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Caramelized okra with tahini mashed potatoes

If you’re going to eat okra, you’ll be eating it stewed in a tomato sauce. For some reason that dictate is observed as if it were religiously mandated. Why is that? It tastes good, of course. But right now is okra season, these itty bitty green nibs are being sold …


Potato kubbeh with mushroom filling, and a tempest in a semolina shell

Kubbeh got a brief blast of attention when a pop-up kubbeh restaurant briefly appeared in New York City last month. Reading about it from afar, I was pleased that kubbeh was getting some much-deserved focus — kubbeh is quite popular in Israel, but nearly entirely unknown in the United States. …


Spanish tortilla

Look at us Mediterranean folk — all fit and healthy thanks to our diet heavy on vegetables, fish and olive oil. Or so the story goes. It’s trendy to speak of the “Mediterranean diet,” but there are so many variations in the food people eat around the Mediterranean basin. And …


Vegan slow-cooker cholent with legumes, freekeh and spices

Cholent season has officially begun. By that I mean it’s raining, it’s pouring, we’ve had nearly half a winter’s worth of rain in about two weeks. This is what an average day has looked like in Tel Aviv, that is, during the hours when it’s not pouring and the streets …


Creamy potato cauliflower soup

I guess you could call this winter. It’s been raining on and off for days. Drops pitter-patter on my windows. The streets are perpetually wet. The sky is gray. My patio planters are soaked through. The once-dusty ground is full of fresh green growth. Well, we take what we can …


Latkes with leek, celery and baharat

It’s the first day of December, the weather is balmy, and it’s also the first night of Hanukkah. The winter festival of lights came as somewhat of a surprise this year — I knew it was approaching, and I saw the growing quantities of jelly donuts at all the bakeries, …


Mashed potatoes with balsamic vinegar, basil and figs

Summertime means figs, and you can’t eat just one. That’s because you can’t buy just one. In fact, you can’t really buy less than a one-kilo bucket at a time. Well, there are worse plights in life. Figs are quite an attractive fruit, and can dress up any dish. I’ve …

white asparagus purple potatoes

White asparagus and purple potatoes with emmenthal and fennel

This mild-flavored dish plays with colors — white asparagus, purple potatoes. OK, maybe for some of you white asparagus isn’t such an oddity, but around here it is. In fact, it’s just beginning to make its presence felt in the market, as I described in a newspaper article.


Pan-fried potatoes with kumquat-orange-basil glaze

It’s well past kumquat season here, but I’ve been saving a few lonely specimens in my fridge for a rainy sunny day. The problem is that unlike fine wine, fresh fruit doesn’t always cooperate when you try to “save” it. As far as these kumquats and I were concerned, the …


Patatas bravas with vitelotte potatoes

I fondly remember my time in Madrid, which was marked by many a visit to various tapas bars, frequently for the ubiquitous patatas bravas — gently crispy potatoes in a hot tomato sauce. In fact, I liked the dish so much that I still have a bottle of salsa brava …