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One could argue that fusion cuisine was invented in Samarkand, the fabled metropolis of the Great Silk Route, which played host to Marco Polo, Alexander the Great and Ghengis Khan – although not always voluntarily – and where traders from the Mediterranean to China passed through for thousands of years, bringing their wares and customs and spices to each evening’s meal. Many of the key aspects of Uzbek cooking will be recognizable from the kitchens and ovens of China, the Indian Subcontinent, Persia and Russia, but the end result is distinctly Uzbek.
Dan and Firuza know a thing or two about blending cultures and backgrounds, having made a home and a family in Los Angeles, perhaps a modern-day Samarkand. Their kitchen – and their city – is where elements and ingredients from all over the world blend together in ways both old and new, and where the ritual of sharing a meal at the end of the day is as important as it was a thousand years ago.