The New Book of Middle Eastern Food
Chair: Sue MacGregor
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Legendary food writer Claudia Roden, exiled from Egypt in the ’50s, was drawn to the subject of food through a desire to remember her lost heritage. Claudia has had a seismic impact on what and how we eat, and how we think about food. Her Book of Middle Eastern Food, offering over 800 recipes interwoven with evocative stories, was originally published here in 1968, before which few of us would have known how to replicate the delicate and exquisite cookery of the Middle East. BBC Radio 4 recently broadcast a 5-part dramatization of Claudia’s life, calling it A Book of Middle Eastern Food. Claudia talks about her life and work through the prism of the food and the countries she has loved.
In conversation with renowned broadcaster Sue MacGregor.
Sponsored by the Jerusalem Foundation
Claudia Roden is a cookbook writer and anthropologist based in the UK. She grew up in Cairo and studied in both Paris and London. She has published multiple bestsellers including the international award-winning The Book of Jewish Food, and she revolutionised Western attitudes to Middle Eastern cuisines in 1968 with her bestselling cookbook, A Book of Middle Eastern Food. Aside from her writing career Roden has presented cookery shows on the BBC and she is co-chair of the Oxford Symposium on Food and Cookery.Sue MacGregor
Sue MacGregor was born in Oxford and brought up in South Africa. She joined the BBC first as a producer, then as one of the first women reporters on Radio 4’s The World at One. For fifteen years Sue presented Woman’s Hour, after which she co-hosted Today, BBC radio’s flagship early morning News and Current Affairs programme, for many years. She went on to front the popular book discussion programme, A Good Read. She is currently heard presenting the award-winning The Reunion on Radio 4, bringing back together, after many years, people involved in an important and sometimes historically significant event.