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‘Je suis carciofo’: Rome’s artichoke revolt

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Published: 7 June 2018

Last updated: 4 March 2024

When the Chief Rabbinate of Israel declared Jewish-style artichokes non-kosher, hundreds of Romans inundated social media with solidarity messages for the centuries-old dish

A FEW WEEKS before the start of Passover, Rabbi Yitzhak Arazi, head of imports of the Chief Rabbinate of Israel, declared that Jewish-style artichokes – a staple feature of the Rome Passover menu – should be considered trayf, or non-kosher.

Rabbi Arazi turned his attention to the matter after a canned version of Jewish-style artichokes started to become popular in Israel. “The heart of the artichoke is full of worms, and there is no way you can clean it,” Arazi told Israeli newspaper Haaretz, explaining that the ban should not be considered as a local policy but as an application of Jewish religious law.

Roman Jews did not take it well. Hundreds of people inundated social media with messages of solidarity for the hundreds-year-old dish, from angry posts to love poems and revisitations of popular mottos – the ‘Je suis Charlie’ meme that went viral after the attacks on French satirical magazine, Charlie Hebdo, in 2015 was turned into ‘Je suis carciofo’.

FULL STORY Has Rome declared an Artichoke war? (BBC)

Photo: Carciofi alla giudia, or Jewish-style artichokes (Taste 4 Travel)

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