Every Friday when Mahmut Pasha, the famous Grand Vizier of Mehmet the Conqueror, invited his ministers to lunch he would serve an intriguing mound of rice and chickpea pilaf as the climax to the meal. Intriguing, because dispersed amongst the chickpeas would he solid gold halls, moulded hy his goldsmiths to resemble chickpeas, which would bring good fortune to the guests lucky enough to procure them in their spoons. Finely chopped leek or spinach can he added to this pilaf.
© 1995 Ghillie Basan. All rights reserved.