The Ralph Nader and Family Cookbook
Classic Recipes from Lebanon and Beyond
"As dining at home moves toward necessity, we can look forward to a cookbook release next month by Connecticut's own consumer advocate and political activist Ralph Nader. The Ralph Nader and Family Cookbook: Classic Recipes from Lebanon and Beyond is due out April 7 and features family recipes from the Winsted native whose family owned the Highland Arms restaurant."
--The Republican American
"Nader's parents owned and operated a restaurant called the Highland Arms in Connecticut, where they served classic American food by day, but they mostly ate Lebanese food at home, and here Nader shares many of his mother's traditional Lebanese recipes for hummus, tabouleh, and kibbe (meatballs formed from onions, bulgur, and ground lamb), along with some surprising dishes, such as a creamy apple parsnip soup with cardamon, baked eggplant stuffed with ground lamb and pine nuts, and a light and lemony apple cake."
Included in Publishers Weekly's Cooking & Food Adult Announcements for Spring 2020
"The Ralph Nader and Family Cookbook shares the offerings of an inspired culinary culture, inviting us to try delicious new dishes with a loving emphasis on family health and unity. A wonderful blend of consumer protection and consumer pleasure!"
--Patti Smith, author of Just Kids
"With a generous helping of mind-nourishing wisdom combined with mouthwatering recipes, Ralph Nader provides the ingredients for a life well lived."
--Andy Shallal, Busboys and Poets founder and CEO
"Rose Nader used family dinners as an opportunity to inform her children about culture, philosophy, as well as nutrition. Her tasty recipes came with a heaping helping of love and knowledge."
"Rose Nader not only prepared the cuisine of my family's homeland to perfection, she infused it with heritage. Whenever she brought me a magical plate of Lebanese goodies, she was sure to remind me, in Arabic, of that old motto of the Lebanese kitchen: An empty hand is a dirty hand."
--Marlo Thomas, actress, author of Growing Up Laughing: My Story and the Story of Funny
Ralph Nader is best-known for his social critiques and his efforts to increase government and corporate accountability, but what some might not know about him is his lifelong commitment to healthy eating. Born in Connecticut to Lebanese parents, Nader's appreciation of food began at an early age, when his parents, Rose and Nathra, owned an eatery, bakery, and delicatessen called the Highland Arms Restaurant. The family eschewed processed foods and ate only a moderate amount of lean red meat.
Nowadays, the Mediterranean diet is considered one of the healthiest on the planet, but in the 1930s and '40s of Nader's youth it was considered by many Americans as simply strange. Luckily for Nader and his siblings, this didn't prevent their mother, Rose, from serving the family homemade, healthy meals--dishes from her homeland of Lebanon. Rose didn't simply encourage her children to eat well, she took time to discuss and explain her approach to food; she used the family meals to connect all of her children to the traditions of their ancestors.
The Ralph Nader and Family Cookbook shares the cuisine of Nader's upbringing, presenting Lebanese dishes inspired by Rose's recipes that will be both known to many, including hummus and baba ghanoush, as well as others that may be lesser known, such as kibbe, the extremely versatile national dish of Lebanon, and sheikh al-mahshi--"the 'king' of stuffed foods." The cookbook includes an introduction by Nader and anecdotes throughout. The Ralph Nader and Family Cookbook will entice one's taste buds, while sharing a side of Ralph Nader that may not be commonly known, though will not surprise anyone familiar with his decades of activism and involvement in consumer protection advocacy.