Little steps helped accomplish a big dream

The Palestinian TableConventional wisdom says that if you want to publish a cookbook but don’t have a huge Instagram following, own a wildly successful restaurant, or host a popular television cooking show, it’s almost impossible to get taken seriously by agents and publishers. It’s a good thing that Reem Kassis didn’t believe in conventional wisdom, because she recently published a cookbook without having so much as a blog

Instead of following a traditional route to publishing, Kassis doggedly pursued her dream by taking a series of small yet concrete steps to achieve her goal. She read the acknowledgements section of cookbooks to identify agents and diligently researched each one. Kassis used the knowledge gleaned from her research to write targeted letters to the agents, and received a high response rate. From there, she kept taking small steps until she got what she wanted: a deal that ended in the publication of The Palestinian Table

Kassis even got Anthony Bourdain to write a blurb for the book. Bourdain says that “Reading and cooking from this essential book – a thoughtful collection of great recipes, historical and cultural insights, and beautiful photographs – will move you closer to understanding this complex, fascinating part of the world.”

We can assume that Kassis worked as diligently on the book as she did on its publication. In The Palestinian Table, she weaves together a tapestry of personal anecdotes, local traditions, and historical context, sharing with home cooks her collection of delicious, easy-to-follow recipes that range from simple breakfasts and speedy salads to celebratory dishes fit for a feast – giving rare insight into the heart and hearth of the Palestinian family kitchen. 

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