Zoe takes you through how she went about putting her take on the North African Shakshuka, inspired by memories of the spice markets and the aromas of orchids that wafts through Tel Aviv. She explains how to introduce different spices, think about how to compose a spread of several small dishes which balance each other nicely in flavour, colour and texture.
Citrus - orchids have a powerful citrus smell and they can be found lining the streets of Tel Aviv. Zoe pays homage to this scent by bringing a strong flavour of citrus to her fennel bishbash salad. She chooses grapefruit as an alternative citrus fruit to the more widely used lemon or orange, which balances the rest of the dish with some acidity.
Feasting - for centuries, cooks in the region have created lavish spreads composed of as many as a dozen dishes including hummus, salads, fresh bread, an array of condiments and an abundance of produce from the region such as olives, lemons, oranges, grapes, dates and mint. This tradition can be seen throughout the region, for example in Arabic the name for this style of dining is 'meza'. Zoe takes you through how you can balance the flavours when bringing together multiple dishes on the feasting table.
Fullness - the idea is to think about the fullness of each bite, how the Shakshuka with its spices is balanced with the acidic fennel salad and rounded out with the creamy tahini - combining hot with cold, salty and sour to create a balanced dish.
Slow cooking - the method of slow cooking softens the peppers and brings out the flavour of the ingredients. It's a great technique for showing off the vegetables of the Israeli climate which due to the dry, hot air, good soil and their unique drip-irrigation technology produces some quality fresh, vegetables.