Pomegranates and their ruby-like seeds are one of the fruits that define the Middle East, or at least the Levante side of the Middle East. Even though suspect pomegranate seeds were traced to an outbreak of hepatitis this past summer in the United States (organic fruit at that!), we have to let bygones by bygones.
I am a fan of baba ghanoush, and I am a fan of food that looks erotic. In today’s way of conventional farming we’ve grown accustomed to getting that perfectly symmetrical eggplant or tomato.
Sustainable urban farming as a viable concept is now beginning to become popular in many parts of the world, including the Middle East.
It could be because the country eats kosher, and many people strictly avoid pizza with both cheese and meat. Or it could be because Tel Aviv seems to be becoming the vegan capitol of the world. But Domino’s pizza chain is rolling with it and delivering what Israeli customer’s want: a vegan pizza.
Listen up. Several Syrian children froze to death this past week because they lacked adequate clothing. The UN predicts that more Syrians will die this winter from exposure to the elements than from the violence of the last three years. There needs to be more sustainable ways of treating refugees. But let’s start with the […]
One advantage of eating vegan is that you probably have all ingredients for home-cooked meals in your pantry, all the time. Another advantage, especially in freezing winter times like now, is how filling and warming vegan foods are, based as they are on grains, like lupini beans, which deserve to be better known, and lots […]
A graphic indication of unsustainable commercial fishing was conveyed by two environmental watch organizations, Greenpeace and Western Sahara Watch, have revealed severe unsustainable practices by Moroccan commercial fishing vessels who were seen dumping tons of sardines overboard into ocean waters off the Western Sahara.
Who says you can’t make the desert bloom? The desert regions of Israel and Jordan have for years been the subject of numerous agricultural projects. Some of these projects include creating community gardens by residents of desert towns; and being involved in epic Sahara forest projects. Now let’s look at what’s happening in Wadi Rum.
The good news is that 800 tons of Syria’s chemical weapons are scheduled to be destroyed before the end of December. The bad news is, the byproducts of this chemical weapon destruction will be dumped into the Mediterranean Sea where they could damage fragile ecosystems.
MERS, a SARS-like virus believed to be transmitted by either camels or bats has claimed another life in the Middle East. This time a mother of a newborn and an eight year old boy from Jordan.
Westerners may be confused about Middle Eastern customs and how people, men especially, use the ‘squat’ toilet. How we “go” impacts our environment: sit down toilets, and toilet paper consume more resources. Here is a guest post from the Sex and Saudi blog on how Saudi Arabians urinate.
Guess who might be the culprit carrying a new SARS-like virus to people in the Middle East?
It’s that frying time of the year again. Hanukkah, the Jewish Festival of Lights which lasts for eight days. The holiday commemorates the victory of the Jewish people against Antiochus IV Epiphanes in 165 B.C, and the restoration of the Holy Temple in Jerusalem, which had been ransacked and desecrated. The light in the Temple, […]
Israel, being on the “land bridge” that links it with Africa and Asia Minor, has always been well known for a number of biblical fruits. These include: the multi-seed pomegranates, grapes from which superb wines are now made; and of course several varieties of dates and olives. Another iconic fruit, although not native, comes from the […]
Qatar, Kuwait, Bahrain, and the United Arab Emirates have all ranked among the world’s top 10 fattest nations with ballooning obesity rates and an explosion of associated diseases. But there’s an upside to oversize:
Polio,or Poliomyelitis has not been a serious medical issue ever since the first wide scale vaccines were developed by Dr. Jonas Salk in the early 1950s. Within the past few years, however, the often debilitating virus has began to return to epidemic proportions in many parts of the world. This includes the Middle East.
Green Prophets burn lots of calories trying to make the planet a better place, but you can’t do much do-gooding if you’re dead. I’ll share a day in my week as a cautionary tale (and offer a peek into Amman’s excellent, and sometimes culturally surreal, medical system).
The number of people left homeless by the devastating Philippines typhoon Haiyan has topped 800,000 according to the latest United Nations estimate. Haiyan was the biggest storm ever recorded to reach landfall, wiping out entire villages and killing over 4,000 people (numbers continue to rise). Feeling the inevitable urge to assist?
A photographic series entitled Pacific Light captures a spellbinding dance that begins when ink, paint and soap collide. Watch stunning color combinations puddle and swirl. Visual artist Ruslan Khasanov snapped gorgeous photos, but his video and GIFs (short for Graphic Interchange Format, a form of computer image that moves as soundless animation) are spectacular.
With the Middle Eastern olive season in full swing, it’s natural to think of cooking with those fleshy, savory olive morsels. If you’ve been lucky enough to get olives pickled on the farm, as I did at the Olive Branch Festival in Israel, most of your work has been done for you.
In the race towards old age, our “girls” cross the finish line first! Maybe not a prize you want to win, but breast tissue ages faster than the rest of our body according to a study published in the journal Genome Biology.
More massive-scale animal abuse found in Israel. This time the kosher status of the company is at stake: Following news that cattle and sheep are being severely mistreated at a large kosher slaughterhouse, Israel’s Kolbotek consumer watchdog program has again revealed large scale animal abuse at the country’s leading poultry processing plant, Soglowek.
Scientists in Dubai are growing a new kind of food crop in salt marshes along the Persian Gulf coast. A variety of salt-resistant succulent, Salicornia are typically sold in gourmet shops in Europe, but they have other uses as well.
Smoking the hookah, nargilah or shisha pipe is a truly fun and social way to connect in the Middle East. It’s an oriental fantasy for newcomers and even for women in private circles who want to wind down and let loose. But one session can be like smoking 600 cigarettes!
We have to laugh at this research, given the latest news that there is a gay test being developed by Kuwait to weed out homosexuals from Gulf regions: scientists from Israel and Switzerland find that while many kinds of insects and spiders “act” gay, they probably are gay by accident.