When I scour my brain for memories of Israeli food, I only find two specific memories. The first was learning that when you babysit Jewish kids you don’t order pepperoni and cheese pizza. The family had 2 sets of silverware, etc. to keep things Kosher in their kitchen. I had my first bowl of matzo ball soup at their house.
The second memory is from Minnesota. Our church had a special dinner to demonstrate and explain what the Passover meal was. The topic is interesting to at least read about if you don’t have the opportunity to actually prepare and taste the foods.
This week, I added a third memory. Patricia and I decided to go downtown for lunch. We got off the Transmilenio at Museo del Oro and wandered around a bit. When Patricia asked at a coffee shop if there was a Jewish restaurant nearby, the worker said “no”, but that there was an Israeli one just around the corner. We weren’t quite sure what he meant by that.
L’Jaim Restaurante Israeli, like most restaurants in the Candelaria, isn’t very big. It is clean and the music wasn’t so loud that you couldn’t understand each other in conversation. The cost of a vegetarian lunch-of-the-day is 6.4000 COP, but we wanted to try cordero (lamb), so we spent closer to 9.000 + 1.500 for a large glass of juice (delicious, of course because it was made from a mixture of fresh fruit). The shwarma came with thin, homemade potato chips. It is a sandwich filled with vegetables, meat, hummus and I don’t know what else. Not spicy or anything, but an okay sandwich.
The restaurant also sells books, and Jewish things. You can buy hummus or pita bread to-go.