The Jew And The Carrot

Deb Perelman's Magical Blintzes

By Devra Ferst

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Leah Koenig/JCarrot

Say what you will about the most iconic Jewish foods — bagels, matzo soup, brisket, Shabbos chicken. Cheese blintzes are the reason I am proud to write about Jewish food. When made well, they are delicate little pillows of crepe stuffed with warm, sweet, freshly made cheese and topped with a fruit compote. They are in essence, a dessert that is socially acceptable to eat at the dinner or breakfast table.

Deb Perelman of Smitten Kitchen fame shares my love for the cheese pockets and this week has a recipe up on her blog.

Today, it’s time to correct one of the greatest oversights of the last 7.5 years on this website… we’re going to talk about cheese blintzes. I mean, really, what have I been waiting for? I’ve got all of the bases covered that would prequalify me for a cheese blintz proclivity: I love crêpes and Eastern European food, I’m Jewish, married to a Russian, had a deep cheese blintz addiction when I was pregnant…

Deb goes on to discuss the provenance of these treats. While the name blintz is Russian, I’ve tried them in Ukrainian restaurants and spotted them on menus in Poland and Germany.

Comprised of such near-universal foods as a thin pancake and sweet cheese filling, I imagine that cheese blintzes are one of these foods that you could connect via dotted line to dozens of others in other countries and cultures.

In Jewish homes, blintzes are usually spring-time fare, made for the dairy fest Shavuot. But, as Deb points out, they are perfect winter comfort food.

They hail from places where the snow seems to go on forever, places where our Polar Vortexes would seem comparatively weak, places that know how to fill bellies with warm to hold you over until it’s fun to go outside again.

While I haven’t had the chance to make hers yet, Deb’s recipes are as reliable as they come. So cancel your evening plans, head to the store and start cooking. Like I said, it’s perfectly fine to eat these for dinner — even your bubbe would approve.

Deb Perelman’s Cheese Blintzes


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