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Fast Track to Slow Food: A Tour of Lebanon's Best Culinary Traditions
Better Barley, Wonder Wheat and Champion Chickpeas
Class notes: May Albert Rihani Receives the 2008 Khalil Gibran International Award
Last Glance: Lee Observatory
 

Summer 2008 Vol. VI, No. 4

From the Editors

Dear Alumni and Friends,

Kibbe, fattoush, baklava... sounds like home? From gala dinners to backyard barbeques, we've noticed that when alumni write to us about their events-anywhere from California to London to Lebanon-no detail about the luscious spread is overlooked. There's a fierce sense of pride in the quality and tradition of Lebanese cuisine that you find worldwide-and even more so in Lebanon. So when we started asking around AUB about work being done in the area of food and tradition, we learned about a FAFS project that supports the production of Lebanese "heritage" products and raises public awareness about the health-and societal-benefits of eating local, minimally processed foods (see "Fast Track to Slow Food", page 22). Improving the quality of what we eat while preserving regional biodiversity is also at the core of Mahmoud El Solh's (BS '69, MS '72) work at the International Center for Agricultural Research in the Dry Areas (ICARDA) in Aleppo, Syria. The center's research and training seeks to increase both the nutritional quality and sheer quantity of food for low income families living in dry areas of the developing world (see "Better Barley, Wonder Wheat and Champion Chickpeas", page 33). On campus, students and professors at FAFS are also taking to the science labs to learn how to make our food tastier, safer, and more nutritious ("Heavenly Halloumi" page 28.)

No matter what you studied, Cordon-Bleu taste buds won't be diminished by an apparently unlikely background in business or sociology. Read the alumni profiles to meet the well known chefs, producers, pastry makers, and yes, dieticians you probably didn't know are our very own.

For those who haven't been back to Lebanon recently, we've also provided a taste of Beirut's changing night-life; the reopening of downtown and the flood of packed new restaurants in Gemmayzeh, Monot and Hamra point to a sense of cautious optimism that we welcome with open arms.

Thank you for your feedback and ideas. We love hearing from our readers.

Ada H. Porter and Ibrahim Khoury
Coeditors, MainGate
maingate@aub.edu.lb