Apr 222011
 

[Translate] Passover is the time where you can find better deals on lamb here in Israel. Lamb is very expensive here, but for me Passover just isn’t Passover without at least one lamb dish. I found a good deal on lamb neck at a local supermarket and had the butcher cut it into slices. The neck is one of the fattier parts of the lamb, but it is a cheaper cut and perfect for slow cooking. Get the butcher to trim as much fat off as he can. Luckily, the neck I picked out had already been trimmed. I found an interesting recipe using the Algerian spice palate: cinnamon, chili flakes, cardamom, ginger, clove, fennel, Click here to continue reading this post

Apr 202011
 

[Translate] I remember Passovers past at my grandparents’ and parents’ houses were always large and boisterous with at least 25-30 people attending, spread over two or three tables. We always invited friends who didn’t have anywhere else to go, and also the stray Jewish soldiers who were “stuck” at Fort McClellan during their basic training. Occasionally, we had a visiting Israeli soldier or two share the seder with us. I really miss these seders, my grandparents, my great-aunts and uncles, the wonderful food, the family tunes, waiting for Uncle Alfred or Papa to proudly read the last stanza of “Had Gadya” in one breath, ribbing my uncle Don about watering my wine, misbehaving at the Click here to continue reading this post

Apr 152011
 

[Translate] Spring arrived here about two weeks ago and the country is in full bloom. The photos in this post were taken around my moshav. As we do every year, we are going to a relative’s house for the seder. Mr BT is bringing his world famous haroset and I am going to bring a tray of biscuits. This year I am making the following: François Payard’s Flourless Chocolate-Walnut Cookies Ka’ik ib’Fis’dok (Syrian-style Pistachio cookies) I will also be making some interesting dishes during Hol Hamoed with the following ingredients: Ground rice Ground lamb Lamb shoulder Lamb neck Mint Chickpeas and I am also making a family Passover dessert I haven’t made in years: Matza Click here to continue reading this post

Jan 202011
 

[Translate] Tu Bishvat is a minor Jewish holiday in the Hebrew month of Shevat, usually sometime in late January or early February, that marks the New Year of the Trees (Hebrew: ראש השנה לאילנות, Rosh HaShanah La’Ilanot‎) or the season in which the earliest-blooming trees in the Land of Israel emerge from their winter sleep and begin a new fruit-bearing cycle. It is customary to plant trees and eat dried fruits and nuts, especially figs, dates, raisins, carob, and almonds. Even though it is considered a minor festival, the commandment to plant trees in the Land of Israel is so important in Jewish tradition that there is even an ancient Rabbinical saying that if you Click here to continue reading this post

Dec 072010
 

[Translate] The holidays always make me think of the fun family gatherings we used to have. With most of the older generation no longer with us, it makes me think even more about the holiday foods I used to watch my paternal grandmother make. Before Hannukah, my grandmother was busy making her famous square chocolate cake, butter cookies, candied almonds, Butter-Mandel Kuchen, which she called Hefeteig (yeast dough) and Schnecken. But one of the treats that we all looked forward to were the fresh apple fritters she would make. The house would smell of sweet oil, apples, cinnamon and powdered sugar. I can smell them now as I am writing this post. I decided to Click here to continue reading this post

Sep 262010
 

[Translate] A guest post from my other half, Mr. BT: One of the great pleasures of living in Israel is the country’s agricultural riches, something that already led to the Land of Israel being described in the Bible as eretz zavat chalav u’dvash – ‘a land flowing with milk and honey.’ The milk in this description was probably more from sheep and goats than cows; and the ‘honey’ was almost certainly the sweet syrup of the dates that grow all over the country, not bee honey. Nevertheless, the historical image of honey as an integral part of the country’s agricultural tradition remains strong within Jewish culture, and especially so at this time of year, the Click here to continue reading this post

Sep 242010
 

[Translate] Today, with a heavy heart Sarah, Miriam, and I shut down Flavors of Israel. It was a project that we were all very excited about, but work and other things interfered with us devoting as much time as we needed to devote on the website. I haven’t talked about my professional life on the blog, but I do have a demanding full time job in the software industry. This really only leaves me with the weekend to find exciting and interesting food-related adventures to write about and photograph. In my case, maintaining two websites was more than I could handle. But don’t worry, we are all still great friends and plan to continue collaboration Click here to continue reading this post

Sep 192010
 

[Translate] I love a rich Brazilian flan with an almost burnt caramel sauce. I grew up eating coconut flan that my grandmother’s Chinese cook used to make for dessert for special occasions and many a Shabbat dinner. So, when I decided to make it during the time Mr BT and I were courting, I was deflated when he told me that he loathes custard of any kind! I said, “but you haven’t had my flan. Maybe I can change your mind?” “All right, I will give it a try” he said. Well, I am happy to say that I did convert him that night, and I was not afraid to go ahead and make a Click here to continue reading this post

Sep 122010
 

[Translate] We had a lovely long holiday weekend  which ended with celebrating my birthday. For Shabbat, I made a lovely, fragrant meal of slow cooked goose legs with shallots and clementines, which have just started showing up in the market. This dish is rich and fork-tender. I served it with a herb roesti that Mr BT made and steamed Brussels sprouts. A perfect dish for a sweet new year. PrintGoose with Shallots and Clementines 4 goose legs 200g shallots , peeled 6 whole cloves garlic, peeled 1 tablespoon ras el hanout 400ml (1/2 quart) vegetable stock 1 tablespoon clear honey Juice 1 lemon or lime 4 small, firm clementines , peeled 2 tbsp toasted sesame Click here to continue reading this post

Sep 102010
 

[Translate] Rosh Hashana, the Jewish New Year, is a holiday for starting anew. So for this year’s holiday I decided to create my own signature honey cake, something special to welcome the new promise of a sweet year to come. What would be better than to take a honey cake and top it with thinly sliced apples that were poached in white wine, and top it with a luscious 72% dark chocolate glaze. Actually, it is so delicious as to be positively sinful. Fortunately, we have just over a week to enjoy it, confident in the knowledge that on Yom Kippur we will be able to atone for this sin. This year, as in every Click here to continue reading this post

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