Hummus unites Jews and Muslims in Argentina

“Instead of importing conflicts, we are exporting coexistence.”

By JTA
September 25, 2017 13:28
2 minute read.
Hummus Israel

Hummus. (photo credit: Wikimedia Commons)

 
X

Dear Reader,
As you can imagine, more people are reading The Jerusalem Post than ever before. Nevertheless, traditional business models are no longer sustainable and high-quality publications, like ours, are being forced to look for new ways to keep going. Unlike many other news organizations, we have not put up a paywall. We want to keep our journalism open and accessible and be able to keep providing you with news and analyses from the frontlines of Israel, the Middle East and the Jewish World.

As one of our loyal readers, we ask you to be our partner.

For $5 a month you will receive access to the following:

  • A user experience almost completely free of ads
  • Access to our Premium Section
  • Content from the award-winning Jerusalem Report and our monthly magazine to learn Hebrew - Ivrit
  • A brand new ePaper featuring the daily newspaper as it appears in print in Israel

Help us grow and continue telling Israel’s story to the world.

Thank you,

Ronit Hasin-Hochman, CEO, Jerusalem Post Group
Yaakov Katz, Editor-in-Chief

UPGRADE YOUR JPOST EXPERIENCE FOR 5$ PER MONTH Show me later

“Make Hummus, Not War.”

That was the message behind a recent event that brought local Jews, Muslims and other Arabs together in Argentina’s bustling capital city of Buenos Aires.

Be the first to know - Join our Facebook page.


On Sunday, 20 amateur chefs participated in a hummus-making competition at the Tetuan Moroccan Grill restaurant in the trendy Palermo Soho neighborhood. About 300 people showed up to see judges award a winner of what was unofficially dubbed The First World Championship of Hummus.

The event was less about competition and more about bringing people of different cultures and religions together through the food they all love.

But there was a winner: Turkey native Beynazur Ors, whose colorful hummus contained beet and red cabbage.

“We all want to respect each other,” Ors said of her fellow contestants.

Her husband, Burak, agreed.

“We all want another event like this, more time to cook and eat together,” he said.

Hummus (courtesy)

Though it may have been the first hummus competition of its kind in Buenos Aires, the evening germinated over the course of informal get-togethers with members of the Latin American Jewish Congress and local Muslim youths. The group started three years ago simply getting coffee or tea together, but soon they invited each other to Passover and Iftar dinners. The hummus contest was an offshoot of the group, but while members of the Latin American Jewish Congress attended, there was little institutional presence.


There has been a heated debate over the years as to whether hummus is an Arab or Israeli invention — or, maybe more accurately, an ancient Jewish creation, since Israel was officially founded in 1948, long after the chickpea dish had become a Middle Eastern staple. But such discussions were not on the table Sunday.

“Instead of importing conflicts, we are exporting coexistence,” Luciano Safdie, who like the event’s other organizers wore a “Make Hummus, Not War” T-shirt, said at the end of the night.

The judges were Matias Cedarbojm, a former Jewish contestant on Argentina’s version of “MasterChef”; Gustavo Massud, owner of an Arab restaurant in Buenos Aires called Al Shark; and Argentine chef Victor Manuel Garcia.

Joan Noejovich, a local Jewish man, made it to the the semifinals.

“I prepared a Druze recipe with ingredients all imported from Israel,” he said.

His version fared better than one prepared by an Israeli expat from Jerusalem named Adi, who didn’t want to give his last name.

Massud, who noted that his restaurant’s customers typically are half Arabs and half Jews, loved Noejovich’s hummus but said in the end he voted for Ors because it had “the flavor of food made by a mother.”

Myriam Kabbara, who runs an Islamic school in Buenos Aires, had a blast at the event.

“I enjoyed the spirit,” she said. “I never had a problem with Jewish people, and I think it is very good to show that we Jews and Muslims can be friends.”

Join Jerusalem Post Premium Plus now for just $5 and upgrade your experience with an ads-free website and exclusive content. Click here>>

Related Content

December 14, 2018
Italian Jewish leader: Jewish community must work with Salvini, nationalists

By JEREMY SHARON