All you need in life

A humorous encounter (last pic) on Tel Aviv-Jaffa´s HaCarmel Market made me think of one big common denominator transcending borders in the Levant: food.

hacarmel 01

© borderlandlevant – HaCarmel Market, Tel Aviv-Jaffa

With a variety of fantastic “Middle Eastern” dishes found all over the area, especially Hummus represents basic foodstuff here and there. As much as it can be seen as a unifying feature, it can obviously add another absurd dimension to the conflict. I remember a time back in 2008 when reports appeared in the media about a Hummus war in the Levant. There was uproar, particularly in Lebanon, about Israel marketing hummus and other food as Israeli, which they believed was Lebanese, or at least Arab. Next to `Baba Ghannoush´ and `Tabbouleh´, the Lebanese Industrialists Association attempted to exclusively protect Hummus as an originally Lebanese dish. The dispute also brought the Palestinians to the scene, who claimed hummus actually being a Palestinian dish. Since we haven’t heard of a law declaring Hummus Lebanese, Palestinian or Israeli, I assume chickpea-spread is still international, with its origins in the Levant!, and can be made and eaten by everyone who likes it.

hacarmel 02

© borderlandlevant – HaCarmel Market, Tel Aviv-Jaffa

Bridging, or rather confusing, the gap between geo-politics and food, Brüno, alias Sacha Baron Cohen discusses serious stuff with high ranking Israeli and Palestinian politicians. Have a look:

Without touching very much on the geo-political side of Hummus, Remy or ‘Habib’, you choose, hilariously raps about the dip. I also recommend the other stuff from him, like the A.R.A.B song. You´ll like it!

Coming back to the amusing part at HaCarmel Market, besides a fascinating mixture of smells, voices, the most colourful fruits, vegetables and other food, as seen above, all the ingredients for a healthy diet and for making hummus can be found there, including olive oil. … Olia, est. 1968?

esx, drugs and olive oil

© borderlandlevant – HaCarmel Market, Tel Aviv-Jaffa

All rights reserved: Sigi Atteneder, 2013