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Bilal Cooks Daal written by Aisha Saeed and illustrated by Anoosha Syed


In a hurry up society, Bilal’s friends are at first confused by the long wait that daal entails. As the day goes on and Bilal and his friends try to wait patiently Bilal is excited, then nervous to share his favorite food. I was surprised that some of my students had not had daal, but when L. piped up and shared it is one of her favorite dishes that her dad makes too they got hungry. The descriptions brought the food to life. The third graders could appreciate the story as a view into traditional foods that others around them might not know and it led to a great discussion. We learned that there was a wide variety of comfort foods we enjoy.

The illustrations are bright and fun to the story. There is even a recipe at the end. I love books with recipes! Every time we read a book with a recipe the class insists on copies! In talking about the book again recently with my class I am determined to make my own daal soon. L. even sent me two recipes her dad swears by. Now more than ever I am all in on learning to make something delicious that can bubble away in the crockpot with just a bit of attention from time to time.



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