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Under the Copper Covers

Sale price€44.00

Gourmand World Cookbook 'Best Arab Cuisine' Award Recipient, 2017


Under the Copper Covers is a culinary journey of a Libyan woman in search of an identity. Forced to live in exile after the 1969 coup, it was through her passion and love for food and cooking that she discovered her sense of self and belonging in the different cuisines that Sherine Ben Halim Jafar encountered along the way. From Libya, Iraq, Iran, Palestine, Syria and Lebanon, this book is the product of her determination to document and preserve this journey.


"The story is moving, it reads like a novel. Food becomes part of the action, and the key to the outcome. The recipes give a full view of the Middle East. This is truly an excellent book, by a talented author. We really look forward to the next book, this one was such a lesson."

Edouard Cointreau, President of the Jury - Gourmand World Cookbook Awards


‘Sherine Ben Halim Jafar's cookbook stirs up memories of life in exile while celebrating Middle Eastern cuisine.' - THE NATIONAL


'a fresh perspective on the turbulent history of the holy city since the Colony was established.'



'...the joys of discovering her identity through food, and the authentic Middle Eastern recipes that she loves to cook.' - GULF NEWS


'Delicious, healthy and very colourful dishes.' - YOUR FOOD MAG


'highly moving and inspirational.' - NAHLA INK


'Food was not just a way for Sherine to hold on to her Libyan roots; it helped her explore a broader Arabic identity.' - STYLIST ARABIA


'In the book, Jafar tells much of her story through a child's eyes. The magnitude of what her family endured - and what a life in exile does to children - is enough to move readers to tears.' - OASIS LIVING MAGAZINE



Size: 200 x 270 mm
320 pages incl. color photography throughout
Rimal Books, 2015
Language: English
ISBN: 978 9963 715 27 5


Book Reviews


Customer Reviews

Based on 6 reviews
Rashed Kanaan
and she has put all her favorite recipes in this book

If u ever had the pleasure of eating Sherine's cooking, you would know why you have to RUSH and buy her cook book! Sherine has an incredible passion and talent for cooking, and she has put all her favorite recipes in this book. If you want true and authentic middle eastern Lebanese, Iraqi, Persian cuisine as authentic as it comes then you have to try her recipes!!

Worth Buying...

'Under the Copper Covers' is a moving, heartfelt and in my view a fantastic pioneer book, part biography and part cookbook of different Arab regional cuisines. Its tells the story of what happened to the Libyan Diaspora, in the personal and moving story of the Ben Halim family (a highly respected Libyan family, with a Palestinian mother, in which the father was the Libyan Prime Minister during the Libyan Monarchy Era)...Once you move from this heartfelt story, you get the lovely homecooking ideas of different Arabic regions: Libya; Iraq; Iran; Palestine; Lebanon, and Syria. The Libyan recipes are the most new, since the few Libyan cookbooks that are around are usually in Arabic, and published in Libya and Egypt. So the Author has broken new ground, introducing Libyan food to the Western foodie world....My favourite thing of the book, is how she explains her personal connection to the country, from her love of Libyan coucous, or whether her fascination with Iraqi food, through her marriage to her Iraqi husband, her love of Iranian food and the importance of the different rice dishes, through her friendships with Iranians that she grew up....The book has a easy to use style. I feel the book is going to be one of my cookbooks that I will use again, and again, and not one of the more aloof cookbooks I have. Its a lovely book, and I recommend buying it. Definitely worth getting. :)

Stephen Spence
A Unique, Life-affirming Cookbook!

This is no ordinary cookbook! Sherine Ben Halim Jafar has led an extraordinary life, and this book blends her unique experience with her relentless optimism, curiosity and sense of humour, to create one of the most remarkable books - in any genre - that I've read in a long time....Fundamentally, though, this is a book that takes the cookbook genre and turbocharges it with a story that the reader will never forget. It is as though the author were with you in the kitchen, putting each dish in context, and demonstrating the power of food to reveal the essence of life itself - to keep going, keep learning, keep laughing, keep celebrating.

The book's opening chapter - affording the reader a glimpse of life in pre-Qaddafi Libya, and taking us back to the night Jafar was born - begins with a memorable anecdote, with a punchline that made me laugh out loud. If you've read Keith Richards' autobiography, "Life", it's reminiscent of that book's unforgettable opening - however, "Life" has only one recipe (albeit a good one), "Keef's" bangers and mash. Jafar's book, which could itself have been called "Life", is full of the most mouth-watering recipes, plus a life story which is both incredible and yet resonates with anyone who has faced challenges in life; in other words, this is a life-affirming book, a celebration both of food and of life itself. I can't recommend it too highly.

Offering a beautifully compiled printed edition

How Middle Eastern Food Became Jafar's Most Powerful Healer - The personal story that precedes the recipes in Sherine Ben Halim Jafar's new culinary book - ‘Under the Copper Covers' - is so highly moving and inspirational that I would advise immediate purchase. Offering a beautifully compiled printed edition - with valuable historical and family-related photo-illustrations - this author draws upon strong memories for each dish mentioned and every recipe lovingly included. Jafar takes the reader on a wonderful gastronomic journey that will urge you to get into the kitchen as soon as possible and start cooking or baking!

An excellent book

An excellent book incorporating her true story about growing up in Libya. It is sad and joyful and compelling reading and I could not put it down. It has encouraged me to cook again and to try the recipes.
A good buy for a present, for young or old

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