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Father’s Day Pledge

While the punch line has changed over the years, the joke (and the underlying societal impression) is unfortunately still the same. While we were growing up, when we were asked what we would be getting Dad for Father’s Day, we always answered, “A tie.” Inevitably, that tie was either store bought with intentions of either meeting, stretching, or countering Dad’s fashion sense; or homemade out …

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Cheesecake – The Taste of Shavuot

Holidays, especially Jewish Holidays, are not the best time to enforce a weight loss diet. Take Shavuot, which this year begins on the eve of Saturday, June 4. For reasons that some attribute to parsing of Jewish law and others, to a tradition that evolved amongst Eastern European Jews, dairy - cheese and one of its sweetest uses, cheesecake - is a Shavuot treat. And so, a …

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Ready, Set, Vote!

    Even though our democracy is only 246 years old, we can look back in Jewish values from 2,000 years ago to guide our understanding of what so many of us understand as the ‘sacred right’ (or is it ‘sacred rite’; or both) to vote. Hillel, an early architect of rabbinic thinking who lived in the first century before the turn of the era commented "Al tifros …

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The Secret to a Sweet Passover: Matzo Brittle

I used to joke that I chose our synagogue because I liked the cookbook. There was some truth to that although as far as recipes go, the very best one was not in the book. Every year, some of us volunteered to do a mass bake of Matzo Brittle to sell to members, using a recipe that I believe was handed down from our rabbi's …

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“Borcas” — Grandma Cele’s Beet Preserves

Another Passover Recipe My husband's Grandma Cele often talked about making her Passover specialties for her sons - carrot candy and something she called "borcas." I did not grow up in a home with Old Country food traditions, so I had no idea what she was talking about. After she'd passed away and I wanted to continue the family tradition, I asked around to find a recipe …

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Make a Meal of Hamantaschen!

Don't get me wrong; we LOVE traditional hamantaschen. Yiddish for "Haman's pockets" and also interpreted in old legend as Haman's three-cornered hat, some of us consider these delectable sweet pastries as a way to get back at Haman, the villain in the Purim story in the Biblical Book of Esther. To commemorate his downfall, we eat his hat! Miriam Szokovski, in an article on unique hamantaschen recipes a couple of …

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8 Nights of Light: A Chanukah Menorah Infographic

The menorah is perhaps one of the most widely recognized symbols of Jewish culture and is the centerpiece of the Chanukah celebration. But how much do you really know about it? We’re sharing the fast facts you need to know about the Chanukkiah – from its history and meaning to the logistics of lighting yours – because it’s so much more than just a candelabra!

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Stuck at home? Bake the Best Challah!

As we self-quarantine during this pandemic, many of us are re-focusing on domestic arts, especially baking. This shabbat, why not try your hand at baking challah? I contend that this recipe, shared many years ago at an NCJW meeting by Charlotte Sadofsky, is the best challah recipe, ever. It has all the eggs, oil, honey and sugar to make it the richest of all challahs. I …

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We are still dreaming. Let’s ensure every person is counted

"I have a dream that my four little children will one day live in a nation where they will not be judged by the color of their skin but by the content of their character.” As we celebrate the life and legacy of Reverend Dr. Martin Luther King Jr., his dream that every person be judged for their character and not the color of their skin …

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A Chanukah Greeting: “Be the Shamash”

As we celebrate the 8 nights of Chanukah, also known as the Festival of Lights, we usually like to consider the meaning of this holiday. There are a lot of different Chanukah stories out there, and many interpretations of why we celebrate for eight days. One thing we believe is that Chanukah commemorates the rededication of the Temple in Jerusalem after the Syrian Greeks were …

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