A Jerusalem native who lived in London before settling with her family in Pennsylvania, Kassis is known for her ability to connect dots in her cooking — across continents, cultures, generations and even centuries. She left a career as a global business consultant some years ago to revive the classic dishes of her heritage so she could pass them on to her children. That research culminated in her 2017 debut cookbook, “The Palestinian Table,” which earned a James Beard nomination.
“The Arabesque Table” widens that lens to encompass the cuisine of the entire Arabic diaspora, from the first recorded recipe to the present. Chapters are organized by primary ingredients: Dairy + Eggs, Eggplants + Tomatoes, Za’atar + Sumac, and so on. Like the intricate patterns of arabesque tapestry, the recipes blend colorful threads from ancient history as well as from her own life story into something exciting and new.