Shalom, my name is Shelly. I hold a few titles: mom, graphic designer, illustrator, self-taught photographer, nomad, and cook. A cook with bad karma, or, maybe, a subconscious fatal attraction to small kitchens. In the last decade, I’ve lived in fifteen homes in three different countries. Nine out of those fifteen apartments or houses had kitchens the size of closets. The rest were a bit bigger, but none of them was big as Martha Stewart’s. (I probably never will have a big kitchen, and if I did, I probably wouldn’t have time to cook in it.) Size doesn’t matter. What matters is intention, desire, family, and health. For my family, I’ll cook in a utility closet if I have to.
You know what is the best thing about living in many places? You always get to try new food, explore new food markets and restaurants, and, even better, meet new friends from different parts of the world – then you invite each other for home cooked dinners, and share family recipes. And the worst thing? (Life is rosy only on social media.) Packing a whole house, storing most of it, shipping your personal belongings, looking at dozens of ugly homes until you find a place to live, starting the kids at new schools, and buying kitchen tools that you’d already bought on the previous move from New York to Los Angeles, but which are now the wrong voltage.
It would sound more convincing to say I started to eat healthy after having a serious health crisis, but that is not true in my case. I was raised in a family, community, and country that cherished vegetables. Fortunately – now I say fortunately, but there were times in my life that it was unfortunately – I was born in Israel in the mid-seventies, in a small, sleepy town in the middle of a desert, where no one had heard of microwaves, pizza, or frozen meals. EVERYONE in my town, including my big Moroccan family, cooked and ate all their meals at home.
So when I had my boys, naturally I wanted to do the same for them.
Occasionally I get a bit fanatic about eating healthy, but this doesn’t mean I force my kids to slurp green juices, or shove chia seeds down their throats.
My “radicalism” comes down to a few basic rules:
- We will not buy or eat processed food.
- We will eat organic food whenever it’s possible and affordable.
- We will eat vegetables and fruits only when they’re in season and locally grown.
- Any homemade cake or cookie is acceptable, as long as it’s not blue, red or green (which is ugly anyway).
I don’t like to preach, or tell anyone how to live their life. If you like what we eat and how we live, adopt it. If you don’t, it’s okay, too. Our life is far from being perfect, but we make it better by eating like kings, spending time with people that we love, and traveling whenever we have some extra cash.
Currently we live on the Balearic Island of Mallorca, in Spain. It’s beautiful (but don’t come in the summer – it’s too crowded.) We lived here ten years ago for almost three years, and we moved back last year.
I’ve cooked every day since Leo was born almost 14 years ago. I don’t cook anything fancy. I love simple, home-cooked meals. I make whatever I can from scratch, including bagels, granola bars and harissa. I like to preserve lemons, pickle cucumbers and cure olives. More then I love to cook traditional recipes I love to give them a healthy twist.
I hope you enjoy my stories, recipes and pictures.
By the way, English is my second language, so forgive my English.