Georgia Hayden

Cookbook - Nistisima by Georgina Hayden


No fads, no frills, just 120 vegan recipes that have stood the test of time from award-winning food writer Georgina Hayden, currently appearing on On UK TV’s The Great Cookbook Challenge

Nistisima means fasting food – food eaten during Lent and other times of fasting observed by those of Orthodox faith. Mostly this involves giving up meat and dairy and instead using vegetables, pulses and grains to create easy, delicious dishes that all just happen to be vegan.

In this book, Georgina draws on the history and culture around nistisimo cooking in the Mediterranean, Middle East and Eastern Europe to share the simple, nutritious and flavour-packed recipes at the heart of the practice, including:

  • Salatet malfouf cabbage slaw
  • Briam ('Greek ratatouille')
  • Pumpkin, raisin and harissa pie
  • Kibbet el raheb, 'monks' soup'
  • Jewelled lentil moutzentra
  • Rizogalo rose rice pudding with roasted strawberries
  • Moustokouloura spiced grape, honey and chocolate biscuits

Whether you're vegan, vegetarian, or simply want to eat more plant-based food, Nistisima offers you tried and tested recipes that celebrate the very best of this tradition – all bursting with flavour and all surprisingly vegan.

Mouthwatering recipes and beautiful storytelling - I want a seat at Georgie's table ― Jamie Oliver

This book is the sunny window that everyone needs: open it to flood your kitchen with Mediterranean sun, delicious food and great stories. Georgina takes these ancient traditions and fits them to our modern kitchens with impeccable style and flare; surely lent has never tasted so good ― Itamar Srulovic, Honey & Co

There's so much to love and to learn in Georgina's glorious Nistisima. It's really worth fasting to eat like this ― Claudia Roden

The only proper response to Georgina Hayden's new book, Nistisima, is greedy delight, as far as I'm concerned ― Nigella Lawson

About the Author

Georgina Hayden is a cook, food writer and stylist from north London. She writes for publications such as The Telegraph, Delicious Magazine and Observer Food Monthly, and in 2021 she won the Fortnum & Mason Best Cookery Writer Award for her work in Waitrose Food magazine. 

Growing up above her grandparents’ Greek Cypriot taverna, Georgina developed a love of cooking and storytelling through the recipes passed down to her. She started her career as food assistant, working at various food magazines, and then went on to join Jamie Oliver’s food team where she worked for 12 years. There she did everything from styling, developing and writing recipes for books and TV, magazines and campaigns. Her first book, Stirring Slowly, was published in 2016, followed by the book about the food of her Cypriot family, Taverna, in 2019. Nistisima is her third book.

For Greek Cypriot food stylist and writer, Georgina Hayden, the food of Cyprus is at the very heart of a lifelong passion for cooking. Georgie's grandparents moved to England from Cyprus in the 1950s, but the cuisine of their native island remained at the centre of family life in the UK; while one set of grandparents ran a hugely popular taverna in London's Tufnell Park for over thirty years, the other opened one of North London's first Cypriot grocers. Many of Georgie's fondest childhood memories are of spending hours in the kitchen with her yiayias, closely watching them make traditional delicacies and helping them prepare feasts for the family and local community.   

See Georgina’s other amazing cookbook Taverna here. 

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