Yoav Alon

The Melting Pot

“We stir both our histories together in a single pot”, says Dafi Kremer. “Her shish-barak soup with my kreplach, my kugel with her kubeh. We each contribute something, and the result is more delicious for it.”

When Dr. Muzna Bishara, a dentist by training, and Kremer, a chef and catering-business owner, discovered that they share a love for the study of their people’s food history — Kremer, by way of the medieval Jewish philosopher Maimonides, and Bishara by way of Ibn Sina, one of the most significant thinkers of the Islamic Golden Age — they decided to join forces for a cause. All they needed? A bigger table.

At the women’s joint meal adventure, Jews and Arabs come together to taste thirteen different dishes, all derived from the histories and cultures of both peoples. Both cuisines, the women point out, owe much to their roots in the Middle East, and both share much in common. As they eat, diners are treated to fascinating tales of the dishes’ origins, which often stir recollections from their own parents’ and grandparents’ kitchens. “We’re not interested in talking politics or arguing about who was here first”, says Muzna. “We talk about food, we reminisce about meals, and we share the most wonderful stories…in our vision for this partnership, there will be tables like this all over the country, at which both peoples sit, eat, and enjoy — together.”

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