Sultan's Pleasure and other Turkish Recipes (1953)


by Robin Howe and Pauline Espir, A.A. Wyn Publishing, 1953. Hard cover with elusive DJ, 152 pages. Probably the first English language cookbook to focus on Turkish cuisine to hit U.S. shores. Illustrated by the English cartoonist, Osbert Lancaster.

The authors, who were British, traveled widely (Mrs. Howe's husband was a foreign correspondent) and met each other during a three-year stay in Turkey, where they became enthusiastic about that country's cookery. They do a nice job, from Mezeler aplenty and on to dolmas and pilafs. "The Sultan's Pleasure," by the way, is a roux based sauce of eggplant, lemon juice and cheese, served over stewed mutton or chicken.

We like their flippant tone too: "One complaint levelled against Turkish cooking" write the authors, "is the liberal use of garlic. Well, there it is, either you like it or you do not." Fun book, and not that easy to find. Book is very clean; the DJ has torn parts and is now protected by a clear plastic Brodart cover. VG+/VG.

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