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
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