Zaatari: Culinary Traditions of the Largest Syrian Refugee Camp

Zaatari: Culinary Traditions of the Largest Syrian Refugee Camp

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by Karen E. Fisher

On the Jordanian-Syrian border lies Zaatari Camp, the largest Syrian refugee camp in the world. Opened in 2012 to provide new arrivals with emergency relief, the camp quickly became a locus of Syrian culture and tradition. In this thriving community of over 80,000 people, the residents of Zaatari combine ingenuity and imagination to ensure that the glorious culinary traditions at the heart of Syrian culture continue to be observed and celebrated.

In this immersive culinary tour, Karen E. Fisher guides us through life at Zaatari, sharing its stories, its art, and its food. Authentically styled and stunningly photographed dishes accompany a vast array of recipes prepared by the camp’s residents for family dinners and community celebrations — and now for others to enjoy at home.

Both an introduction to Zaatari Camp and a robust cookbook, Zaatari: Culinary Traditions of the World’s Largest Syrian Refugee Camp offers an intimate encounter with Syrian food practices and traditions as they have been handed down through generations.

About the Author: Karen E. Fisher is a professor at the Information School, University of Washington, and an embedded field researcher with UNHCR Jordan. Originally from St. John’s, NL, she has found her second home at Zaatari Camp.

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