YEREVAN. – Armenian publicist and writer sees a plot in the Culture Ministry’s policy. She expressed this opinion, during a press conference on Wednesday, reflecting on including the Armenian national dish Harissa in UNESCO Intangible Cultural Heritage List, but as a Turkish national dish called Keshkek.
In her words, cuisine is a part of culture, and Harissa is an Armenian dish which was prepared since long ago. “We must be the masters of our belonging. We have a Culture Ministry that has two tasks: to preserve and to reveal what was lost, and to properly present our culture,” the publicist stated.
In his turn, the “Development and Preservation of Armenian Culinary Traditions” NGO Chairman Sedrak Mamulyan noted that the utensils, methods, and ingredients used for making the Harissa have a pure Armenian origin and it is a purely Armenian dish. “If a dish is prepared in the tonir [cylindrical clay oven], there is no doubt that it is Armenian. The homeland of the wheat is the Armenian Plateau, and this is accepted by everyone,” he said.
And the aforesaid NGO’s secretary Vahe Antanesyan informed that the young Armenian ethnographers are gathering all information on Harissa so as to appeal this decision. “But there must be state assistance to rectify the situation,” he argued.