Welcome to the Weekly Portion. I’m glad you’re here.
For the past 30 years I have been “putting it on the table” in one way or another every Shabbat and Chag – food, ideas, arguments and opinions, doubts, resolutions, and prayers.
Every recipe you will find in this blog is strictly kosher. I can’t say the same for every thought, but I do my best…
I can’t count the number of times that my family and friends have expressed wonder that a secular well-educated woman would, without any warning, fall deeply into orthodoxy. Surely I know better. My mother put it as “falling off the edge of the flat earth.” Thanks, Mom.
I know that the earth isn’t flat, and I also know that evolution occured, and is still occurring. What I don’t accept is that these precepts are mutually exclusive to an unshaken certainty in Torah m’Sinai. Every week we put a parsha on the table, along with the food. And each day, each week, the parsha reveals itself to be just as current, immediate and relevant as the day it was delivered to us. I have found that to really understand it, I have to filter it through the realm of my personal experience.
Parsha by parsha, and holiday by holiday, I will put recipes and ideas and thoughts on the table. I talk a lot about my family, and friends, and colleagues, and about current events. As an American who has lived in Israel for 30 years, I would have to say that I am basically neither.
Some of the features of this blog include columns on cooking, baking, parshat hashavua, thoughts on upcoming holidays, shopping, and household management. If there’s a great sale, or a new item on the shelf – I will let you know what it is, where it is, how much I paid for it. If you paid less, let us all know. The blog will also include occasional interviews with experts in various fields (talk to the butcher, talk to the baker, talk to professional chef). Another feature is titled “waste-not-want-not”. I will share with you my money-saving, budget-friendly ideas. And of course, I would love to hear yours.
This is an interactive blog. I want to hear from you. If your take is not my take, let’s talk – let’s put the ideas of the table. If your recipe isn’t like mine, we’d love to hear about it. Got some cool tips to share? We’re listening.
Why talk so much about myself and my family, and my habits? Who am I to speak to you? Why would you care that Chupchick ended up with three Uncle Ya’akovs? Why should I reminisce with you about an unforgettable first year of a blended marriage, a year when we jammed nine kids under one roof, and three of them were 14-year-olds.
The world’s first family blogger, Italian satirist Giovanni Guareschi, answered this question in 1954 in his Corrierino delle Famiglie – a book derived from a popular series of Italian newspaper articles written as a social commentary on his family’s place in the newly developing Italian middle-class of the 50s.
“Why am I talking about me and the people in my house?” Guareschi wrote. “In order to talk to you about the people in your house. To console both you and me for the boring lives we lead…to smile with you at our little daily troubles. To take from those troubles (little even when they’re big) the dark hues of tragedy they so often assume if kept bottled up within ourselves.
“So there it is. If I have a problem, I rid myself of it by confiding it to this journal. And those among the readers who have a problem deep in their hearts may also, when they read about it in detail in the columns of the newspaper, feel freed of it.
“And from a strictly personal problem it thus becomes universal.
“And quite a different thing.”