Tag Archives: Passover

Reflection Eternal

4 Apr
Paw Paw

Paw Paw

This past week has brought on a lot of reflection.  Sure, it was Passover and I couldn’t help but think that this time last year I was pregnant and now I’ve got an 8 month old and boy, how time flies.  But with Passover comes my grandfather, my mom’s father’s, yarteitz, the anniversary of his death.  Paw Paw passed away on the last day of Passover two years ago.  My mom likes to light-heartedly joke that he passed away on the last day of Passover so no one will forget the anniversary of his death.  But to  live 31 years with grandparents is a blessing so, quite obviously, we would never forget regardless.  When Paw Paw was in hospice, I was able to spend some alone time with him.  He wasn’t conscious and it was near the end but I made a promise to him that my husband and I would name our first born after him, which we did.  Siona, the feminine version of Sion or Tzion (Zion, a term synonymous to Jerusalem.  Paw Paw’s Hebrew name was Yisrael), was born about a year and a half after Paw Paw passed away.  My poor Southern family could not quite wrap their accents around the name, Siona.  So much so that for about an hour, my brother thought her name was Fiona (this story will go down in family folklore).  Oh how my brother and sister-in-law smiled and nodded and indulged me when they thought her name was Fiona.  It was very, “Ohhh, um, how nice” but in their heads I’m pretty sure they were thinking, “What the h*ll!?  What’s a Southern Jewish baby girl doing with the name Fiona?!”.

Paw Paw and my husband embracing on our wedding day

Paw Paw and my husband embracing on our wedding day

My cousin, Ayelet, walking our grandparents down the aisle at our wedding

My cousin, Ayelet, walking our grandparents down the aisle at our wedding

In the mix of Passover and my grandfather’s yarzeit is my birthday.  Talk about a mixture of emotions.  Yowsa.  I’m two days away from 33.   I can’t believe how much time has flown by.  I can’t believe it’s been 20 years since my Bat Mitzvah! I can’t believe Siona is closer to 1 then not.  It’s all so surreal.   But anyway, what I really wanted to do for this post is to share the speech I gave at Siona’s Simchat Bat.  We were blessed to have so many friends and family present to celebrate her birth so I wanted to explain, on the day we celebrated her arrival, my relationship with not only my Paw Paw, but also my father’s father.  I worry that my kid won’t know how lucky she is to come from such a diverse background; that she won’t fully realize how her cultural background shaped who I am and how grateful I am for it.

Getting some love from Paw Paw and Grandma

Getting some love from Paw Paw and Grandma

This is the original speech.  Please excuse typos.  It was written to help with the whole ‘public speaking while emotional’ thing. 

As many of you know, I come from an inter religious background, it’s the only way you could explain a 5’10” Jewish girl named Whitney Dyan Lacefield, now Fisch. As a kid it was a bit hard having one parent who was one religion and the other another but as an adult I’ve come to truly value the dichotomy that is my background and no one quit emphasizes this than my two grandfathers My Ca Ca, my dad’s dad, represents that Southern side of me that I’m so proud of. He was one of the kindest men I’ve ever met. He was always active, whether tending to his tomatoes or making or building something; you couldn’t slow him down. He said thing like “daggumit” and dagnabit when he was upset. When he died my brother inherited his shot guns, like any good Southern grandson would do. He passed in 2005 and if you think a week has gone by since when I haven’t thought of him or his wife, my grandma Viv, you’d be very wrong. The other side of me is quite obviously my Jewish side and no one represents this part of me than my Paw Paw, whom Siona is named after. I don’t know who my paw paw was as a young man or a father but as a grandfather he was lovely. My paw paw is the reason I fell in love with music and theater. He’s the reason my first celebrity crush wasn’t some boy found on teen beat magazine but Mandy Patinkin (he’d shown Sunday in the Park with George in 1987 and I was hooked). He’s the reason I had any connection or interest in Israel way before I finally went when I was 20. He indulged my love of dining out and cultivated by love of live theater. He loved teasing us grandkids with little jokes and then following up with, “would I kid you”? Most importantly, he loved family. When he got into framing and wallpapered the house in Louisville with beautifully frames pictures of relatives—-some lost  in the Holocaust, others still with us today, thank Gd, I think each of us grandchildren learned a lesson in informal education. How could you not want to know the stories of all those people posing in the frame? As much as we joke about paw paw’s talent for telling and retelling a story, I am most grateful for the familial history I now take with me and will share with Siona one day, Gd willing. I was 31 when my paw paw passed.  To get to spend 31 years with a grandparent is a blessing, to get to spend any time with a grandparent is a blessing. It’s an honor to carry on paw paw’s spirit within our little family. Thank you.

Passing Through Passover

29 Mar

Happy Passover y’all! How’s everyone’s holiday going? How were your sedarim?  I survived my first Seder.  I not only survived hosting my first Seder but I also really enjoyed it. Our first night didn’t go as originally planned and it ended up just being my wonderful husband and I, so we enjoyed our cups of wine and we may have even rapped the Four Questions so even though we were by ourselves the first night, we still nailed it.  Our second night was pretty awesome as well.  We hosted lab mates from my husband’s PhD program (he’s a marine biologist).  No one was Jewish but it didn’t matter.  There was wonderful conversation, folks participated, I printed our visual aids for the order of the Seder and the 10 plagues, and I gotta say, it was really a lovely night.  I made WAY too much food and actually ended up sending folks home with goodie bags of meatballs and charoset, which is definitely normal, right?  I mean, who wouldn’t want a goodie bag of meatballs and charoset?  I’m thinking of giving that out as party favors for the kid’s first birthday in a couple of months.  You know, something for the kids.

Anyway, I’m currently in Atlanta visiting my brother and sister-in-law and their wonderful kids.  I flew solo with the baby, which was an Exodus in its own right (read: people do NOT like babies when flying.  People do not like you AND your baby when flying. It does not matter that your baby slept the whole time and didn’t make a peep, you will be ostracized from your plane-community and glared at for deeming to leave the comforts of the ground and flying with your baby.  And it’s Passover so there is no enjoying a coffee during my 8AM flight with the baby nor is there any enjoying a Bloody Mary either . . . which I would definitely not drink with the baby.  Definitely not. ).  But anyway, I digress.  We’re in Atlanta, I miss my amazing husband but I feel like I passed through a mom-hurtle with this solo traveling with baby and I’m gonna pat myself on the back for that.

Image

Solo Flight Success

This week’s recipes once again feature the deliciousness that is Temp Tee.  When organizing the menu for our Passover week I tried really hard to only include fresh vegetables and fruit and lay off the starches.  I wanted to go light in the afternoon knowing that dinners would be a little more filling.  I also wanted to save money because Passover, though a favorite holiday of mine, is draining on the wallet.  As a result, I settled on a gravlax and herb cream cheese recipe that could be eaten for several breakfasts/brunches as well as an eggplant and baby portobella mushroom saute with an avocado and Temp Tee crema.  Recipes can be viewed on the Joy of Kosher website.  Simply click on the recipe titles below (Gravlax can be found after eggplant pictures) and enjoy!  Chag Sameach and Happy Easter to our readers who celebrate!

*This blog post is sponsored by the fine folks at Temp Tee, but all opinions and recipes in this post are my own.

Eggplant and Portobella Saute with Temp Tee and Avocado Sauce

Image

Getting Ready to Make Some Magic

Image

The Flavors of Miami

Image

The Flavors of Miami Meet the Flavors of Passover!

Image

Everything is Better with Sauce

Image

The Final Product. Delicious!

Gravlax with Herbed Cream Cheese

Image

Fresh Herbs

Image

Fresh Herbs and Temp Tee = Partners in Tasty Heaven

Image

Fresh Fish, Herbed Cream Cheese — What More Could You Ask For?

Monday Round-Up: Desserts! Egg Cream Popsicles w/Chocolate Chips

18 Mar

Hey gang.  This month’s Kosher Connection round-up theme is Passover-friendly desserts.  This initially intimidated the crap outta me.  I tried (and failed) at cashew/almond brittle but then it hit me.  While most of the Jews of these great United States will be celebrating Passover in frigid temperatures, us Miami Jews will be living it up in this balmy spring/summer weather.  And what’s better than a cool, delicious popsicle in this Miami heat!?  And of course, nothing (to me, at least) says “Jew” and “Passover” much like an egg cream.  That classic combination of chocolate syrup, milk and seltzer—-all of which have nothing to do with eggs or cream (OK, maybe the milk is kinda like cream).  Plus, and let’s be honest, I’m overwhelmed and can’t imagine baking desserts on top of all the cooking I have to do for my very first Seder! That’s right y’all, I’m hosting my first Seder.  Heck, I’m hosting two Sedarim and a lunch!  I’m overwhelmed.  I may or may not have cried a little last night trying to think about how to figure out to cook, clean, take care of my little one and go to work full-time.  So, rather than get into a story from the week or some new neurosis I’m working on I’m asking YOU for stories and advice.  HELP! What advice do you have for a first-time Seder hostess? What have you learned through your own experiences?  What made a Seder memorable for you (positively or negatively)?  Tell! Tell!  Please feel free to leave stories, advice, etc. in the comments section of this post.  It’s appreciated.  Yours,

Whit

Ahhh, the union of chocolate, milk and seltzer.

Ahhh, the union of chocolate, milk and seltzer.

Egg Cream Popsicles (the recipe is based on how many popsicle holders you have use of—just make sure that there’s a little less seltzer than milk as seltzer needs diluting in order to freeze).

WHAT!?

~4 Popsicles

* 1/2 Cup seltzer
* 1 Cup Milk

* 3 Tbsp Chocolate Syrup

* Handful of Chocolate Chips

How’s That Now!?

Pour 1/2 inch of cold milk into a tall soda glass.

Add seltzer or club soda to within 1 inch of the top of a 2 cup glass measuring cup with a spout; stir vigorously with a long spoon (this will cause it to foam/bubble, which you want!).  Very gently pour 2 tablespoons of chocolate syrup slowly down the inside of the glass; briskly stir with a long spoon only at the bottom of the glass where the chocolate sits. The resulting drink should have a dark brown bottom and a 1-inch high pure white foam top.  When assembling in popsicle holders — put chocolate chips in first (about 1/4 in full) then add liquid up to the top.  Freeze and enjoy!

We're getting serious now

We’re getting serious now

This is very serious business :)

This is very serious business 🙂

**Please excuse no finished product picture. It’s dark and the light in the apartment stinks so I’m just not doing it. 🙂

Temp Tee and Tempting

5 Mar
Don't buy that canned Kosher for Pesach stuff--it's WAY too expensive. Make your own sauce!

Don’t buy that canned Kosher for Pesach stuff–it’s WAY too expensive. Make your own sauce!

 

*I’d like to start this post by sending a heart-felt apology for an editing error in my last post. I mistakenly linked Maija’s Mommy Moments when commenting about an article I had read by another mommy-blogger lamenting those parents who post pictures of their children on Facebook or Instagram. In fact, it was another blog post by another blogger entirely. The situation went a little like this, “Ok. Where’s that post?” (starts Google search). “That’s not it. That’s not it. That’s not it. Wait, is that it? I think so”. (skim post. link post. publish post.) I received an incredibly classy and respectful email from Maija rightfully alerting me to my error and I just wanted to make sure you 5 readers out there who actually read this blog note my error but most importantly, that Maija hears my apology.

 

 

I’m not sure why I’m doing this to myself. I’m watching the Kardashians. What the H*ll was I thinking!? It’s only 10 minutes left until the end of the episode and I’m not sure what possessed me to do it. Wait, that’s not true. I know EXACTLY why I did it. It’s the combination of not being able to look away from a shiny, shiny train wreck and the need to decompress, mom-style. I had a hard day. My boss called me ‘authoritative’ and for a second, I took that as an insult but then properly shook that off and realized, that’s awesome and then thought to myself, “would he say that if I was a dude?” It’s also the second week of the hubby’s nightly boating course. Yes, I said BOATING COURSE. Two days a week the hubby stays at work until 9PM to learn how to drive a boat for his job (he’s a real life marine scientist) and last night/this morning the baby started showcasing some separation anxiety which resulted in my own tears out of sheer frustration/heartache so when she went down without a hiccup I celebrated crazy mom-style—-I cracked open a beer, hopped on Facebook and turned on E! cause that’s how I roll. And now here I sit, watching real live people line up to attend Rob Kardashians sock line launch. I’m confused as to how anyone can talk about a sock line launch and keep a straight face but you know, that’s just me. I’m absolutely probably a little jealous because I’ve never launched anything before except for a free blog on WordPress. Oh, and that one time I launched myself off of my bike when I was 10 years old because I was riding down the big hill in the neighborhood too quickly and whooooooooooo . . . . I launched myself right over my handlebars. So, OK, I guess I have launched something. Go me! But anyway, I bring up the Kardashians because they’re on my TV and I’m watching it and I feel shame but also because in this same episode, Kim Kardashian just decided to treat her sister to a little surprise and bought her a house. A house! On Friday I decided to treat my dear friend, Dina, to a trenta-sized (that’s a real size by the way. It’s the bucket they keep behind the counter for those in the know) iced tea and I was worried if I could afford it this week but heck, I just went for it because we had a rough week last week and my girl deserve that $4 drink. And then I watched Kim Kardashian be able to buy a house for her sister and well, I felt the reality of my middle class status set in. Am I jealous? Not really. I really don’t want to be famous for the size of my tushy and I certainly am not jealous of a 72-day marriage, real or not, but who am I kidding? It’d be nice to have that kind of financial security. As the hubby and I work out our finances to see if we can actually take a family vacation this summer or not, it’d be cool to not have to think to ourselves, “Hmmmm, who’s got a vacation home we could commandeer for a week? Do we really need to eat dinner on vacation because that’s a solid $50 saved a day.” But you know, we gotta do what we gotta do. Thank Gd, we live in Miami so if we can’t afford a real vacation this year, at least we can take a nice little staycation with direct beach access so that’s certainly a lovely option. And as a full-time employed parent, vacation is really all about spending several days not cooking and not subsequently cleaning up after cooking. It also means no laundry and more importantly no work so I can spend unlimited time with my man and our kiddo, which is really the goal.

GIMME GIMME GIMME!

GIMME GIMME GIMME!

In the meantime, I’m not on vacation and Passover is on the way so menu-planning is on the brain (though, to be honest, menu-planning for something or the other is ALWAYS on the brain). I picked up some Temp Tee Whipped Cream Cheese and with my past spaghetti squash recipe in mind decided to enjoy that sweet, sweet potato vodka and whip up a batch of drunken spaghetti squash, a.k.a. spaghetti squash a la vodka. Usually I make my cream sauces with heavy whipping cream and some butter but I got all that creaminess from a hefty scoop of Temp Tee and the taste was beyond. I also cut out the butter and sauteed the shallots and garlic in coconut oil (which can be kosher for passover certified) and it gave the sauce an overall beautiful sweetness. And for a snack? Why some Temp Tee, raspberry preserve, chocolate chip, walnut apple sandwiches (say THAT ten times fast), of course!

Please find the recipes for the Spaghetti Squash and Apple Sandwiches by clicking on the recipe titles below:

Spaghetti Squash with Vodka Sauce and Apple Sandwiches With Temp Tee Whipped Cream Cheese

*This blog post is sponsored by the fine folks at Temp Tee, but all opinions and recipes in this post are my own.

 

Please enjoy the pictures. If these don’t tempt you into making the aforementioned meals, I don’t know what will.

Sauce is good. Sauce is very good.

Sauce is good. Sauce is very good.

Tomato Sauce and Temp Tee = BFF

Tomato Sauce and Temp Tee = BFF

Wha, what's that mom? I want to go to that.

Wha, what’s that mom? I want to go to that.

Temp Tee and Spaghetti Squash.  Yum.

Temp Tee and Spaghetti Squash. Yum.

Dessert, snack, dinner, it can be everything

Dessert, snack, dinner, it can be everything


20130304-223025.jpg

The Great and Powerful Blog

27 Feb

Image

There’s a hot topic on the parenting/mom blogs these days.  I mean, there are a lot of hot topics (Attached Parenting, for example. No one ever seems to get tired of bashing or praising that whole business).  Then of course there’s breastfeeding vs. bottle-feeding (I’ve been a part of that whole business).  However, the past several weeks the parenting blogs, heretofore known as pogs, have been aflutter about pictures. There are a few of the most popular parenting/mom blogs that seem to paint an eternally serene picture of mom/parenting life.  There always seems to be the perfect amount of snow on the ground or just the right of sunshine coming through a window.  And the food! Oy, the food! It’s healthy and interesting and made from scratch! It’s so wholesome and homemade it could make Laura Ingalls Wilder’s meal selection on the prairie look like an all-you-can-eat buffet at the local Sizzler.  And let’s not forget the children.  The children are clean and interesting and eat all that wholesome food while making origami and knitting their own sweaters.  Now, I’m not exempt from some of that. I post pictures of my daughter and more often than not she is smiling and looking happy.  I mean, who wants to look at pictures of crying children? I’m trying to attract people to this here blog not turn them away running.  I also have a goal of not wanting someone to call Child and Family Services on me based on unhappy baby pics. Yikes.

But then there’s the other side.  There are the parent/mombloggers who want you to know how much they hate Instagram and Facebook.  Please, PLEASE know that they do not post pictures of their children anywhere because they want to live in the moment.  Kveller.com recently got an influx of new followers and great publicity when a blogger of theirs posted a rant on the first category of “perfect harmony” (my words, not hers) mom bloggers.  Her post started a campaign on the site called No More Fake Book where readers can post pictures of what parenthood really looks like (I myself posted a picture of my husband with our daughter.  Both of them were in Giants jerseys only Siona was freaking out and had her classic cry face on).  It resonated with a lot of people and I enjoyed what she had to say and how she said it.  Yet, I’m still somewhere in the middle.

Here’s the thing.  I like the rosy-cheeked children and the perfectly placed raindrop on the window behind a cup of coffee in a mug handmade by the aforementioned rosy-cheeked children.  But I also like the pictures and the bloggers who are real with their parenting.  Thank you for letting us know that you had to feed your kids box mac n’ cheese cause you work full time and didn’t have time to make your own pasta for dinner.  I don’t feel so inadequate.  For reals, thank you.  And yet, it’s hard enough being a parent and sometimes I don’t want to read about someone else’s struggles with parenting.  I have a nearly 7th month old baby.  She’s my first kid and your story about how your 2 kids were up all night for 3 nights with fevers TERRIFIED me. I mean I lost sleep just thinking about how I would be able to handle that.  But then there’s that rosy-cheeked blogger mom again. I’m having a hard time digesting the fact that you’re on baby number 3 and you still manage to wear lipstick, style your hair and go out and get coffee with friends WITH your 2 week old baby.  I’m pretty sure I didn’t shower for the first 2 weeks of my kid’s life and I’m still waiting to put lipstick on again.  And here’s the inadequacy again. But here’s the thing, no one can MAKE me feel anything.  I allow that feeling to exist. I give that person/blogger/child/whomever the power to ‘make’ me feel that way.  And I know this is going to blow y’all’s minds but I, and anyone else, don’t actually have to read the blogs you don’t want to read.  I also get to pick and choose who I follow on Instagram. Nowadays you get to pick your news, your culture, your online life.  It’s all your choice (for example, if this post is pissing you off then just close your browser).

Image

Someone’s not diggin’ on the whole ‘apple’ thing.

So because I still haven’t made dinner yet tonight I’m gonna cut to the chase—the food!  As we’re preparing for Passover (we’re staying put for the first time ever), I’m of course thinking of food.  I want to diversify and not get stuck in the matzah rut.  Listen, I like matzah . . . the first 3 days but day 4 rolls around and I’m all, “that better be a piece of cardboard you’re waving at me cause if that’s matzah I need you to get it out of my face”.  I hope to be able to cook with a lot of fresh veggies and fruits but the one item this house will not do without is Temp Tee cream cheese.  I’m not kidding.  My husband buys at least 2-3 tubs of it every Pesach.  He loves the whipped yumminess but I think it also gives him really great memories of Pesachs of yore.  Now since I’m going to try to be easy on the matzah I was thinking a great way to have a sandwich and not have to use matzah is to use apples!  Below is a recipe that’s super easy yet super delicious and I dare ya not to eat the left over Temp Tee/preserves mixture with a spoon like a delicious soup!

Image

Apple Sandwiches with With Temp Tee Whipped Cream Cheese

What!?

1 Golden Delicious apple (or any of your choosing)3 Spoonfuls of Temp Tee Whipped Cream Cheese
2 Spoonfuls of raspberry preserves
Handful of chocolate chips
Handful of chopped walnuts

Image

How’s That Now!?

Mix Temp Tee Whipped Cream Cheese and raspberry preserves into a small bowl.  Cut apples into 1/4 inch thick round slices. Spread Temp Tee and raspberry preserve mixture onto one slice.  Top with your choice of chocolate chips, walnuts or even dried cherries.  You can also go crazy and top it with all of the above toppings.  Lay the other slice of apple on top like a sandwich and enjoy!

Image

Back to Life

5 May

Well friends, it’s been several weeks since this jewhungry author wrote anything on this here blog so it’s about time I got to it.

The past 2 weeks have been a blur–a messy, difficult, exhausting but still with shades of sunshine and love blur.  My Papa  (Grandpa) passed away on Tuesday, April 26th, at 5:30 am.  After a few days in the hospital followed by about 5 days in hospice, my beloved Papa passed away.  He was 87 years of age at the time of his death and to some, it wouldn’t seem shocking to have a grandfather pass at that age but for our family, his passing really was a shock.  The reality of our parents’ and grandparents’ true age is, at times rationally understood, but generally, not full comprehended.  Though logically, I understood my Papa to be an elderly man–it’s why we insisted our traditional, Orthodox Jewish wedding take place in the Southern Appalachian town they live in rather than have the ease of a kosher wedding in Teaneck, NJ.  However, it wasn’t until we arrived at my Papa’s bedside the Friday of  chol hamoed that I realize just how old my Papa was.  But I have to tell ya, even with the memories of the devastating and heartbreaking final days spent by his side, I will always remember my Papa as being larger than life in every possible way.  He loved to tell stories (most notably, one about the best corn beef sandwich he ever had (corn beef being one of his last coherent requests, which my brother and sister-in-law brought up from Atlanta, before entering hospice) and his love of music and theater was passed down into every one of us grandkids.   I don’t know the type of man my Papa was when he was my age but as a grandfather, he was loving and kind and attentive and truly enjoyed spending every second he could with us and I will always be grateful for that blessing.

Now, the stress of watching a beloved family member die is really enough for any one person but add the stress of trying to keep kosher during Pesach in a household that doesn’t necessarily keep the same type of kosher and well, you got yourself a really obnoxious pickle.  Confession time:  Until my husband and I have the space and kids, we plan to spend every Pesach with his parents in Jersey.  It’s just easier.  It is by no means a value judgement on my side of the family.  It’s just easier and I think this past Pesach proved that it’s not just easier on us but on EVERYONE.  I’ve said it before and I’ll say it again; I didn’t decide to keep kosher to alienate my family and friends but decided to keep kosher to live a more spiritually fulfilling life.  I want everyone who walks into our house to feel like they can eat at our table.  So, with that decision came tougher decisions—where to spend Pesach? It was a difficult phone call, having to tell Mom that Pesach would be a Jersey holiday for us, but to her credit, she got it and was supportive and I will always be grateful for that.  However, here we were, not 6 months after that phone call, having to figure out how to feed everyone in Mom’s kitchen during Pesach.  And to my mom’s credit, in the middle of everything else she was dealing with, the woman kashered her kitchen, brought out the plastic-ware and we did this thing.

It wasn’t all hunky dory, don’t get it twisted.  It was frustrating at times.  I mean, how much kosher for Passover bag n’ bake chicken can one person eat?  But it was my genius friend, Jackie, who made a point that completely allowed that frustration fly out the window.  The morning of my Papa’s death, as I was running errands for mom, I’m on the phone with my Jackie, just venting like we do, when she says to me, “Whit, how amazing is it that in spite of that difficult conversation about not spending Pesach in Asheville or Atlanta, here is your Grandfather, bringing your entire family together and showing all of you that you can do this.  What a gift.”  Well if that didn’t just verbally slap me in the face with glory than I don’t know what will.  My Jackie is a genius.  And she was right.  We had 5 days of Pesach, including one shabbat, with all my crazy family members in Asheville and we did it.  Hell, My sister-in-law and I even created an amazing new soup using a Vitamix and every tomato in Asheville and it was damn good.  There was a kosher for Passover mashed potato bar one night and even a quinoa pilaf (quinoa from Bolivia, thank you very much)!  I mean, I don’t mean to brag, but we nailed Passover 2011.  A fete I never would have thought possible.  Thanks Papa.

Papa and Grandma dancing at my wedding - Aug. 15, 2010

Vitamix, Vitadelicious Tomato and Kale Soup

WHAT??

10 whole tomatoes, stemmed

a bunch of kale

1 large onion, diced

Olive oil

3 cloves of garlic, diced

4 cups of water

1 large russet potato, peeled

Salt

Pepper

Shredded mozzarella

Italian parsley

HOW??

Clean tomatoes and place into Vitamix in 2 groups of 5.  Press on and watch it do its thang.  Put aside.

Meanwhile, turn stove to medium high and heat 4 table spoons of olive oil  in the bottom of a large stock pot.  Add onions and garlic and saute until onions are translucent.  Next, add the kale.  Sautee kale for 2 to 3 minutes.  Next, add all those tomatoes and the four cups of water.  Bring the entire thing to a boil, then reduce heat to a simmer and let cook for 30 – 40 minutes or until kale is good and soft.  During the last 10 minutes of simmer time, add your peeled potato.  The starch of the potato will help thicken the soup.  Add seasonings as needed.  Once done, serve hot (leave potato in the soup but don’t serve it) and garnish with cheese and parsley.

A Word on Pesach

17 Apr

I wasn’t raised in a particularly observant household. I love my childhood connection to Judaism and appreciate the entire journey of life that has brought me to Pesach in Teaneck for the last several years. First night Seder goes well into the late night hours and four full glasses of wine are always enjoyed. I have incredibly fond memories of my mom’s perfectly boiled eggs sitting in just the right amount of salt water and that perfectly formed matzoh ball swimming in harmony with carrots and chicken. I carry these memories with me as I join the Seder at my in-law’s table and though observance level might be a bit stricter, I think I’m finding a comfortable place at each table.

20110417-060702.jpg

Living a more observant life tends to naturally call for a stricter observance of holidays and really, well, everything. For the past 2.5 years, as Pesach looms nears, I get a little panicky at the thought of all the cleaning and prep our observance level calls for and don’t even get me started on the dread of saying good-bye to wheat, beans, peanuts, corn, etc. for a week.  It’s not just because my love for pasta rivals that of any full-blooded Italian or the fact that kosher for Pesach food is more expensive than regular kosher food (I’m saving my rant on the high cost of kosher food for another day), but it’s also the fact that I don’t have a cadre of kosher for Pesach recipes in my head like my mother-in-law or a woman who was raised in this kind of observance level.  It’s a bit intimidating actually.   But then my very thoughtful and thought-provoking brother-in-law said something that completely changed my mind about Pesach (and was also one more bit of proof as to why he is such a great Jewish educator).  See, we were talking about how folks run out and by some of the more disgusting,  laboratory-enhanced kosher for Pesach (heretofore known as KFP) foods like KFP Oreos or KFP soy sauce (which is imitation since soy isn’t eaten on Pesach) and fake cereals when he made the statement, “if only people could realize it’s not about what you’re limited to or what you can’t bring into the house but rather what you can bring into the house—fresh fruits, vegetables, pure, whole foods.”  Genius, right?  So while we remember that we were once slaves and now we are free, let’s really BE FREE, no?   Let’s free ourselves from overly processed imitation foods that have that ever-coveted P deeming it KFP.  Let’s free ourselves from the junk that we put in our body in the name of Pesach and instead choose to honor the memory of Moshe and our ancestors who were once slaves in Egypt by eating foods from the earth, not a lab, and allowing ourselves the privilege MOST of us have to be creative, think outside the culinary box and truly be free.

20110417-060753.jpg

20110417-060814.jpg

Jewhungry

Recipes and stories from my shvitzin' kitchen

molly yeh

Because sometimes Jews get hungry . . . for EVERYTHING.

LALA LAND

Still trying to figure it out.

Pop Chassid

A blog by Elad Nehorai

The Little Ferraro Kitchen

Because sometimes Jews get hungry . . . for EVERYTHING.

Food with a View

Mindful Cooking - Green Living

Take a Megabite

Because sometimes Jews get hungry . . . for EVERYTHING.

Manu's Kitchen

Because sometimes Jews get hungry . . . for EVERYTHING.

Foodie With Family

Life at the intersection of food, family, philosophy, frugality and fun!

The Rural Roost

Because sometimes Jews get hungry . . . for EVERYTHING.

Love and Lemons

Because sometimes Jews get hungry . . . for EVERYTHING.

Lea & Jay

(Gimlet, Mistletoe, Arwen)

Finger, Fork & Knife

I'm Kate and Finger, Fork and Knife is where I record the recipes that excite, nourish and inspire me. I focus on wholesome, high-nutrition, home-cooked food - recipes that satisfy and delight. Welcome!

The Joy of Caitlin

cooking, loving, life-ing!

iamthemilk

Every day I'm jugglin'.

I want that for dinner

Gluten-free, healthy, creative, and kosher cooking...with a comedic twist!

%d bloggers like this: