Category Archives: Ideas

An Update From The Israeli Foodie

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Hey everyone. I wanted to give you some updates about what has been going on with me.

  • I recently have been hired by the Joy of Kosher magazine to be their social media marketing manager. Basically to run strategies and all the content that runs over all the platforms of the social like facebook, youtube, twitter and more.  This has been consuming a lot of my time, hence why I haven’t really been focusing on my own blog, but I plan on keeping it going and even trying my hand in vlogging at the restaurants where I eat and posting my recipes. I’ll update you guys about that later.

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  • I have also been writing for a magazine called the luxury spot, all about Middle Eastern food and posting some cool recipes there as well.
  • I hope you all are enjoying the use of the group and all the stuff I post. My hope is to make the Israeli Foodies group one of the largest foodies group in Israel and to be the number one source about food in English in Israel.
  • I would also like to remind any restaurant owners, if you’d like your business to be featured on an international platform like the culture trip, you can either email me or PM me on facebook and be in touch.
  • I would also like to mention, if you guys could start following me on instagram and twitter, @theIsraelifoodie on instagram and @yudajacobs on twitter. that would be awesome!

Anyway, expect a lot of new articles from me, this upcoming summer and also don;t forget to have a great summer!

Yehudah

 

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The Affects of a Culture on Local Cuisine

Recently I was reading a journalistic paper for an assignment at college, and stumbled upon how this works in Israel. The article was about how the effects of local culture on the local cuisine. So what is Israeli cuisine? How does the culture affect the food and wine in Israel?

So to answer these questions we need to take a look back at what has happened in this country before it became a state. The state has been around for 67 years, and it has been ruled by so many regimes before we won it back. That is when it all started for the Jewish nation in Israel. Thousands of immigrants came off the boats from countries like: Poland, Morocco, Tunisia, Yemen, France, Italy, Iraq, Iran, Germany and many more. This is when we started creating an identity for the new state. All at once everyone brought the tastes they love from their countries to here.

so 67 years later, has all this defined what Israeli cuisine is today? In my opinion, no. We are still a young state trying to find its identity so there is no real Israeli cuisine. But, there are all of those dishes that really represents what every immigrant that moved here has brought with them and basically has created a fusion of foods that everyone in the this country eats. Whether it’s Ashkenazi Jews eating Sfardic food and Sfardi Jews eating Italian cuisine. Things like Cholent or Chamin, same dish different interpretation. Same for a big doughy ball in your soup whether it’s Kibbeh or Kneidels. Different types of stuffed vegetables, is another great example. Sadly what is called Israeli Salad is really an Arab salad and Israeli couscous is really little balls of pasta.

So what are those dishes that I’m referring to?

  • Kibbeh, Matbucha, Felafel, Tehini- All over the Middle East
  • Shakshukah, Chraimeh-  Tunisia
  • Hummus, Tabooleh-  Lebanon
  • Shwarma, Bourekas- Turkey
  • Croissants- France
  • Couscous, Tajine- Morooco
  • Kneidelach, Kugel, Deli meat, Goulash-Eastern Europe
  • Schug, Jachnun- Yemen
  • Sabich, Sambusak, Kebab-Iraq
  • Pasta, Pizza, Bolognese, Meatballs- Italy
  • Feta- Greece
  • Yellow rice- Iran
  • Hamburgers- USA

All of these things have become part of the mainstream cuisine in Israel, and I feel that we can all agree that all of these dishes and food items is what affects the local cuisine in Israel. By mixing and combining and interpretation of all of these great foods is what really makes up a great foundation that will one day be defined as Israeli cuisine.

Enjoy!

מסעדת קונספט

Here is an article I write in Hebrew about the new wings bar in tel aviv:

אני קראתי השבוע בוואלה, שהולכים לפתוח מסעדה\בר חדש בתל אביב בשם “כנפיים בר”. ממה שהבנתי הולכים למכור שם רק מוצר אחד. כנפיים. אז שאלתי את עצמי, חוץ מהסיפור שעומד מאחורי המסעדה החדשה הזאת, האם מסעדה שמססת את עצמה סביב פריט אחד בלבד יכולה לפרוס כנפיים?
הסיפור העומד מאחורי הקונספט הוא סיפור טוב. מי שעומד מאחורי המקום הוא איתן ווייט. וויט עסק מעט במסעדנות בעבר כשגר בארה”ב וזאת המסעדה הראשונה שהוא פותח בעצמו .”הבאתי יועץ קולינרי שיעזור לי קצת, מעולם לא הלכתי ללמוד בישול אבל כנפיים זה משהו שטבוע בי עמוק עוד מאז שאני ילד”, מספר ווייט. חבריו ניסו לשכנע אותו לפתוח מסעדה כבר בעבר, וסוף סוף הוא פותח מקום קצת שונה ממה שהקהל הישראלי רגיל לראות.
בארצות הברית הרעיון של מסעדה שסובבת את עצמה סביב פריט אחד הינו תעשייה שלמה. ישנם את כל רשתות ההמבורגרים, פיצות וכמובן הטרנד החדש, משאיות אוכל. תרבות הפנאי של חובבי האוכל בארה”ב הינו כל כך שונה משלנו. שם חובב אוכל יעשה נסיעה ארוכה על מנת לאכול משהו שונה בטעם, במראה ולפגוש את האנשים העומדים מאחורי האוכל. שם לרב, המקומות האלה משגשגים ומגיעים להצלחות גדולות.
בישראל, הקונספט של מסעדה מסביב לפריט אחד שהיגר את עצמו מארה”ב אינו דבר חדש. אנחנו רואים את זה כמעט בכל פינת רחוב וקניון: דוכני פלאפל ושווארמיות היותר ישראליות, לעומת פיצריות,ורשתות המבורגר שעשו עלייה מח”ול. כל אלה, הינם סוג של מזון מהיר, וזה מאוד נגיש ולפעמים טעים ומי שמצא את המתכון הנכון דווקא מאוד הצליח. אז אני שואל, האם אפשר להכניס לקטגוריה הזאת גם בר כנפיים?
המחשבות שלי נוטות לכיוון שמקום כזה הוא מעולה. לא חסר מקומות כאלה בארה”ב שמוכרים כנפיים בעשרה סוגי רטבים. מקומות כאלה הם הצלחה גדולה שם. אבל כאן המציאות אחרת. כי מתי ישראלים אוהבים לאכול כנפיים? רק כשעושים “על האש” עם החברה, כמנת פתיחה במסעדה או בבופה לפני חתונה. ישראלים רואים בכנפיים כמנת פתיחה ולא כארוחה ששווה לצאת מהבית בשבילו. יהי קשה למקום כזה לפרוס כנפיים.
למרות זאת, המסעדה ייפתח בתל אביב, וזה משהו חדש, טרנדי ושונה במהותו מרשתות המזון המהיר(וגם כשר אגב), אני מקווה שחובבי האוכל בישראל כן יפתחו את התאבון שלהם למשהו חדש. זה מקום שהחברה יכולים לשבת ולהזמין כמה מנות ביחד, כדי שכולם יטעמו ויחוו משהו שונה, אפילו שמדובר בכנפיים. ובגלל שמדובר בכנפיים, המחירים יהיו נוחים על מנת שכולם באמת יוכלו לחוות משהו חדש ומרענן בעולם הקולינרי הישראלי.

Thoughts for the new year

Hey everyone. I just wanted to share with the group a couple of thoughts before the new year.
I am happy to say that I have have created one of the fastest rising food loving groups on facebook(https://www.facebook.com/groups/israelifoodies/?fref=nf)! When I started the group a couple of months ago, I didn’t realize how big and how fast it would catch on so(over 2,000 members in a half a year!) I’m very grateful for this.
I love the passion that everyone has there. For most of us cooking\food\eating out isn’t a hobby, it’s a passion and I’m glad that I was able to create a place for people to share that passion.
I’m happy to share with you my new blog that I have finally come to create.
(https://theisraelifoodie.wordpress.com/). Please share your thoughts and comments. I have learned over the years that the only way to become a better chef is to listen and use be able to take criticism. So please don’t be afraid to say what you need to say on my blog or in the group. Your opinion is what makes you, you!
And last, Let’s keep on having fun! Share your thoughts, recipes ideas! This group is a home for creativity so lets keep the ball rolling and double the number of members and friends that we have on the group!
Shana Tova,
Yehudah Jacobs
shana tova

The Bun Swap

There is a new trend in restaurants across america, that they are swapping the buns of sandwiches for a protein.In KFC it’sthe double down called the “Double Down” which contains “bacon, two different kinds of melted cheese, the Colonel’s secret sauce… pinched in between two pieces of Original Recipe chicken fillets. KFC describes the Double Down as a “sandwich” although it does not have bread.

Then we have the Ramen Burger, a meat patty sandwiched between two fried ramen noodle buns.

An alas we have Fatburger’s new “Skinnyburger” protein burger can be described as an inside-out version of the better burger chain’s typical offering. The burger features one of Fatburger’s standard patties sliced in half, then stuffed with typical toppings like lettuce, cheese, onions, pickles and tomatoes.

the-burger-made-of-burgers-finally-hits-nyc ramen-burger

So, is this the future of sandwiches? I understand the idea of swapping out the bun for health reasons, like less calories. Although if you are going to get yourself a sandwich from a restaurant, Why skip the bun? There are so many types of buns: the classic, pretzels, briosh, biscuits and even sliced bread.  Why go out and skip one of the best part of the sandwich?! Enjoy sandwiches like they where intended to be, with a bun!

billboard burger

Prepping for a cheese and wine party

wine cheese pairingHow do you prepare yourself for a wine and cheese party?  What types of wine and cheese you ask? Well, before we get to that, there are a couple of stages before you get to the actual wine and cheese part.

  • Firstly, you need to make a budget. See how many people you invited and are coming so you know how to shop for.
  • Second, the venue needs to be big enough to host the amount of people you invited. Make sure there is enough chairs and tables also. For example: if you are hosting 20 people, you need at least 3 tables to serve on. 1 for drinks and 2 for food, having at least 12-15 chairs.  Have garbage pails around so people can discard their trash and you also have less to clean up later.
  • The shopping list. how do you shop for an event like this? You need to again, go back to your guest list and see how many people are coming. Here’s why: 1 bottle of wine can serve up to 5-6 guests.  100 grams of cheese, can serve at least 12 tastings. This way you don’t overspend on buying wines or cheese.
  • Part of your shopping list should also be dedicated to buying fruits, dried fruits and nuts. Why?  The juicy, tangy fruits go well with young cheeses like Brie. Sweet dried fruits are wonderful with salty cheeses like Bulgarit cheese. Buttery, bitter nuts are tasty with rich Cheddar. From fruity to sweet to nutty , these same pairing principles apply to wines, too. When in doubt, try to imagine which food would pair best with a cheese, and let that guide you toward a wine.

After we have gone over the basics on how to prepare for the party, now we can get to the actual pairings. How do we know what wine goes with what cheese? Here is a guide to help you prepare for a great party:

Fresh and soft cheeses

soft cheese

Fresh and soft cheeses love crisp whites, dry rosés and sparkling wines.   Avoid red wines like Malbec, Cabernet Sauvignon, Bordeaux, and Bordeaux blends.

Cheeses: Ricotta, Mozzarella, Feta, Halloumi, Brie, Camembert.
Pair with: Riesling (dry to sweet), Gewürztraminer, Moscato, Champagne, Cava, Sauvignon Blanc, Lambrusco.

Semi-hard, Medium-aged Cheeses

gruyere

These cheeses have a firmer texture and stronger flavors. They need  fruity reds, vintage sparkling wine, and aperitif wines that offer a balance between acidity, fruit, and tannin.

Cheeses: Havarti, Edam, Emmental, young Cheddar, Manchego.
Pair with: Chardonnay, white Burgundy, white Bordeaux, Pinot Blanc, Viognier,  Riesling (off-dry), Gewürztraminer, Champagne, red Burgundy, Pinot Noir,Zinfandel, Merlot.

Hard-aged Cheeses

cheddar cheese

Harder cheeses love full-bodied whites and tannic reds. Their nuttiness also works with oxidative wines like sherry, and their saltiness makes them terrific with sweet wines.

Cheeses: Aged Cheddar, aged Gruyère, aged Gouda, Pecorino, Manchego, Parmigiano Reggiano.
Pair with: Aged white Burgundy or Bordeaux,  sweet Riesling, vintage Champagne,  red Burgundy, red Bordeaux, Cabernet Sauvignon, California red blends, Zinfandel.

When it comes to pairing, there are no firm rules, just guidelines that can get you in the right ballpark. The only way to know if a pairing works is to experiment and taste for yourself. Don’t forget to buy a lot of toothpicks and even a bad pairing can be educational!