My Shavuos Menu

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…

Cheese and Raisins Pie

I am sure this was more of an afterthought. It was like, hey, we are already making traditional green savory pies, why not bake something sweet for kids to enjoy! I remember my father, the quintessential kid, sneaking into my grandmother’s kitchen to snack on the sweet filling while the dough was being rolled and…

Light the Bonfire of Love with Chocolate Logs!

Happy Mother’s Day, Beautiful People! Our sages said, “Who is wise? One who learns from every person” (Ethics of Our Fathers, 4:1). The first person in our lives we have a chance to learn from is MOTHER. From her we learn kindness, caring, and most importantly, unconditional love. Sometimes, it’s not a biological mother who does…

Let Them Eat… Potatoes!

From the Inca Empire to Queen Marie Antoinette of France, to the Russian patissiers (pastry chefs), traveled a simple vegetable, to be transformed into a delectable pastry. Here is this civilization which, starting in the early 13th century, in three hundred years grew into an immense empire and, by the time it was conquered by the Spanish,…

Raisins in the Pudding

I am repeating this post in honor of the Black History Month. Over forty years ago, as I landed in the U.S., I came across a short poem and was stunned by the powerful images: What happens to a dream deferred?Does it dry upLike a raisin in the sun?Or fester like a sore–And then run?Does…

More Traveling Food, but No Adventure

The great adventure has been postponed. We are literally “sitting by the sea” (the ocean, in our case) “and waiting for the weather” (that’s an Odessa saying). So far only one of you, Beautiful People, has figured out my disappearing act. Well done, dear Carol of Retired? No one told me! One more beautiful and…

Apple Charlotte

I have just realized that October is a National Apple Month, yet today is the last day of it, and I have not posted any apple recipes. To remedy the situation, I am repeating one of our favorites. Napoleon invaded Russia and lost. Embarrassed and frustrated, he declared that it wasn’t the Russian generals who…

My Grandmother’s Recipes: Part 7, Strudel.

Last Sunday we have started celebrating a series of holidays commonly called The High Holidays. In Yiddish, we simply say Yontoivim – The Holidays,  and everybody understands which holidays are meant. That’s because there are four holidays that follow each other not only on the calendar, but also in meaning and significance. In this chapter, you will see…

Pyshka – Sweet Roll and a Baby Kitten

Calling all cats and their humans: HAPPY INTERNATIONAL CAT DAY! To celebrate, I am repeating a post I wrote four years ago, when little Pyshka was about four weeks old. Now she is a big and beautiful four-year old kitty girl, heavier than Auntie Beba, who is 12, but still playful and mischievous like a…

Chocolate on Chocolate with Extra Blessings

Happy World Chocolate Day, Beautiful People! Jewish people are obligated to say one hundred blessings every day, and observant Jews are making every effort to do it, well, religiously. There are two reasons for it. First, in Deuteronomy, Moses poses a rhetorical question to the people:”What does G-d ask of you?” Says the Talmud that the word…

Fruit Rainbow: Light, Love, Laugh

A beautiful shimmering symbol of peace, both a natural phenomenon and a Divine promise to protect and preserve the world, the rainbow is a living statement, a map, if you will, of what really transpires in our lives.  A rainbow is formed when pure white light refracts into seven shades. Red is nearest the original…

Royal Wedding – Carrot and Banana

I have learned from lovely and well-informed Carol of Retired? No one told me! that today is a National Banana Bread Day. I think combining bananas with carrots will still serve the purpose, Beautiful People. February – the stores are decked out in red and pink hearts, furiously marketing in the name of love. Jewelers…