Welcome to the Crowdsourcing Mornings segment! Every weekday morning, Geek Alabama talks about and features one crowdsourcing project from crowdsourcing sites such as Kickstarter, Indiegogo, and others. The hope with Crowdsourcing Mornings is to feature and help a project be successful and reach its fundraising goal. Please enjoy today’s featured project!
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An Afghan Cookbook – Arman “Longing”
In early 2021, I was Googling “Afghanistan” for stories about the people, the culture, and the cuisine. I found images of war, refugees, and suffering. I wanted to change the narrative, to tell the story of my people and its rich and vast traditions in a way people across the globe could understand – through food.
One of the first things I did was look for cookbooks that could give me insight into the real, authentic, traditional recipes of Afghanistan. Not just how we cook things the way we do, but why. I was also looking for fresh, modern takes on our ancient cuisine.
What I found was, while there are many great Afghan cooks there aren’t many great Afghan cookbooks.
This meant I had to be really creative in my research, but what this did was really allow me to explore my identity as an Afghan raised in America through the food of my homeland. And, I thought why not write the ultimate Afghan cookbook – one that doesn’t just give the recipes those of us who have visited Afghan restaurants or been to Afghan parties are so used to – but one that also gives us fresh takes on those old favorites.
Authenticity is important, but humans have traveled across the world throughout the ages, and with every step they bring with them new flavors, new traditions, new crops. This hasn’t stopped, particularly for Afghans who have been leaving home with tears in their eyes for generations. We take with us the taste of Afghanistan, but we make things that incorporate our new homes as well.
I have been testing these recipes my entire life, making mistakes of too much salt, not enough salt, sticky rice when it wasn’t intended and bread that came out crisp but not soft. I’ve made all the mistakes so you don’t have to! I’ve also done extensive research into the history of Afghan cuisine, why do we make things the way we do? Where does the dish originate from, and in what region of Afghanistan? And, I have stories – memories and longings and wishes all wrapped up in a plate of food. All of these will be in this book.
While the book will be beautiful, it will also be functional meaning you can look up dishes by ingredients as well as their name. This makes it useful for people who may remember eating something “it had potato and leeks in it” but not remember the name “bolani!” It will also have menu ideas – what do we eat with what? What flavors go well together? What do we eat at Nawruz, or during our break fast or breakfast with guests?
We will also be featuring Afghan artists – painters, photographers and graphic designers. The beauty of self-publishing is having control over the team you work with on the book and we can make sure that money goes to Afghan creatives.
As of January 3rd, this project has raised $15,500 of their $25,000 goal. This project has 36 days left to raise the $25,000 or it will not be funded. For a pledge of $30, you will get one eBook. For a pledge of $75, you will get one hardcover book. To learn more and to pledge money, go to: https://www.kickstarter.com/projects/afghancooks/arman-an-afghan-cookbook?
Categories: Crowdsourcing Mornings Stuff