For our regular weekly lunch my mother and I decided to run a little intelligence detail on Kapulsky, located directly between Tel Aviv and Jerusalem in Modi’in. We wanted some quiet for a heart to heart and looked for a casual place offering simple tasty food. Kapulsky’s new location (open for only a year) surprised us with their unique and homey dishes.
We settled in on the stone patio, my mother shaded by the large umbrella while I chose to warm myself under the hot sun. A gust of half-Jerusalemite wind blew by the buildings of modern stone and the freshly planted trees, rocking the red and white umbrellas and brushing by the little birds, which could be heard singing in the background. The atmosphere was lovely and relaxed. Two tables nearby were also filled, a man, woman and a baby at one and a young couple at another– all of whom looked quite content. Inside the restaurant, the tables were all full of locals who seemed to be thoroughly enjoying the air conditioning.
At all the Kapulsky Café locations certain standard dishes are offered in addition to local specialties, owner Ronit tells me. She adds how much she loves her homey café, the nice people who come from the neighborhood and specifically points out that this is the only Mehadrin kosher restaurant in the area.
The food here is dairy only and very creative. The menu consists of very generously portioned salads, pastas, stir-fries, fish, sandwiches, breakfasts (served all day) and all sorts of sweets. Any customer who comes in will certainly find something to satisfy.
We started on our starters with ravenous appetites. We’d ordered fried mushrooms and antipasti – specialties only available at this particular Modi’in location. The mushrooms arrived on a long narrow plate lined up in a neat row looking like round little schnitzels, crisp on the outside and with a surprise on the inside: mushrooms covered in melted salty cheese. Alongside this dish of little cylinders came a sweet chili sauce that gave the dish a snappy bonus. The antipasti consisted of hot eggplant, roasted peppers, broiled zucchini and more mushrooms – always a welcome addition. The antipasti came with Bulgarian cheese and fresh lettuce dressed in olive oil and a bit of salt. We found this portion to be relatively large and filling.
After such an interesting start, we felt secure about the mains to come – a piece of salmon with sautéed vegetables, a green salad and baked green beans, which the nice waitress had recommended. The second dish had come highly recommended by owner Ronit – a dish of penne sautéed with halumi cheese, mushrooms (mushrooms rule at Kapulsky), onions and garlic soy sauce. The fat piece of salmon came to the table steaming hot, resting on a bed of thinly sliced vegetables, which tasted of a light teriyaki. In a separate medium sized dish came the leafy green salad with cherry tomatoes and a sweet good quality vinaigrette dressing. The penne was served in a deep triangle-shaped dish with large chunks of dreamy half melted halumi, thinly sliced mushrooms and lots of sautéed onion. The dish was dark brown in colour – initially a bit frightening, but sure to become one of our regular favourites. This is the perfect dish for those who like strong flavours and aren’t afraid of trying new things.
A couple hours of lovely relaxation flew by in an instant. Satisfied and satiated, it was almost time for us to get going on the afternoon’s errands…but not before we checked out the cheesecake. I must admit that choosing a dessert was the hardest choice of the afternoon. Kapulsky specializes in sweets and the range of dishes on offer is astounding. Cookies, ice cream, cakes, mousses, crepes, waffles, chocolate soufflé and more. We chose the cheesecake because it was the lightest way to end such a lush meal. A perfect circle of cheesecake arrived on the table – airy, light and topped with crumbs, the cake was accompanied by a cherry sauce that cut the sweetness of the cake nicely with its subtle tart flavour. A grand finale to this week’s mother-daughter luncheon.
80 Emek Haela, Modi’in