It’s going to be an exciting semester here at the University of Rhode Island Hillel! There are so many interesting events going on that I am really excited for, but the one I am most excited for (right now at least) is our Shakshuka making event! I went to this event when we had it last year and since then, making, and more importantly, eating, shakshuka has became one of my favorite things to do!
When I began working at Hillel, a goal of mine was to become more immersed in Jewish culture, and I think one of the best ways to connect with any culture is through food, plus, food is amazing! Although I had never had it before, shakshuka, a dish consisting of a flavorful tomato sauce base with eggs cooked right on top always seemed interesting to me. It had tons of things I loved to eat and you got to dunk tons of bread in it, which sounded, and is, awesome! I couldn’t wait to learn how to make it! At the event, we learned how to make Shakshuka from an Israeli and while eating, we all got to know each other a little more, gaining insight into the lives and cultures of other community members and students. It really was one of my favorite nights at Hillel- plus I got to eat a delicious, easy and healthy homemade meal at school, which is always a plus!
Eager to get as involved as possible with my heritage and with the Jewish culture after so many wonderful experiences here on campus at Hillel, this past summer, I traveled with Hillel on my Birthright trip to Israel. Of course there were many things I was looking forward to doing in Israel, but eating was certainly at the top of the list. Once we got to Israel, I couldn’t wait to try the top dish on my foodie bucket list- shakshuka. Throughout our entire trip, I asked our knowledgeable tour guide the best place to go to get a taste of this traditional dish, and finally on one of our last days, he brought me to a small stand in the middle of the shuk ha Carmel in Tel Aviv. The saucy and decadent dish was worth the wait. I saw the chef preparing mine exactly to my liking- spicy and covered with fresh cheese before he served it to me alongside a fruity juice and a whole basket of soft bread. It was delicious and made me feel right at home in Israel, sharing a well-loved dish with well-loved friends!
I can’t wait to make shakshuka on Monday, January 30th at 7 PM at Hillel! I know that although it will not be my first time trying the dish, it will now bring back amazing memories and feelings that stretch across cultures and countries. I hope you join me there!