Queens of Yeroham
If you’ve ever eaten Israeli-style home cooking, you know the aromas, visual appeal, tastes and textures of Shabbat and holiday feasts served to tens of family members and guests by immigrant women who brought to young Israel (est. 1948) recipes handed down to them by mothers and grandmothers through the generations.
Meet Our Culinary Queens
Hadara Halaf Ben David
Pastry chef, entrepreneur, and first-class hostess Hadara moved in girlhood from Tel Aviv to Yeroham when David Ben Gurion personally asked her father to help establish a Negev-based nationwide defense project. Prior to working for Atid Bamidbar, she managed a cake factory and founded the Quality Time Café. Let her teach you how to bake traditional Frena bread (like focaccia) in her outdoor clay oven imported from Morocco.
The local queen of kindness and Moroccan cuisine, Shula made aliya to Yeroham from Casablanca at age six. In addition to cooking for our visitors, she directs a social welfare project for the municipality that takes Yeroham families on quarterly trips throughout Israel that they otherwise could not afford.
A retired kindergarten and elementary school teacher who now takes Israelis on culinary tours abroad, Leah specializes in Djerban and Libyan cuisine and high-quality vegetarian and vegan cooking. She arrived in Yeroham from Moshav Berekhya (founded in 1950 by Tunisian immigrants). Her personal story of hardship, hope, and strength inspires listeners.
Mazal and Jojo Nagar
As a young woman, Mazal followed her sister from Moshav Uziyahu (founded in 1950 by Libyan immigrants). She soon met Jojo, and they fell in love. She serves delicious Libyan and Tunisian cuisine while irrepressible Jojo leads guests in song, tells them his aliya story from Tunisia, and describes his boyhood in a very different Yeroham from today.
Yael and Moshe Glantz
Yael and Moshe arrived in Yeroham from Jerusalem with their three daughters in 2015; two years later, their fourth daughter was born. The family lives in the Desert View neighborhood (named for its addictive desert view). Moshe, who does the cooking, brings a young, modern touch to Yeroham’s culinary traditions. The couple accompanies dessert—washed down with their own homebrewed craft beer—with a performance mixing piano and vocals.
Shai is a chef by training, with rich experience in Israel’s biggest kitchens. Eight years ago, he came to Yeroham with his wife and children to open the kitchen at the newly established Desert Iris Hotel, and later launched a community-oriented spice shop and café. Shai invites you to taste Indian and other oriental cuisine in his home and to hear the upbeat story of his move to Yeroham.
The Culinary Queens can host anyone from small families to large groups of up to 50 people. They observe all the rules of Kashrut. Hadara Ben-David's kitchen (separate from her home kitchen) also has kosher certification from the local rabbinate.
Book a learn-by-doing workshop from Yeroham’s Culinary Queens, who will take you through the entire process from kitchen preparation of ingredients right through to enjoying the delicious flavors of finished dishes you yourself made.