Yom Kippur Menu Ideas
Yom Kippur is the holiest day of the Jewish calendar. Jews refrain from all food and drink, including water. It is no coincidence that the solemn day of Yom Kippur occurs in the midst of the autumn bounty, just before the most exuberant of the harvest festivals, Sukkot, the Jewish Thanksgiving. In Temple times, Yom Kippur was the day that the priests purified the Temple and expiated the sins of all of the Israelites in anticipation of the Sukkot festivals. The fast cleanses not only the body, but the soul as well. It is not just an act of contrition, but an affirmation of sincerity. It focuses concentration on the spiritual. I have put together a Yom Kippur menu to break the fast.
Almond Challah Bread
Smoked Whitefish and Fennel Salad
Cream Cheese and Assorted Cheeses
Fresh Red Pepper Rings and Black Olives
Smoked Fish: Sliced Smoked Salmon, Whole Whitefish, Baked Salmon, and Sable
Smoked Salmon With Hummus, Baba Ghanoush, Tabouli, Tzatziki, Feta, Grape Leaves, Olives, Pita Chips and Fresh Pita Bread
Poached Salmon Served With Dill-Mustard Sauce
Gefilte Fish Trio Served With Horseradish and Carrots
Herring In a Wine Sauce
Tuna and Egg Salad
Domestic Sliced Cheese: Cheddar, Havarti, Muenster and Swiss
Orzo, Spinach and Feta Salad
Cous Cous and Vegetable Pilaf
Penne With Tomatoes and Corn
Salad of Sliced Baked Beets, Boston Lettuce, and Fresh Chopped Dill With Walnut Vinaigrette
Hummus, Tabouli and Baba Ghanoush
Cheesecake Topped With Strawberries, Blueberries, Mango and Kiwi
Traditional Honey Cake
Cranberry Honey Cake
Applesauce Honey Cake
Mini Pastries and Tartlets
Black and White Cookies
Custard Challah Bread Pudding
Fresh Fruit Platter
It’s time to start thinking about making Christmas cookies.
1 1/2 Cups Softened Butter
1 1/2 Cups Sugar
2 Eggs Lightly Beaten
3 Cups Unbleached Flour
1/3 Teaspoon Kosher Salt
1/2 Teaspoon Vanilla Extract
1/4 Cup Sifted Powdered Sugar (Optional)
Preheat your oven to 375° F. In a large size bowl cream the butter and sugar together. Add the beaten eggs. In a separate bowl mix the flour and salt. Gradually add the flour mixture to the sugar mixture. Blend well and then add the vanilla. Fill the cookie press with 1/4 of the cookie dough at a time. Press the cookies onto a parchment paper covered cookie sheet 2 inches apart. Bake for 10 minutes. Remove from the oven and allow the cookies to cool for 10 minutes while still on the cookie sheet. Transfer to a cooling rack to cool completely. Dust with the powdered sugar if you want to. Makes 48 cookies.
Packing A Picnic
*Pack lots of extra drinks in a cooler. When it’s hot outside picnickers get thirsty.
*Pack sweet treats. Bring fresh fruit such as berries and melon or cookies instead of ice cream.
*Keep prepared foods in the refrigerator until it is time to pack them up.
*Bring a soccer ball, football, baseball & mitts or a Frisbee. If you live close to the park either walk, rollerblade or ride your bikes.
*Pack sunscreen! Even when it is overcast or if you’re lying in the shade make sure to wear sunscreen.
Serving Food Outdoors
*When taking foods on a picnic make sure to keep perishables in the cooler with either ice or freezer packs until serving time. Make sure that the food is cold BEFORE it goes into the cooler.
*Pack just the right amount that you and your picnickers are going to eat. You don’t want to bring leftovers back home.
*If you are driving to your picnic don’t put your cooler and picnic basket in the hot trunk. Instead transport your picnic in the air-conditioned car.
*At you picnic site, keep the cooler and picnic basket in the shade. Open the cooler as little as possible.
*Never leave foods at room temperature for more than 2 hours. If the temperature outside is over 90°F, perishable foods should be left out no longer than 1 hour.
*If you buy a lot of take-out foods, such as fried chicken or barbecued beef, make sure to eat the food within 2 hours of pickup. Otherwise, buy the food in advance, refrigerate and reheat just before serving.
*Keep desserts made with whipped cream, cream cheese or dairy products refrigerated until you are ready to serve. Store any leftovers in a refrigerator or cooler.
*When preparing food outdoors, away from home, make sure to bring a jug of water, soap and paper towels for hand washing.
Last Wednesday I spent the afternoon at the Aquidneck Growers' Wednesday Farmers Market, in Newport, Rhode Island and had such a great time. I was impressed at how nicely laid out the market was as well as having such a nice variety of vendors. I had a wonderful slice of wood oven pizza. Bravo Wood Fired Pizza actually brings an actual wood oven to the market and bakes pizzas all afternoon long. Here is the link for Bravo Wood Fired Pizza http://www.bravowoodfiredpizza.com/Pages/default.aspx .
What I was most impressed with, however, was Olga’s Cup & Saucer. Olga had an amazing selection of baked goods that is better than most famous bakeries that I have visited. Olga’s booth was constantly jammed with people buying bagfuls of delicious treats. I had a chocolate cookie and a macaroon. Both were superb! Olga’s Cup & Saucer is out of Providence and has her deliciousness in my favorite Providence restaurant, La Laiterie/Farmstead Cheese. Here is where you can find Olga’s Cup & Saucer online http://olgascupandsaucer.blogspot.com/ and http://www.facebook.com/pages/Olgas-Cup-and-Saucer/200452426644338 .
If you find yourself in Newport on a Wednesday I highly suggest that you make a stop into the farmers’ market. Parking is tight, but not impossible. http://www.farmfresh.org/food/farmersmarkets_details.php?market=2 Aquidneck Growers' Wednesday Farmers Market
Wednesday: 2:00 PM to 6:00 PM
June 6 to October 31, 2012
Along the shaded walk
Memorial Blvd And Chapel St
Yesterday I was on foot from my hotel to the M.I.T. graduation ceremony at Killian Court. It was early in the morning and I hadn’t eaten a thing although I had managed to choke down a couple cups of lousy hotel coffee. I ended up walking past a bakery that smelled divine, and stopped dead in my tracks. Some backpacked students briskly walked past me and shouted out, “that place is super expensive, but tastes great!” I thought to myself, “my kind of place,” and ventured in. What a place! The displays were unbelievable and the smells even better. I picked up an almond croissant and an apricot brioche and carried them to the graduation ceremony. I figured that I would be sitting there awhile and needed something to nibble on. Each bite was heaven.
Apparently, Tatte Bakery & Café is brand new with its grand opening a month ago. They serve breakfast, lunch, dinner and take-out cookies, cakes and pastries. You can check them out at www.tattecookies.com.
Tatte Bakery & Café
318 Third Street
Cambridge, MA 02142
M-F 7am to 10pm
Sat 8am to 10pm
Sun 9am to 6pm
The intense flavor and aroma of citrus zest adds great flavor to so many foods from soup to sauces to cookies and cakes. The real trick in using lemon, lime or orange zest is to remove only the outer, colored layer of the peel. Avoid the bitter white pith underneath. Scrub the citrus well with a vegetable brush or coarse sponge to clean off any dirt or markings. Next grate the zest, using a zester or the smallest holes on a conventional box grater. You can also slice the zest off with a sharp paring knife or vegetable peeler and then finely mince it.