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Shabbos - Karen's Musings
Random Rambling
estherchaya
estherchaya
Shabbos
Last Shabbos was very nice. I can't entirely remember everything we had, but we did have good company. Daniel, Harold, Becky, Aaron, Alan (H's father), Jo, Cary & Nathan. All in all quite nice, if somewhat heavy on the Y chromosomes.

I think we had:
  • Challah
  • Baked Gefilte Fish
  • Garlic Tofu Dip (it's been a while)
  • Chicken Schnitzel
  • Rice Pilaf
  • Tomato Salad
  • Green Salad (nothing fancy)
  • Butternut Squash with Maple Syrup
  • Broccoli Kugel
  • Some kind of pastry desserty-thing.

Now, this is relatively on par with a lot of people's typical Shabbos dinners, except I didn't have a soup course. For some people, it's not shabbos unless there's: Challah, gefilte fish, chicken soup, chicken, potato kugel, dessert. That's a basic recipe for a basic Shabbos dinner.

Now, for me, I like to do different things, and I'm firmly of the belief that food can be festive even if it's seemingly mundane food. Therefore, we occasionally have Taco Night for Shabbos. I almost never make tacos any other night, and I definitely find ways to make it festive, so I think it's perfect for Shabbos, even if others turn their nose at my ideas. There are several people on my friends' list who can vouch for the festiveness of my Taco Night. Though I am very choosy about who gets invited for Taco Night, for fear of offending a traditionalist, no one has ever left my table disappointed on Taco Night.

Several weeks ago, we had Pizza and Beer night on Shabbos. Now, it's not just ANY pizza. It's my specially amazing pizza. And it's yummy. It's time consuming to make and completely worth it. And this Friday we will be having Pizza and Beer night again. I shall make:
  • Challah
  • Spinach Artichoke Dip
  • Green Salad
  • Pizza
  • Something else (not sure what)
  • Some kind of dairy dessert


It's simple. It's delicious. It's colorful. And plenty festive. So there!

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Current Mood: blah still headachy

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Comments
magid From: magid Date: November 16th, 2006 06:16 pm (UTC) (Link)
It all sounds yummy to me.
But then, I'm not a traditionalist when it comes to Shabbat menus, as you've already figured out :-)
estherchaya From: estherchaya Date: November 17th, 2006 06:42 pm (UTC) (Link)
a lot of people are bothered by dairy meals on Shabbos, particularly for dinner. Still others would consider pizza and beer night not festive enough for Shabbos dinner. But I assure you, it will be festive! I enjoy the traditionalist Shabbos dinner. I do. But I don't think it always has to be the same, either.
magid From: magid Date: November 17th, 2006 08:04 pm (UTC) (Link)
I've never really understood the horror of milchigs on Shabbat, if they're sufficiently nice, and homemade pizza definitely counts. (I'm assuming there's no lactose intolerance or allergies involved, just regular eaters.)
I can't comment on the beer part, though; I have yet to find one I like.

I'd get bored making the same meal every week.
zis770 From: zis770 Date: November 19th, 2006 09:58 am (UTC) (Link)
there's an idea of that a shabbos/y.t. seudah has to have fleishigs. but how does the pizza stay nice and hot for shabbos? please divulge your secrets. DH would be so thrilled. although when it comes down to it I wonder if he would really eat pizza for Shabbos (or a YT that isn't 1st day Shavous)
estherchaya From: estherchaya Date: November 19th, 2006 07:16 pm (UTC) (Link)
yes, there is an idea. But interestingly, the mitzvah of eating meat on Shabbos is best fulfilled with red meat, not with Chicken, yet the traditional Shabbos dinner involves chicken! One of the reasons that it's traditional to have meat on Shabbos is because there was a time that meat was a pure luxury and one best reserved for Shabbos. While meat is still a luxury in some sense, it isn't uncommon to have it during the week anymore. If I were a vegetarian I wouldn't be eating meat on Shabbos anyway. (It happens that though I generally have a fleishig Shabbos... I rarely eat the meat as I tend not to enjoy it as much as other things)

At any rate, to me, the point is to make Shabbos special. The food should be more special and more beautiful than the rest of the week. The table should be set nicely. There should be guests. Etc, etc, etc. I feel entirely capable of accomplishing special without having meat. But like I said, I'm also careful about who I invite on those nights, so as not to offend the traditionalist.

As for how I keep it hot... I cook it as close to Shabbos as possible and I always use a pizza stone, which retains heat very well. Right before Shabbos, I turn down the oven and cover the pizza with aluminum foil. It keeps just fine that way. It's not QUITE as good as fresh out of the oven, but it's pretty darned close. On Friday, I also served it with hot spinach & artichoke dip (yum!), green salad with italian dressing, and marinated tomato salad. We had kalua brownies, strawberries, and grapes for dessert. I made about half as much food as I normally would have made with a meat meal, and somehow, there was STILL way too much food.
debsters1101 From: debsters1101 Date: November 16th, 2006 06:33 pm (UTC) (Link)
lol how did you know EXACTLY what I ate for Friday night dinner for the first 20 years of my life? (challah, fish, chicken soup, chicken, potato kugel) i must admit i am still a traditionalist... but not that bad.
estherchaya From: estherchaya Date: November 17th, 2006 06:42 pm (UTC) (Link)
I enjoy a traditional Shabbos dinner. But I don't enjoy doing it every week, because then it ceases being festive and becomes mundane.
ailsaek From: ailsaek Date: November 16th, 2006 06:43 pm (UTC) (Link)
I think I've made a Proper And Traditional Shabbos Dinner (tm) all of once since Adam & I got married. There's nothing on that list that Adam actually enjoys eating, so it's not really a good idea in my household. I have my Shabbos rotation: Indian Chicken, General Tso's Tofu, Swedish Meatballs, plus experiments. I keep hoping one of my experiments will go over so well that I will be able to add it to the rotation (which is how we got Indian Chicken in the first place).
estherchaya From: estherchaya Date: November 17th, 2006 06:42 pm (UTC) (Link)
oooh! Can you share your recipes?
real_bethy From: real_bethy Date: November 16th, 2006 08:33 pm (UTC) (Link)
Pizza and beer sounds like a great change to me! And Taco Night...wow! When I was growing up, I would bug my parents all the time for a Taco Night. I think Shabbos is about having special, yummy food and not just sticking to Bubbe's kugel recipe every week. It's good to balance the traditional with the unique!
estherchaya From: estherchaya Date: November 17th, 2006 06:44 pm (UTC) (Link)
Taco Night is a good time in our house. :) I remember taco night being fun when I was growing up too, though those were usually mundane during-the-week meals and not so much with the kosher, but it is all good.

I enjoy having the occasional dairy meal on shabbos, even if it isn't traditional. I get bored otherwise (Plus, I'm not much of a carnivore).
hannahsarah From: hannahsarah Date: November 16th, 2006 10:49 pm (UTC) (Link)
I never understood people who ate the EXACT SAME THING every single shabbos. I think it's an Ashkenazic thing. The Sephardim have a much more interesting range of meals. I'm all about the variety, but I've learned to make sure that if I'm using a new recipe that I try it out on a weeknight first, in case it's a flop! There's nothing worse than ruined food 1/2 hour before candle lighting.
estherchaya From: estherchaya Date: November 17th, 2006 06:45 pm (UTC) (Link)
I'm all about variety and all about new recipes. I don't always try new recipes out ahead of time. In fact, I rarely do. But what I do if the new recipe is a major part of the meal (e.g. the entree) is make sure I have an emergency backup option if it doesn't come out well.
yeishlitikvah From: yeishlitikvah Date: November 17th, 2006 12:28 am (UTC) (Link)
I think it is so original and creative and various foods you prepare for shabos.

I know there are people who are THERE MUST BE CHOLENT, THERE MUST BE THIS, but not all of also are so content for the same thing week in and week out. I must admit the past 3 weeks my husband has been given some variant of meatloaf with ground meat for the past three weeks but I digress.
estherchaya From: estherchaya Date: November 17th, 2006 06:46 pm (UTC) (Link)
I hate cholent, with rare exception, so bleh. I'm all about meatloaf. :)
magid From: magid Date: November 17th, 2006 08:05 pm (UTC) (Link)
Mmmm.... meatloaf....
torahumaddachic From: torahumaddachic Date: November 17th, 2006 07:37 am (UTC) (Link)
karen, i always LOVE hearing about your shabbos menus. this shabbos is my birthday, so im making a fusion fifties meal- mashed potato kugel with caramelized onions, meatloaf (my roomie made that actually), broccoli (got to figure out what to do with it), balsamic roasted butternut squash, and foccacia instead of challah. your pizza shabbos meal sounds incredible- i love dairy shabbos. i should totally do that- if it wouldnt be copycatting your style :-)
magid From: magid Date: November 17th, 2006 05:26 pm (UTC) (Link)
Happy birthday!

Your menu sounds yummy. (And I'm not saying that just because I'm also making meatloaf :-)

One way to make broccoli that's a bit nicer than just steamed: steam it partway, then sautee with lots of garlic and ginger.
estherchaya From: estherchaya Date: November 17th, 2006 06:52 pm (UTC) (Link)
good call on the broccoli. I usually steam it all the way and then drizzle sauteed garlic on it (with whatever oil or margarine I used to sautee it in). Sauteeing the broccoli WITH the garlic (and ginger!) is much more efficient.
estherchaya From: estherchaya Date: November 17th, 2006 06:50 pm (UTC) (Link)
Happy Birthday!
Thanks for the compliment!
You should definitely go for the dairy shabbos (taco night in our house is also dairy... morningstar farms fake ground meat is a godsend)! I'm all about it. I started by having dairy lunches a lot (which also offends people), and branched out to dinner after a few years of that.
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