Bilal Cooks Daal (Hardcover)
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Bilal is six years old and excited about sharing his favorite food with his friends. It takes a long time to cook, which gives Bilal time to start worrying about whether his friends will even like it! This cute story touches on themes of patience and teamwork, and how luckily, good food always has a way of bringing people together.— Jackie
An Asian/Pacific American Award for Literature Honor Book 2019
Six-year-old Bilal introduces his friends to his favorite dish—daal!—in this charming picture book that showcases the value of patience, teamwork, community, and sharing.
Six-year-old Bilal is excited to help his dad make his favorite food of all-time: daal! The slow-cooked lentil dish from South Asia requires lots of ingredients and a whole lot of waiting. Bilal wants to introduce his friends to daal. They’ve never tried it! As the day goes on, the daal continues to simmer, and more kids join Bilal and his family, waiting to try the tasty dish. And as time passes, Bilal begins to wonder: Will his friends like it as much as he does?
This debut picture book by Aisha Saeed, with charming illustrations by Anoosha Syed, uses food as a means of bringing a community together to share in each other’s family traditions.
Anoosha Syed is a Pakistani-Canadian illustrator and character designer for animation, based in Texas. She graduated with a BFA in illustration at Ceruleum: Ecole d’arts Visuels in Lausanne, Switzerland. Bilal Cooks Daal is her first picture book.
— Kirkus Reviews, starred review
"Refreshingly innovative...a lovely picture-book debut."
"The author uses food as a way to create common ground and bridge cultures. The illustrations are charming and the facial expressions of the children are endearing. The recipe itself, diversity of the characters, and the father taking on the role as a cook and enlisting his son to help prepare dinner are interwoven themes that make this book perfect for reading discussions among preschoolers. The book also shows that the deepest flavors come with ingredients that simmer gently. This teaches patience to youngsters. The story can prompt discussions about patience, friendship, expanding your palate, measurements, and spices. A fun introduction to cross cultural sharing."
— School Library Journal, Online