Shabbat

 

Shabbat Menu – Mango Banana Phyllo Nests

 

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One of the most beautiful passages in this week’s parsha, concerns the bird and her young. We are told: If you should encounter a bird’s nest and the mother is sitting with her baby birds or upon the eggs, you shall not take the mother upon the young, but should send the mother away before taking any eggs. This week we’re going to give the birds a break, but I can’t resist the opportunity to include a simply sensational dessert recipe for a Mango Banana Phyllo Nest that will leave your guests squawking for more.

Golden Gazpacho

Golden Gazpacho


 

Shabbat Menu – The Scales of Justice

 

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Jewish lawyers of the world unite in celebrating this week’s parsha, where Moses instructs the people of Israel to appoint judges and law enforcement administrators in every city. “Justice, justice shall you pursue,” Moses explains, without corruption or favoritism to the rich or powerful.  In my mind, I think of the scales of justice in perfect balance.  On my plate, I think of the scales of a delicious baked trout – dressed up for Shabbat with a light fennel salad.

Potato Napoleon with Vegetables

Potato Napoleon


 

Shabbat Menu – Italian Meat Antipasto

 

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In this week’s Parsha, the Torah expands on the farewell speech Moses is delivering to the Jewish people, saying: “When the Lord, your God, expands your boundary, as He has spoken to you, and you say, ‘I will eat meat,’ because your soul desires to eat meat, you may eat meat, according to every desire of your soul.”  Can you think of a more appropriate or appetite whetting introduction to a Shabbat menu? This week at Joy of Kosher we bring out the best of the beef.  B’tayavon!

Meat Kosher Antipasto Platter

Meat Antipasto Platter


 

Shabbat Menu – Stuffed Veal Roast

 

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In this week’s parsha (Eikev), Moses is reflecting on forty years of wandering in the desert, and reminds the Children of Israel how Hashem sustained them with daily manna from heaven.  The lesson Moses teaches is “that man does not live on bread alone, but by the utterance of Hashem’s mouth.”  We agree, but we still love our bread.  This week we are bringing the bread.  We celebrate with a challah recipe your guests will be hollering for (Jamie’s special), a spectacular stuffing and a bountiful bread pudding.



Romaine Pecan Salad

Romaine Pecan Salad


 

Shabbat Menu – Hasselback Potatoes

 

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This week’s parsha brings us to the beginning of the final book of the Torah.  It is a long farewell by Moses to the Jewish people as the Children of Israel prepare to enter the Holy Land without him.  Lest the people forget their history, Moses reminds the Jewish people who have been wandering for nearly 40 years of where they came from and where they are going.  For us, we celebrate this Shabbat with a meal to fill us with the strength and energy to handle whatever comes next – whether conquering a new land or a new week of challenges and triumphs (and a fast).

*Note: most of these recipes are wonderful grilled, but would work very nicely in the broiler if you don’t have a grill.


 

Shabbat Menu – Almond Cherry Biscotti

 

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The double portion of Mattot-Massei includes a detailed overview of where the Children of Israel have been since the Exodus from Egypt.  Now, standing just outside the Land of Canaan at the gates of the Promised Land the Jewish people are nearly ready to realize their national destiny in the land that was originally pledged to Abraham so many years ago.  The poet Ralph Waldo Emerson once wrote: “Life is a journey, not a destination.” But don’t arrive empty handed.  One of my favorite treats to bring over for dessert is Biscotti.  This  week we’ve got a fabulous Shabbat menu, but make sure you leave room for these Almond Cherry Biscotti.

Start with two kinds of Bruschetta:


 

Shabbat Menu – Pistachio Chocolate Chip Cake

 

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In parsha Pinchas we deal with succession.  Passing things down.  From parents to children.  From Moses to Joshua.  These are the things we’ve handed down.  As I get older and look in the mirror or hear myself talking to my children, I am following in the well-trodden footsteps of my mother and her mother and on and on.  It is our immortality.  When we try to recreate a recipe from a parent or grandparent and capture the taste, sight and smell of something near and dear and precious to us, we are able to keep something very much alive and allow our own children, friends and family to join us in that experience.  This week we highlight recipes from our community that are inspired by their family.  I hope you enjoy and hope you are also creating and sharing memories with the people you love most.

Grandma Sylvia's Salmon Croquettes with Fried Onions


 

Shabbat Menu – Chimichurri Beef Kabobs

 

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In Parsha Balak, we learn how Balak, a Moabite King, selects the prophet Balaam to curse the Jewish people and how Balaam experiences the mysterious ways of Hashem when he and his talking donkey witness an angel standing in the road, with a sword drawn. We are also drawing our swords this week (or at least our skewers). Our Shabbat Menu offers a taste of Latin America.  These Grilled Chimichurri Beef Kabobs are perfect on or off the grill.

 


 

Shabbat Menu – Chocolate Lava Rocks

 

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In Parsha Chukat, Miriam dies and the people bitterly complain of thirst.  Moses is told to speak to a rock and command it to give water.  Frustrated, tired and still in mourning over the loss of his sister, Moses angrily strikes the rock.  While water miraculously appears, the price is high.  Moses is told that he will not be able to enter the Promised Land.  We are going to rock your world with our Shabbat dessert this week.  We are baking delicious Chocolate Lava Rocks that no one could possibly get angry at!

 


 

Jewish Food for a Long Shabbat

 

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Its always a challenge making hot foods for Shabbat lunch other than cholent. I came up with the idea to make a Yaptzik, a.k.a over night potato kugel with meat. It is so easy to make and so delicious. It is always a big hit and great for sitting around on a long Shabbat enjoying your guests. I tried to google the origins of the recipe and the name and there wasn’t much except for that it was layers of potato kugel and meat cooked in an over night oven.  This is not a light recipe nor the most Summery, but I like the changeover from cholent, try this Yaptzik recipe.


 

Shabbat Menu – Chocolate Almond Panna Cotta

 

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After Korach and his followers challenge the leadership of Moses and meet a dramatic end, Hashem asks Moses to collect a staff from each of the tribal leaders. For the Tribe of Levi, the staff is inscribed with the name of Aaron.  The next day Aaron’s staff is blooming with almonds, signifying the continuity of Aaron’s spiritual leadership.  We’re blooming almonds this week at Joy of Kosher with a delicious summer Shabbat menu that is perfect hot or cold — we kick things off with a brightStrawberry Cucumber Salad with Almonds and Mint, Almond Crusted Chicken Fingers that the kids will love and a decadent Chocolate Almond Panna Cotta for dessert.

Strawberry-Cucumber Salad with Almonds and Mint


 

Shabbat Menu – Lamb Kebabs on Cinnamon...

 

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This week we read about the Spies exploration of the land in Parsha Shelach.  They return with the bountiful fruits of the Holy Land – grapes, pomegranate and figs.  I will resist the temptation to share a menu featuring these items (since I did that last year) and tackle a more complex (from a menu planning perspective) episode in this week’s parsha, the issue of a man gathering sticks on Shabbat.  The punishment is severe and the lesson to be drawn is that any work must be completed before Shabbos begins.  So let me make it easy for you, with a menu featuring a delightful recipe that isn’t much “work” at all (20 minutes prep time) and will “stick” with you for a while, Lamb Kebabs on Cinnamon Sticks with Chutney.

Lamb Kebabs on Cinnamon Sticks with Date and Mango Chutney


 

Shabbat Menu – Matzo Ball Soup

 

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In Behaalotecha, unable to bring the Passover offering at the appointed time, some Jews who had been ritually unclean and therefore prohibited from making a sacrifice on the appointed day, asked Moses for another opportunity to participate in the ancient ritual.  Moses, in characteristic humility, asked Hashem for help resolving this question and remarkably, those who were excluded from the sacrificial rite were granted a second chance to celebrate Passover.  While I would not want to provoke a rebellion by suggesting another seder, I am going to suggest a recipe for Matzo Ball soup (Manischewitz Cook-Off Winning recipe) that is perfectly acceptable for Passover or any day you want to remember the miraculous Exodus from Egypt and the sacrifices of our ancestors.

Mod Matzo Ball Soup


 

Shabbat Menu – Grapes

 

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In this week’s parsha, we encounter the laws of the nazir, an individual who voluntarily foresakes wine, grapes or any products distilled from grapes, lets his or her hair grow long, and avoids contact with a dead body.  Today, we have many ways of expressing piety without abstinence.  This parsha is also a reminder that grapes have the potential to sanctify or to debase.  We look to this week’s menu with the spirit of elevation, incorporating the grape (in various forms) throughout each course of our Shabbat menu.