Chef • Gastronomic Consultant

This is what you must try the next time you visit the Middle East.

I have chosen a few of my favourite Middle Eastern dishes which I have tasted a few months ago in east and west Jerusalem. For those who have been there it is clear that these are two separate worlds, unfortunately not only culinarily speaking. (You can take a look at the photos by clicking at the bottom of the page)

Photo No.1: Perhaphs the best eatery of the city since its opening in 1975. It's worth visiting not only for its dishes but for its atmosphere as well. (13 King George Street, Jerusalem)

Photo No. 2: Kubbeh (a dish of Iraqi and Kurdish origin with bulgur wheat, lamb, goat or beef) is one of the most popular dishes in Israel today. It can  

be cooked or baked. The cooked kubbeh has many varieties, my favourite is the one with beetroot. In the photo you can see a cooked kubbeh dish with vegetables and tomatoes.

Photo No. 3: Enormous pomegranates at the market. They are very healthy, I tend to use them in salads and sauces.

Photo No. 4: The inevitable sweets! Mountains of baklava are on offer at the markets.

Photo No. 5: And the knafeh, my big favourite of all the sweets, not because of its colour! It is also called the queen of Arabic sweets, and quite rightly so, in my opinion. It is sweet cheese and pastry inside with pistachios on top.

Photo No. 6: Za'tar spice mix. Its main ingredients include thyme and sesame seeds. I often use it, different types of this mix are sold at the market.