May 21st
 

theresa albert - my friend in food

 

What I learned on Kibbutz

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My Journey Through Ace Your Health – the Six of Clubs

When I was 18 I spent ten months living in Israel. The first five months were in Jerusalem and the second half on a kibbutz near Nazareth. While there, I had a variety of jobs – I worked in the daycare, the kitchen and the “chicken” area. Ah yes, for some reason, us North American volunteers wanted to wake up at 3:00am (or simply not go to sleep), and sort through baby chicks that had just been born. Did you know, you can tell a chick’s gender by its wings? Males would go on one conveyor belt, females on the other. Every hundred chicks or so, you would see a deformity. They never made the belts…

The other coveted spot was the hatchery. Those volunteers that got to pick eggs in the morning, sometimes came back to our quarters with a few “extra” that got away. I can still remember the scrumptious taste those eggs would have. We ate eggs every night – along with a few beers. Fried, poached, hard boiled. In salads, sandwiches and on pita with hummus. To this day, I have a hard time eating anything but farm fresh eggs.

My family eats a lot of eggs. My kids love to much on a hard boiled egg for a snack. They eat scrambled eggs with “green bits” (peppers) for breakfast, and they will sneak a piece of egg or two out of my salad at dinner. Eggs are a staple.

A friend once told me to add an egg to my oatmeal at the last minute during cooking. Mix it in, and the egg will add a creamy texture to oatmeal. So my oatmeal contains, in addition to chia seeds and hemp seeds, an egg and some ground almonds. The kids love it. And on lazy nights when I am too tired to cook – that is what we have for dinner. As I have mentioned before, my daughter is hypoglycemic, and we struggle with getting enough food into her. There are nights she wakes up at 2:00am, needing a piece of cheese because she is starving. Not on oatmeal nights. Those are her best nights.

I love eggs – thanks Theresa for letting us know they love us back.

Below is my favourite dish from those days in Israel. I make this at home from time to time and find this recipe one of the best – it is from the site www.smittenkitchen.com

Shakshuka [Eggs Poached in Spicy Tomato Sauce]
Adapted from Saveur

Serves 4 to 6

1/4 cup olive oil
5 Anaheim chiles or 3 jalapeños, stemmed, seeded, and finely chopped
1 small yellow onion, chopped
5 cloves garlic, crushed then sliced
1 teaspoon ground cumin
1 tablespoon paprika
1 28-ounce can whole peeled tomatoes, undrained (I prefer to make my own tomato sauce)
Kosher salt, to taste
6 eggs
1/2 cup feta cheese, crumbled
1 tablespoon chopped flat-leaf parsley
Warm pitas, for serving

Heat oil in a 12-inch skillet over medium-high heat. Add chiles and onions and cook, stirring occasionally, until soft and golden brown, about 6 minutes. Add garlic, cumin, and paprika, and cook, stirring frequently, until garlic is soft, about 2 more minutes.

Put tomatoes and their liquid into a medium bowl and crush with your hands. Add crushed tomatoes and their liquid to skillet along with 1/2 cup water, reduce heat to medium, and simmer, stirring occasionally, until thickened slightly, about 15 minutes. Season sauce with salt.

Crack eggs over sauce so that eggs are evenly distributed across sauce’s surface. Cover skillet and cook until yolks are just set, about 5 minutes. Using a spoon, baste the whites of the eggs with tomato mixture, being careful not to disturb the yolk. Sprinkle shakshuka with feta and parsley and serve with pitas, for dipping.

** Photo is from the same site. Thank you

Heather

Heather

Heather Lochner is a mother to two wonderful and energetic children and a freelance writer. Together with her children, husband and dog, she has recently relocated to Toronto after spending 15 years on the West Coast – many of which were spent living aboard her sailboat. Heather loves to exercise but always finds a reason to sit on the couch. While she knows carrots, whole wheat pasta and lean meat are good to eat, Heather loves to munch on a burger, chicken wings and poutine. Heather loves to cook, but is notorious for ruining every batch of chocolate chip cookies. She looks forward to seeing what’s in the cards during this Ace journey....www.heatherlochner.com

 

3 Responses

    Ilana
    September 21, 2011 at 5:39 pm Reply

    Funny, I never had this dish when I too spent part of my teens on a kibbutz. I did, however, learn a dish from the La Dolce Vita cooking show that was very similar and became quite popular in our household. For a quick breakfast we would heat tomato sauce in a pan, crack the eggs on top, sprinkle with whatever herbs and cheese we had and then close the lid for a few minutes… delish! Oh, and by the way, my volunteer job on kibbutz was milking cows!

    Jennifer
    September 26, 2011 at 2:38 pm Reply

    This looks yummy. Thanks for sharing…eggs are one of my favourite easy dinners. I’ll have to try the egg in the oatmeal tomorrow morning.

    Michelle
    September 29, 2011 at 7:09 pm Reply

    I have not purchased “store bought” eggs in about 5 years. I bought eggs from neighbours, who were lucky enough to have laying hens.

    Well this year I got my own laying hens. Now I get approx. 3 dozen eggs a day! I sell my extras, although illegally as they are un-inspected eggs.

    I cook eggs many different ways and always enjoy a new recipe for eggs. Thanks for your post today!

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