7 Species Recipe Contest

I just returned from another amazing trip to Israel where I was one of 3 leaders shepherding 14 Jewish moms helping them learn and grow their Judaism and spirituality. Naturally, given the foody person that I am, one of my favorite places in Jerusalem is Mahane Yehuda—the main food market where spirituality and life lessons (patience, self control among the top) abound, especially on Friday afternoon before Shabbat. Let’s just say: OY—very hot and crowded. But, during my visits there I was reminded of the truly biblical foods, the Seven Species:

  • Olives
  • Grapes
  • Wheat
  • Barley
  • Figs
  • Dates
  • Pomegranates

Photo By Erika Yarmoff

Photo By Erika Yarmoff

These are the foods that accentuate a sense of continuity between the biblical Land of Israel and the modern state. They were very significant during ancient times, as the fruits were discovered and embraced the very moment the Israelite’s entered the land after their bondage in Egypt.



With Rosh Hashana just 7 weeks away I wanted to get you thinking about something yummy to prepare for the holiday! With that in mind, I challenge you to come up with a recipe that includes as ingredients at least 3 of the 7 species listed above. Whether the recipe is for an appetizer, main course, or dessert, everything qualifies as long as the recipe includes at least 3 of the 7 species. The individual with the most creative and tasty submission will receive a 7 species tote bag! Additionally, one runner-up will receive a 7 species pot-holder.

Entering To Win The Tote Bag Is Easy!
  1. Formulate a recipe for an appetizer, main course, side dish or dessert that includes at least 3 of the 7 species
  2. Include instructions for how to prepare the meal
  3. Post your recipe & instructions as a comment below
  4. Submissions must be made by August 16th. The winners will be announced shortly after.
  5. We will email you if you are a winner or runner up.

Best of Luck!

Jane Moritz


  1. Marcia Goldstein Said,

    July 30, 2013 @ 9:04 am

    Duck Breast Salad With Figs and Golden Beets and barley

    Serves 2

    2 golden beets – roasted, cooled and sliced (red beets would work fine too)
    2 duck breast
    2 to 4 cups arugula
    1/4 cup pomegranate seeds
    6 fresh figs – roasted and cut in half
    olive oil
    lemon juice (1 lemon)
    Salt and pepper
    6 thyme sprigs
    For Barley
    7 oz. barley
    7 oz. pomegranate seeds
    7oz. avocado – chopped in ½ inch cubes
    2 tbsp. chopped mint leaves
    4 tsp. EVOO
    2 tsp. lemon juice
    1 tsp. salt
    ¼ cup diced tomato
    Small onion diced and sauteed

    Preheat the oven to 450. Place the beets in a large piece of aluminium foil. Drizzle with a little olive oil, salt and pepper. Cook for about 30-45 minutes or until tender. Let cool in the foil.
    For figs:
    Place figs and thyme sprigs on baking sheet. Drizzle with extra-virgin olive oil. Roast in oven at 425°F for 10 minutes.
    Soak the barley for at least 1 hour in luke warm water, then boil it for 7-8 minutes in salted water. Strain the water and cool it down to room temperature.
    Add chopped avocado and tomato to the barley with pomegranate, chopped onion, chopped mint leaves, lemon juice and extra virgin olive oil.

    In a large saute pan set over medium high heat, sear the duck breasts on both sides until crispy brown on the outside but still moist and tender inside (About 7 minutes on both sides). Let cool for 10 minutes while you assemble the salad. Slice thin.
    In a large bowl, gently toss together the arugula, the pomegranate seeds, figs, a drizzle of olive oil and lemon juice. Season with salt and pepper and top with the sliced duck breast. Serve barley salad on side.

  2. Malvina Shimanov Said,

    August 9, 2013 @ 8:57 am

    Odessa Fish Stew with Herbed (Green) Barley

    2 lbs of hake or whiting filet, cut into medium pieces
    1 large yellow onion, finely chopped
    4 large carrots, shredded
    2-cups of breadcrumbs
    2 table spoons Sunflower oil+1
    2 table spoons of tomato paste
    1 can of Crushed Tomatoes
    3 fresh bay leafs
    5 allspice berries
    1/2 cup of black and green pitted olives chopped
    ½ cup of dried figs chopped
    Kosher salt to taste
    ½ teaspoon of ground black pepper

    Sautee carrots and onions in oil until golden brown, remove from pan.
    Add more oil
    Season fish with salt and pepper
    Drench catfish in breadcrumbs and fry.
    Remove fried fish on to the paper towel
    Drain oil
    Return fish and carrot/onion mixture to the pan.
    Add all other ingredients
    Stir gently
    Cover the pan and let it simmer on low heat for 35 minutes.
    Serve on the bed of Green Barley

    2 cups vegetable broth
    1 cup barley
    1/3 cup of each: chopped dill, flat parsley, and thyme
    1 teaspoon extra-virgin olive oil
    1 teaspoon kosher salt
    Bring broth to a boil in a medium saucepan. Add the barley, oil, and salt.
    Cover and cook until tender, about 30 minutes.
    Mix in fresh herbs and serve.

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