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March 3, 2014 6:30 pm

Miss Israel Says She Doesn’t Like Hummus

avatar by Shiryn Ghermezian

Miss Israel Yityish Aynaw. Photo: Instagram

While visiting New York on Sunday, Miss Israel, Yityish Aynaw, proved that not all Israelis love the country’s national chickpea spread: hummus.

“In Israel, I don’t eat hummus,” she explained to a New York Daily News reporter during an interview at Hummus Place in the East Village, a popular stop for Israelis. “Now I come to New York and I’m supposed to eat hummus? It’s not tasty for me. I don’t like it.”

During the discussion, Aynaw, 22, shared her dating preferences and admitted that she likes American men, as long as they don’t want to be with her just because she is a beauty queen. Of her time spent in New York, she said, “I like New York. I think I am more beautiful when I come here.”

Israel’s first beauty queen of Ethiopian origin, Aynaw  is working to open a youth center in her hometown of Netanya before her reign as Miss Israel comes to an end later this month. She is also enrolled in college outside Tel Aviv.

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Aynaw was a soldier in Israel before a friend signed her up to compete in the Miss Israel pageant.

“I was an officer in the army and two months later I was a beauty queen,” she said, describing how she never smiled at soldiers during training for fear of compromising her authority. “Suddenly I was Miss Israel and I had to smile all the time. Life surprises you. You never know what’s next.”

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