PART II: The ABCs of Middle-Eastern Spice Medicines from Dill to Ginger

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Dried galingal root is a Middle East spice great for nausea and flatulence. In Mama Nazima’s Jewish-Iraqi Cuisine, author Rivka Goldman mentions that her mother cooked soup to help invalids regain strength. Well, all the recipes involve spices: curry, black or red pepper, turmeric, ginger, cloves, and cumin. Mama Nazima, with her rich fund of […]

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RECIPE: Creamy Eggplant Soup

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Eggplant seems an unlikely soup ingredient. But blended with vegetable stock, herbs, and cream, the shiny purple vegetable makes a creamy soup full of Middle-Eastern flavors. Now is when eggplant is coming into season in the Middle East. In any market there’s a table piled high with long purple-black eggplants, round eggplants, ridged eggplants, purple […]

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IsraWinexpo In Tel Aviv Showcases Israeli Wines

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IsraWinexpo 2010 opened last night to journalists, critics, and wine industry representatives. The exhibition opens to the public today and tomorrow, Feb. 10-11, from 16:00 -22:00 hours. It takes place at the Tel Aviv Exhibition Center. Green Prophet attended. Glass in hand, we circulated between the attractive, well-organized stands, which were staffed by friendly, knowledgeable […]

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RECIPE for Ma’amoul Cookies, a Tender Arabian Pastry Delight

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Ma’moul means “filled” or “stuffed” in Arabic, and these tender, crumbly pastries are stuffed with dates or nuts. Traditionally, they’re made in special wooden molds that imprint the pastry with individual designs – so you know if your ma’amoul is stuffed with walnuts, dates, or pistachios, without having to take a bite. People all over […]

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RECIPE: Almond Blossom Liqueur

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White Almond Blossoms Make A Unique Liqueur All over the Mediterranean and Middle East, wild almond trees in fields and along highways are becoming clouds of pink and white blossom. They’re the first to bloom at winter’s end. Although rain and dark skies may return a few more times, tentative sunshine warms our faces, and […]

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Surprising Salt

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Photo of the Dead Sea by David Shankbone, courtesy of Wikimedia Commons. We can’t live without salt. That’s a known fact. To satisfy the craving for this essential nutrient, people have fought wars to own it, built roads to transport it, suffered extreme labor to extract it from the earth, and paid high taxes for […]

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RECIPE: Chicory, Traditional Middle-Eastern Greens

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Will chicory become chic? Chicory, or olesh in Arabic and Hebrew, is a tasty wild edible related to endive. Generations of  Middle Eastern peoples hand-gathered the lance-like, serrated leaves to cook, but you can buy it cultivated now. Unfortunately, this nutritious, inexpensive wild vegetable hasn’t acquired the prestige of, say, artichokes – which are really […]

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Where Macrobiotic Meets Makluba in Jerusalem

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Chef Moshe Basson and health expert Christina Pirello put a vegan twist on a classic Arab dish. After changing location several times, Jerusalem’s Eucalyptus Restaurant has taken root in the prestigious Khutzot HaYotzer artist’s quarter in Jerusalem. Chef Moshe Basson hosted a “Biblical Cooking Class” there last week, taught by visiting American health and nutrition […]

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Book Review of Precycle! by Paul Peacock: So You Can Do Better Than Recycling

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Recycling uses up the planet’s resources. You can do better than to recycle: consume less to begin with. That’s the premise of this short book by British self-sufficiency expert Paul Peacock, who has written 14 books on topics ranging from seasonal cooking to keeping poultry for town dwellers. Peacock dips into the question of what […]

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RECIPE: Potato Latkehs for Hanukkah

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The Festival of Lights. Traditional songs, spinning tops and chocolate coins, candles in the menorah flickering while we wait for the first platter of hot latkehs, our home-made Hanukkah treat. Latkehs! What is it with latkehs? They’re brown, they’re fried, they’re potatoey and oniony and when you fry them, you have to open all the […]

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