Just as Israel is a land rich in culture and history, so too is it rich in culinary delights. Israel is a land of immigrants and a melting pot of different cultures.
In fact, those who settled in Israel in the past generations came from more than one hundred and twenty different countries, bringing their cuisine traditions and culinary styles along with them.
As such, the country boosts diverse – and generally mouth watering – cuisine, including classic Middle Eastern dishes, traditional Jewish food from Eastern Europe and North Africa, East African cuisine, and Arab, Druze, and Bedouin delights.
As a cosmopolitan capital, Tel Aviv and other major cities also offer a variety of international and gourmet dishes created by world renowned chefs. In fact, Tel Aviv has more sushi restaurants than falafel stands – Israel's national treat and favorite street food.
Still, even with all the sushi, traditional Israeli dishes are plentiful and delicious.
Falafel is one such favorite dish - mashed chickpeas fried in the shape of a ball and served in pita bread pockets with plenty of salads, hummus, and tehina – a sesame paste with garlic and lemon.
Humus is such a staple dish that restaurants, called "Humusia," are devoted completely to the dish.
Shwarma meat served in pita is also a popular and savory street food, served with French fries and salads.
Meats of all varieties, including lamb, steak, and kebabs, are served on skewers and grilled with a mix of seasonings.
Traditional Israeli grill restaurants serve a meat of choice with a variety of salads, sauces, breads, and rice that alone could fill your belly.
The classic Israeli salad – chopped cucumbers, tomatoes, and onions with light seasoning of olive oil, salt, pepper and lemon juice, is served essentially with every meal of the Israely cuisine, including breakfast.
A classic Israeli breakfast usually includes a variety of small salads that are much like meze, as well as eggs, fresh breads, and a variety of cheeses and yogurt.
Another favorite breakfast dish is shakshuka, a North African egg and tomato dish. At some restaurants breakfast is served all day long.
Fresh fruit and vegetables are a staple of the Israeli cuisine and fresh fruit juice and shake stands are located practically on every corner; pomegranate and grapefruit juices are a local favorite.