My trip to Israel is almost over, and so is this blog. As much as I'd like this to turn into the next "Julie and Julia" film (in which case I'd like Paul Giammati to play me), I don't think that my story is that interesting and I will probably delete this blog (whatever that means) sometime around December.
I spent the last three months in Israel exploring the culture through its food (in and out of this blog), its scenic routes and, above all, its people.
But this blog is about my culinary experience and what I made of it. Israeli food is certainly very different from (my experience of) American cuisine. It is probably healthier (although you have got to keep an eye on those carbs) and uses more vegetables and less meat (but Israelis do love meat, don't get me wrong). It is also interesting to see how here lettuce doesn't play a central role in salads.
I managed to surprise myself (and others) from time to time with some of the recipes, most of which I will try to incorporate in my everyday life. I came across ingredients I didn't even know existed and learned new ways to use some I've known for a while.
I discovered that eating is also about cooking and enjoying the process. On my way back from work everyday, I would ask myself 'what do you want to eat tonight?'. This certainly helped me reduce my anxiety towards dinner. Having the change to take some time off my day to prepare dinner and think about stuff was nice. I wish I had that time on my college life.
Cooking is also a great opportunity to socialize and meet new people. More often than not leaving the door of my kitchen open attracted people into whatever I was making. People would come in, ask about the recipes or the dishes and maybe even stay for dinner. There were also a couple of debates about how to make a great shakshuka. Discussing these things with people helped me learn more about them and about the dishes, too.
But ultimately, this whole experience was about showing to myself that I am capable of appropriately feeding myself (even on a tight-ish budget) and sharing this experience with my family and friends. So, thanks to all of you for following my adventures this summer (we hit almost a 1000 views!) and for supporting me all along this experiment, where I made a big deal about silly things like salads and sandwiches and pita pizzas.
It's been delicious!