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January 12, 1979 - Image 20

Resource type:
Text
Publication:
The Detroit Jewish News, 1979-01-12

Disclaimer: Computer generated plain text may have errors. Read more about this.

,

20 Friday, January 12, 1919

THE DETROIT JEWISH NEWS

Israeli Kitchen Revolution Marked by Updated Appliances

By SYBIL ZIMMERMAN

From World Zionist
Press Service

revolutionary
.What
changes have taken place in
the Israeli kitchen during
the past 30 years? The
changes in the Israeli
kitchen can probably be

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summed up in three ideas:
from p'tilia and primus to
gas or electricity; from ice
box to refrigerator; from
wonder pot to oven.
Most newcomers to Israel
in the 1930s and 40's were
introduced to kitchen
"appliances" that were
familiar to those already
living in the new country,
but certainly primitive by
today's standards. The
primus was a single burner
kerosene portable stove;
after you lit the wick, you
pumped it to get a higher
flame. Small ones were used
for cooking, large ones for
boiling laundry.
P'tilia comes from the
Hebrew word, ptil or wick.
This, too, was a single
burner portable kerosene
cooking stove. What hap-
pened when you wanted to
bake a cake? You used the
wonder pot (sir pelle in He-
brew), a top-of-the-stove
baking pot. The pan would
bake a cake in 45 minutes to
- an hour.
By the 1950s, people
began to buy two- or
three-burner gas hot
plates, but continued to
bake in the wonder pot.
For other baking, there
was also a portable oven

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with a door. This fitted on
top of one burner but had
a space in the bottom so
the heat of the gas burner
came through and
worked to bake whatever
was placed on the rack
inside. It wasn't as well
insulated as an oven, but
it baked and you could
bake things other than
just cakes.
The real revolution in the
Israeli kitchen took place
between 1960 and 1967.
With more money in many
pockets and a large con-
struction boom with build-
ing of larger apartments,
more space was allotted for
the kitchen, giving more
room for appliances.
Refrigerators gradually
began to replace iceboxes.
Today, regular, push-
button defrost, automatic
defrost and frost-free re-
frigerators are readily
available in Israel.
By the late 1960s, people
were beginning to buy gas
stoves and ovens combined.
The most popular combina-
tion was and still remains
gas burners with electric
oven. Less popular are
stoves with both gas bur-
ners and gas ovens. Electric
stoves are the least popular
because of the high con-
sumption of electricity
which is extremely expen-
sive in Israel.
Undoubtedly the first
small appliance Israeli
women began to buy
were hand mixers or
mixmasters. Even so, this
still appears to be some-
what of a luxury. Accord-
ing to the Central Bureau
of Statistics, in 1962, only
9.2 percent of all Israeli
families owned a mixer;
by 1968, this had more
than doubled to 21.8 per-
cent; today 43.1 percent
of all families own a
mixer.
The trend toward time-
saving kitchen devices has
not yet really reached its
peak in Israel. Juicers, toas-
ters, and blenders, as well
as toaster ovens and waffle
irons, are not yet common
property. Many Israelis do
have the locally-made
table-top grill, similar to a
waffle iron, but for toasting
sandwiches, fish, hambur-
gers, etc.
appliance
Electrical
stores in Israel carry a wide
variety of appliances. How
many Israelis actually own
these appliances due to
their very high cost is an-
other question.
In the kibutz, one of the
most indigenous forms of

"There must not be one
law for the Jews and
another for the Arabs. We
must stand firm by the an-
cient principle enunciated
in the Torah: 'One law and
one manner shall be for you
and the stranger that
sojourneth with you.' I am
certain that the world will
judge the Jewish state by
what it will do with the
Arabs, just as the Jewish
people as a whole will be
judged by what we do, or fail
to do, in this state."
—Chaim Weizmann

living in Israel, the kitchen
has gone through a revolu-
tion as well. Today, kibutz
kitchens are highly moder-
nized and efficient opera-
tions with gas, electric and
steam stoves and ovens,
large room for food prepara-
tion and storage, huge freez-
ing and refrigeration
facilities and capabilities
for serving meals to hun-

dreds and even thousands of
people including those on
special diets.
Each kibutz apartment
usually has a small kitch-
enette fitted with electric
kettle, sometimes one or
two gas or electric bur-
ners, a small electric re-
frigerator, kitchen sink
and minimal facilities for
cooking. It is not uncom-

mon to find toaster, toas-
ter oven, hand mixer and
waffle iron in the indi-
vidual's kitchenette.
Many kibutzim have al-
tered.their basic philosophy
whereby all members ate all
meals together in the com-
munal dining room. Today
some members eat meals as
a family in individual
apartments.

these are only a few of the
features you'll find weekly
in The Jewish News

order a subscription or
gift subscription today!

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