As seasons change in the beautiful Holy Land, Gil Travel is gearing up for an incredible Culture and Culinary tour led by author and famous Jewish foodie Joan Nathan. Nathan is deep-rooted connections to the culinary side of Israel, which is reflected in her successful career as an author of cookbooks, articles, recipes and more!
This March, she will be leading a once in a lifetime tour with exclusive experiences made possible only by travelling with a mega-food-star like Nathan. The Culture and Culinary tour of Israel reflects Nathan’s interests and background as much as it does the rich heart of Israeli food; learn more about Joan Nathan herself in this exclusive Gil Travel Interview!
SN: What have your past travels to Israel involved?
JN: “I lived in Israel for a few years working for Teddy Kollek, the former Mayor of Jerusalem. Since then I have fallen in love with Israel and gone back year after year to write about food. I have written two cookbooks on Israeli food- I love the food scene there because it is always changing. I love to go into peoples’ homes and get them talking about food whenever I go back to Israel to visit.” [pullquote align="right"][quote]Israeli food is more bound to the land of Israel itself- food that has been brought to Israel and reinterpreted in Israel. This is what makes Israeli food so much fun![/quote][/pullquote]
SN: How does food impact your relationship with Israel and Judaism?
JN: “What interests me most about Jewish food are the laws of Kashrut, or keeping kosher. These laws really bind you to Israel, and are intended for many people to keep. Accommodating to these laws while cooking has always interested me.”
SN: What is the difference between Jewish and Israeli food?
JN: “Jewish food is kosher food first and foremost. Israeli food is more bound to the land of Israel itself- food that has been brought to Israel and reinterpreted in Israel. This is what makes Israeli food so much fun!”
SN: What are your favorite and least favorite Israeli foods?
JN: “I love all eggplant dishes known to mankind, as well as any variety of hummus. I am not a fan of grilled hearts or goose liver though, both of which you can find in Israeli cuisine. There are so many great dishes though.”
SN: What are some exciting features of the upcoming Culture and Culinary tour to Israel? [pullquote align="right"][quote]We are visiting places known for good food but not necessarily the stylish places. I am most excited about the really great people going on the trip![/quote][/pullquote]
JN: “During the tour, we will be going into homes and engaging with locals directly over food. We will be visiting a good chef friend of mine, Eres Komorovsky to experience his cooking as well as his teaching. We are visiting places known for good food but not necessarily the stylish places. I am most excited about the really great people going on the trip! I am especially excited to share new experiences with my husband who has also been to Israel many times but usually focuses on different things when he is there. We are going to the Albert Einstein Archives too which is a huge treasure and got me really excited for the trip!”
Do you have any questions for Joan about her background, interests, or upcoming trips? Comment below!