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My (Not So) Tiny Gift of Life – Chanukah Party


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The best Chanukah Gift I ever received weighed exactly 9 pounds, 7 ounces, and was 22 inches long. That was three years ago, when my son was born on the fifth night. We named him Avraham Yitzchak after both of my grandfathers, two strong, warm human beings—and both exceptional chefs! AY’s Chanukah/ first haircut/ Birthday Party will include festive delights that are kid-friendly, yet so elegant even my gourmet grandfathers would be impressed!

Join our family celebration with this Chanukah menu:


Caprese Latkes

A total show stopper. The base for this perfect latke is my grandfather Yitzchak’s recipe. Matzah meal, he taught me, makes your latkes nice and crispy. “Corn meal is good too,” if there’s no matzah meal at hand. As in every respectable Hungarian home, corn meal was a staple in his kitchen.

waldorf salad

Waldorf Salad

It all began at the Waldorf. Both the salad and my marriage (Hubby and I visited the lobby the night we got engaged). Never knew my favorite salad was actually invented there. Really. Ever since it was first created in the 1890s, we’ve been calling this mix of fresh apples, celery and walnuts, dressed in mayo, a “Waldorf Salad.” It’s usually served on a bed of lettuce as an appetizer, or even as a light meal in itself. In honor of Chanukah, I added blue cheese, one of my faves (and it goes with the blue in my holiday color scheme). To save time, I am making a simple creamy balsamic vinaigrette; but if you want a
more authentic version, combine equal parts yogurt and mayo with parsley, honey, lemon juice, and zest, and salt ‘n’ pepper to taste.

Decadent and delicious, everybody will go for this perfect pasta.  Who said pink is just for girls?

green bean casserole

Green Bean Casserole

While some people think of a green bean casserole as classic, comforting, and commonplace, to me it’s uniquely American. In my Eastern European grandfathers’ kitchens you’d never find a (green bean) casserole, caviar, or ketchup. But hey, I was born in the USA!

ice cream cone cupcakes

Ice Cream Cone Cupcakes

For my big two year old!  A dessert he and his siblings will love that’s elegant enough to serve to kids of all ages.

What is the best gift you ever got or gave on Chanukah?

As seen in Joy of Kosher with Jamie Geller Magazine (Chanukah 2011) – Subscribe Now.


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About Jamie Geller


Jamie Geller is the only best-selling cookbook author who wants to get you out of the kitchen – not because she doesn’t love food – but because she has tons to do. As “The Bride Who Knew Nothing” Jamie found her niche specializing in fast, fresh, family recipes. Now the "Queen of Kosher" (CBS) and the "Jewish Rachael Ray" (New York Times), she's the creative force behind JoyofKosher.com and "Joy of Kosher with Jamie Geller" magazine . Jamie and her hubby live in Israel with their five busy kids who give her plenty of reasons to get out of the kitchen - quickly. Check out her new book, "Joy of Kosher: Fast, Fresh Family Recipes."




26 Responses to My (Not So) Tiny Gift of Life – Chanukah Party

  1. avatar says: Blss52

    actually as simple as it sounds thick warm socks and a good book have been among my most favorite chanukah gifts to recieve,

  2. avatar says: dalesusan

    it is always hard for people to give me gifts, because at this point what do i need? so i love it when my daughter takes me for a hike (we live in los angeles) as a hanukah gift.

  3. A great gift would be an hour to myself with nothing to do!

  4. The best gift I ever got for hanukkah? A vitamix. Mazel tov on the birthday, the party looks amazing as always.

  5. This is beautiful, I love all these recipes, especially the Italian style ones :) . Can’t wait to try these!!

  6. The best Chanukah gift I ever got was a bracelet that my great aunt left for me when she passed away. She died when I was 2 and left instructions that I get it for Chanukah when I was 16.

  7. A photo of my mother

  8. avatar says: bedz

    Whatever my Grandmother used to send was so special, as she lived out of town, and would send a package with individually picked out and wrapped things for each child in the family.

  9. avatar says: amelia613

    The best Chanukah present I ever got was a choson! We got engaged on the 1st day of Chanukah.

  10. avatar says: RenaB

    The best present I ever received was my husband. We were married the second night of Chanukah and it was truly special. Happy Anniversary!

  11. avatar says: peg42

    The best present that I received was a small gold heart locket with our childrens photo’s in it that my husband had given to me.

  12. avatar says: chossid

    Recipes look interesting!

    My grandfather a”h had a toy store, and on Chanukah and Purim, he would give us Ginny dolls. Anybody remember them?

  13. I got a photo album of old family pictures

  14. My husband surprised me with a sterling dreidel necklace that I had admired. That he actually made note of what I liked and followed through made it very special. I look forward to wearing it every Chanukah.

  15. avatar says: Chaya

    Delicious recipes for Chanukah cant wait to try some new foods.

  16. Spending time with family!

  17. avatar says: aahaft

    my husband gave me a gift certificate for a massage

  18. My parents usually bought us books – biographies of Gedolim or short stories such as Hanoch Teller. One year i received Gateway to Happiness by Rabbi Zelig Pliskin. I still have it many years later

  19. My parents got me a plane ticket home to see them when I was in College and really needing a pick me up.

  20. avatar says: BusySavta

    The recipes look great, I’m planning on trying your Waldorf salad! Enjoy your first Chanukah in Israel with your family:)

  21. The best gift I ever got was when I was a kid – it was a brand new bike! I loved that bike!

  22. avatar says: jrapp

    Mine is what I pick out for myself!! I do all of the gift shopping, so I get free reign!!

  23. avatar says: cezovski

    It was a pearl necklace

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