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Canadian Hadassah-WIZO (CHW)

From Curry Connoisseur to Citrus Specialist: A Corona Culinary Journey

Daniel Shechter was on the last El Al emergency evacuation flight from Mumbai to Tel Aviv.  Rather than ride out the pandemic abroad, Shechter made the difficult decision to return home while international travel was still a viable option.

Unlike thousands of other young Israelis, commonly found on what’s referred to as India’s ‘Hummus Trail,’ because of the sheer number of Israeli tourists, Shechter spent the last 7 years out of his home in Mumbai. 

Since graduating from The Photographic Communications Department at Hadassah Academic College, his career took off as a sought-after photographer in the international culinary scene. Yet, it was a chance meeting, while a student at Le Codon Bleu in Paris, that Shechter met a friend from India who would change the course of his career. His friend, a famous Indian Chef, invited him to Mumbai to help launch a new chain of French bakery cafés. 

“Of all the places in the world, I never imagined I would end up in India! I’m glad my destiny brought me here, it’s a fascinating place.”

Since the move to India, Shechter’s work expanded to include photography and food styling for top lifestyle brands and leading international chefs. He also collaborated on a number of projects, including an ‘insider’s’ travel guide to Mumbai and a popular food photography workshop. 

But, like thousands of Israelis scattered around the world, Shechter had just a few days to pack up and sell all of his belongings.  The sudden move back to Israel was jarring-even for a serial entrepreneur who was used to chaos and uncertainty. With so many landmark restaurants and top notch chefs struggling to stay afloat, pivoting and adjusting his business model was no easy feat. 

Now based out of his Jaffa studio, it’s clear that Shechter used his creativity and practical skills, honed as a student, to forge ahead.

“As someone who lives and breathes art and design, I take inspiration from a variety of sources. With a background in French patisserie, I have a deep understanding of food photography and the highest attention to details, so crucial for precise visual outcomes.”

One only needs to sneak a peek at the July cover of Israel fashion and lifestyle publication, La Isha Chef Magazine, to fully appreciate his talent.

So, until the skies re-open, Shechter will continue exploring Israel’s culinary scene and bringing a taste of India to a devoted fan base in Israel.

For more of Schechter’s exquisite works, follow @shechter on Instagram.

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