Preserving Jews and All Sorts of Fish: Escabeche

We are still in March, celebrating Women History Month and we are in the middle of Passover which will continue for six more days. This story of a remarkable woman and one of my favorite Pesach recipes certainly bears repeating. Enjoy, Beautiful People!

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An innovative and highly profitable method of borrowing money was practiced by King Edward I of England: you borrow from the Jews, as there is no one else to borrow from (usury was forbidden by the church), then, since legally all Jews are the King’s property, all debts payable to them instantly become payable to you. All you have to do is to kill some and expel the rest. To quote Mel Brooks, “It’s good to be the king!”

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Edward I issued the expulsion edict in 1290, two hundred years earlier than the famous expulsion from Spain by Isabella and Ferdinand. Although there are some dubious records of hidden Jews living in England here and there, mostly practicing as physicians, officially Jews were not readmitted until Cromwell, having just executed King Charles I and feeling magnanimous, allowed them to resettle in 1655.

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Meanwhile, things were literally getting hot for Jews…

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23 Comments Add yours

  1. This definitely looks delicious (and the platter so beautiful as well). Love all the background!

    Liked by 2 people

    1. Thank you so much, dear Dorothy! The platter is part of my Passover set of dishes which are not used during the year. The batik under the platter depicts, gifted to me by one of my students, was created in Art Therapy and depicts the view of Jerusalem. I thank you for your interest, darling!

      Liked by 1 person

      1. What a lovely framework for such an important observation! ❤️

        Liked by 1 person

      2. Thank you so much, darling!

        Liked by 1 person

  2. Thank you for remembering on another sad part of history, Dolly! Flounder is honestly the only fish i adore to eat. Here most times are carps on the plate, but for me to fat, and like the pigs of the water. 😉 Have a nice day! Michael

    Liked by 1 person

    1. I agree that carp is too fat – “pigs of the water” is sooo funny! – and I use it ony in combination with two other kinds of fish (non-fatty) to make gefilte fish for hoidays.
      Have a wonderful day, dear friend!

      Liked by 1 person

      1. Have to re-read your recipe of gefilte fish. I am just remembering not all. With carps i have not so good experiences. We got them at boarding school regularely, and made fun of using the bones to recreate them like in a natural history museum, during the dinner. 😉

        Liked by 1 person

      2. Oh, this is so creative and so cute! My husband tells me that in yeshivah, the cook used so much grease when frying latkes that the boys used to stick a wick in them and light them for Chanukkah.

        Liked by 1 person

      3. P.S. My gefilte fish recipe is so labor intensive and time consuming that I only make it for holidays and only when we have big company. Since Covid struck, I haven;t made it for just the two of us.

        Liked by 1 person

      4. Oh, but at least no problem here. I have (co)workers. Lol

        Liked by 1 person

      5. You are so lucky!

        Liked by 1 person

  3. What a lovely, light recipe!

    Jewish history almost always makes me cry, and makes me angry on behalf of a people who have been so sorely used and abused.

    Liked by 2 people

    1. Thank you so much for your empathy and your kindness, dear Mimi!

      Like

  4. A timely refresher, Dolly

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Thank you very much, Derrick.

      Liked by 1 person

  5. CarolCooks2 says:

    Such a pretty plate and again some interesting history…Have a great weekend 🙂 x

    Liked by 2 people

    1. Thank you so much, dear Carol. This serving plate is a part of my 12-person set only used for Passover. Sadly, due to Covid, it sits in the capboard, waiting for better days…
      You too, have a wonderful weekend!

      Liked by 1 person

  6. CarolCooks2 says:

    There will be other years dear Dolly this is just an unfortunate blip in our calendars… sigh.. I also have special sets and dishes I only use for

    certain occasions which is lovely and makes it so special Hugs xx

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Hugs right back to you, darling!

      Liked by 1 person

  7. An awesome share! I love the way that you connect with history and love.💓🎼

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Thank you so much, darling!

      Liked by 1 person

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