Thursday, 30 September 2010

Dr Landeau has made himself piggy in the middle

The New York Times reported yesterday that Dr Eli Landeau has written the first ever Israeli pork cookbook. In a country where keeping kosher is not an alternative lifestyle this has, naturally, led to a storm breaking over the head of the retired cardiologist and food writer with one rabbi accusing him of deliberately taking a pot shot at religion, another dismissing him because he's from Tel Aviv; and "what goes on in Tel Aviv , nobody cares."  Dr Landeau himself writes of the recipes with such passion and care it is hard to imagine he meant anything except, as he claims, to teach people to cook it in a country in which pork sellers face regularly face protesters and even arsonists.

There is something ironic and deeply fitting about the humble pig highlighting the dangers of entrenched thinking - which is divisive and suffocating weather it be in religion, politics or any other field in which one group says this is right and closes their ears to all other thinking.  Dr Landeau says that twenty years ago his book would not have been possible, twenty years hence it will be natural. Perhaps it could be pork today and peace tomorrow? Could it be that, to paraphrase holy writ, 'a little piggy shall lead them?'

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