Carolyn M Wetzel cmwetzel at
Fri Oct 21 12:25:12 EST 1994

This is in response to the request for information about the sumac used in
Middle Eastern cooking.  Sorry, I lost the original message so I don't
remember who to direct this to.

Jill Norman, in her book "The Complete Book of Spices: A Practical Guide to
Spices and Aromatic Seeds", gives the name Rhus coriaria for culinary sumac
of that region.  She says that it grows wild throughout the Middle East, and
is especially popular in Lebanon.  She also says that Rhus glabra was used
by North American Indians for a sour drink.  I have found ground sumac at
Middle Eastern groceries, and it keeps well for several months in a glass

By the way, I highly recommend Jill Norman's book if you have any interest
in spices and spice blends used throughout the world.  It has beautiful and
helpful pictures of all forms that the spices are available in, information
about how and where they are grown, any interesting bit of lore about them,
and recipes for common ethnic blends and dishes.  Standard disclaimer for
advertising on the NET:  I do not gain in any way from recommending her book
(except the satisfaction of sharing it with fellow spice enthusiasts).
(Viking Studio Books, New York, 1991 [American edition])

Carolyn M. Wetzel			cmwetzel at
Postdoctoral Research Associate		Tel. 515/294-7784
Department of Botany			Bessey Hall
Iowa State University			Ames, Iowa  50011-1020

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