The Jew And The Carrot

The CSA Psolet Challenge: Week Two

By Shuli Passow

Flickr, BroadStreetInn

If last week was about confronting my CSA enemy, this week was all about reuniting with a good CSA friend: beets. It took me a while for my love affair with beets to ignite, but when it did, I never looked back. In addition to being gorgeous and delicious, nutritionally speaking, beets have it all: folic acid, iron, magnesium, calcium, fiber, B-complex vitamins, potassium, and more. A beautiful bunch arrived in the share, the first we’ve received this season, and I pondered which of my many favorite recipes to prepare. As I considered my options, I realized that most recipes I love call for peeling the beets—a rather arduous and messy task. No matter which technique I’ve tried—peeling while raw, roasting wrapped in tin foil, roasting not wrapped in tin foil, boiling—I’ve never found the peeling process to be as simple as every cookbook promises. So I decided to go with a simple roasted beet recipe, shared with me by my good friend Stephanie Pell, which does not require peeling the beets. Not only is this a huge time saver, but—CSA psolet challenge bonus!—you create less waste by eating the peels instead of throwing them away.

Read more


Permalink | | Share | Email | Print | Filed under: beets, Rosh Hashanah, CSA, CSA Challenge, Psolet

A Summertime Cold Borscht

By Lisa Amand

Lisa Amand

There I was, like a character out of a Nora Ephron film, standing in the middle of Zabar’s, asking anyone within earshot the difference between their two beet soups. The bustling Manhattan store’s two versions of borscht boast the same color, almost the same ingredients. Scrutinizing the two containers, I hold them up to the sage pastrami-slicer behind the deli counter, asking him how the two vary. Can I eat either cold? He shrugs, smiles and nods.

A few days later, shopping at my favorite Eastern European food emporium, M & I International in Brighton Beach, I spy a big pot of ruby-red borcsht labeled red borscht. But when I say want to eat it cold, the woman immediately turns her back and strides over to the fridge, pointing to another pot covered with plastic wrap. As I pay $6 for the tall tub of pink soup, the friendly Russian explains with great urgency that the cold version boasts sour cream and yogurt and should never ever be heated. If you enjoy pairing cold borscht with bread, buy or bake dark, old-world, farmer’s rye.

The pleasant dilemma is that there are as many versions of cold borscht as there are countries in the Olympics. Even the name and spelling changes with its place of origin depending on whether you’re concocting Latvian, Lithuanian, Ukrainian, Polish, Russian or Belarusian borscht.

Read more


Permalink | | Share | Email | Print | Filed under: CSA, Borscht, Beets

Using all of Summer's Bounty

By Ilana Cohen

It’s mid-July and farmer’s markets and gardens are brimming with gorgeous produce. You don’t have to look far to find interesting ingredients for a summer meal — some of them are already a part of your everyday veggies. Instead of throwing away veggie leaves or discarding what are typically thought of as weeds (like dandelions and purslane), a slight change in perspective will reveal an even wider array of summer produce right in front of your eyes.

This week’s featured CSA veggie is beets. Often the leafy beet greens are discarded in favor of the rich root which is commonly baked, boiled, or made into soup. But beet greens are also a delicious and versatile summer veggie, and by putting the greens in a pan, rather than in the bin, you will gain a delicious and nutritious addition on your plate. Beet greens are actually so tasty that whole varieties have been cultivated so that the plants produce copious amounts of tender, sweet leaves and only the suggestion of a red beet.

Read more


Permalink | | Share | Email | Print | Filed under: Hazon, CSA, Beets, Beet Greens

Shabbat Meals: Lauren Shockey’s Roasted Beet and Feta Salad

By Lauren Shockey

Courtesy Lauren Shockey

Of all the salads that you can find in New York City restaurants today, none is more ubiquitous than the beet and cheese variety. Which makes it all the more surprising that I had never eaten it until I was a teenager.

Despite the prevalence of beets in the Ashkenazi Eastern European culinary traditions of my ancestors, they were banned from my family’s dinner table. My father hated the ruby spheres, so we never ate them.

Imagine my delight when I first tasted the sweet, robust flavor of a perfectly roasted beet. I sighed. How had I been robbed of this pleasure for so long?

Read more


Permalink | | Share | Email | Print | Filed under: Vegetarian Shabbat, Shabbat Meals, Shabbat Dinner, Beets, Beet Salad

CSA Unboxed: Beets

By Elisheva Margulies

Courtesy of Hazon

Beets — most people either love them or hate them. It’s amusing listening to other CSA members pick up beets with the consistent refrains of yippee or oh-no. They really are a polarizing vegetable. This is unfortunate, in my opinion, given their availability for much of the growing season and their ability to keep well beyond many other vegetables. They are one of the crops that does very well from early summer all the way through the season, so you might find them now at the markets starting, with the beautiful (edible) leaves still attached. The beets are smaller in early summer, with delicious, sweet flavor, so grab them up while you can!

Here you’ll find some tips on using and cooking with beets, plus a recipe for the all-time Jewish favorite, borscht.

Read more


Permalink | | Share | Email | Print | Filed under: Beets, Borscht, CSA Unboxed

Celebrating Passover With the Bounty of Spring

By Naomi Rabkin

iStock

I have a confession. I pretty much hate Jewish Food. Not all Jewish food, of course, but the ubiquitous beige and brown kugels and meat-heavy holiday tables I grew up with never really did it for me. Passover in particular, with hidden matzo meal and farfel at every turn was never something I looked forward to. But at the same time the experience of Passover as a whole always had a strong impact on my understanding of Jewish values, history and biblical narrative.

Passover (Chag Ha Aviv, or the holiday of spring) is meant to do more than recall the exodus, we are to celebrate the abundance of spring vegetables and herbs that have just sprouted. I took a vegetarian cooking class for Passover a few years ago taught by Rabbi Hillel Norry of Congregation Shearith Israel in Atlanta. He taught that Passover did not need to be thought of as a week of deprivation. It is a time to rejoice in abundance of spring and to enjoy unprocessed, wholesome and healthy food. It is the Jewish version of a “cleanse” both spiritually and physically. Focus less on replacements for bread and other starchy items, let the seasonal produce shine, and take the time to prepare it impeccably.

Read more


Permalink | | Share | Email | Print | Filed under: Vegetables, Passover, Non-Processed Foods, Beets




Find us on Facebook!
  • Did Hamas just take credit for kidnapping the three Israeli teens?
  • "We know what it means to be in the headlines. We know what it feels like when the world sits idly by and watches the news from the luxury of their living room couches. We know the pain of silence. We know the agony of inaction."
  • When YA romance becomes "Hasidsploitation":
  • "I am wrapping up the summer with a beach vacation with my non-Jewish in-laws. They’re good people and real leftists who try to live the values they preach. This was a quality I admired, until the latest war in Gaza. Now they are adamant that American Jews need to take more responsibility for the deaths in Gaza. They are educated people who understand the political complexity, but I don’t think they get the emotional complexity of being an American Jew who is capable of criticizing Israel but still feels a deep connection to it. How can I get this across to them?"
  • “'I made a new friend,' my son told his grandfather later that day. 'I don’t know her name, but she was very nice. We met on the bus.' Welcome to Israel."
  • A Jewish female sword swallower. It's as cool as it sounds (and looks)!
  • Why did David Menachem Gordon join the IDF? In his own words: "The Israel Defense Forces is an army that fights for her nation’s survival and the absence of its warriors equals destruction from numerous regional foes. America is not quite under the threat of total annihilation… Simply put, I felt I was needed more in Israel than in the United States."
  • Leonard Fein's most enduring legacy may be his rejection of dualism: the idea that Jews must choose between assertiveness and compassion, between tribalism and universalism. Steven M. Cohen remembers a great Jewish progressive:
  • BREAKING: Missing lone soldier David Menachem Gordon has been found dead in central Israel. The Ohio native was 21 years old.
  • “They think they can slap on an Amish hat and a long black robe, and they’ve created a Hasid." What do you think of Hollywood's portrayal of Hasidic Jews?
  • “I’ve been doing this since I was a teenager. I didn’t think I would have to do it when I was 90.” Hedy Epstein fled Nazi Germany in 1933 on a Kinderstransport.
  • "A few decades ago, it would have been easy to add Jews to that list of disempowered victims. I could throw in Leo Frank, the victim of mob justice; or otherwise privileged Jewish men denied entrance to elite universities. These days, however, we have to search a lot harder." Are you worried about what's going in on #Ferguson?
  • Will you accept the challenge?
  • In the six years since Dothan launched its relocation program, 8 families have made the jump — but will they stay? We went there to find out:
  • "Jewish Israelis and West Bank Palestinians are witnessing — and living — two very different wars." Naomi Zeveloff's first on-the-ground dispatch from Israel:
  • from-cache

Would you like to receive updates about new stories?




















We will not share your e-mail address or other personal information.

Already subscribed? Manage your subscription.