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Food

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Eating Jewish: Strudel

by  Katherine Romanow

I have come to take for granted that with a quick search on Google I can easily find most recipes that I’m looking for. If for any reason I don’t find what I want on the Internet, I can usually consult my ever-growing collection of cookbooks to find the recipe I need. This means that a huge number of recipes are literally at my fingertips whenever I need them. However, my most recent time in the kitchen reminded me that this was not always so.

Topics: Food, Recipes

Thinking about women and food on Tisha B'Av

by  Leora Jackson

This Tuesday marked Tisha B’Av, the 9th day of the Hebrew month of Av. Tisha B’Av is a Jewish fast day marking the destruction of the Temple in Jerusalem, but over the years, it has come to serve as a symbolic day of mourning for tragedies that have befallen the Jewish people over the course of history.

Topics: Food, Tisha B'Av

Eating Jewish: Mandelbrot (Mandel Bread)

by  Katherine Romanow

When thinking about what I should write about next for Eating Jewish, I came across Lenore Skenazy’s article entitled “You Say Mandel Bread, I Say Biscotti” in The Forward. In the beginning of her article Skenazy confesses her lack of affinity for mandel bread, a baked good she associates with bubbes and paper lined tins. On the other hand, it’s clear that she is a fan of biscotti, cookies she describes as “the world’s coolest cookies, the supermodels of sweets: tall, thin, Italian, expensive.

Topics: Food, Recipes

Eating Jewish: Muhammara

by  Katherine Romanow

Hosting dinners, whether it is for Shabbat or any other occasion, is something I truly enjoy because I love cooking for other people and it also gives me a chance to try out new dishes. However, despite the fact that I enjoy trying new recipes, there are certain standbys that I know I can rely on to be crowd pleasers. One of these recipes is the roasted red pepper and walnut dip called Muhammara. This dip originated in Aleppo, Syria where there was a sizable Jewish community, many of whom immigrated to the United States and formed a community in New York.

Topics: Food, Recipes

Eating Jewish: Orange Salad with Olives

by  Katherine Romanow

After having spent an entire day in the library, the thought of cooking anything when I got home seemed impossible to fathom. On my way home I tried to think of something simple that I could throw together with a few of the ingredients I had lying around my kitchen. I remembered that I had bought three oranges the day before and I also had some pimento stuffed green olives in the cupboard that I could use to make a delicious salad with. I simply added some olive oil, cumin, paprika and salt to the oranges and olives, and dinner was ready.

Topics: Food, Recipes

Eating Jewish: Cream Cheese Rugelach

by  Katherine Romanow

Freshly baked cookies are, in my mind, one of life’s pleasures and are hard for anyone to turn down. Jewish cookbooks abound with recipes for cookies and other baked goods but it is rugelach that has come to hold a place in my heart and my stomach. They are one of the first Jewish cookies that I began baking and I’ve been hooked on them ever since.

Topics: Food, Recipes

Eating Jewish: What is "Jewish food?"

by  Katherine Romanow

What exactly is Jewish food? This is the question that most people will invariably ask me after I tell them that I research Jewish food. Most people ask this question with interest, while others are incredulous that there could be Jewish food. Yet, whenever I am confronted with this question I realize that one simple answer cannot work to define this term that eludes any strict definition.

Topics: Food

Introducing "Eating Jewish": The World of Jewish Food

by  Katherine Romanow

The centrality of food to the Jewish experience is a fact that is undeniable. It serves to identify one as a Jew, while at the same time defines one’s particular identity within the wider sphere of the Jewish community.

Topics: Food

Floaters or Sinkers?

by  Preeva Tramiel

In the degradation of Passover tradition that happens when parents get older and children move away; at times when there is no one young enough to sing the Four Questions without embarrassment; when the eating of the Hillel Sandwich is skipped because everyone at the table gets acid reflux; when the traditional four cups of sock-rotting Manischewitz dwindles to a single glass of Hagafen Chardonnay that is raised four times and demurely sipped by the host alone, one Passover tradition lives on: Matzoh balls, or knaidlach.  Or, as my neighbor calls them, “those cool things you Jewish people put in soup on Passover.”

Topics: Food, Recipes

A place at Emily's Table

by  Laura Bramson Hyman

Of all the things I’ve come to regret in life (most of which involve something I should/could/would have said, or the length of my hair before I turned 30), the most significant is not spending more time cooking with my beloved aunt, Emily Mehlman, before she passed away in 2006.  

Topics: Food

Feed Me Bubbe

by  Leah Berkenwald

As stated in the Boston Globe, "Two years ago, Bubbe didn’t know from a website."  Her grandson, Avrom Honig, decided to share his Bubbe with the world, producing an online kosher cooking show from her classic 1950s Jewish kitchen called Feed Me Bubbe.  After 30 Youtube episodes teaching luchen kugel, chicken soup, cheese blintzes and more, 83 year-old Bubbe now has her own website, t-shirts, and even a ringtone.

Topics: Food

Luck and Pluck

by  Preeva Tramiel

Question: Why would a modern woman cross the road to go to a Kosher Chicken Shechita?
Answer: To get to the other side. With feet.

Topics: Food

Who wields the pans on Hanukkah?

by  Preeva Tramiel

Ever since that one little jug found in the corner of the First Temple burned for eight days instead of one, olive oil has been political. 

The one day supply of olive oil lasted for eight days, so the eternal flame did not go out while the temple was re-dedicated. Thus, Judaism’s victory against Hellenism was ratified by the holy light, and we now remember the miracle by serving fried food for eight days.

Topics: Food, Hanukkah

What's on YOUR latkes?

by  Preeva Tramiel

Hanukkah is coming, and with it my usual debate with my husband’s family. They are wonderful--sophisticated, warm and accepting of my last-minute hysterical gift decrees (no plastic toys, no battery-operated toys, whatever is bothering me that year). They are flexible about what a proper Menorah is, especially if a grandchild constructs it. But, don’t touch their toppings.

Topics: Food, Hanukkah

"Cravings:" Food and the Jewish experience

by  Leah Berkenwald

This weekend I went to the Central Square Theater to see Cravings: Songs of Hunger and Satisfaction, a cabaret set in a Jewish kitchen that explores themes of hunger, success, acceptance, nourishment, fame, and sex.  Cravings, starring cabaret artist Belle Linda Halpern, accompanied by Ron Roy, and directed by Sabrina Hamilton, was originally created to close the Ko Festival's 2008 series, themed on food.

As I entered the theater I was surprised to find myself in a Jewish kitchen. The only thing out of place was the piano. Belle Linda Halpern made charoset, and kibbitzed with us in between songs.  She even called on Ron to help peel apples. As a Jewish woman, I found everything in this show relatable. (Except, where did they find such a quiet food processor!?) But what struck me most of all was the connection Halpern draws between the Jewish craving for food and the craving for success and achievement.  

Topics: Food, Theater

Remembering Sylvia Schur, a pioneer who transcended the kitchen

by  Leah Berkenwald

Thanks to Julie & Julia, foodies are abuzz about Julia Child.  Icon though she is, the story of a different sort of chef caught my attention this week.  Sylvia Schur passed away at age 92 last week.  Her obituary in the New York Times captivated me as I realized that this woman was no ordinary chef. 

Sylvia Schur was not a stereotypical "Betty Crocker," though she did create recipes for the company.  She did not wear pearls and an apron and stand in a TV studio stirring cake batter. Instead, she pioneered the modern food industry - creating the now classic recipes you see on the back of the box, problem solving with the heads of Ocean Spray, editing magazines, running a successful consulting company, and developing convenience foods for women on the go.  Sylvia Schur was a creative champion of modern working women who refused to spend their days in the kitchen.

The New York Times profiles Kosher food matriarch Regina Margareten at age 95

December 24, 1957

Born in Hungary on December 25, 1862 [some sources say 1863], Regina Margareten came to the U.S. as a young bride in 1883.

Dietician Frances Stern connects nutrition to social welfare

August 23, 1914

"There is meager knowledge of the comparative nutritive value of various kinds of food," lamented Frances Stern in an August 23, 1914 column in the

Tillie Lewis opens cannery for American-grown Italian tomatoes

July 13, 1935

Tillie Lewis, born Myrtle Ehrlich, in Brooklyn, NY, on July 13, 1901, left high school after one year to work in a wholesale grocery.

Frieda Caplan founds innovative specialty produce company

April 2, 1962

If kiwis, spaghetti squash, and jicama are familiar sights in your local grocery store, you probably have entrepreneur Frieda Caplan to thank.

Frances Stern

Frances Stern’s experience as a second-generation American Jew dedicated to social reform, interested in education, and having the good fortune to come into contact with several prominent women engaged in various aspects of social work led her to a career in scientific nutrition, applied dietetics, and home economics.

Regina Margareten

Regina Margareten was known as the “Matza Queen” and the “matriarch of the Term used for ritually untainted food according to the laws of Kashrut (Jewish dietary laws).kosher food industry,” according to her obituary in the New York Times. Born in Balbona (Miskolcz), Hungary, on December 20 or 25, 1863, she came to America as a young bride in 1883, with her husband, Ignatz Margareten, and her parents, Jacob and Mirel Chayah (Mary) (Brunner) Horowitz. Regina, also known as Rebush and as Hannah Rivka, was the Horowitzes’ third child and second daughter.

Turkey: Ottoman and Post Ottoman

In the nineteenth and early twentieth centuries, far-reaching changes took place in the Ottoman Empire in the political, social and geopolitical spheres.

Juedischer Frauenbund (The League of Jewish Women)

The League of Jewish Women (Jüdischer Frauenbund, or JFB) founded in 1904 by Bertha Pappenheim, attracted a large following. Absorbing some traditional Jewish women’s charities and building on programs that Jewish women’s groups had pioneered, the JFB offered a feminist analysis and approach to social welfare.

German Immigrant Period in the United States

The period 1820–1880 has generally been considered the era of German Jewish immigration to the United States. Issues of gender and family shaped this migration from the Germanic regions, and from other parts of Central and Eastern Europe from 1820 to 1880.

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