By Dan Garwood, North American Coordinator
ICYMI, we’ve been hosting March Madness: Israel Edition over on our Instagram. We seeded 32 iconic Israeli food, people, places, and things across four divisions and let you vote to decide each matchup! We’re now down to the Final Four, so here are some fun facts about these amazing contestants.
BTW, if sports are your thing, check out our brand new Sports Israel trip! Space is still available for the summer, so register now. And right now we’re offering the opportunity to win a $750 scholarship toward Sports Israel. Just email us at firstname.lastname@example.org by April 4 to enter the drawing – open to anyone not yet registered.
Hummus & Pita
Hummus is a classic dish in Israel and across the Middle East. How classic is it? Well, the oldest known recipe for hummus is from the 13th century! There are tons of ways to prepare hummus, with different spices and herbs, like paprika, mint, and parsley. You can add eggs to it or other kinds of beans, top it with mushrooms, or douse it in hot sauce. Versatile, filling, and absolutely delicious!
Ok, so hummus has been around a while, but pita traces its roots all the way back to flatbreads baked in the Stone Age! The modern pita with a pocket was developed later, and it’s pretty cool how the pocket gets formed. Pita are baked in an oven hot enough to instantly turn water in the dough into steam, causing the pita to fill up like a balloon. The two layers bake separately, and when cool, the pita flattens out.
We all know Gal Gadot from her amazing portrayal of Wonder Woman in 2017. But before then she acted in a number of other films, such as Date Night, Criminal, and Keeping Up with the Joneses. But her coolest role before Wonder Woman was as Gisele Yashar in The Fast and the Furious franchise – where she performed all her own stunts!
Tel Aviv Beaches
Tel Aviv’s beaches are legendary, and for good reason! The water is bright blue, the sand is smooth, and the sun is perfect for getting that tan. On the beach, you’ll see people relaxing, swimming, playing Kadima, and generally having a good time. David Ben Gurion himself was known to enjoy himself at the beach – there’s a statue commemorating a 1957 photo of him doing a handstand at the beach!
At night, Israel’s deserts cool off and quiet down. There’s no better place for a campfire and an unobstructed view of the Milky Way! A few songs, some s’mores, and a view of the sky that will make for a lifelong memory.