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Eating Jerusalem texted

My husband and I were fortunate enough to visit Israel in late November. This trip was different than our previous ones. We were there to vacation, some R&R, and to visit our grandson who attended Yeshiva Mevaseret Tzion. There was nothing planned on our itinerary except to explore and enjoy Jerusalem.

And explore we did... from learning the ticket process for the sleek light rail, to understanding the bus schedules, to visiting some of Jerusalem’s many sites. From the neighborhoods to the Kotel, we walked and walked and walked. I was not wearing a Fit Bit or Apple watch, but it had to be thousands and thousands of steps daily. I unofficially named this trip “Eating and Drinking our way through Jerusalem”. Along with our grandson and sometimes his very willing friends, we enjoyed every bite! Israel’s kashrut is complicated, and the rabbinate is currently undergoing a controversy (so what’s new?) on varying types of kashrut certification. Some of the restaurants mentioned in this series of articles are certified Rabbanut Yerushalayim, which is not accepted by all; and some are Mehadrin Yerushalayim, a more widely accepted level of certification. I suggest that you call the restaurant, ask your rabbi or refer to the restaurant’s website for certification details- since certification changes quite often.

Shabbos Lunch at the David Citadel Hotel
Warm, friendly, sumptuous, Hamish – a multi-course banquet for everyone. That is how I would describe the Shabbos lunch at The David Citadel Hotel, a Jerusalem landmark. The talented staff, including the manager, the chef and the servers, were outstanding. Read more about Shabbos Lunch at the David Citadel. . .

Piccolino exceeded our expectations in taste, presentation and service. There were smiles all around when we entered, and friendly, efficient, accommodating service through the superb dinner. And what a dinner it was! Read more about Piccolino. . .

Lechem Basar - Meat and Eat
Lechem Basar, known as "Meat and Eat" in English, is located in Jerusalem’s old train station. Both the restaurant and the center are bustling, fun, eclectic, “happening” venues -- especially at night. The décor and ambiance combine both the old and new in an updated setting of shops, bars and eateries. Read more about Lechem Basar . . .


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Lechem Basar, known as "Meat and Eat" in English, is located in Jerusalem’s old train station. Both the restaurant and the center are bustling, fun, eclectic, “happening” venues -- especially at night. The décor and ambiance combine both the old and new in an updated setting of shops, bars and eateries.

We arrived at Lechem Basar very hungry, but certainly did not leave that way. The dinner was a feast; each entrée layered with aromatic Middle Eastern flavors and inspiration. Yes, confession here, we over-ate, but we enjoyed every bite. There were three of us, and we were served family style so that we could taste the restaurant’s many specialties. We certainly appreciated the warm hospitality of owner Rami Ran and restaurant manager Kfir Edri. They graciously arranged the tasting, and selected some of their most popular dishes. We invite you to join us virtually as we feature a memorable culinary experience...

Panzanella salad
Layers of croutons, cherry tomatoes, radishes and onion- all in a citrus based dressing

Smoky Grilled Eggplant
Well charred eggplant seasoned with Israeli spices and served with oregano,
roasted tomatoes, tahini, pomegranate sauce and extra virgin olive oil

   Lechem basar foccacio E Mobile  

Flat pastry with tomato sauce, beef ragout, roasted peppers and olives

   chicken salad Lechem Basar E Mobile  
       Spring Chicken Salad

Grilled chicken sautéed with onions, roasted tomatoes, garlic confit, green beans
topped withs spring greens

(Nope, we’re not nearly done yet!)

Lechem basar lamb pastry Mobile E
Lamb Sini’Ya
Lamb stew seasoned with middle eastern aromatics, pine nuts,
roasted peppers and tahini on a bed of roasted eggplant cream
and covered with a fresh pita pastry. This was a simply spectacular presentation

Succulent Grilled Spring Chicken Pargiot
This boneless chicken is served with a marinade of sesame oil, soy sauce and garlic confit

Entrecote Steak - An aged steak served with a side of chimichurri, and fries
Fresh pita bread and a lovely Gamla Merlot 2013 accompanied dinner.

Dessert was divine and chocolate, but I could only take 2 bites!
The Galaxy is a crispy chocolate ball with inside layers of Lotus Creme Anglais and crunchy crumble, enrobed in velvety chocolate, and drizzled with chocolate sauce. (Yes, all of the leftovers went in a doggie bag.)

For those that enjoy a Middle Eastern inspired meat dinner, generous portions and an informal contemporary atmosphere, add this to your Jerusalem restaurant list. The next time we go back to Lechem Basar, we’re going to try the burgers. The Buzz, shared with us by diners at the next table, "the burgers are delicious".  Lechem Basar has Mehadrin Kosher Certification.


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Time to Think Stuffing! 


Famous pairs: Adam and Eve, Ben and Jerry, Bert and Ernie, Batman & Robin, wine and cheese, corned beef and rye…and of course, turkey and stuffing. At Thanksgiving, most Americans consider the stuffing just as important as the turkey!  Some call it dressing; some put it inside the turkey and some serve it on the side. Stuffing can be fruity, savory, made of rice, farfel, matzoh meal, cornbread, bread crumbs, quinoa and more. It can be parve, meat, or even gluten-free. Many stuffing recipes are family heirlooms, passed down from a grandmother’s or bubbie’s kitchen, or can be simply made from a convenient stuffing mix. We are presenting some of our favorites, including some packaged choices. Enjoy!  ... And by the way, do send us a recipe for your favorite stuffing. Thankgiving Day is November 22!  Gobble, Gobble!

Wild Rice Cranberry Apple Stuffing
Gluten Free Wild Rice Stuffing
Classic Bread Stuffing
Daphne Oz‘ Mushroom & Vegetable  Stuffing
Challah Stuffing
Chestnut Stuffing

Easy Corn-Bread Stuffing
Herbed Thanksgiving Slow Cooker Stuffing
Herbed Stuffing with Jack's Kosher Gourmet Sausage

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Piccolino exceeded our expectations in taste, presentation and service. There were smiles all around when we entered, and friendly, efficient, accommodating service through the superb dinner. And what a dinner it was!

Picollino Mobile 


Smoked Salmon lox

We were delighted to be hosted by Piccolino owner Nava Bibi along with her family. Nava is a legend in Israel’s professional food community. Her experience spans 30 years in the hotel business, including managing the King David Hotel, and then creating a popular restaurant in the Ticho house, hotel and museum. When the hotel announced its closing, she relocated the restaurant to a historical neighborhood near Zion Square. Her vision for Piccolino was to present simple authentic Italian food, served indoors, in a lovely dining room, and also outdoors in a spacious courtyard. Each day at lunch and dinner, musicians playing live soft music add to the courtyard ambiance.

Gnocchi MobileWe discovered that the name Piccolino comes from an Italian song titled “Poppa Piccolino”, which is about a poor, but happy Italian street musician who sang and played his concertina throughout Italy. All loved him. Nava chose the name because the restaurant’s mission is to combine food and joy. Nava says: “When we established Piccolino, we had in mind a warm Jerusalem atmosphere, family-oriented with generous, joyful and courteous service. In our opinion, she has achieved her dream. Our dinner at Piccolino was one of our best meals, ever!

For those who would like to eat along virtually with us we present the mouthwatering menu. (Or even better, visit the restaurant!)

The menu was prepared by talented Chef Avdiel Moshe. His emphasis on fresh ingredients was evident. The menu included: Gravlax; Focaccia with roasted pepper and goat cheese; Seared Tuna tartare on a bed of green bean and vegetable salad with an olive oil lemon dressing; Focaccia with cheese and peppers; Homemade Gnocchi, Arancini - Risotto rice balls with mushroom and mascarpone filling;

Risotto Rice Balls Mobile

Fresh fillet of drumfish; and my favorite-Artichoke ravioli served with a sauce of olive oil, garlic, herbs and artichokes a alla romano.

Dessert was an assortment of the restaurant’s specialties including lotus cake and tiramisu. Fabulous!
The restaurant serves breakfast, lunch and dinner, and accommodates private parties. Mehadrin kosher certification.


    Picollino desserts   Tuna tartar Mobile Terramiso Mobile
    Picclino Desserts   Tuna Tartar  Tiramisu
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Grow and Behold
Glatt Kosher Pastured Meat and Poultry

Grow and Behold logo med 225x325Grow and Behold is a dynamic young company specializing in OU certified Glatt Kosher pastured meats, all raised on small family farms.

According to Naftali Hanau, company CEO and founder:
“We adhere to the strictest standards of kashrut, animal welfare, worker treatment, and sustainable agriculture. We pay our farmers fair prices, generally above the national averages, ensuring that they can support their families while raising food for our customers. We work closely with our farmers to determine the best practices for raising animals in ways that support the natural environment and respect the natural instincts of the animals. Grow and Behold works with producers to ensure the highest standards of care for animals and people, all along the supply chain from field to fork. We’ve been blessed with spending years on organic farms, where watching food grow reminded us daily of the miracles of creation… Having our animals raised, processed and consumed as nearby as possible means we’re treading lighter on the earth, leaving less of a carbon footprint.” 

Naftali is a shochet (ritual slaughterer), m’naker (ritual butcher), farmer and professional horticulturist. He grew up around the corner from the kosher butcher in Rochester, NY, and has been a carnivore from a young age. He learned shechita (ritual kosher animal slaughter) in Crown Heights, NY, and Scranton, PA, and has studied at butcher shops and slaughterhouses across the country.  He holds a degree in horticulture from the New York Botanical Garden School of Professional Horticulture has been a Greenhouse Manager at Adamah, a Jewish environmental farming program in northwest Connecticut, worked on several organic farms and owned his own landscaping firm. Anna Hanau, who is Grow and Behold’s Communications director, is a farmer, writer and a Jewish educator. Formerly a vegetarian, she now eats meat when she knows how it’s produced and where it came from.  Anna worked for 10 years at Hazon, and word has it that she keeps a flock of chickens in her Brooklyn backyard.

So how does the meat taste? In one word – exceptional. When we grilled rib steaks they were tender and flavorful.  We pan–fried sweet Italian sausage (nitrite free) and added it to our Slow Cooker Split Pea Soup. Everyone loved it. The sausage added a delicious mild, smoky flavor. The ground beef formed a juicy, flavorful hamburger which we enjoyed on a potato bun.

We are now intrigued by Grow and Behold's newest product Rose Veal.
We asked Anna, what makes this veal different from all other veals?
Her reply:
Finally, veal that your taste buds and conscience can truly enjoy. Our delicious Rose Veal comes from animals raised outdoors on pasture, with plenty of room to graze and move around. They are never forcibly confined, as is common in conventional veal. Instead, these animals nurse from their mother until 6-8 months, and then enjoy a diet of grass and locally-grown grain (including hay and haylege, fermented grain).Rose Veal is generally quite lean and should be cooked to rare. Brining definitely improves texture and flavor. 
There are many more products available from this company that we look forward to trying. We applaud Grow and Behold for its mission, its standards and its commitment to humane sustainable practices and the environment, while adhering to the highest standards of kashrut. 

Grow and Behold offers buying clubs in several cities across the U.S., and ships meat and poultry throughout the U.S.  To learn more, visit them at Friend them on Follow them on Twitter: @growandbehold 

Enjoy these scrumptious recipes from Grow and Behold:
Rose Veal Roast with Pocket
Lamb Roast with Rosemary and Sage



January 16, 2012

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