The City of Ma’aleh Adumim treated new olim to a trip to (Eretz Bereishit/Genesis Land) on Sunday, September 21st. As we traveled (the brave ones on camels) down the road to Avraham’s tent we were transported back to an ancient world.
We were greeted by Avraham and invited to wash our hands after our journey. Then we experienced “Hafla” (the ancient hospitality that Avraham is famous for) as we enjoyed a Kosher meat meal in his tent, sitting on mattresses around low tables. It was fun and the food was delicious and nicely presented.
As we ate, Avraham explained that each dish contained multiple spices and/or herbs to awaken the taste buds. After a variety of Middle Eastern breads and appetizers, we were treated to meatballs on a bed of rice cooked in vegetables and a sweet chicken dish. I’m not much of a meat eater, but the chicken was so tender and juicy that it fell off the bone and the taste was a new experience for me. After obtaining the recipe, I made a point of stopping in the gift shop to buy a spice that was new to me – Za-atar (ground hyssop leaves, white sesame seeds and salt) to mix with garlic and date honey for the marinade.
Michael thought it was wonderful that they saved him from the expense of an anniversary dinner (it was the 4th anniversary of our Jewish wedding – we’ve been married 11 years).
Despite the heat of the desert it was pleasantly cool in the tent; Michael explained that this was due to the multi-layer construction. “Avraham” made a point of criticizing those of us who use air conditioning, but admitted that his wife (the one from the future) also demands it 🙂 It might not be bad to live in one of those tents – temporarily. However, I’m not sure I would have held up as well as Sarah (who must have been hiding in the kitchen).
Here is a sampling of our Genesis Land photo album:
According to their website, they offer a variety of activities including parchment writing, pita baking, pottery, mosaics, desert adventures and more. This is certainly a place we’d like to visit again.