Habeeb Salloum: Author, Scholar, Traveler
He has taken us sailing on an Arab dhow in Dubai and given us tours of the world's most beautiful and interesting destinations: El Salvador's Mayan ruins, the Island of Mallorca and the emerald world of Jarabacoa in the Dominican Republic.
Most recently he took us on a nostalgic tour through the grasslands of western Canada where he grew up during the Great Depression on a homestead in Gouverneur, Saskatchewan. The town is gone; there is only a plaque showing where it was.
Habeeb is an author and freelance writer specializing in Canadian, Arab, Far Eastern and Latin American history, travel and the culinary arts. Besides five books and 15 chapters in anthologies, he has written hundred of article about food, travel, history and homesteading in western Canada.
He grew up on his family's homestead farm in Sasketchewan and served in the Royal Canadian Air Force during World War II. After the war he worked for Revenue Canada and, at the same time, pursued his literary and scholastic interests. After retirement, he became a full-time freelance writer and author.
He has travelled extensively to most parts of the world and has written hundreds of articles about the countries he has visited and about their cuisines.
For the last 22 years he has been a full-time freelance writer and author specializing in food, history and travel. Besides eight books and 18 chapters in anthologies, he has written hundreds of articles about culture, food, travel, history and homesteading in western Canada, especially about Arab pioneering / homesteading in western Canada; the impact of Arab/Muslim Spain on the development of subsequent world history; and Arabic contributions to the English and Spanish vocabularies.
Among his most important published books are: Classic Vegetarian Cooking From the Middle East and North Africa; Arabic Contributions to the English Vocabulary; From the Lands of Figs and Olives: Over 300 Delicious and Unusual Recipes from the Middle East; North Africa; Journeys Back to Arab Spain; and Arab Cooking On A Saskatchewan Homestead, winner of the Cuisine Canada and The University of Guelph's Silver Canadian Culinary Book Awards in Winnipeg in 2006.
He also authored the chapter on the history of the Syrians in Canada in the Encyclopedia of Canada's Peoples.
Currently, Habeeb still spends his time traveling and writing about his travels. While at home, he continues to create new dishes. His writings on these subjects continue to be published in a series of newspapers and magazines in North America, Europe and the Middle East.
This year he published two new cookbooks: Bison Delights: Middle Eastern Cuisine, Western Style with more than 100 recipes for cooking buffalo Middle Eastern style, and The Arabian Nights Cookbook: Great Goodies from the Gulf with "multinational" recipes from the Persian Gulf.
He lives in Toronto, Canada, with one of his daughters, who is kept busy proofreading his work.
Read Habeeb Salloum's stories on GoNOMAD:
Grasslands National Park: Canada's Only Virgin Prairie
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