- € 12,99
Winner of the Art of Eating Prize 2020
Winner of the Guild of Food Writers' Best Food Book Award 2019
Winner of the Edward Stanford Travel Food and Drink Book Award 2019
Winner of the John Avery Award at the André Simon Food and Drink Book Awards for 2018
Shortlisted for the James Beard International Cookbook Award
'The next best thing to actually travelling with Caroline Eden – a warm, erudite and greedy guide – is to read her. This is my kind of book.’ – Diana Henry
'A wonderfully inspiring book about a magical part of the world' – Viv Groskop, author of The Anna Karenina Fix
‘Part travelogue, part recipe book, this is a love letter to “the sea that welcomes strangers”, soaked in colour, history, myth and the flavours of many cultures.’ Nick Hunt author of Where the Wild Winds Are
This is the tale of a journey between three great cities – Odessa, built on a dream by Catherine the Great, through Istanbul, the fulcrum balancing Europe and Asia and on to tough, stoic, lyrical Trabzon.
With a nose for a good recipe and an ear for an extraordinary story, Caroline Eden travels from Odessa to Bessarabia, Romania, Bulgaria and Turkey’s Black Sea region, exploring interconnecting culinary cultures. From the Jewish table of Odessa, to meeting the last fisherwoman of Bulgaria and charting the legacies of the White Russian émigrés in Istanbul, Caroline gives readers a unique insight into a part of the world that is both shaded by darkness and illuminated by light.
Meticulously researched and documenting unprecedented meetings with remarkable individuals, Black Sea is like no other piece of travel writing. Packed with rich photography and sumptuous food, this biography of a region, its people and its recipes truly breaks new ground.
Eden's elegiac and incredible sophomore effort (after Samarkand) documents the food and culture of the lands surrounding the Black Sea. Erudite without being stuffy, Eden writes with finesse and subtlety about regional traditions: an essay on Odessa's Jewish food cites native writer Isaac Babel, whose grandson reports that he liked his tea brewed with slices of acidic "sorrow-tasting apples." Food tends to be hearty a sausage stew with sauerkraut and prunes from Bulgaria and Circassian chicken, a stew of chicken and bread topped with a walnut sauce, from Istanbul. The three chapters on Turkey are rich with surprises such as a chestnut and sage pilaf and lamb-filled and yogurt-topped manti dumplings. Naturally, seafood is prevalent: spicy mussels from Bulgaria and cured mackerel from Istanbul stand out. Typical of the beautifully told stories of humor and perseverance is one of how, generations ago, men from the tiny town of Camlihemsin, Turkey, a place "as idyllic as it is hopeless," emigrated to Yalta, where they learned to bake elaborate French- and Austrian-style desserts such as a rich chocolate layer cake with ganache and hazelnuts. Enticing to home cooks and armchair travelers alike, Eden's spectacular cookbook transports readers to the Black Sea.