The Jew And The Carrot

Mayim Bialik's Vegan Cookbook

By Alix Wall

It probably was only a matter of time before Mayim Bialik put out a cookbook. The actress – who began her career as a child actor on “Blossom” and now appears regularly on “The Big Bang Theory” is also known for a few other things: her PhD in neuroscience; her advocacy of attachment parenting; her blogging for the Jewish parenting website kveller.com; her balancing act of working in Hollywood as an Orthodox Jew; and her diet.

One might assume she is kosher, which she is, but Bialik is also a vegan. Her journey to veganism, she says in “Mayim’s Vegan Table: More than 100 Great-Tasting and Healthy Recipes From My Family to Yours” co-authored by Dr. Jay Gordon, began as a vegetarian college student, but she began cutting back on dairy when she realized her son was having issues with it from breastfeeding. What began out of practicality later morphed into embracing veganism for idealistic reasons, too.

This is not a cookbook with a capital C. It’s not a hardback, and unlike most Cookbooks these days, which have a photo of almost every dish, this one has a small photo section in the middle (with photos taken by Mayim’s friend Denise Herrick Borchert).

Her co-author, Dr. Jay Gordon, is a pediatrician who has been vegan for over 40 years. Bialik and Gordon spend the first third of the book explaining a vegan diet, why one should be wary of the meat and dairy industries, nutritional myths as they see them, especially when it comes to feeding your children — such as that children need milk — how to stock a vegan pantry, kind of like Veganism 101. They also say that they know most people won’t be as extreme as they are, but that any move toward a plant-based diet is the right step.

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Rainbow Cabbage Salad with Tahini-Lemon Dressing

By Mayim Bialik

This colorful salad is delicious as a main course or side dish. The nutritional punch of colors makes it full of beta-carotene, calcium, and a bevy of vitamins. Arrange the ingredients alongside one another and drizzle with the dressing, or mix them all together for a mixed-up delicious rainbow of a salad.

Serves 4

3 tablespoons toasted sesame or sunflower seeds
6 cups red cabbage, roughly chopped (about 1/4 large cabbage)
1 large carrot, peeled then shaved (using the peeler) into 2-3 inch strips
3 celery stalks, leaves removed, chopped
1 red bell pepper, seeded and thinly sliced
2 handfuls of fresh flat-leaf parsley, finely chopped
tahini-lemon dressing
4 ounces tahini
1 garlic clove
Juice of 1/2 lemon
Pinch of cayenne pepper
1/2 teaspoon salt
1/4 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper

Preheat the oven to 325 F. Using a rimmed baking sheet, toast the seeds for 8 to 10 minutes, watching closely. You can also use a toaster oven until the seeds start to darken, or sauté them without oil in a small pan until they brown and become fragrant, about 5 minutes. Remove and set aside.

Boil 8 cups of water while you chop the cabbage. Slice cabbage in half through the stem. Slice each half in half again and chop roughly. Place the chopped cabbage into a strainer over your sink and pour the boiling water over it. Rinse quickly with cold water. Dry the cabbage roughly with a (dark-colored) hand towel or in a salad spinner.

In a large bowl, mix together the celery, pepper, cabbage, shaved carrot, and parsley.

Place all the dressing ingredients in a blender. Add enough water to make a dressing consistency. Add the dressing to the cabbage salad just before serving.

From Mayim’s Vegan Table: More Than 100 Great-Tasting and Healthy Recipes from My Family to Yours by Mayim Bialik with Dr. Jay Gordon. Reprinted courtesy of Da Capo Lifelong Books.

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Dilled Chickpea Burger with Spicy Yogurt Sauce

By Mayim Bialik

No one will ever know these burgers are made of chickpeas, unless you tell them. Shallots, chickpeas, tahini, and spices are combined and sautéed to crisp perfection for one of the most satisfying veggie burgers we’ve tasted. Here we’ve stuffed them into pita pockets and doused them with yogurt sauce, but they’re just as wonderful with ketchup and mustard, or raw onion and a little hummus and Israeli Salad (page 81). These are thinner patties that should be cooked until crisp. Handle them as little as possible, and let them cook well on the first side before flipping. yogurt sauce.

Serves 6

1 cup plain vegan yogurt
2 garlic cloves, peeled and minced
1/2 teaspoon curry powder
1/4 teaspoon cayenne pepper
1 (15-ounce) can chickpeas, well-drained and rinsed
1/3 cup fresh dill, finely chopped
1/2 cup shallots, minced
2 tablespoons plain dry bread crumbs
2 tablespoons freshly squeezed lemon juice
2 tablespoons tahini
1/2 teaspoon salt
1/4 teaspoon coarsely ground black pepper
1/4 teaspoon ground cumin
About 1/4 cup vegetable oil, for oiling the pan

6 pita pockets or buns

To make the yogurt sauce, place all the ingredients in a small bowl and stir ­until blended thoroughly.

To make the burger, lightly mash half of the chickpeas in a medium bowl. Add the dill, shallots, bread crumbs, and lemon juice and mix well.

In a food processor, combine the remaining chickpeas, tahini, salt, pepper and cumin until smooth. Add to the mashed chickpeas, mix well, and form into six to eight patties.

Oil a 12-inch skillet over medium heat and cook the burgers until very crispy and dark golden on both sides, about 6 minutes. Don’t flip them too much! Drain on paper towels or brown paper bags on a wire rack.

Stuff the patties in pita pockets. Drizzle with yogurt sauce.

From Mayim’s Vegan Table: More Than 100 Great-Tasting and Healthy Recipes from My Family to Yours by Mayim Bialik with Dr. Jay Gordon. Reprinted courtesy of Da Capo Lifelong Books.

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Mayim Bialik's Winter Vegetable Risotto

By Mayim Bialik

Risotto is often hard to mimic as a vegan dish because it calls for lots of Parmesan and butter to create its creamy taste and consistency. This recipe re-creates all of that, using a combination of almond milk, tahini, and a touch of nutritional yeast. The result is a sophisticated risotto, which we pair with carrots, parsnips, and butternut squash. You can use any vegetables on hand, though, including diced asparagus, zucchini, or other squash.

Serves 6

1 medium-size carrot, peeled and diced
1 medium-size parsnip, peeled and diced
1 (1-pound) butternut squash, peeled, seeded, and diced (about 2 cups)
1 tablespoon fresh rosemary or thyme, chopped
5 tablespoons olive oil
5 1/2 cups vegan vegetable stock
1/2 cup dry white wine
2 garlic cloves, minced
1 cup onion or shallot, chopped
1. cups uncooked arborio rice
1/2 cup plain, unsweetened almond milk (rice or soy milk works, too)
2 tablespoons tahini
1/2 cup nutritional yeast
1 tablespoon freshly squeezed lemon juice
1 tablespoon mirin (see Kitchen Tip)

1) Preheat the oven to 350°F.

2) Place the carrot, parsnip, and squash in a large bowl with the rosemary. Add 3 tablespoons of the oil and toss to coat. Sprinkle with salt and pepper. Arrange on a baking sheet in a single layer and roast for 20 to 25 minutes, until soft but not mushy.

3) In a small saucepan over medium heat, combine the stock and wine and heat to simmering. Lower the temperature to a simmer.

4) In a large nonstick pot, heat the remaining 2 tablespoons of olive oil over medium heat. Add the garlic, onion, and rice and saut. for 3 to 5 minutes, or until the rice starts to be toasted.

5) Add 1 cup of the simmering broth-and-wine mixture to the rice and cook, stirring continuously, until the liquid is mostly absorbed. Continue adding the broth 1 cup at a time, cooking and stirring as it is absorbed. It will take about 20 minutes for all the broth to be absorbed and for the rice to become tender and creamy.

6) Add the almond milk, tahini, nutritional yeast, lemon juice, and mirin and cook for a further 5 minutes. Stir in the roasted veggies. Season to taste with salt and pepper.

Kitchen Tip: Mirin is a sweet rice wine. If you can’t find it, you can use dry sherry or white wine with a pinch of sugar.

From Mayim’s Vegan Table: More Than 100 Great-Tasting and Healthy Recipes from My Family to Yours by Mayim Bialik with Dr. Jay Gordon. Reprinted courtesy of Da Capo Lifelong Books.

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Domino's Pizza Goes Vegan — in Israel

By Michael Kaplan

thinkstock

Traveling in Israel as a vegetarian was tough — I can only imagine what it must be like for vegans. (I’m imagining an endless diet of falafel and salad). Thankfully, a bit of relief came earlier this week.

International pizza giant Domino’s announced its first ever vegan pizza — offered at its Israeli outlets.

The decision marks a major win for a popular Facebook campaign launched by Vegan Friendly, which promotes a vegan lifestyle in Israel. The group has more than 37,000 followers on Facebook. The new menu item uses a soy-based substitute to replicate the taste of cheese, and also offers vegetable toppings. Sadly, no word yet whether the fake cheese has that signature stringy pull.

The Israeli chain will be the first of the global food giant to offer a dairy-free pizza option. The decision comes as the dietary choice, practically unheard of a few decades ago, has grown increasingly popular in Israel and globally over the past few years. Still, non-dairy substitutes are rare in the holy land, especially outside of Tel Aviv.

“We’ve notified Domino’s Pizza’s world headquarters and they’re very pleased, Yossi Elbaz, CEO of the Israeli franchise, told Haaretz. “They’re waiting to see the results.”

If you live in Israel, you can get your vegan pie for 69.90 shekels, or $19.91 — just don’t expect it to be kosher. The Israeli franchises don’t carry a heksher.

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Taste Testing 'Isa Does It' Everyday Vegan Recipes

By Alix Wall

Vanessa Rees

Would You Make This?” is a sporadic column where personal chef Alix Wall evaluates a new cookbook by making some of its recipes, sharing them with friends and asking what they think of the results.

It’s been 10 years since the Brooklyn born and raised Isa — pronounced like Lisa, without the ‘L,’ — Chandra Moskowitz first burst onto the culinary scene with her public access television show, “Post Punk Kitchen.”

Since then, a lot has happened: the former punk rock devotee and Jewish vegan activist has released six cookbooks, including perhaps her most well-known: “Vegan with a Vengeance,” and the best-selling “Veganomicon;” likely gotten more tattoos; and she left Brooklyn for Portland, Oregon, where she met the founder of Vegan Omaha, a guy named John McDevitt, and followed him to Omaha, where she lives now.

It’s here that she wrote “Isa Does It: Amazingly Easy, Wildly Delicious Vegan Recipes for Every Day of the Week,” her latest book, brimming with — as she says — “plenty of thirty-minute meals, and the ones that take longer are designed with built-in downtime, so while the quinoa and lentils are simmering, you can sit back, relax, and iron out your plans for world domination. Or just play with your cat.”

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Is Benjamin Netanyahu Going Vegan?

By Barak Ravid (Haaretz)

getty images

Could Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu be on the way to becoming vegan, or will we at least see him attend Gary Yourofsky’s next lecture in Israel? This question was on the minds of several ministers after hearing Netanyahu’s long monologue on his positions regarding animal rights at the weekly cabinet session on Sunday.

Part of the cabinet meeting was devoted to a survey of Agricultural Minister Yair Shamir’s work in the field. At the meeting, Environment Minister Amir Peretz asked to have the authorities to enforce animal rights laws to his ministry.

Two officials that participated in the cabinet meeting relayed the surprising development that Netanyahu instructed Harel Locker, the director-general of his office and the Cabinet Secretary Avichai Mandelblit to look into Peretz’s suggestion.

For more go to Haaretz

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Getting to the 'Root' of Horseradish

By Ilana Schatz

JS online

My usual preparation for Passover entails reading and contemplating a lot (did I say “a lot”?) about the meaning of freedom and liberation; gratitude for the myriad ways I am blessed to experience it daily, and pondering the responsibilities it imposes on me to help free others less fortunate. I also focus on “cleaning out the chametz” theme by getting back to basics about the food I put into my body - everything I eat is homemade, not processed or packaged.

I often get bored by the fourth day and have been hungry for new recipes. This year, the timing was right and I was lucky to attend a Vegan Passover Cooking class with our favorite vegan chef, Philip Gelb in Oakland, CA. The dish that particularly drew my attention was “Roasted Beets with Horseradish and Basil”.

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On Passover Indulgence

By Rachel Grossman

Rachel Grossman
Vegan Garam-Masala Infused Chocolate Chip Cookies

Inspired by Buzzfeed’s 25 Delicious Ways to Use Matzoh, I am running full speed ahead into Pesach. I have lists of vegan, Pesach-friendly recipes lining my cubicle at work and shopping lists ready that I’ve prepped already. Strawberry Rhubarb. Dark Chocolate Brei. Rosemary Crepes. Cookies Galore, spiced, promising to be fluffy. I am resolved to do my due diligence, deliciously.

In the past, I have kept kosher for Passover for approximately 2 days. Around the 48th hour, I could be found gripping my stomach and sighing dramatically. Blurry-eyed, I would beg friends and coworkers for spaghetti and sandwiches. I rather obviously love food, love cooking, and find great happiness in consuming whatever my little heart desires, whenever it so desires. Now I find it hard to admit how childlike I am in my desire – and in my indulgence. Coming from a secular family, having acquired no knowledge of, or discipline for, Pesach, I suppose it makes sense that I start to become bitter, frustrated, anticipatorily hungry, and then gluttonous.

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Cardamom-Fig Hamantaschen

By Rachel Grossman

Rachel Grossman

“I stood willingly and gladly in the characters of everything - other people, trees, clouds. And this is what I learned, that the world’s otherness is antidote to confusion - that standing within this otherness - the beauty and the mystery of the world, out in the fields or deep inside books - can re-dignify the worst-stung heart.” – Mary Oliver

Sometimes I marvel at how hard it can be just to be myself, to be the person I expect of myself, to be the version of myself that others probably expect, too. I end up staring off into space, dreamily fixed elsewhere, thinking abstractly about where I’ve been and how far I still have to go in a world that paints me flat. Sometimes my friends privately settle on the word ‘melancholy’ after they’ve known me for a few months. They present the word to me carefully, like a confession of their judgment, holding it by its edges, setting it carefully into my hands. Melancholy. It’s as if the word itself, a little gift, might capture and hold my disquietude, the parts of me that clamor against patters, expectations, what’s tried and true, and if I hear it, perhaps – poof! – fulfillment and happiness! Thinking of this, I don’t want to write another ‘perfect’ or, even, the ‘best’ hamantaschen recipe, the tried and true the ones we all love, and know. And what we all expect. I want something else today.

On Purim, we celebrate Jewish survival and redemption. It is one of the most popular Jewish holidays because it is built on hope. Purim is a reminder that no matter how bad the circumstances, or whatever we fear around the corner, things will turn out well in the end. It’s greatly loved for the merriment to be had celebrating Esther’s victory with the king, her great success, not to mention her great skill and tact. It is with this in mind that Jews observe Purim. The day before Purim is a fast day, followed by two days of celebration: dancing, merrymaking, feasting. Jews will linger in temple into the early morning hours, drinking and masquerading, dressed in full costumes – drunkenly assuming new identities.

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Isaac Bashevis Singer, Yiddish Food Writer

By Jeffrey Cohan

www.nndb.com

Editor’s Note: The Beet-Eating Heeb is the nom de plume of Jeffrey Cohan, a former journalist in Forest Hills, PA. He also blogs about Judaism and veganism on his own website.

Somewhere in the higher realms, Nobel Laureate Isaac Bashevis Singer is observing his 110th birthday today.

And it would be a pity if his birthday went unnoticed at The Jew and the Carrot, a space dedicated to discussions of Jewish eating.

After all, Singer, the greatest Yiddish writer, had something to say about food, to put it mildly. He wrote vividly about the ethical imperative of vegetarianism in both “The Slaughterer” and “The Letter Writer,” two of his classic short stories.

So his 110th birthday provides an occasion – maybe even an appropriate one – to briefly re-examine those two stories from the perspective of our contemporary food system.

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New Year for Animals: The Time Has Come

By Jeffrey Cohan

Jeffrey Cohan

Editor’s Note: The Beet-Eating Heeb is the nom de plume of Jeffrey Cohan, a former journalist in Forest Hills, PA. He also blogs about Judaism and veganism on his own website.

A divinity student from a Presbyterian seminary approached The Beet-Eating Heeb recently and made a surprising comment.

“I’m so impressed,” he said, “with the emphasis that Judaism places on treating animals with compassion.”

The Beet-Eating Heeb didn’t know whether to kvell or to cry.

Kvell, because all levels of Jewish texts, from the Torah on down, express incredible sensitivity for the welfare of animals. The divinity student knew something about Judaism – on paper.

Cry, because concern for animals is almost totally absent from Jewish communal discourse, while literally billions of farm animals are suffering in abysmal conditions.

It is therefore, in the spirit of our Prophetic tradition, that a creative effort has arisen to rouse us from our chilling complacency and to focus attention on Judaism’s teachings about animals: Concerned Jews in Israel and the United States are trying to resurrect and reframe the ancient but long-forgotten holiday of Rosh Hashanah La B’Heimot, or New Year for Animals.

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No Meat — The 9 Days

By Jeffrey Cohan

Editor’s Note: The Beet-Eating Heeb is the nom de plume of Jeffrey Cohan, a former journalist in Forest Hills, PA. He also blogs about Judaism and veganism on his own Web site.

Observant Jews refrain from eating meat for the first nine days of the Hebrew month of Av as part of the mourning rituals leading up to Tisha B’Av, the saddest day on the Jewish calendar.

To those refraining from eating meat, BEH says, “Welcome to the plant-based party! And where the heck have you been?” But hold on a second. This nine-day ban on meat-eating is meant to constitute a denial of pleasure. For humans anyway. The list of prohibited actions also includes drinking wine and wearing freshly laundered clothes, which implies that eating meat equates with getting a buzz and dressing for success.

So you’re probably thinking, “BEH, just lay off the vegan advocacy for a few days. For a change.” Well, The Beet-Eating Heeb hates to disappoint you, but upon closer inspection, it appears that the themes of the holiday and the Book of Lamentations actually reinforce the vegan ideal.

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Herbivores and Locavores: Frenemies?

By Melissa Tapper Goldman

Via scazon on Flickr

James E. McWilliams wrote in a recent NYT Op-Ed, “The Myth of Sustainable Meat,” that consuming animal products can never be sustainable, even when approached with an eye toward ecology. He breaks out his calculator, multiplying the number of cows that Americans currently eat by the number of acres required to farm them responsibly. The result: an impossible amount of grazing land, among other problems. I normally expect this tone from guardians of the status quo who dismiss organic farming as inefficient or naive. What I didn’t expect was McWilliams’s suggestion: Stop creating animal products. He pits sustainability-minded omnivores not just against industrial farming, but against herbivores. His argument is so snide and riddled with flaws that it distracts us from his conclusions. It also points to a rift within the sustainable food movement. Can omnivores and herbivores talk to each other about food issues? And can a Jewish perspective help us through this seemingly intractable conflict?

McWilliams has a bad premise: that meat could only be “sustainable” if it could be eaten in the same quantity as Americans eat it now, but farmed in a humane way. However, I have never heard a “locavore” argue that meat should be abundant. Michael Pollan, the torchbearer of the local food movement, sums up the “locavore” ethos: “Eat food. Not too much. Mostly plants.” McWilliams uses spurious gotcha facts to show that “holistic” animal farming is unrealistic. He cites a few mysterious figures, like “Pastured organic chickens have a 20 percent greater impact on global warming,” but doesn’t say what this means or how it was measured. His numbers are there not to make things clearer, rather, to intimidate. It’s also a common rhetorical error to judge something’s sustainability only by its so-called logical conclusion, assuming that the word “sustainable” means a practice that could work forever in the exact same way, and could be scaled up to seven billion people. That probably unachievable standard is not what most of us mean when talk about sustainability. We look for systems that are more healthy, lower in impact, encouraging of future learning and improvements.

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Keeping Up With Tradition: A Vegetarian Passover

By Jackie Topol

Photo By Jackie Topol

Passover, though one of my favorite Jewish holidays, is also one of the most challenging for me. As a vegetarian and Ashkenazic Jew, major staples in my diet such as beans, tofu, tempeh, seitan, and brown rice are suddenly banned. I have met some vegetarians/vegans who “go Sephardic” for Pesach so that they have more food options, even going as far as consulting and getting permission from their rabbis to do so. But bringing kitniyot (foods such as: rice, corn, soy beans, string beans, peas, lentils, mustard, sesame seeds and poppy seeds that are not allowed to be consumed during Pesach under Ashkenazic custom) into my home would be a big no-no, and personally I wouldn’t feel comfortable observing the holiday differently. I’ve had 11+ years to figure out and fine-tune the ins and outs of a vegetarian Pesach and I’m here to share some of my must-have foods, while still following Ashkenazic tradition and staying healthy.

Let me preface my suggestions by explaining a little bit about my background and how I observe Passover. I was raised in a Conservative kosher home, where the only foods that enter our kitchen for the holiday are ones that bear a Kosher for Passover (K for P) symbol. Even though there are so many vegetarian/vegan packaged goods that I love and are chametz-free, they will not be coming into my home without the K for P symbol. For some readers, this may be stricter than you’re used to. Ultimately, you have to do what you feel comfortable with on this holiday. As a result, I tend to cook nearly all my meals from scratch. Cooking in bulk and not minding repeat meals is helpful, as is finding a grocery store (or online kosher shop) that carries a variety of products, which thankfully gets easier every year with the ever-expanding selection of Passover foods on the market.

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Raw Chocolate Love

By Yael Greenberg

Photo By Shimon Pinhas
The Internet, for me, is more than a tool for research and convenience. It is a medium for discovery which leads me to exciting uncharted territory, and, admittedly, the occasional obsession. My latest find? The kosher vegan subculture. The links between Judaism and veganism are certainly understandable — both promote a particular sort of awareness of one’s environment and a distinct attitude towards the animal kingdom, and both mandate dietary rules. And although kosher veganism may not be universally accepted, one New York company is giving everyone something to be happy about: raw vegan kosher chocolate.

Imagine a modern, hip Israeli incarnation of Willy Wonka and you have a picture of Shimon Pinhas, the man behind Raw Chocolate Love. His company is one among a handful in New York that produces raw vegan chocolate, and one of the few with kosher certification. Shimon, whose dark curly hair protrudes in every direction and almost resembles steel wool, gives the impression that he is a man who can do anything, a presumption that is not far from the truth. When he arrived in New York twenty years ago without a word of English, he had already worked in construction, electrical work, and theater in his native Israel. His present occupation as a chocolatier on the border between Brooklyn and Queens follows an 18-year career running a music studio in the East Village.

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Uncommon Hamentaschen

By Rachel Harkham

Rachel Harkham

As a devoted, dessert-first, dentally-challenged lover of sweets I have often been disappointed by the hamantaschen. This iconic Purim cookie seems to me like a baked good whose main concern is its shape. The sweet center hardly ever extends itself past its expected core of apricot, prune, or poppy seed. The cookie crust that encloses its traditional center is often pale and plain in flavor and crumb, leaving nothing much to excited about beyond the triangle. I am calling for a hamentaschen makeover, because, really, a cookie is a terrible thing to waste.

Instead of using this Purim as an opportunity to try out chocolate fancies and other sweet ‘n creamy curiosities, I am dedicating it to the pursuit of delicious and different hamantaschen. I am devising a Purim baking plan. My goal is to come up with 3 or 4 uncommon, completely delicious, and totally fresh three-cornered holiday treats.

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Mixing Bowl: Kosher TV Star; Jewish Farming; Bill Clinton's Veganism

By Devra Ferst

iStock

Britain’s next food TV star may just be a kosher housewife. [The Jewish Chronicle]

With the Jewish farm movement growing, Leah Koenig takes a look at the history of Jewish farming in America. [Tablet]

The tale of a family’s babka recipe. [Gilt Taste]

Last butcher standing: “Yuval Atias is the last of the Bay Area’s independent kosher butchers.” [The Wall Street Journal]

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Kasha Recipes Get a Modern Makeover

By Louisa Shafia

Louisa Shafia

What would you do with a one-pound bag of toasted buckwheat groats, a.k.a. kasha? If you’re like most Ashkenazi Jews, you’d probably cook up kasha varnishkes, the Jewish “soul food” side dish made of kasha, sautéed onions, bowtie pasta, and often mushrooms. If you’re not Jewish, well, you probably wouldn’t have the kasha in the first place!

If you’re wondering why buckwheat hasn’t caught on here like other whole grains, try tasting it on its own. It’s bitter and bland, probably why our people resorted to mellowing its flavor with carb-heavy pasta, sweet caramelized onions, and plenty of schmaltz. (It’s worth noting that buckwheat is, in fact, not a grain at all, but a fruit in the same family as rhubarb and sorrel — but who’s keeping track?) But buckwheat is worth a second look, not only for its sentimental value but because it’s high in protein and fiber, and contains a significant amount of manganese, magnesium, and Vitamin B-6. It seems that our time-honored way of preparing kasha could use a twenty-first century makeover.

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Chabad Goes Vegan in Montreal

By Dorothy Lipovenko

Hosting a group of young adults for Shabbat dinner, Rabbi Yisroel Bernath and his wife, Sara, noticed something odd: salads and kugels were disappearing quickly, but the chicken went largely untouched.

When a little post-dinner sleuthing revealed many of their guests were vegetarian, it was all the incentive the Chabad rabbi needed to take his storefront center vegan.

For the 28-year-old Chicago native, whose friends at yeshiva called him “alfalfa sprouts” and ribbed the health-conscious bocher for his blender-buzzed vitamin shakes, the idea of a vegan/organic Chabad house was hardly a stretch.

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