Friday, June 28, 2013

Food, glorious food

I have always had a love hate relationship with food.

I didn't realise it until about four years ago when I suffered with quite severe depression. Those who have suffered or are sufferers will know what I mean, I found it hard to think about preparing food let alone eating it, and I stopped eating. That's quite an admission when I see it written, but breakfast would be half a slice of bread and butter, no lunch, ( and to this day, I still find it hard to eat lunch and if I do, I don't eat in the evening save for a few crackers and a bit of cheese). The evening meal was awful and I would struggle to get the food down. Breakfast now consists of a whole slice of bread and maybe a boiled egg if I can be bothered, and I might have a cookie or two for elevenses, so things have improved.

My relationship with food has shifted to a "better place" over the past year, although I am very careful about my food intake. But, something has changed slightly. When our Israeli guests left, I purchased a Cook book by Joan Nathan, "The Foods of Israel today". Now I don't know about you, but I love cookery books, I have a cupboard in the kitchen absolutely full from top to bottom. So what? Well, the cupboard is six feet tall and has five shelves. When we were in the UK, we used to do Boot Fairs, (yard sales), at the weekends, and my most prized find was a copy of Elizabeth David's "Mediterranean and French Country Foods" in it's original dust jacket. Not a first edition, but still a prize which cost me 20p. I love to read cook books like this although some of it is written in French so totally  not understandable to me.

So, now you all know.

Anyway, back to my current cook book. I love it!!

It was sort of recommended to me and I thought I would get it and have a look. Well, I think the husband is very long suffering, for tonight, I made Falafel. I love Falafel, the crispness and the flavour of them is second to none, and I managed four of them with a small Pita bread and some tomato. So I think I overdid it but I really enjoyed it. The book also contains some very interesting history and facts on Israel and also lists Restaurants and other places that serve excellent Middle Eastern food. I have made salads from this book and I am thoroughly enjoying the exploration and the journey of cooking. I think my food intake must have gone up a little too as it is not mentioned by the husband.

I also think the brunch we attended at the Jewish Community Centre back in January was an eye opener, and then the food we had at the closing brunch was just wonderful, and I think it triggered something.

My other favourite books are by Darina Allen, an Irish cook. My good friend Heather in Northern Ireland introduced me to some great cook books by Jenny Bristow, and then Darina. For the longest time they were the only books I used, and then along came Jamie Oliver. Another eye opener.

I know I will be going to Israel at some point,and I will be armed with a list of places that I would love to visit, the best place to buy Baklava, the only place to buy Falafel, etc, etc,. I just hope that my hosts won't mind my strange eating habits and driving me all over the country to try new foods!

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