Shish Kebab

Shish Kebab

Most of us associate Israeli cuisine with the following three specialities – delicious hummus, crispy falafel, and creamy tahini. In fact, you can get them on every street corner here in Tel Aviv and in every other city in Israel. But if you take a closer look, you will notice that there are not only hummus or falafel shops but also shops with delicious Arab specialities.

As we already know Israeli cuisine is a fascinating mixture of cuisines from all over the world and Arab cuisine has a big influence. This influence doesn’t only come from the surrounding Arab neighbouring countries but also from the 20% of Arab citizens in Israel itself. It is especially because so many different cultures and cuisines come together here in Israel that there is this incredible culinary diversity on the streets.

Since shish kebab is one of the dishes you find on every menu of an Arab restaurant I had to try it, to find out what makes it so popular. 

What is shish kebab?

Shish kebab or better “şiş kebab“ is Turkish for minced meat on a spit. It is a very popular Arab dish – it’s simple and tasty but as it happens with most of the simple dishes, it has many varieties. Families have created their own family recipes and then opened their restaurants. I enjoyed shish kebab in many different restaurants and each time it tasted delicious and very different.

The main ingredient is minced lamb meat. Added are onions, cut very finely, and several spices. At one restaurant they had added little pieces of fresh peppermint, at another, it was parsley that gave the special taste. Both spices are extremely delicious though they taste unlike each other. In addition to the various ingredients, each restaurant serves special side dishes eg. rice, pita, hummus, salad, or fresh onion.

Every time you eat shish kebab you are going to have a new experience so enjoy as many shish kebab as you can.

Here my personal recommendations for you: 

Turkiz acre – a beautiful restaurant in the middle of Akko Old Town. Here they have delicious shish kebab with flavorful rice and a very tasty yoghurt dip. 

Basti Restaurant & Café – since 1927 this family-owned restaurant welcomes tourists from all over the world on the vibrant Via Dolorosa in Jerusalem Old Town.

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