travel & recipes

Mediteranean botanas for a Turkish fashion Show

In this epic journey to Mexico I have connected with many people, all from this magical fertile land yet so different, in their economic status, their culture and even the spanish they spoke. 
I have been undoubtedly blessed with a constant stream of eye opening, challenging interactions that led me to places I did not plan on going and meeting people I never anticipated meeting. One of these random connections was with chef Gustavo, the personal chef of Ricardo Salinas Peligo and now a dear friend.
As stories unfold, Gustavo and I met in Mexico City on my first week in town. Put in touch by a mutual friend, we met for dinner and talked about food, how different are cultures were and our mutual love to traveling, we talked about food the non existing limitations of flavors, we shared our ideas and aspirations all while sipping mescal...
It was a friendly conversation that ended with a promise to try and work together soon (funny enough we ate some Mediterranean knock off that night).
Four months went by and our paths haven't crossed again, I was nearing the end of my trip and Gustavo was heading to the coast of Spain on a private yacht when he called me and said "Mrs Salinas is hosting a fashion show for a turkish designer, I need to make middle-eastern botanas, can you help?", Can I ? Born and raised in Israel, tahini and falafel flow simultaneously in my veins, "sure I can", I responded and hopped on the next bus to DF.
We worked for three days, together with a team of four talented cooks who normally work for Salinas in the kitchens of TV Azteca. Simmering chick-peas for hours, burning eggplants and red peppers on open fire, rolling puff pastry and soaking sheets of filo with rose water infused honey syrup, recreating the smells of my childhood on a Friday afternoon in my mother's kitchen.
The result was stunning, we created a display of bite size delicacies (botantas), authentic and beautiful that have transformed guests at the BNG fashion show to the warm middle east in an instant.
Gracias Gustavo por eso oportunidad, y gracias a grupo de los talentosos y talentosa por la ayudarnos, el placer ha sido mío!