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An Israeli mother - and restaurateur - shares her love of food from the eastern Mediterranean and beyond with a range of delicious recipes from her kitchen.

An Israeli mother - and restaurateur - shares her love of food from the eastern Mediterranean and beyond with a range of delicious recipes from her kitchen.

Middle Eastern food is on a roll among New Zealand readers and diners. Cookery writers such as the Israeli chef and cookery writer Yotam Ottolenghi have surged into the popular cooking consciousness.

It’s not hard to see why. Food from the Middle East and around the Mediterranean Sea — whether from North Africa or from Turkey, from Iran or Israel — is colourful, unpretentious, intriguing and (for the most part) relatively easy to prepare. Many of the best dishes are naturally low in fat, cholesterol, sugar and salt.

Now a celebrated Auckland personality and restaurateur is offering a galaxy of recipes with locally sourced ingredients.

Ima Cuisine draws on the successful work of Haifa-born Yael Shochat, the founder and manager of Ima, a popular restaurant and deli/cafe in Fort Street, central Auckland.

Written with the home cook in mind, the dishes here are straightforward, simple to follow and work every time. Recipe and chapter introductions give valuable information about how local dishes are prepared and served, while the comprehensive glossary explains unfamiliar ingredients (which are steadily more common in supermarkets today).


Having grown up in Haifa, Israel, Shochat is an expert in the cuisine of that country. She cooks vibrant, fresh food influenced by Mediterranean, North African and Middle Eastern cuisines. These are the dishes she serves at her downtown Auckland restaurant, Ima, and they include colourful salads, latkes, blintzes and her mother's favourite chicken recipe. Healthy, flavour-filled food with a spicy twist.

Lauraine Jacobs, New Zealand Listener

Yael's food is a vibrant and distinctive combination of Mediterranean, European, North African and Middle Eastern and she joins these tastes together in her cookbook, Ima Cuisine.

Northern Advocate

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Formats & editions

  • Paperback


    October 31, 2016

    Random House NZ

    288 pages

    RRP $55.00

    Online retailers

    • Fishpond
    • Mighty Ape
    • Paper Plus
    • The Warehouse
    • Whitcoulls
    • The Nile

    Find your local bookstore at www.booksellers.co.nz/directory


If you're looking for something a little different for breakfast, why don't you try this delicious recipe from David Cohen and Yael Shochat

Fig and Camembert Tart

Try out this delicious recipe from Yael Shochat and David Cohen's book Ima Cuisine


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