Asif’s library was built with the help of chefs, artisans, scholars, winemakers, and cookbook authors. At our Flavors of the Library event series, we explore the shelves with the experts like Lana Zaher who shaped the collection.
Tahini is one of the most iconic ingredients of the region — and has been produced locally since ancient times. Join a discussion about tahini and cookbooks with Lana Zaher, global manager of exports and marketing for the family-owned, Nazareth-based tahini company Al Arz. Learn about the sesame route, the revival of raw tahini in recent decades, Lana’s family, and the Syrian and Lebanese cookbooks she recommended for the Asif Library. At the end of the evening, we’ll step outside to watch the sunset and taste dishes from the books we discussed.
A Nazareth-style aperitif from الشيف رمزي- من تراث لبنان (The Heritage of Lebanon) by Lebanese chef Ramzi.
Tahini tasting and discussion of the sesame route, inspired by “On the Hummus Route,” by Ariel Rosenthal, Dan Alexander, and Orly Peli-Bronshtein.
Tajine from a recipe by Julia Zaher, recently published in “A Kitchen of Their Own – the Cookbook of Israel’s Women” edited by Yael Kalev, with a wink to Duhul Safadi and Michal Waxman’s book, “Baladi.”
Sabuniye, a dessert based on a 13th century Syrian recipe, included in “Scents and Flavors: A Syrian Cookbook,” translated by Charles Perry.
The discussion and tasting will be accompanied with Arak Kawar from the family distillery.
About the Expert Guest
As export manager of Al Arz products, Lana Zaher is in charge of developing brand awareness strategies in existing export markets and developing new markets for the company’s products. Al Arz Tahini is a family business based in Nazareth, making and selling tahini and halva products, all made exclusively from Ethiopian sesame. Lana joined the company in 2002 and started working in marketing while studying for a BA in International Relations at the Hebrew University in Jerusalem. She has held her current position since 2014, after completing her MBA from the Kellogg School of Management at Northwestern University and the Tel Aviv University.