Saturday, December 12, 2009

This will make you hungry

Chief Rabbi Jacob Saul Dwek, Hakham Bashi of A...Image via Wikipedia













souq, aleppo syria, easter 2004Image by seier+seier+seier via Flickr











With the opening of Aleppo Restaurant at Main and Thomas streets in Paterson, I have  more opportunity than ever to get in touch with my culinary roots. My parents were Sephardic Jews born in the northern Syrian city --  he the son of a pastry maker and she a rabbi's daughter who would go on to self-publish the first cookbook in Brooklyn's Syrian Jewish community.

Now, I have come across a food blog called "Syrian Foodie in London," lovingly written by a doctor, and this video of a falafel stand in Aleppo. If this doesn't make you hungry, I don't know what will. The metal bowls you'll see are filled with sprigs of mint, a nice accent for the yogurt sauce you can have on your falafel. I visited my parents' birthplace briefly in the late 1970s and ate lots of terrific food, but didn't get a chance to try the falafel.

http://syrianfoodie.blogspot.com/2009/09/worlds-fastest-falafel-maker.html

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4 comments:

  1. Hi Victor

    Thank ytou very much for this post and the link.

    Like yourself I was so impressed with this falafel shop. Actually one of my fellow Syrian bloggers managed to identify the area of Aleppo where the shop is, around Bab Al-Faraj.

    On my next visit to Syria I am planning a few days in Aleppo. I will try to find this shop and write an update on my blog.

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  2. Hi Kano:

    I remember Bab Al-Faraj, the clock tower in the old part of the city, from my visit to Aleppo. In fact, my parents used to refer to it all the time. I also recall eating in a restaurant near the tower where the cooks used long, very sharp knives to chop meat for salagan, the kebabs. I look forward to your update on the falafel place. One thing I'm curious about is whether the falafel is made with fava beans or chickpeas.

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  3. In Syria, falafel is always made with chickpeas, never with foul.

    Fava bean is used in Egyeptian falafel. Some places in Lebanon use a mixture of the two.

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  4. Thanks, Kano. There's an Egyptian place near me and I'll be trying his falafel. I remember it well from my visit to Egypt many years ago.

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