Say CHEESE for Shavuos!

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…

Pickling Time and Chunking Kale

A distressed mother barges into a Rabbi’s study: “Rabbi, my son has gone meshuge (crazy)!” “Calm down, lady, have you taken him to a specialist? What makes you think that?” “Specialist-shmeshalist! Who needs specialists? I am a mother, I know!” “But, dear lady, what does he do?” “Oy, Rabbi, he eats pigs and dances with girls!” “Listen,”…

Kugel: Where East Met West

At first, Jews had it good in the Roman-administered land which is now France. Having lost their own homeland, they have dispersed throughout immense Roman Empire, settling mostly along trade routes. Even though they were still not allowed to own land, nor practice law or hold any administrative positions (restrictions are nothing new to us!),…

Tweaked Green Papaya Salad and Carol’s Naughty Corner

South Florida is a crazy patchwork of little cities, towns, and villages, each boasting tropical flavor and colorful history. However, only one bears an official title City Beautiful, the City of Coral Gables. One of the seven cities in the United States influenced by the City Beautiful North American architectural movement which promoted “beautification and…

The Real Treasure of the Caribbean: Haiti, Part 2. Fried Accra.

Slavery started in Haiti with the arrival of Columbus. Met with friendliness, welcoming gifts, and delicious local fritters called Accra or Akra, he described the native Arawak Taino people as “tractable, and easily led; they could be made to grow crops and build cities” (Mellzer, Slavery: A World History, 1971). And the gentle, helpful natives…

Kids, Miracles, and Banana Latkes

I got the best Chanukkah present from my younger son – he brought over his littlest daughter, the only one of his brood of four who was available. The two middle ones went with their school to Orlando, accompanied by their mother who is also the head of the school’s counseling services, and the oldest…

My Grandmother’s Recipes: Part 8, Quinoa Pomegranate Salad.

This post takes us to the last two of the four holidays: Sukkot (Sukkos) and Simchat Torah (Simhas Torah). It also concludes my story with the celebration of Simhas Torah in Moscow Synagogue. *20. Leader of All Peoples – one of the multitude of epithets Stalin constructed to refer to himself. *21. The Big Brother…

15 Down and Counting!

All this bean counting and portion measuring did bring a fantastic result! Drum roll, please: During the last four weeks my husband has lost 15 lbs. There was no wacky diet to follow and no magic trick, other than the right selection of ingredients, extremely tight portion control, and a 30-minute walk every evening. His…

My Grandmother’s Recipes: Part 4, Gefilte Fish.

Which teenage love story has become proverbial, portrayed on stage and on the movie screen, rendered into an opera and a ballet? Romeo and Juliet, you say? You’ve seen too much of Leonardo di Caprio, Beautiful People! Those kids have got nothing on my grandparents,  whose love story that lasted for 60 years starts in…

Kitchen Queen

Originally posted on lifelessons – a blog by Judy Dykstra-Brown:
Kitchen Queen Her souffles are a marvel and her cakes a work of art. Every single thing she cooks, a product of her heart. Her kitchen full of luscious smells and openness and levity, every disaster solvable and noted for its brevity. She surmounts each…