Sabras – prickly pears – opuntia ficus-indica. The reddish-purple sabra fruit is ripening in empty lots and gardens all over Israel and the Levant. But you have to know how to pick them. As one who ignored the warning cries of experienced foragers and grasped a ripe sabra with my bare hand, I know. The […]
Soy has been touted as a source of perfect protein for decades. It was believed that soy prevents breast cancer and heart disease. Women built soy into their diets as a nutritional shield against breast cancer. Soy-based baby formula was hailed as a convenient and healthy alternative to mother’s milk. In 1999, the FDA authorized […]
Cauliflower is enjoying a big trend among dieters and health-conscious eaters. That’s because the vegetable has almost no calories and almost no starch. And it has so many phytochemicals – biologically active plant compounds – that listing them all here would make you think you’re reading a leaflet from a multi-vitamin box. Cauliflower is such […]
Eggplant is the poor man’s meat in the Middle East, but when you serve it stuffed with good local cheese and sweet cherry tomatoes, it’s a luxury. We also do a variation on eggplant Parmesan, here. This recipe is different in that the eggplants are simmered whole in water before filling and baking, rather than […]
If “breakfast” evokes a chilly bowl of cornflakes and a fast cup of coffee, it’s time you treated yourself better. It’s hard to say which meal is our favorite, but here are the reasons to make the day’s first meal a good one. For a quick, healthy breakfast, avocado is your ally. Half a medium-large […]
It’s springtime in the Middle East. Afternoons are warm, but chilly evenings still make oven-roasted vegetables an enjoyable option for dinner. Butternut, and other hard-skinned squashes, are in season, and will be for at least another month. Here’s April’s seasonal produce, all detailed out for you. I picked up a medium-sized butternut squash to make […]
This week is when the weather finally turns warm in Israel, inviting families on Passover vacation to fire up their grills outdoors. You can hardly walk through a public park without skirting families unpacking picnics, fanning charcoals, and chasing runaway toddlers. And chicken wings are a favorite on these picnics, being easy to cook and […]
It’s full garlic season in the Middle East. Markets display piles of the pungent bulbs, with the green stalks for you to hang up and dry, or with the greens chopped off for your convenience. I confess, I’m crazy about about garlic. Every spring, I buy 30 kg. to see me through the year. Local […]
Being vegewarian, I keep meat for holidays and special occasions. Because that’s what vegewarian means – eating mostly sustainable and local vegetarian foods, with meat dishes only once in a while. Here’s one of our typical vegewarian non-meat recipes. With Passover on the way, I’m thinking what sumptuous meat dish to cook. The problem with […]
Passover is the Jewish festival of freedom from slavery in Egypt and the realization of Jewish national identity. The Jews fled Egypt in such haste that there was no time to let their dough rise to bake waybread. They simply rolled the unrisen dough out and baked it flat. And thus were born matzot, also […]
Mallows are at the top of my edible weeds list. Once or twice every year, at late winter, I go out and bring home a big bag full of them. Mallows on their long stems to hang up and dry. Mallow flowers and fruit to sprinkle over salads. Mallow leaves to stuff with rice or […]
Part II in a series of 4 about cooking and healing with roses. To cook with fresh roses, first make sure they haven’t been sprayed with pesticides. Then get up early, while the dew is still on the flowers and before they’ve released most of their perfume. Clip off as many as you need and […]
Part I in a series of 4 about eating and healing with roses. Roses have everything you desire in a flower: beauty, fragrance and the power to express, and to waken, love. Maybe it’s their mysterious beauty; a whorl of petals that enclose the unmistakable, heady scent. Body and spirit instinctively respond to rose’s soothing, […]
Roasted wedges of kabocha pumpkin make a great, easy winter dinner.
I live in the Middle East. Whenever my mom comes to visit she freaks out over the new flavors. Middle East cuisine has its own distinct curries and flavors for vegetables, fish and meat. There aren’t thousands of varieties, but like Indian cuisine the flavor of a good spice blend depends on its source, blend […]
Israel! You are so good at so many things beyond technology. And food, as locals and tourists know is becoming Israel’s rising star. With hyper-local fresh food production capabilities, Israelis from Tel Aviv to Jerusalem enjoy traditional Mediterranean food, hybridized with any international trend. It makes complete sense in a country that’s into food, and […]
Watch out world, and those in North Africa and Middle East areas: A swarm of locusts of Biblical proportions could be heading near you. While bugs can form a significant amount of healthy human protein (that’s not kosher), locusts are particularly damaging as they ravage crops in their wake. RELATED: Flying Spark food made in […]
Somewhere in the middle of Ontario is a company hidden from view. Sitting on 5 acres of reforested farmland is Blue Planet Environmental. I guess you can call them innovative scientists, who are using patented aeration technology and what they call “nano-bubbles” or really, really small bubbles of air, to make big changes in industries […]
Even the US Customs guy at the New Jersey airport gave me an approving nod: “A technology for hydroponics?” He flips over my business invitation from the NY company to see if there wasn’t something inside. “Well, you know, it’s still,” in a fake finger-wagging voice, “…illegal here?” he says, waiting for my reply. There […]
What’s vegewarian, anyway? Answer: it’s selecting sustainable dishes based on non-meat foods at least once weekly. Halloumi is said to have originated long ago in Cyprus. Cheesemakers spread the Halloumi technique abroad of compacting milk fresh curds and curing them in brine, and now many Middle Eastern countries produce the cheese. It may be made […]
The quinoa craze turned what was once a cheap, nourishing staple diet for Bolivians and Peruvians into an unaffordable grain for many of the poor locally. Read here about the dirty secret of quinoa. The appetite of western culture, and fanatic vegetarianism has increased demand for quinoa stratospherically: in 2013 the price of quinoa tripled […]
If you live in south Tel Aviv in the Shapiro neighborhood by the central bus station you might come in contact with an African migrant or refugee. Unless you live side by side with them, it’s doubtful that you’ll get a chance to talk to one of the tens of thousands of men, and sometimes […]
A liquid formula that goes down easy and provides you enough nutrients for the day. Would you ever start eating soylent?
Those jars and honey bears full of golden liquid are mostly not honey at all. It’s just syrup that tastes something like the real thing.
In the Galilee’s Arab, Jewish, and Druze communities, life has a rural rhythm, slower than in big towns. You can tell that people like to stop and sniff the roses, as each garden displays roses and other lovingly tended fragrant bushes. And the old foodways are still alive in the Galilee, preserved by middle-aged housewives.