While Tajikistan is the smallest of the former Central Asian Soviet counties, it is a rapidly globalizing nation undergoing a rich cultural and national renaissance. More than a cookbook, Taste of Sarband is a collection of anecdotes, memories, cultural lessons, and musings on what food means to Tajiks, both personally and culturally. This cookbook contains recipes encompassing building blocks and seasoning, breads, breakfast dishes, side dishes, main meals, drinks, and deserts.
Ellen A. Abdulmuminov is a graduate student pursuing her Ph.D. in International Relations. During this time, she has been blessed to become part of a warm and generous Tajik family. From these relationships, she learned how to cook traditional meals from Tajikistan, and became passionate about capturing these recipes (and the oral histories behind them) and making them more available for general enjoyment and dissemination.
Always a fan of qualitative methods over quantitative data (explaining why she is in Political Science and not Economics), Taste of Sarband is Ellen’s first large-scale interview and oral history project. In addition to talking, her other passions are hiking, travelling, and mead-making. Ellen is passionate about making education more accessible to youth, especially young women. Half of all profits from Taste of Sarband: Culinary Histories and Dishes of Tajikistan go to supporting rural and female schoolchildren in Tajikistan.
Ellen has had the honor of having several short and science fiction stories published across the web, including 365 Tomorrows, The Cross Section Journal, Managing Multicultural Scandinavia, and American Review of Canadian Studies. She has presented and served as invited speaker at the Asia in the Russian Imagination conference, and the Washington Institute on the Study of Inequality and Race.