From the Contributors
"When I visited the Syrian refugees in Lebanon, I said to them: 'Had I been a barber, I would have cut your hair. Because I am a cookbook writer and photographer, I am doing what I can do to help through my work."
—Barbara Abdeni Massaad
"Soup is elemental, and it always makes sense, even when the world around us fails to."
"Soup is the ultimate comfort food: nurturing, sustaining and all good things. One recipe is a drop in the ocean, but if awareness of the plight of the Syrian refugees is raised with each batch made and shared then that is a force for good. As well as being a delicious meal in and of itself."
—Yotam Ottolenghi and Sami Tamimi
"Whether we are in times of crisis or times of peace, gathering family and friends together around the table and sharing food is one of the most powerful and life-affirming acts we can do. And there is nothing more comforting and nourishing than a bowl of warm soup."
"Soup for Syria is a touching visual account of one's experience through the hardship of war. May this book bring a light of hope to everyone's heart and body and may peace be found very soon."
"There is hope that this marvelous collection of soup recipes from chefs all over the world will remind us of those in Syria who have lost their homes and so much more. Let us all make soup to create some relief and provide more outreach to those that are in need."
"In Farsi, the word for chef is ash-paz—someone who is capable of making ash, or herb soup. The ash dishes of Iran are held very dearly, and the act of making them is often regarded as an act of love or dedication. I would like to think that as you make this recipe you will remember those who are in exile from Syria, who have no kitchen or soup pot or indeed anyone for whom or with whom to make soup."
"My hope is that this project is a success and the book helps to keep the plight of Syrian refugees in people's minds and that it will raise funds to alleviate their awful living conditions until their future is settled. Pasta e fasioi (Venetian dialect for 'beans') is an old peasant dish in the Veneto. The soup varies from one city to another—wide tagliatelle are used in Vicenza, whole wheat noodles called bigoli in Verona, lasagne in Este and Padua, and thin fettuccine or small tubular pasta in other parts. I am so glad that it is part of this humanitarian project."
"I've always believed that there is no better way to banish differences and bring people together than through sharing food... and soup is, perhaps, the ultimate shared dish. It's a small enough thing, to contribute a recipe, but perhaps the many small voices that have joined together in this lovely book can, together, sing a loud message of hope."
"When I looked at the faces of those displaced children, all I could think of and see is the face of my own daughter. I immediately knew I had to help. If one child is helped because of this book and this recipe, then I have done my job as a chef, father, and human being."
"The moment I heard about Soup for Syria I was hooked. The tragedy of the Syrian people touches us all, but the more than 2.5 million refugees stuck in Lebanon cry out for concrete actions of solidarity. Again, we are all called upon to build bridges, and this book is there to connect us with the most vulnerable."
—Carlo Petrini, founder of Slow Food
"It was only natural for me to participate and give a helping hand in this project. I wanted to share and live this different human experience! And it was a great one made possible by the lovely people I met—especially those refugees for whom this book project is intended."
Praise for Soup for Syria
"Soup for Syria may be the most compelling cookbook ever created. Through her photographs and collected recipes, Barbara Massaad directly connects us with a people in dire need of our help. Just holding this book is nourishment for the soul."
—Jim Clancy, former CNN Correspondent and Anchor, awarded A.H. Boerma medal for coverage of food and hunger issues by F.A.O. (U.N. Food and Agriculture Organization)
"Soup is the ultimate comfort food; war is not. Soup for Syria gently stirs the two together: a variety of comfort-ready recipes from well-known food writers and chefs share the pages with a variety of faces—often smiling, always with eyes wide open—of the Syrian refugee crisis. The intimate photographs are a gentle reminder of the discomforts beyond our kitchen; the recipes the opportunity to experiment with a global collection of soup ideas, particularly from the Mediterranean region that Syria is a part of. Little twists and turns with tomato, bean and pasta soups may inspire you to create your own variations, hot or cold, while other recipes introduce less familiar soup ingredients, like bulgur wheat, yogurt and verjuice. The requisite chicken soup is here, but this book is particularly comforting for vegetarians and vegans. As we indulge in these recipes, we pray for the day Syrians will once again be able to sit down together over a bowl of soup in their own kitchens."
—Alia Yunis, filmmaker and author of The Night Counter
"Through her photography, Barbara Massaad brings to life the stark and inhumane reality of the Syrian refugee crisis. Politics be damned! These are human beings, not political pawns. Follow Barbara's lead and support her work."
—Cathy Sultan, author of A Beirut Heart, Tragedy in South Lebanon and The Syrian