Israel Part III
We walk to the shore and enjoy a beautiful breakfast on the beach at Mantaray.
This is a quick Skashuka for two: - at Mantaray their sauce was incredibly smooth, with delicious salty haloumi cheese to garnish, my version here is a little more rustic. Use tinned or fresh cherry tomatoes. If you have large tomatoes, you will need to peel and seed them beforehand.
2 tbsp olive oil
1 clove garlic, thinly sliced
1 tbsp cumin seeds
Pinch chilli flakes
1 tin chopped tomatoes or 450g cherry toms, halved
1 tsp sugar and salt
1 tsp balsamic vinegar
Handful of flat leaf parsley, leaves and stalks very finely chopped
Serving suggestion:- bread to mop up and and avocado
1. Use a medium/large size le creuset style pan and heat the olive oil and cook the garlic, cumin and chilli flakes on super low for 2 minutes, stirring all the time.
2. Add the tomatoes (tinned or cherry toms), sugar, salt and balsamic and simmer for 10 minutes (or Note if using the cherry toms cook for 30 mins until well broken down)
3. When the tomatoes are nicely broken down, make two little “holes” in the tomato sauce and crack in the two eggs. Simmer for a further 5 minutes, with lid on or until the eggs are done to your liking.
4. Check the seasoning and serve immediately with chopped parsley
We then give in to the brilliant sunshine, laze around the pool and have a delicious late lunch; a Tunisian croissant consisting of tuna, potatoes, spices, and hard-boiled eggs. I am always on the lookout for a double carb whammy and this is most satisfactory against the umami hit from the resident beurre noisette in the croissant. My mate has vegetables home grown by the chef, raw kohlrabi and courgettes served with feta, bulgar, zaatar… delicious.
In an attempt to work off all the food, we walk for dinner through the now quiet Cartmel market and along boulevard Rothschild. The sun sets on the fascinating Bauhaus architecture, where we stop to ponder whilst hydrating on a glass of Israeli Rose wine. The workout continues, as it’s getting dark we arrive at MIZNON. A restaurant I vividly remember from last time as it is the birthplace of the giant cauliflower.
This restaurant specializes in pitas as well although I remember the minute steak from 6 years ago. Last time it was a big juicy fillet, this time, unfortunately the steak is thinly sliced, it is still good, but not the stuff of dreams. We also try a lamb kebab (a little too mutton-y for me - I’m fussy!) and a ratatouille, with pumpkin, which lacks a little depth but we still wolf it down. The majestic large cauliflower and the usual condiments of tahini and crème fraiche, tomato & chilli are also joyously polished off.
In the morning we revisit the famous Hummus restaurant “Abu Hassan”, Ha-Dolfin ST 1, Tel Aviv – Yafo. Back in the UK the thought of hummus for breakfast feels so wrong, but here, it feels so right. We mix the rough with the smooth, two types of hummus, one with acidic lentils. Both served with chilli dressing and quarters of raw onion- as good as I remembered it! Something almost biblical about eating hummus, sweating in a hot restaurant in Jaffa Port.
You know that incredible feeling when you get to France and you eat a green salad with a beautiful dressing that is so simple, yet there is a fully-fledged symphony in your mouth? Bells are ringing… alarms even! Well imagine that thrice fold, with abundance and extreme flavours that leave you so satisfied, you are almost aghast, with the main surprise being the power of the vegetables. The blood that pumps around this city consists of eggplants, cauliflowers and beetroots. We have been rendered speechless at the perfect, beautifully pitched plates.
Special thanks to Yair Bekier & Janna Gurr