Passion for Persia Showcasing a Dazzling Culinary History

Presented by Naomi Duguid
Traveler, writer, photographer, cook

Here in the west, though we may know a little about the great Persian empires of times past, we have been cut off from an appreciation of Persian culture by complicated geopolitics. And we’re not familiar with the old deep-rooted connections between the various peoples in Iran and neighboring countries.

In the travels of award-winning culinary scribe, Naomi Duguid, this acclaimed author has come to see Iran and the Caucasus countries, together with Kurdistan (in Iraq) as a fascinating culinary region. When Naomi first traveled to Georgia in 1989, it was part of the USSR and felt very remote. She says the food was dazzling, remarkable, a whole new take on some very familiar ingredients. Now Georgia and the other Caucasus countries, Azerbaijan and Armenia, are in the western sphere. Their giant neighbor Iran has been isolated politically for decades, but now it too is slowly becoming more accessible to visitors from the west.

Despite a great diversity of languages, religions, landscapes, all these places share a culinary history, and esthetic, while also having distinctive local cuisines. Naomi will take us traveling there, through photographs and stories, to see the landscapes and to engage with the remarkable and generous people and food traditions she encountered in her travels.

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Biography: Naomi Duguid, traveler, writer, photographer, cook, is often described as a culinary anthropologist. Her newest book TASTE OF PERSIA: A Cook’s Travels Through Armenia, Azerbaijan, Georgia, Iran, & Kurdistan was just published this month. Copies will be on hand for purchase, with all profits used to fund the Culinary Historians of Chicago.

Naomi is the author of the acclaimed BURMA: Rivers of Flavor (winner, 2013 IACP culinary travel cookbook award), and the co-author of six earlier award-winning books of food and travel: Hot Sour Salty Sweet: A Culinary Journey Through South-East Asia; Seductions of Rice; Flatbreads and Flavors;Home Baking; Mangoes and Curry Leaves; and Beyond the Great Wall: Recipes and Stories from the Other China. The books explore home-cooked foods in their cultural context, with recipes and photographs as well as stories. Naomi is a frequent contributor to Lucky Peach, and is a contributing editor of Saveur magazine. She conducts intensive cultural-immersion- through-food sessions in northern Thailand each winter, as well as food-focused tours to Burma/Myanmar (for details of the tours this coming winter see

Saturday, October 1, 2016
10 a.m. to noon
At Kendall College School of Culinary Arts
900 N. North Branch Street, Chicago
(Located just north of W. Chicago Ave. at N. Halsted St.)

Cost of the lecture program is $5, $3 for students and no charge for CHC members and Kendall students and faculty.

To reserve, please e-mail your reservation