The person responsible for the new diet, which caused an uproar among the ministers, is Cabinet Secretary Zvi Hauser, who said he got the idea from Yona Bar-Tal, the President's Residence's deputy director-general.
"I reached the conclusion that the ministers should have a healthy menu with as little dough and fat as possible. Currently they are accustomed to get burekas puff pastries, sandwiches and cakes.
"We did away with juices and replaced them with water. We completely removed the burekas, rugelach and cakes. We put in yogurts with granola, fruits, vegetables, whole wheat bread, low-fat cheeses and other healthy foods," he said.
Hauser insists that the aim is to see to it that all government members "reach the finishing line on their feet" at the end of the four-year term.
The sudden change of diet was the talk of the day among the ministers and their aides, who accompany them during the weekly cabinet meetings. Naturally, responses were mixed.
Coalition against health menu
Three ministers formed a coalition and threatened a cabinet crisis should the burekas pastries not be reinstated. Another minister noted that with all due respect to the initiative, "to sit through five hours of sessions without something sweet to energize oneself and keep us awake is impossible."
On the other hand, several ministers welcomed the change for obvious health considerations.
Agriculture Minister Shalom Simhon noted, "Finally we have a cabinet secretary who recognizes the true value of Israeli agriculture and the land of milk and honey."
It should be noted that this isn’t the first time that cabinet secretaries have attempted to incorporate a healthier diet in cabinet sessions. Efforts to remove the much-loved pastries from meetings have failed in the past following ministerial pressures.
This time, however, Hauser seems determined to reform the system, and according to Sunday's meal, which was wholly devoured, he may yet succeed.