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Aug 8 2013

For the Month of Elul, Threading Together My Sons’ Jewish Identities

By at 11:53 am

croc with jewish star buttonOn her blog “Ima On and Off the Bima,” Rabbi Phyllis Sommer started something called #BlogElul. Elul is the Hebrew month preceding the High Holidays, and is meant to be a time of introspection as we mentally prepare for Rosh Hashanah and Yom Kippur. Rabbi Sommer has designated every day of Elul to a different topic, and will be blogging about each one and encouraging others to join in.

The #BlogElul challenge spoke to me, as each year I contemplate how to weave bits of Judaism into my children’s day. Bits that over time will be threaded together to form their Jewish identities and sense of self. Read the rest of this entry →

Aug 5 2013

The Review of Rosh Hashanah Menus Past

By at 5:02 pm

rosh hashanah apple cakeA few nights ago, I began my annual pre-Rosh Hashanah ritual: “The Review of Menus Past.”

Since 2004 I have kept a record of what I planned to serve each year for Rosh Hashanah. Over the years, the record keeping has been refined.  In the second year of this project, I decided to list who was “responsible” for making the item on the menu like me, Mom A, or Mom B (my mother-in-law and my mom, designated this way because of last names, not priority, of course).

In 2006 I realized that it would be really helpful to add in the cookbook title and page number so that when I went to cook the food I could find the recipe quickly. It turned out to be even more helpful years later when I decided to make something again and I didn’t have to rack my brain to remember where it was (I have a lot of cookbooks). Finally, four years ago I added the schedule of cooking so I knew what I had to accomplish each day to stay on track. (Perfect for my busy life and my type A personality!) Read the rest of this entry →

Sep 19 2012

Rosh Hashanah Recap

By at 10:24 am

green applesWelcome back, Kvellers! We hope everybody had a wonderful Rosh Hashanah and kicked off 5773 with a bang. We’re glad to be back in the swing of things, but are definitely curious to hear how your holiday weekend went. If you’re in the mood for sharing, tell us the one thing you were most thankful for this Rosh Hashanah in the comments below.

And then remember, it’s never too early to start preparing for the next Jewish holiday. T-minus one week until Yom Kippur.

kveller 5773 baby glasses

Sep 14 2012

Rosh Hashanah Recipes: Apple Cake

By at 2:30 pm

Today’s Rosh Hashanah recipe of the day brought to you by Meredith Jacobs is a nice alternative to the traditional honey cake. Enjoy!

Rosh Hashanah is known as a holiday that loves sweetness–after all, that’s what the whole dipping apples in honey thing is all about. And traditionally you’d find a honey cake on the holiday table–sweet and spicy. But personally, I never really liked that honey cake. I’m a fan of apple cake. This is my mom’s recipe and I think it’s delicious. I hope you like it too.

You’ll Need:

3 cups flour
2 ½ cups sugar
1 cup cooking oil
5 unbeaten eggs
½ teaspoon salt
1/3 cup orange juice
2 ½ teaspoon vanilla
3 teaspoons baking powder
8-10 thinly sliced apples
cinnamon
sugar

1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees.

2. Grease and flour a tube pan or bundt pan.

3. Beat together flour, sugar, oil, eggs, salt, orange juice, vanilla, and baking powder until smooth in a large bowl.

4. In another bowl, mix together apples with 2 teaspoons cinnamon and 3 teaspoons sugar.

5. Layer apples in the bottom of the pan. Pour over enough batter to cover, then layer more apples, then batter again. Top with apples.

6. Bake at 350 for 1 hour and 45 minutes.

Rosh Hashanah for a Marine Household

By at 12:20 pm

marine corpsTwo years ago, on the first day of Rosh Hashanah, our moving truck pulled up to our current home in Pensacola, Florida. The move was arranged through the Marine Corps, and did not take into consideration that it was a Jewish holiday. While this might have seemed like a great excuse to skip services, my husband was determined to walk to shul that morning to pray.

Part of this determination stemmed from living, for the past four years, over an hour away from a Conservative congregation. Even when he wasn’t deployed, he struggled just to get to a meaningful High Holiday service. Read the rest of this entry →

There are Stars in Your Apples

By at 10:36 am

In 1990, at 8 years old, I went away to sleepaway camp for the first time. My parents chose Camp Morasha in Pennsylvania, 3,000 miles away from my Seattle abode, partially because my father had attended years earlier, and partially because it was filled with my cousins. It also granted them an excuse to eat their way through New York’s kosher restaurants on their way to seeing us on Visiting Day, but this is a realization I only came to recently.

Is listening to stories a traditional sleepaway camp activity? At Morasha it certainly was. Every Shabbat morning, instead of a speech about that week’s Torah portion, we were told a story. It was always about the animals of the Magical Forest. We looked forward to hearing about Leah the Lion, Moishy the Monkey, Ze’ev the Wolf, and more. Read the rest of this entry →

Sep 13 2012

No More LOLCatz for the Jewish New Year

By at 5:39 pm

woman typing on laptopRosh Hashanah, people: New Year’s resolutions. And these are the kind that get you written and sealed in the Book of Life, so let’s take it seriously, shall we?

I find I make resolutions like, “I want to be a better person,” “I want to be a better parent,” “I want to go to the gym more,” EVERY YEAR. These are all worthy goals, and I’ll be writing more about good ways to pursue them. Well, at least the first two. I mean, I’m almost 35 weeks pregnant over here, people. I get winded walking to school/the refrigerator. Read the rest of this entry →

I Love Rosh Hashanah But I Hate the Cooking Part

By at 1:00 pm

microwave disasterThe holidays are upon us, and once again, I find myself swimming in a sea of ambivalence. There is so much I enjoy about Rosh Hashanah and Yom Kippur; I find so much meaning and inspiration in the words and observance of my friends and community, both online and in real person.

But there’s this one thing that gets me every year, and every holiday. It starts with the constant barrage of recipes on my Facebook and Twitter feeds, and all my favorite blogs. (Yes, I’m talking to you, Kveller. And I don’t appreciate it.) It ends with me in a state of near panic and desperation. Read the rest of this entry →

Rosh Hashanah Recipes: Chicken Soup (& Veggie Chicken Soup)

By at 9:45 am

chicken soup recipeToday’s Rosh Hashanah recipe of the day is quite the classic–chicken soup. Meredith Jacobs shares her recipe for the Jewish penicillin. But have no fear, vegetarians–we’ve also got a great recipe for vegetarian chicken soup from Leah Koenig that’s just as yummy.

Recipe for Chicken Soup:

My kids love this chicken soup. Why? Because I let the flavor of the chicken and vegetables infuse the broth creating a rich, velvety, and delicious soup. I make this every other week, freezing part of it use whenever we need it. My kids like it with matzah balls(of course) and they also like to eat the chicken shreds. Read the rest of this entry →

Sep 12 2012

Sneak Peek at Mayim Bialik’s Vegan Honey Cake

By at 9:53 am

mayim bialik vegan honey cake recipeEditor’s note: Today’s Rosh Hashanah recipe of the day comes from Kveller’s very own celebrity blogger, Mayim Bialik. Last week, Bialik announced her next book, a vegan family cookbook, and today we’re getting a sneak preview with her Rosh Hashanah recipe for vegan honey cake.

Ingredients

2 egg equivalents (I use Ener-G egg replacer)

3/4 cup agave

1 cup sugar

1/2 cup plus 1 Tbsp oil Read the rest of this entry →

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