The Cuisine of LIFE: Recipes and Stories of the New Food Entrepreneurs of Turkey

About the Cookbook

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“Often our first exposure to a new culture is through our palates. What better way for you to get to know the new food entrepreneurs of Turkey than through their signature dishes?”

Abdulwahab Alkebsi, Managing Director for Programs, Center for International Private Enterprise

The Cuisine of LIFE is a unique collection of wisdom, stories, and culinary treasures from some of the leading minds in the food industry internationally and rising stars in Turkey.

This book combines short essays about the special role of food in building community with recipes you can prepare at home. The 58 recipes are contributed by 24 members of a larger community of LIFE Project entrepreneurs and a co-editor representing the unique culinary cultures of seven different countries. Through the contributions made by these entrepreneurs, we learn how their culinary roots have shaped their personal and business journeys. We are proud to tell the stories behind the food.

“This is not only a cookbook. This is the story of an entrepreneurship program that will both create jobs through cultural engagement and develop capacities in the process of sharing recipes and learning new skills.”

Filiz Hösükoğlu, Co-Editor






Filiz Hösükoğlu

Gastronomy Consultant

Johanna Mendelson Forman

Distinguished Fellow, Stimson Center

Special Thanks to our Collaborators

Recipe Advising - Mutfak Sanatları Akademisi (MSA Culinary Arts Academy of Istanbul): Mehmet Kemal Aksel, Sitare Baras, Ayşe Uğural, Marketing and Communications, Cem Erol (Head Chef), İsmail Emre Çakır (Assistant Chef), and the MSA students who supported this effort

Photography: Danielle Villasana and Seren Dal, with assistance from Can Mete

Co-Editors: Filiz Hösükoğlu, Alaa Alarori, and Johanna Mendelson Forman

Copyediting: Kara Elder

Essay Contributors: Johanna Mendelson Forman, Filiz Hösükoğlu, Cem Erol, Kathleen Newland, Yigal Schleifer, Mert Firat, Dalia Mortada, Zeynep Kakınç, Nevin Halıcı, Joan Nathan, Artun Ünsal, Musa Dağdeviren, Paul Newnham, David Hertz, Anissa Helou, Mitchell Davis