University of Haifa International School Student Blog
With only a month left in Israel I thought I would share my favorite Israeli recipes! After eating Israeli food for the past 5 months I have learned what the secret is make the best Tahini, Israeli Salad, Mujadara, and Falafel!
Tahini: is a paste made from sesame seeds
1 cup tahini sesame seed paste
3/4 cup lukewarm water
3 cloves raw garlic
1/4 cup fresh lemon juice (or more to taste)
1/4 tsp salt (or more to taste)
2 tsp fresh parsley, minced
Mix tahini paste, lukewarm water, garlic, lemon juice, and salt together till sauce is creamy. If mixture is too thick, slowly add more water until it reaches the preferred consistency.
Israeli Salad: The perfect side dish to any meal and pretty healthy too
Diced red onions
Minced fresh parsley
Olive oil (to your preference)
Lemon juice (to taste)
Salt (to taste)
Chop all the ingredients into small pieces and mix till vegetables are well coasted with parsley, oil, lemon juice, and salt.
**By far the easiest dish to make and you can add other vegetables if you want, but the ones above are what make up an Israeli Salad
Mujadara: Rice and lentils mixture prefect main meal option
1 cup of brown or green lentils soaked over night in water
1/2 cup extra virgin olive oil
1 tsp cumin seeds
1/2 tsp cracked black peppercorn (or black pepper)
3 medium yellow onions, thinly sliced
Salt to taste
1/2 tsp ground cumin
1/2 tsp cayenne pepper
Bring the lentils to a boil, then turn down to a simmer and cook until the lentils are tender but not mushy, about 20 minutes. Drain and set aside.
Meanwhile, fry onions with a pinch of salt and cook until they turn caramel.
Add the rice and cook, stirring often until some rice grains start to brown.
Quickly add the the cooked lentils, 3 cups of water, salt, black pepper, and cumin; bring to a boil.
Turn the heat down to low, cover and cook 30 minutes. The water should be completely evaporated and rice should be tender. Serve with the caramelized onions.
Falafels: a common dish served all over the Middle East
2 cups of dried chickpeas or fava beans or a mixture of both
2 cloves of garlic
1 small onion
1 cup of fresh parsley leaves chopped
1/4 cup of cilantro chopped
1 1/2 tsp of salt
1 1/2 tsp of black pepper
1 tsp of grounded cumin
4-5 mint leaves chopped
Vegetable oil for frying
Put the chickpeas/fava beans in a large bowl and add enough water to cover them by about 2 inches. Refrigerate overnight.
Drain the water and then add the chickpeas/fava beans mixture in to a food processor with garlic and onions. Toss the chickpea mixture with the parsley, cilantro, salt, pepper, coriander, cumin and mint and run through the food processor again.
Heat the oil in a large pot over medium heat.
Shape the falafel mixture into medium size balls. Might help form balls easily by spreading some oil on hands. Make sure the mixture stays together.
Fry the falafel mixture until they are golden brown
Tips: You can also bake the falafel mixture instead of frying it. I have learned that the best falafel is if the inside is green and not brown. The green is due to all herbs put into the mixture. You also don’t have to make falafels into balls they can be flat as well and it will make putting them in pita bread a lot easier.
Hope you try all the recipes! These are really easy to make and you can change them up to fit your desired taste.