Purim

 

Gingerbread Hamantaschen Recipe

 

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I love ginger in all its forms, pickled for sushi, candied and especially ground inside little ginger bread people.  When I first tried baking Gingerbread Men quite a few years back, after trying my first gingerbread latte, I felt like I was doing something wrong.  Gingerbread Men have long been associated with the secular holiday season, but there’s nothing remotely religious about them except for the heavenly taste and no reason why we can’t make and enjoy ginger cookies in any form.  A few weeks back, when my Ema was in town, my brother had been begging for a Gingerbread House.  I was excited to make my annual Gingerbread cookies, but a house is way out of my league.  Fortunately, my mom is an artist and real estate agent so she was up to the task and my brother fulfilled his “giant” fantasy breaking a house and eating it, too.

While we were all baking and decorating, a little light bulb went on over my head.  What about Gingerbread Hamantashen? I found a recipe for Gingerbread Macarons that used an apple compote filling that was almost creamy without any cream and these Gingerbread Hamantashen were born. I couldn’t be any happier with my spicy creation!  Even my not so ginger happy husband gave me a big thumbs up when I twisted his arm into trying one hot and fresh from the oven, I mean really who could resist?  Whatever you have planned for your mishloach manot, these Gingerbread Hamantashen should be added to your list.  For our michloach manot, we’re going to put them in large mugs with our own special blend of looseleaf Chai Tea and Spiced Chocolate Truffles.  Who is going to want winter to end now?


 

Purim Tablescape

 

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The Purim feast is truly a unique affair. Spirits are soaring and wine is pouring. Costumed family and friends gather around the table to take part in a lavish dinner fit for royalty. Set your table for a dinner party everyone will enjoy.

Start with…Wine & Dine
Incorporate wine-inspired décor into your table scheme. Employ creative ways to use glasses of varying shapes, wine bottles, and corks. Add a bit of bistro flavor with retro pieces and butcher shop elements.


 

Perfect Ideas for Easy and Beautiful Mishloach...

 

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The Recipes + The Packaging + The Downloadable Purim Cards – We have taken care of everything with your busy lives in mind, all you have to do is choose a theme.

Every year, when it’s time for me to plan what I am going to create for my mishloach manot, I go to the huge Dollar Power store that’s a few minute drive from my home. I walk around and around the aisles, looking for the item that will inspire me. I’m not looking for a container or basket—but something out-of-the-“box.” Last year, it was the picture frames you see below. There was a whole aisle of frames, in different sizes
and styles. Even though I usually prefer modern styles, this time I loaded up my wagon with the most ornate detailed frames (including the one in the photo)—those definitely didn’t look like they cost one dollar! The frames were repurposed as trays and wrapped up in cellophane with
grosgrain and pearls.
The Joy of Kosher team collaborated to come up with these recipes and concepts. We made sure all of the recipes can be prepared in advance and of the packaging is accessible. All the pricing and source information is available, and all the Purim cards you see (and more!) are downloadable.  Read on for more inspiration and ideas for your own mishloach manos. Happy Purim!


 

A Happy and Frugal Purim

 

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Purim is right around the corner! It’s such a fun holiday, and there are so many aspects to it that we mustn’t forget. It’s definitely worth thinking about a few weeks in advance.

Off the top of my head, here are the parts of Purim that tend to make us spend money: Costumes, especially for families with a bunch of kids (but I also know adults who go “all out”); Purim Seudah – a festive meal; Mishloach Manot – sending gifts of food to friends; and Matanot La’Evyonim – gifts to the poor.


 

Pralines for Purim

 

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Pralines are perfectly formed chocolates with a variety of fillings hiding inside—either soft and chewy or crispy and crunchy. If you prepare them according to the directions and use polycarbonate chocolate molds, your pralines will look just as professional as the store-bought ones.


 

Share The Joy – Joy of Kosher Magazine Is A...

 

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We share a special connection with Purim; after all, Purim is a time when we are mandated to increase our level of joy! At Joy of Kosher magazine, joy is on our minds all the time, as we endeavor to indulge our readers with a beautiful read, and a delightful culinary experience.

Purim, as a holiday, is more than fulfilling the four mitzvos (manos, mishteh, megillah, tzedaka); lots of you no doubt look forward to Purim as a time to let your creative juices flow, as the one-time-of-year you get to express yourself, by way of your shalach manos. For some of you, that means getting all artsy and cutesy and coming up with a great theme to send along with a creative poem. Other people prefer to convey a personal touch and send homemade goodies, ranging from cakes and cookies, to challah, to salads, to kugels, you name it. And yet others prefer to purchase a knick-knack or the like, something useful for your recipients, to still enjoy long after the purim nosh has been consumed. Wrap some store-bought chocolates and a grape juice in some cellophane, and those people are all set. No matter your shalach-manos-style, the common denominator we all share is that we view this special mitzvah as an opportunity to show the people we care about how much they mean to us.


 

What is a Hamantaschen and How to Make Them...

 

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Hamantaschen are triangle shaped cookies that we like to make for the holiday of Purim.  The name comes from the villainous character in the Purim story and is most known to be in reference to Haman’s Ears. In fact in Israel, they call these cookies, Oznei Haman, which translates to Haman’s Ears.  Some people say and many people sing that Haman wore a three cornered hat and maybe that is what the cookies emulate.  Regardless of exactly where the name and practice came from, they are the symbol of Purim and are undeniably delicious.

Usually they are made with a sugar cookie type dough and filled with jams made of prunes, apricots or poppy seeds.  If you are looking for the perfect dough that is so versatile and easy to work with, but also extremely tasty, look no further.  Often times people sacrifice the dough for a great filling, leaving us to waste time on a bland dough just to get to a sweet filling.   This Savta Cookie Dough is so flavorful on its own that you won’t have that problem.  Enjoy with any filling of your choice either store bought or home made.


 

Mask Cake Pop Tutorial and *Giveaway*

 

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I almost always stick with round cake pops, for some reason shaped pops intimidate me. A crazy cake? No problem… a shaped pop? Yikes! But when I was asked to do a guest blog post I thought what could I do that I haven’t done yet and haven’t seen yet? Purim is right around the corner and I feel like my thoughts go immediately to masks. I thought I’d go out of my comfort zone and try mask cake pops! Well I think I was pretty successful with it and I hope you will be too. Enjoy my tutorial and have a Happy Purim!

Materials:


 

Happy Purim!!

 

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Well, it’s been intense preparing for this holiday – but we have had so much bringing you all the Purim recipes and Seudah themes and ways to wrap your Mishloach Manot.

Here’s a round up of what we shared with you – bookmark this page to use again next year!


 

What Are Mishloach Manot?

 

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On Purim one of the special mitzvot we perform is giving food gifts to friends. The reason we perform this mitzvah is to bring joy to others and to generally increase happiness among Jewish people on Purim. What better way to make friends happy than to give them food packages!

By doing this we add unity to our people and this in turn allows the Jewish people to be judged favorably in heaven.


 

Homemade Muffins for Mishloach Manot

 

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Purim is the one time of year when we go to synagogue and do all the things we would never do any other time. And we encourage our children to do them too. By that I mean: we laugh and talk loud and generally misbehave. There we are, at services and we’re yelling, cavorting and making a racket! Our kids grog their groggers, make loud hissing sounds and stamp their feet whenever Haman’s name is mentioned, so they can wipe out the evil name. Don’t we all just love it too!

Really, it’s okay, all this acting out. According to the Megillah, we’re actually commanded to right? This is the way it’s supposed to be on a day when we celebrate a victory over an enemy who tried to destroy our people.


 

A Pirate Purim Party

 

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Hi Everyone! I’m so excited for purim! It is my favorite holiday. I remember as a kid rushing around with my mom to get all the fun items for our family mishloach manot. My mom always came up with a poem, theme, or found a cute container. All these years later I’m still doing the same thing.

Every year I try to figure out what my kids will be interested in. Over the years we’ve done Pinkalicious, Dr. Seuss, dogs, and the list goes on and on. This year my kids decided they wanted to be Jake and the Never Land Pirates. I figured that would be easy. Get them all pirate costumes and we’ll do some sort of treasure hunt. As I started to plan I decided to take it one step further. The Usdan Family became the Shushan Pirates!


 

How To Make The Perfect Cocktail

 

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Purim is coming, we’re so happy, we’re gonna make cocktails! Now that the especially long February is over, it’s time to spring into March with some class. Here are two delicious cocktails with my tips on how to get the most out of your drink.

For a full list of cocktails for Purim click here.


 

A Mexican Seudah

 
 

What could be more fun than your guests walking into your home and being greeted by a riot of color: red, green, gold, white, terra cotta pottery, a festive tablecloth, sombreros, piñatas filled with kosher candy, and some music to round out the festivities?

The colors and interesting foods will delight children and adults alike.


 

Purim Disguised Dishes-The Surprise is On The...

 

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One of the many commentaries discussed at Purim is that nothing was as it seemed.  The miraculous salvation of the Jews was concealed under the guises of nature, luck and coincidence.  I’ve read that Esther wasn’t the prettiest contestant in front of King Achashveiros, that Queen Vashti’s banishment was excessive even for a drunk king, and that Mordechai’s timing was more than coincidental in order for him to overhear Haman’s plot against the Jews.

Each one of these events is remarkable by themselves, and yet, they all happened with such precise timing to enable the events of Purim to take place.  Did these occurrences happen by luck, by coincidence, by timing alone?  Some say no.  Instead, it is believed that these acts were all maneuvered by a higher force.  And yet at the time, all these instances were disguised as ordinary occurrences.