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25 May 2012 (Shavuot dinner)

May 25, 2012

A Jewish holiday called Shavuot is approaching this Sunday. If you ask me what Shavuot is exactly, I’m afraid I won’t be able to tell you. What I can tell you based on my experience from last year is that for me personally, it’s a culinary dream come true! For reasons unknown to me (again, sorry) a Shavuot dinner is based on dairy, which means lots and lots of cheese and creamy sauces often paired with carbohydrates! I am in heaven.

A Japanese friend of mine living in a neighboring kibbutz invited Yuval and I to join her family for Shavuot dinner last year. It was held in one of the small community spaces in her kibbutz, and every participating kibbutz member brought a dish. Bourekas (pastries) with cheese, salads with cheese, pasta and potato dishes with creamy sauces and cheese, cheese cakes and other cheese related desserts… it was all too good to be true.

This year, Yuval, his brother, and I decided to prepare a few dishes amongst ourselves for the family dinner. Naturally I already had many cheese-recipes in my repertoire to choose from, but so rarely does an opportunity present itself when I can cook all of them at once. Or almost all of them, at least.

今度の日曜日はユダヤ教のシャブオットという祝日です。
何をお祝いする日なの?と聞かれても正直なところちゃんとした答えは返せません。
(ペサハの約50日後だということと、収穫を祝う日だということぐらい以外は)
でも去年の経験から言えるのは、私にとって大好物の料理がたくさん食べれるひだということ!
なぜならこれもまたちゃんとした理由はわからないのですが、
シャブオットの食事は主に乳製品が含まれるものに限られているからです。
あらゆるチーズやクリームソースと炭水化物の組み合わせ、、、なんて幸せ。

去年のシャブオットは近くのキブツに住む日本人の友達が私たちを招待してくれました。
彼女のキブツの小さな公共スペースにキブツの人達が集まり、皆何か一品ずつ持参していました。
チーズ入りブレカス(ペストリー)、チーズ入りのサラダ、
クリームソースやチーズが入ったパスタやポテト料理、
チーズケーキや他のチーズが入ったデザート、、、
私にとっては好きなものばかり!

今年はユバルとユバルのお兄さんと私の間で
家族のディナーのために数品ずつ作ることになりました。
レパートリーにあるチーズが含まれるものやクリームソース系の料理を
一斉に作れる機会なんて、そうめったにないこと!


Cheesecake marbled brownies
チーズケーキ・マーブル・ブラウニー

Caramelized Onion Tart with Gorgonzola and Brie (photographed here before I sprinkled fennel leaves over it… so pretty!) and potato gratin.

あめ色玉ねぎ、ゴルゴンゾーラ、カマンベールのタルトビザ (写真を撮った後フェンネルの葉っぱを散らしたのですが、とてもきれいな上おいしかったです)とポテトグラタン。

Along with the yummy pasta salad Yuval made (with, you guessed it… cheese, among other things) we will have plenty of leftovers to linger in this dairy celebration for a bit longer.

Have a wonderful weekend my friends, and Hag Sameach to those celebrating Shavuot!

ユバルが作ったパスタサラダ(もちろんチーズ入り)と合わせて、
残り物で乳製品オンパレードをもう少しエンジョイできそうです。

では良い週末を。シャブオットを祝う人は、ハーグ・サメア!

Much love,
Kaori

4 Comments leave one →
  1. May 26, 2012 8:47 pm

    TOO MANY CARBS!😉 Hope y’alls weekend is/was lovely! (These holidays are gonna kill me! So many!)

    • May 27, 2012 4:10 pm

      Yeah I know, but it’s one day out of the year after all… right?🙂
      I’m also stunned with the number of holidays. Never ending!

  2. Yuval permalink
    May 26, 2012 9:23 pm

    A few things about ‘Shavuot’:

    The origin of the holiday is from the time the people of Israel were wandering around in the desert after they escaped slavery in Egypt. According to the bible (as we Jews call the old testimony – Leviticus chapter 23 verse 16), Shavuot is celebrated 7 weeks after the 2nd day of Passover, and is considered as the time when God gave the people of Israel the TORA (first 5 books of the old testimony). Hence the reason for the dairy meal.

    According to the Jewish laws, we are not allowed to eat ‘a fawn in its mother milk’, which is interpreted as an order to separate meet and dairy. As at the time of receiving the TORA the people did not know about this law, they found themselves with cooking pots that were not kosher (and yes, the prohibition is extended to the cooking pots & utensils as well). As a result, they decided to limit the holiday feast to dairy dishes only.

    Another custom of this holiday is the ‘First Fruit celebrations’ and is related to the culture of the people of Israel in ancient times. Since the beginning of summer was a time that the harvest for many crops was beginning, it was the custom to bring the first fruits to the temple in Jerusalem as a sacrifice to God.
    Growing up in a Kibbutz, which had the ideology of re-connecting to the land of our forefathers, I remember how every year each of the Kibbutz economic branches used to present its products in a big parade (which was a bit difficult for our factory, were they were making all kinds of plastic products).

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