Israeli Cuisine – Hummus, Falafel and More

Think of Israel cuisine and we probably picture bowls of hummus for dipping, pita breads stuffed with falafel and salads of finely diced tomatoes with plenty of herbs and olive oil. Think again … there’s a whole lot more to this. The Israeli cuisine is unbelievably diverse, a blend of local dishes and dishes brought to Israel by Jewish immigrants. Israeli food is probably one of the healthiest foods in the world. Here are some dishes we think you will love to try when you are next in Israel or cook in your very own kitchen.


What to Eat in Israel?


1. Shakshuka

Shakshuka is a good choice for breakfast. It is a dish of eggs poached in a tangy sauce of simmering tomatoes, olive oil, peppers, onion, garlic and spices. Some will add spinach, feta cheese and other ingredients to the mix. It’s nourishing, filling and it’s simple to make with this recipe.

2. Shawarma

Shawarma is a popular Israeli street food classic made of grilled beef or chicken heavily marinated in olive oil, vinegar, lemon juice and warm spices. It can be served on a plate surrounded by colourful vegetables including tomatoes, onions, shredded lettuce and pickles or simply in a wrap.


3. Falafel

Falafel is a great snack by itself. It is a deep-fried ball made from ground chickpeas, fava beans or both, herbs and seasonings. It is usually stuffed into pita bread or served atop fresh greens. How to make perfectly crispy falafel?


4. Ptitim

Ptitim also known as Israeli Couscous is a great meal for kids. The tiny pasta pearls are made from semolina flour, dried and then toasted to give a nutty flavour. It is known colloquially in Israel as “Ben-Gurion’s rice”. Just add anything in it … carrots, tomatoes, corn, peas, any herb or spice … and make it your own style as you like.


5. Challah bread

Bread comes with every meal in Israel but be sure to try the Challah bread made with eggs, flour, butter, yeast and sugar. It is a simple recipe. The most important thing is the braiding. Try this at home.


6. Hummus

Hummus is a creamy dip typically made with a blend of chickpeas, tahini, salt, olive oil, lemon juice and garlic.  It is a meal on its own or we can eat it with different veggies, use it as a salad dressing, spread it on two pieces of toast or create a fancy grain bowl. Try this recipe at home.


7. Baba ganoush

Baba ganoush is simply aubergine mixed with tahini, lemon juice, garlic and whatever other flavours you want to add, and served with bread, crisp vegetables and pita chips.


8. Latkes

Latkes are popular Israeli potato pancakes, made from mashed or grated potatoes, flour, eggs, onions and finely crushed matzo crackers.

9. Kanafeh

Kanafeh is a thin vermicelli-like cheese pastry soaked in sweet sugar-based syrup, topped with ground nuts like pistachios.


10. Baklava 

Baklava is very rich in aroma and flavour. It is prepared from phyllo dough sheets with butter and pistachios, cashew nuts and walnuts, soaked in sugar syrup or honey.


11. Halvah

Halvah is crumbly and dry. It is made of tahini from typical chocolate and vanilla flavour to pistachio, cinnamon flavour and many more flavourings.


So here it is, the top 11 foods that you should try when visiting Israel! Even though travelling may not be possible during this season, we can stay home and try the above recipes. Have fun!

Lord, bless the food before us, the family beside us and the love between us. Amen!


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