The Israeli team took the first place in the European 2012 Bread Baking Cup over the weekend, beating culinary powers like France and Germany and leaving countries like Portugal and Britain far behind.
The competition, held in Rimini Fiera in Italy, included four different categories. Israel won two of them: Innovative Bread with a Health Focus and Baked Dessert.
In the first category, the Israelis prepared a modern version of pita bread with falafel. They baked green pita bread (with spinach), filled it with cheese balls coated with pistachio, and sprinkled yogurt sauce on top.
For dessert, the team prepared Black Forest-style strawberry and fruit brioche.
In the Traditional Bread category, the Israelis came in second after serving the judges whole-wheat bread with eggplant and Pecorino cheese.
In the last category, Artistic Bread Centerpiece, the bakers created a tambourine alongside Jacob’s Ladder and the angels, but were only ranked fourth.
The team captain was baker Eli Avraham, and other member included pastry chef Eran Schwarzbard, artistic bread designer Osnat Lipson and baker Alex Besser.
“We prepared for the competition for a long time, making many changes in the pastries until we came up with the perfect recipes,” said team trainer Jacky Hazan, the bakers and pastry chefs’ representative at the Israel Chef Association. “This victory proves that Israeli chefs and bakers are at the forefront in the world.”
The German team took the second place in the championship, while Australia came in third.