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Focus on Flavor: Helal Sousi, a refugee home cook from Syria

[Above photo: Helal Sousi, right, pictured with her husband Maher at a KRM staff member’s home for a food tasting. Photo by Pedro Santiago, 2016.]

Photo of Helal taken by Steve Pavey,

Photo of Helal taken by Steve Pavey.

Helal Sousi started cooking 26 years ago when she was married to Maher. She had success because her mother trained her well. When asked about her biggest food blunders she answered with a smile that she has not had any big food mistakes. If she had a choice of eating her own home cooking or having someone cook for her she would prefer her food, but she never says no to others food!

Her favorite dishes to make? Mahshi, stuffed zucchini and Makdous, stuffed eggplant.

When asked if there are ingredients she has not had access to here in Lexington and has missed she said that she has been happy to find everything she wants at Lexington’s local shops, Parissa, Alibaba, Sahara, and King Tut. She is truly a humble yet amazing cook!

Helal and Maher arrived in Lexington in July 2015. Both are from Syria and joined us here after fleeing to Jordan. Helal was paired with local chef Ilias from Athenian Grill for KRM’s Passport to Flavor fundraiser in Lexington, Kentucky, on June 24, 2016. KRM will host this fundraiser in Lexington each year.