The Japan Association for Refugees released a cookbook on traditional dishes from the home countries of the refugees who now live in Japan. The cookbook, “Umi o Watatta Kokyo no Aji” (Flavours Without Borders), provides 45 recipes from 15 countries and regions in Asia, the Middle East and Africa.
The book includes colorful pictures of food, such as spicy Pakistani and Nepalese curry, according to Kyodo news agency. Among the recipes there are Kurdish cucumber and yoghurt salad, Burmese noodles with kinako (roasted soybean flour), and omelette with Chinese chives.
The cookbook is dedicated to the refugees in Japan, as it is trying to raise awareness to a greater audience about their stories, according to the Japan Association for Refugees.
Every year, more than 1,000 people come to Japan to look for asylum and what they face in the new country is quite different from what they expected, the association’s officials say. “They do not understand the Japanese language and laws. In isolation and uncertainty, refugees have to survive while waiting for their refugee status to be granted. It usually takes 2 to 3 years, with some cased taking more than 5 years”.
Traditional food seems to be a way for refugees to keep their native countries closer to their hearts, as its taste and flavor brings back memories of home and important people in their lives.
The book is on sale since February 15 and all the funds obtained from its selling will be used to support refugees in Japan.