Maydan: Home Cooking from the Middle East

The debut cookbook from Rose Previte, creator of the Michelin-starred restaurant Maydān and the beloved Compass Rose, explores bold flavors, accessible, shareable recipes, and overlapping foodways, spanning from Lebanon to Morocco, from Oman to the Republic of Georgia—cowritten with New York Times bestselling cookbook author Marah Stets.

Rose Previte introduces readers to the eclectic cultures of the region spanning North Africa, the Caucuses, and the Middle East through food, offering a nuanced, informed, and yet entirely warm and personal way in. Before opening her beloved Washington, DC, restaurants Maydān and Compass Rose, Previte traveled old spice trade routes to learn from home cooks, and it became apparent how adjacent cooking traditions informed and folded back on one another, creating a constant dialogue.

Ancient foodways don’t recognize geopolitical boundaries. For instance, the harissa found in Tunisia is incredibly similar to the adjika used in Georgia, and the lineage of baking bread in clay ovens stretches across the region with strikingly parallel methods. And in that vein, the word maydān has roots in a number of languages and has been crossing borders for generations, from Tangier to Tehran and from Beirut to Batumi. It means “gathering place” or “square,” often located in the middle of a city, and originates in Arabic, but translates to Hindi, Urdu, Persian, Ukrainian, and even Latin. To Previte, it symbolizes how food brings us together and everyone can add a personal twist.