World-renowned chef, best-selling author and Emmy-winning television personality Anthony Bourdain returns for the second season of CNN's showcase for coverage of food and travel. "Anthony Bourdain: Parts Unknown" is shot entirely on location and premieres September 15 at 9 p.m. ET/PT. Follow the show on Twitter and Facebook. Bourdain's first stop: Israel, the West Bank and Gaza.
Israel exists as an intersection of three major religions, Christianity, Judaism and Islam, creating a complex blend of cuisines.
In the Season 2 premiere of "Parts Unknown," Anthony Bourdain visits Israel, the West Bank and the Gaza Strip for the very first time. "The most contentious piece of real estate in the world," he calls it, citing its 4,000 years of intense political and religious conflict.
In Jerusalem, Bourdain meets up with Yotam Ottolenghi, the chef and owner of Ottolenghi and Nopi restaurants in London, and co-author of the runaway best-selling cookbook, "Jerusalem." Ottolenghi, who is Jewish, wrote the book with Sami Tamimi, a Palestinian chef who grew up on the opposite side of the divided city.
It doesn't take long for Bourdain to discover that even the roots of certain foods are fiercely debated.
"So is there a historically provable answer to who invented it?" Bourdain asks at a stand in Jerusalem's Old City where workers are frying falafel, deep-fried balls of chickpeas, to order.
"There is actually no answer to this. But, the question of food appropriation or who owns the food is massive here. You can go on arguing about it forever," says Ottolenghi.
Yet, Ottolenghi remains hopeful that "this soup of a city" can work together -- starting at the table.
Makes about 20 balls
1 1/4 cups dried chickpeas
1/2 medium onion, finely chopped (1/2 cup in total)
1 clove garlic, crushed
1 Tbsp finely chopped flat-leaf parsley
1 Tbsp finely chopped cilantro
1/4 tsp cayenne pepper
1/2 tsp ground cumin
1/2 tsp ground coriander
1/2 tsp ground cardamom
1/2 tsp baking powder
3 Tbsp water
1 1/2 Tbsp all-purpose flour
About 3 cups sunflower oil, for frying
1/2 tsp sesame seeds, for coating