I like to believe that my love of cooking started here, with Betty Crocker propped open in my 1982 brown-and-mustard linoleum kitchen.  It then disappeared for several decades in the face of what constituted most late 20th century diets (Velveeta “cheese,” Ramen noodles and copious amounts of peanut butter), and was reawakened only a few years ago when I suddenly found myself an adult, needing to provide meals not only for myself but also a Hungry Husband.

We moved to the Middle East in 2006, just five months into marriage, and have lived in several countries throughout the region.  Because most of my married life has taken place in the Middle East, my process of becoming a wife has been shaped not only by my and my husband’s family backgrounds and American culture but also by our Arab neighbors and their understandings of family.  One of the things that has impressed me the most is the care women put into preparing food for their families, and I feel challenged to incorporate that value more into my life.  Although I am American, I have imbibed deeply of various aspects of the Arab cultures and have been changed by my time here.  The name of this blog is my attempt to reflect the continual process of cultural identification that goes on in my life.

I started this blog primarily thinking to write about food, American, Arab, and otherwise; my main intention is to bring back to life my angsty-college-poetry-writing self in a slightly healthier (and tastier) manner.  Life is more than food, however, so I will occasionally write on other subjects that interest me (and hopefully you).

I would tell you all about my camera, as that seems to be good food blog protocol, but really—we bought it before we were married, when 6 megapixels was the height of technology for the average consumer, and there is no reason anyone should buy a camera with such little zoom power these days.  That, combined with my complete lack of knowledge about proper “staging” of food (a concept which still makes me snicker a little) and no photo editing experience means that my pictures are not always pretty.  I also deal with internet limitations of time, speed, and government monitoring, which means I can be neither graphically fancy nor (overtly) politically snarky.  Such is The AmerArab Life.

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