice.
To make the salad more filling, you may add the optional tahini, as seen in the above picture.