Say CHEESE for Shavuos!

This Sunday we will be celebrating the holiday of Shavuos. It will also be the third year I’ve cooked and baked for my father’s birthday that fell on this holiday, but he will not be here with us, as he has left this world three years ago, However, I believe that he will be with us in spirit, as he always is. Welcome to my holiday table, Beautiful People!

koolkosherkitchen

Contrary to all other Jewish holidays, when we prepare festive meals that include both fish and meat, signifying rejoicing in His benevolence that grants us abundance, traditional Shavuos table is laden with dairy dishes, from blintzes to cheesecakes, and anything milky delicious you can think of.  One of the reasons for this unique menu is explained in this short video.

Shavuos has a very special personal meaning for me. Two years ago, when I lost my father, May His Soul Rest in Peace, I started this blog in order to share with you, Beautiful People, my way of celebrating my father’s birthday. He was born on Shavuos, and for twenty years, after my mother’s passing, May Her Soul Rest in Peace, I would make a birthday party for him by cooking and baking all his favorite Shavuos dairy dishes.

This Sunday, just like every year, friends and family will gather…

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30 Comments Add yours

  1. Read through and found your menu — fabulous! Enjoy celebrating your Father, based on what a wonderful lady you are, i am certain he was a fine man.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Ah, dear Mimi, I don’t know about myself – I am just a simple funky cat – but my father was a truly extraordinary person in his loving kindness, Thank you so much for your lovely comment!

      Liked by 1 person

  2. spearfruit says:

    Very beautiful Dolly. Glad that you continue to remember your Dad in this special and loving way.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Thank you so much for your kind words, Gary!

      Like

  3. randyjw says:

    Wow, Dolly… Time just seems to fly faster than ever.

    I love how you have a selection of your previous recipes, which would be perfect for the holiday, as well as year-round.

    If you have some time to think about it, would you be able to help me come up with some more EBT-friendly eating ideas? I have no storage capacity; no bowls, etc.; can’t carry much more; can be cold or ready-prepared, but no hot-prepared; for one person; less than $6.00 per day; will fill me; preferably Kosher, but… All I mostly eat is bananas and oranges (‘cuz they’re cheap); some vegetables (in phases, ‘cuz the IBS can’t always handle that); dairy (same on the IBS, but I do it, anyways); and bread, but the bread is putting way too many pounds on, and my body can’t tolerate this. Of all people, I think you and your supporters would be the most qualified to ask. I’m starting to have a hard time. Even getting to the soup kitchen is becoming too much of an effort, nor will a meals-on-wheels scenario work, as it’s too routine, and my day is planned on necessities and energy-level. I’m hoping you can have some food suggestions which might help. Sorry to burden you, but your help would be so-much appreciated, if you can…

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Dear Rachel, I’ll be more than happy to brainstorm some ideas! I’ll think about it during Yom Tov and get back to you. Please tell what EBT and IBS are, otherwise I wouldn’t know where to start. Meanwhile, have you tried any Kosher food banks? There must be some in NYC. Do you have access to them? It is getting hotter and thus more difficult for you, and I am concerned about your health, dear friend. Please take care of yourself as much as you can!

      Liked by 1 person

      1. randyjw says:

        Addendum:

        I went off on a tangent (sorry). What I was trying to get at, was that now they no longer offer “overnights” to the homeless. You must get into a program (2-month temporary), and there’s a long waiting list. They might not even let you repeat it if you’ve somehow failed at it, either. Additionally, they expect you to have a job and pay them a good sum, in the interim. They make you turn over any money you get (returned, at the end). Apparently, in the halfway houses or addiction homes, you pay rent there (same amount as finding a cheap apartment, if one can be found), as well as having to have roommates with all their drama, who steal, do drugs or drink, etc), as I’ve heard from many others (with problems), who’ve done that. The Jewish (Christian) girl I helped with cancer was doing that, and was trying to talk me into that, but I don’t have a substance abuse problem, except nicotine, right now — I started up during all this — and I don’t have a job, anyways, to pay rent…

        As far as the weather, I have two youth-sized sleeping bags zipped together; I guess it’s nylon, with fill only around the outer edges, so that when you go to feel it, it seems thick, but there’s not much lining the middle. I also acquired two small fleece throws. I don’t want to jettison any of these, because I need them, and they’re too difficult to reobtain. It’s not warm enough in cold weather, and it’s way too hot in warm. It’s warm now. Even hot! I have to keep the sleeping bag up to my ears to keep the mosquitoes out and try to shield my eyes from the light. So, I sweat like no tomorrow, which gives me a headache, and exhausts me, too. Sometimes it’s either too cold, or too hot, or too scary to sleep. Now, though, I pretty much fall asleep quickly, but am usually awoken a couple of times at night, and need to arise early so people aren’t annoyed or I’m ticketed. Homelessness has do many problems. Now, it takes me much longer to commute around, because of the bus schedules, etc, and I still don’t get much done. Then, I need to save my sanity by my blog, and others, in what other time I can find. Lately, I’ve been a bit teary, due to all this, plus not getting my strengthening food, lack of sleep, lugging bags, weather, no places to go without being harassed by police, regular people, business owners, security guards, etc. Walmart has been discriminating against me alot lately, and making me miserable. Their employees don’t stop. I’ve been complaining to them, and they crack down even harder. One came out of the store after me to check my receipt, just ‘cuz I have bags and am homeless. It’s been going on now for quite awhile; practically daily. It’s never-ending.

        Liked by 1 person

      2. Is there anything at the end of this extremely rocky road, Rachel? You are not going to stay in this situation forever, I hope, so is there hope for change? I wish I could be more helpful with food, but you don’t have the ability to cook or even heat things up, so the only solution is to keep buying what EBT buys and mix it up to provide maximum nutrition and taste.

        Liked by 1 person

      3. randyjw says:

        I always have hope, Dolly; it’s part of neshama. It’s certainly been an eye-opener, in learning this by living through it; people’s reactions to the homeless (mostly negative, shocked, but sometimes kind), and all.

        I’m gaining do much weight, filling up on bread, but I had lost three pounds during Pesach!

        Well, if you think of anything else, let me know.

        Plus, I eat hummus, but too much of it gives me indigestion.

        Off to bed now. Goodnight, and thank you.

        Liked by 1 person

      4. Hummus is good, but plain chick peas with any kind of leafy green veggies are much better. Good night, dear Rachel. Stay safe!

        Liked by 1 person

  4. randyjw says:

    Thanks, Dolly.

    EBT stands for Electronic Benefits Transfer; or, in other words, my food stamp card. The parameters I listed are those of the food stamp program. IBS is Irritable Bowel Syndrome (a diagnosis). Sometimes it kicks in, sometimes it doesn’t. If people want to look it up, they can. For me, it just means a bad stomach, more often than would be the norm. Don’t worry about the IBS part; I won’t. Just the EBT restrictions, and more ideas than just cottage cheese, yogurt, fruit, veg… I dunno. Maybe I’m getting testy, much like tiring of manna and hunkering for quail… (mmmm…. come to think of it….) although I’m glad to be alive and able to eat. The problem with food banks, and most general pantry services, is that you must be living under a roof! and pretty much not homeless, but just poor! That is the case with most of them, with very few exception, except one Church thing I went to, once. The church one gave out huge, heavy bags of rice, big boxes of cereal, etc. People came with carts, etc. I have no way to cook. I can’t carry much, food too perishable, have to daily purchase. Getting too tired to even get to soup kitchen (walking a few blocks with my bags). Food pantry doesn’t work; the Kosher one is way too far, not convenient, and no way to transport the food. I occasionally used to go to the soup kitchen’s pantry, when I still lived in my apartment, and wheeled the box they gave me atop my bike. I only did it maybe a couple of times. It tended to be not worth it, because they require extensive documentation, just like food stamps do. I had to copy every single monthly rent payment, rental agreements, landlord verification, external/other assistance, etc. It was very costly to do this, and I had to ride my bike to town to copy the stuff; sometimes gathering all the info might take a few days or a week, and g-d forbid you forget something… And they make you do this every month. And it’s not for the homeless! It’s for the homed! The homeless are only entitled to the meal prepared for them at the soup kitchen. This was the same at both my last city, and the one I’m at now (won’t name state, city, etc.) The pantry wasn’t Kosher (most aren’t). I could hardly eat anything (I was really trying, and want to, keep Kosher…. But!!!). Now, I’d prefer Kosher, but if not, I still need to eat. They gave me a packet of miso soup once – – it had live bugs in it. On top of another can was a dead bug. I kept track of it all. Now, I can’t. One, no money to throw around on photocopies. They require such ridiculous amounts. Justified for EBT; but for occasional food pantry? Doesn’t pay! Made me mad, too, ‘cuz people used to DRIVE up to the pantries in their not too bad vehicles to get their boxes. That’s the way these places work. Surprise!!! I get sick to death of people who have no idea that this is the way it is, how it REALLY works, etc. These places (soup kitchens and/or pantries) get grants to do this, and donated food. Every time you sign for a soup kitchen meal, or pantry, or go to a class, etc., you’re justifying their receipt of receiving more grant money to continue (plus pay their salaries, operating expenses, etc.). What this entails, especially with the shelters, is significant. Let’s take the shelters, for instance. I said previously, when being briefly homeless many years ago, that they didn’t explain anything to me and signed me into a program (a temporary two-month stay). Between that and my friend, it cost me my job, because I was told I couldn’t leave (I didn’t know that THAT was also just temporary, since they didn’t tell me. Even though I told them I had a job, they didn’t inform me it was just temporary… So, it cost me my job! – plus, my friend did, as well. At that time, I’d used up almost 6K of savings, trying to save my brother and getting anything he wanted to eat delivered, while he was just dying of cancer in a rehab facility (Romneycare, precursor to Obamacare, which even I could never qualify for). My mother showed me she’d put my name on his proxy with her, only after he passed away. He was only at a rehab because it belonged to a family friend, and my Mom had to find help. I think her resources were tied up because she agreed to my cousin’s daughter’s law school loan guarantee, which I think might’ve been getting deferred… My Mom had to get breast cancer treatment (she was elsewhere; not with me and my brother), and my brother passed away in three months, and I helped my mother driving her to her treatments, etc when I got back. Doing this, I spent the rest of my savings and became homeless. I left the shelter when me and another homeless person came down with mysterious rashes on our arms after being tested by the medical van (mandatory) gor TB, though both of us didn,’t have TB. After some girl purposely scratched her head above mine, while I was lying on my mat (which these horrible mats started my hip problems, to begin with), I got lice. I was not allowed at the shelter, or at the soup kitchen, until I got s doctor’s note verifying they were gone. I had to scrape together money from an old pharmacy gift card, a manager’s discount, and etc to buy the very expensive OTC treatment to eradicate these vermin. Turns out, I was allergic to that (ragweed), and I broke out in a similar rash I’d gotten from the TB test. I surmise it was hives. After which, my head could no longer take the abuse, and I got folliculitis. The people who ran the shelter have more than one shelter. At the other, the main guy there had once said to me that he really didn’t want to let me in, as I made no money for him. Why? Because, now that I’d been through all that, being in their “program,” I was now only “overnighting”. In the program, you do your chores of keeping the place clean (free labor; why should they pay their staff to do what they don’t have to), going to dumb, nonhelpful classes all day (why they don’t teach money-management, parenting skills, etc, is beyond me… but now one of the non-profit homeless helping soup kitchens is starting to). I don’t think the phone lottery to get into the shelters is still valid anymore. I think you just have to chase around the van, which drives around to different cities, that makes the referrals for both the overnighter and programs to all shelters, even to a place like The Salvation Army, to reserve a bed (although you might be able to wait and get in line and take a chance at SA; but, I think it’s not…). So, you have to get to other cities, which takes time, to wait in looooong lines, and see if they come up with a bed for you – – supply is much less than demand. Then you have to report to the shelter about 3:30 pm. Processing everybody takes a long time (like a TSA screening). Then you have to wait for each person to take their shower (this can take another 2-1/2 to 3 hours; interrupted in-between for dinner); then it’s bedtime. Wake up at 4:45 am, put mats away, breakfast, and kicked out at 7am. Now, repeat the cycle. Whether in the shelter going to class or cleaning, or chasing a van and being warehoused waiting for showers, none of this is productive in finding a job. There’s simply no time. Living in the great outdoors, without money and means, also has it’s drawbacks. Trying not to get ticketed by the police, anxiety over sleeping places and other bad people, finding food in cities which don’t have many church dinners (which is what I had to move to, since the county has essentially padlocked the homeless sleeping “haunts” and I had to move, yet again). I’m in a much better area, but it doesn’t have the resources the other one had). I’ve been overspending on my food stamps, but I had saved them (by going to church dinners) for potential rainy days, which is what I’m experiencing, now. I’ll have to dredge up the energy, eventually, to start getting back to, at least, eating at the soup kitchen, which is an expenditure of energy I’ve been lately too tired to make, with my 50+ pounds of baggage. It’s a bad cycle, since I’m really not getting those much-needed protein meals (also not as energy-packed as the meals at the more-urban location I had to leave… but considerably more safe, to some extent, provided I keep away, and I do, believe me, from the drug-infested, ctime-riddled other areas…). This is why, any food ideas, etc, I’m open to hearing…

    Liked by 1 person

    1. I’ve been thinking about you all Yom Tov, Rachel, and praying for you. My heart is breaking for you!
      As to food ideas, since you are not able to cook anything, you basically are what they call a “raw foodie,” which is not bad and quite healthy, actually. If you have no problem with dairy products, then veggies with cottage cheese or cream cheese are good. Another source of protein is any type of beans you can get. Adding beans, even canned, to green leafy veggies is delicious and provides all the nutrients you need. I don’t know what else to suggest, dear Rachel, as you are not able to actually prepare anything. All I can do is keep praying for you and wishing you luck!

      Liked by 1 person

      1. randyjw says:

        I know. I already eat these things, plus bread, puddings (tapioca, rice, etc.)… but, all the time? I’ll have to figure something out.

        Liked by 1 person

      2. But what else can you use EBT for?

        Liked by 1 person

      3. randyjw says:

        It’s “food stamps;” on a card, rather than actual “stamps.” Restricted food purchases, as noted previously.

        I can also get peanut butter, jelly, hummus, marshmallow creme. I’m sorry to kvetch; I’m happy to get something that keeps me alive. It is difficult, though, and I both: needed to just complain, and see if you might have any tempting ideas I’m not coming up with on my own.

        Liked by 1 person

      4. Dear Rachel, what are food purchased restricted to? For instance, can you get canned chick peas instead of hummus? Can you get sugar free jelly and light peanut butter? Can you get something less sugar-loaded than marshmallow creme? Can you buy meatless “fake chicken strips”? Those are delicious with any veggies and don’t have to be cooked, only naturally defrosted. Can you buy any meat substitutes that don’t have to be cooked? What about cauliflower rice? Bean sprouts? Canned diced tomatoes?

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  5. purpleslob says:

    I love dairy!! happy Heavenly Birthday to your DAd!

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Thank you so much, dear purple person; how well you understand my feelings!

      Liked by 1 person

  6. A beautiful sentiment, indeed Dolly! Thank God for all the goodness that memories are made of. ❤🙏

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Thank you so much, darling!
      P.S. Right before holiday, we managed to go to Weird Al Yankovic concert; a hilarious way to enjoy all the old goodies!

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      1. That was surely an added treat. I love Weird Al!

        Liked by 1 person

      2. So do we, and have enjoyed him greatly.

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  7. What a lovely idea, celebrating the remembrance. The headline sounds like a poem itself. Thank you for sharing, and have a beautiful week. Michael

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Thank you so much for your lovely comment, Michael! I believe that we have survived for millennia because we remember and celebrate remembrances. It goes right along with Jung’s collective subconscious theory. Have a great remainder of the week!

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  8. oldpoet56 says:

    Very nice article Dolly, I am going to go ahead and reblog this one for you. You are always a good read even for us non-cooks.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Thank you so much, Ted, for your kind words! Many blessings to you and yours.

      Like

    1. Thank you so much for reblogging, dear friend.

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