Tuesday, September 05, 2006

Five Things to Eat Before You Die



I have been planning to write my own entry about my "essential" 5 foods for almost a month now. As you notice it got delayed all the time and I simply decided to write otherwise it will never happen. Before I write about these 5 dishes I must say that Melissa Kronenthal initiative and blog The Traveler Lunchbox are superb!!! Beside the interesting foods and thoughts that one can read on the site it is such an interesting phenomenun to see how people from all over the world find a common language around such a basic theme. The food blogging world does not seem to be as virtual anymore, and I am very excited to be part of it.
So lets get down to business... My list contains 5 foods (it was very difficult to decide which ones to choose)which either my life wont look the same without, or else they contain a unique memory for me or I have eaten them in a special place. By the way since I read Melissa's initiative I have so many ideas for entries both about actual dishes and about restaurants worth mentioning.

So my Five MUSTS are:

1)My Lebanese grandmother's Sambusak Bjibne
2)My Lebanese grandmother's Meat filled Kube
3)My Mom's Argentinian Style Pizza
4)Filipino/ Pinoy desert Halo Halo
5)Deep Fried Ice Cream served in "Le Souffle" Manila Philippines

1+2) Writting down the recipes for my Gramma's dishes is one of the hardest things to do as she remembers them by heart and she never really measures what she puts inside.
However there is a very good Lebanese cook book I recently bumped into. I believe there are such books in English as well. It will take a while but I promise to translate the recipes from there and put load them to this entry...it will happen soon!
So why are these two dishes on my must list? Guess because first of all they are delicious!!! And second becuase for me they represent my home, my childhood and many memories of holidays and family get togethers. With each bite I can hear my gramma's stories about growing up in Lebanon, coming to Israel and raising a family here. Besides the memories in present times I ask her to prepare me these dishes whenever I have friends over or whenever there is a party at my house. These two are excelent finger food for any party. So she is happy because she has something to keep her busy (she is almost 80 now) and my friends and I are happy because both the Kube and the Sambusek is sooooo tasty!

3)My Mom's Argentinian Style Pizza
This pizza is not all that unique, however I chose to put it in this list because I love Pizza and this pizza in particular is a whole meal. And second because of the nice memories I have from this pizza. I think that my mother got the recipe when she went to college from an Argentinian friend. Whenever we eat this pizza we speak about this friend who later on bought a yacht and traveled around the world with it. But we also remenice on happy days in the 80's. A few years ago we went to Australia to visit family friends and they insisted my mom will prepare her famous pizza and even leave them extra sauce in the freezer because for them too this pizza is magical.
So what do you need in order to prepare it:

4)Filipino/ Pinoy desert Halo Halo
Anyone who visited the Philippines or a pinoy restaurant must have tried it. Halo means in Tagalo mix so it is a mix mix cold desert. The magic of it is the fact that there are so many flavours and textures in each bite. I don't know exactly what was in the Halo Halo's I've eaten but it was delicious. I chose to add it to my list because I believe it was one of the first exotic dishes I ate in my life. I was 15 and we just left Israel to live in the Philippines. For me it was the first time ever to leave Israel! We landed in Manila and the second day there we went to a [inoy restaurant. For desert I got the Halo halo, at first I was a bit suspicious but with each bite I liked it more. In any case, for me Halo Halo represents a period of 3 years which was very unique, and unforgetable. You can read more about Halo Halo here.

5)Deep Fried Ice Cream
This is my all times favorite desert which I used to eat in the Philippines and ever since we came back, and with all my travels I never ever ate a good deep fried ice cream like the one served in "Le Souffle"! I promise myself that one day I will master the preparation of this desert and try to reach the taste and shape of the deep fried ice cream served there! I guess I have such a poritive experience from this deep fried ice cream because it was the last perfect dish of a perfect meal. I highly recomand "Le Soufle" restaurant in Makati Metro Manila. If you ever get to Manila you MUST go to this restaurant. It is the best in Manila and I think it can be ranked very high in International level as well.

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