October 20, 2020
Today we're featuring an interview not with one of our fabulous chefs or tour guides, but with Theresa VanderMeer, the founder of the company that…Read This Post
We are thrilled to announce our new culinary tour of Israel!
What is Israeli cuisine? Why travel to Israel on a culinary tour? What can you expect on our Israel culinary tours? We’ll answer these questions and more!
Israeli cuisine is based on thousands of years of history, its location in the Mediterranean basin, and an amazing influx of influences from other lands.
First, Jewish cuisine in Biblical times, which still informs much Jewish cuisine, was based on what were collectively known as the “seven species”:
To journey through the centuries of Jewish cuisine on an Israel food tour takes all these ingredients into account, and marries them with the rich history of Jewish celebration foods.
But of course modern Israeli cuisine is not just based on Jewish culinary traditions. As one of the main holy sites for Christians and Muslims, many different cultural and religious culinary traditions are alive and represented in the nation’s gastronomy. Couple that with its geography in the Mediterranean, and you have a gastronomy that is akin to other Middle Eastern and Arabic cuisines, as well as a strong strain of Mediterranean influences.
With the founding of the state of Israel after the second World War, many Jewish groups from nations around the world brought their culinary traditions to Israel, making its modern cuisine one of the most remarkable fusion cuisines to be found. This meant not only characteristics of Mizrahi, Ashkenazi, and Sephardic culinary traditions, but also of cuisines hailing from Poland, Romania, Hungary, Czechoslovakia, Yugoslavia, and, to a lesser degree, western European nations.
Well, in addition to exploring one of the most intriguing fusion cuisines, as mentioned about, visiting Israel on a culinary tour means exploring the local customs and learning about the way of life that goes far beyond the sound bites you see on the news. You will visit the local markets in multi-sensory experiences that will engage you in every way. You will cook with local Israeli chefs and with a Palestinian family to learn more about the complex cultural and religious diversity that forms one of the foundations of the regional identity. And, like with any culinary tour we offer, you will have an “in” to the authentic life of the place, a way to meet the locals, make new friends, and savor the authenticity of the destination.
Food is our common ground, a universal experience.
– James Beard
Of course, our guided Israel culinary tours include a rich array of historical and cultural experiences as well. You will visit cities that have been around for millennia, churches and temples that are among the most revered in the world, ancient fortresses, modern museums, and places of amazing natural beauty. Just think of the Old City of Jerusalem and Akko (Acre), of the Sea of Galilee and the Dead Sea, of the Ein Gedi Nature Reserve, the ancient city of Jaffa, or the fortress of Masada built by Herod the Great.
Travel with us to this complex and fascinating destination on an Israel culinary tour, and discover a truly unique and authentic culinary and cultural experience.
By Peg Kern
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