The World of Hummus offers a taste of Israel inside a Delray Beach flea market

Falafel platter with salad, hummus and pita from The World of Hummus in Delray Beach.

A family run casual eatery inside the Big Apple Shopping Bazaar is cooking up flavorful kosher versions of popular Israeli dishes.


Talk about a hidden gem. To get to The World of Hummus at Delray Café in Delray Beach you’ll have to drive around to the back of the Big Apple Shopping Bazaar, a largely vacant flea market, on West Atlantic Avenue. It’s worth the effort.

Inside a cavern-like space decorated with a dark wood pergola, fake trees, and Asian-style lanterns, you find the glass-enclosed brick counter and kitchen of The World of Hummus, an Israeli family owned eatery, under a striped awning. The awning is a holdover from the space’s previous occupants, the Delray Café, where shoppers once picked up hotdogs, cheese steaks and sandwiches, and before that the Posh Nosh Deli.

Jonathan Brami works behind the counter.

Zeev Brami preps food.

Don’t get fooled by the look. This new concept – open since mid-2020 – turns out delicious, authentic Israeli food.

And, for those who care, the food is Glatt kosher, which means the meat here adheres to a high kosher standard. Also, there’s a mashgiach, or rabbinical supervisor, working in the kitchen to ensure that every item is kosher, from the kosher meats to the last leaf of lettuce. Not surprisingly, The World of Hummus is closed during the Jewish Sabbath and on Jewish holidays.

In Israel, the World of Hummus would be considered a hummusia. Here, the Brami family, who formerly lived in Kiryat Gat, a city in Israel’s northern Negev, turns out more than hummus. There’s a wide range of Israeli-Middle Eastern specialties on the menu, and complete Shabbat dinners to go on Fridays

In view of the pandemic, I did takeout several times, partly to sample the range of dishes, and partly because I so enjoyed my first order, I had to return for more.

There’s a stack of one-page paper menus on the counter. At the top right of the page are the Hebrew letters for B”H, an acronym for the Hebrew words Baruch Hashem, which means, Blessed be G-d.  Below, in two columns, are a selection of sandwiches (served on either pita or baguette), salads, platters and soups. The beverage selection includes Israeli soft drinks.

Place your order and wait. Everything is freshly prepared. (Note to self, order in advance next time.) It’s worth the wait.

Schnitzel pita.

Pargiyot pita.

As I chomped down at home on a puffy, cloud-like pita pocket overstuffed with zesty, juicy turkey shawarma ($11.95) – Israel’s most-popular street food – and various fixings, among them crunchy vegetables, hummus and hot sauce, I was reminded of a lunch some years back at a sidewalk café near Jerusalem’s Old City. A barrage of flavors – my guess, cumin, turmeric, paprika, salt, garlic and coriander, among others – exploded in my mouth.

Falafel ($12.95 for a platter), bite-sized vibrant-green balls inside and deep brown and crispy on the outside, also delighted. Fried chick peas with parsley, coriander and cumin never tasted better. The accompanying hummus was incredibly creamy and silky, no doubt the result of a thorough whipping. Unlike hummus elsewhere in the Mediterranean, often garlicky or lemony, Israeli hummus is strictly about chickpeas and tahini, a sauce made from ground, toasted sesame seeds.

World of Hummus also makes a terrific rendition of schnitzel ($12.95), which has its origins in Austria and which made its way to Israel with European Jewish immigrants. It’s a popular dish throughout Israel, although it is made with cheaper chicken breast instead of veal and fried in vegetable oil instead of butter, so it would be kosher. Here, the chicken is tender and available in a pita, baguette or platter with a crunchy Israeli salad and a tangy dressing.

Chicken also makes an appearance as Pargiyot ($12.95), boneless chicken thighs, which are Israel’s favorite meat for grilling. Pargiot, which means young chicken in Hebrew, is generally marinated with olive oil, honey and spices before grilling. The version at World of Hummus proved too sloppy to be enclosed in a pita. Nonetheless, it was incredibly tender, juicy and spicy. Next time, on a baguette.

The World of Hummus is open daily 10 a.m. to 8 p.m., except on Friday, when it closes at 4:30 p.m. It’s closed on Saturdays and Jewish holidays.  And while its flea market location is shuttered on Mondays, World of Hummus is open and can be accessed through the building’s rear door.  Drive around. You’ll be amply rewarded, as I was, for seeking it out.

The World of Hummus at Delray Café

5283 W. Atlantic Ave., Delray Beach, FL 33484

(561) 270-7772

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