Special Holiday Issues

Giving, And Doing Good

Cool (and meaningful) gifts for the Festival of Lights.

Special To The Jewish Week

In this season of gratitude, here are gifts that are practical, imaginative and allow you, the giver, to do good works in the process Happy gifting!

Jewelry that helps change lives

The bicycle menorah of South Africa’s Victor Chiteura.

Chanukah 5773 (2012)

Chanukah 5733: The Light Fantastic
Cool (and meaningful) gifts, the musical December Dilemma, plus healthy latkes and mulled wine.

Chanukah 5733 (2012)

The Sweetest Gifts

Judaica and beyond to beautify the season.

Special To The Jewish Week

Celebrate the birthday of the world with sweetness and style, beautify ritual and spread good in the world.

Gary Rosenthal’s shofar holder, top. Above, silk-covered journals from Globalgoodpartners.org.

Pomegranate Tartlets


2 ½ cups flour
1 cup butter or margarine
½ cup sugar
1 large egg

2 cups milk
½ cup sugar, divided
3 tablespoons butter
Pinch salt
¼ cup cornstarch
3 eggs plus 1 egg yolk
3 tablespoons butter, diced into pieces
2 teaspoons vanilla
¾ cup pomegranate juice
1 cup pomegranate arils

Pomegranate Tartlets.

Chocolate Pomegranate Cupcakes Cake


1 ½ cups pomegranate juice
1 cup (225g) granulated sugar
¾ cup (170g) soft unsalted butter or margarine
2 large eggs
¾ cups buttermilk or soy milk
1 tablespoon white vinegar
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
1 ¾ cup flour
2 ½ tablespoons cocoa powder
2 teaspoons baking soda
pinch salt

1 cup pomegranate juice
¼ cup flour
1 cup (2 sticks) unsalted butter or margarine, softened
1 cup sugar

Pomegranate-studded Chocolate Muffins


2 cups flour
½ cup cocoa powder
1 ²⁄3 cup packed light brown sugar
½ teaspoon baking soda
2 teaspoons baking powder
½ teaspoon salt
1 ¼ cups milk
1 egg, lightly beaten
¼ cup vegetable oil
1 ½ teaspoons vanilla extract
1 cup pomegranate seeds
Stir the flour, cocoa powder, sugar, baking soda and baking powder and salt together.
Make a well in the center of the dry ingredients, and add the milk, egg, oil and vanilla.

Pomegranate-studded Chocolate Muffins

Seeds Of A New Dessert Tradition

The pairing of chocolate and pomegranates is a double dose of sweetness.

Special to the Jewish Week

I imagine thousands of tables this Rosh HaShanah will be adorned with apple pies and honey cakes. After all, the traditional holiday treats are not only deeply tied to the High Holy Days but they are also sweet additions to any meals. The pomegranate, on the other hand, though it is also a major symbol of Rosh HaShanah, usually appears only at the beginning of the meal, and then along with the other new fruits. But I like to incorporate pomegranates into main dishes and desserts as well.

Pomegranate-studded Chocolate Muffins. photo: Amy Spiro

Ashkenazic Stewed Root Vegetables with Beef (fleishig tzimmes)

From Gil Marks’ “The Encyclopedia of Jewish Food” Makes 6 to 8 servings main course servings

Special To The Jewish Week

3 pounds beef brisket, flanken, or chuck; or 4 pounds short ribs (whole or cut into 6 to 8 pieces)
2 tablespoons vegetable oil or schmaltz
2 medium onions, halved and sliced
1 to 1 ½ pounds carrots, sliced into rounds
2 pounds (6 medium) sweet potatoes, peeled and quartered; or 1 pound sweet potatoes and 1 pound white potatoes; or 12 ounces parsnips
2 to 3 cups pitted prunes, or 1 ½ cups prune and 1 ½ cups chopped dried apricots or peaches (optional)
½ to ¾ cup honey, granulated sugar or brown sugar

Ashkenazic Stewed Root Vegetables with Beef .

Turkish Leek Patties (keftes de prassa)

From Gil Marks’ “Olive Trees and Honey” • Makes 24 patties


2 pounds (about 10) leeks, white & light green parts only, cut into thin lengthwise slices and washed
2 to 5 cloves garlic
1 ½ teaspoons table salt or
1 tablespoon coarse kosher salt
1 cup mashed potatoes
About ½ cup matzah cake meal,
fresh bread crumbs,
or finely ground walnuts
3 large eggs, lightly beaten
1 tablespoon vegetable oil
or melted butter
About ½ teaspoon ground
black pepper
¼ to ½ teaspoon freshly grated

Turkish Leek Patties.

Staying Traditional On The New Year

Having just moved to Israel, cookbook author Gil Marks is bringing back some old favorites..

Special to the Jewish Week

Gil Marks is, well, a walking food encyclopedia. In the short hour we sat talking in the center of Jerusalem, we covered the mistaken attribution of the origin of Boston Cream Pie, the culinary contributions of the German Christian Templer society to Israel and whether or not the biblical tapuach is actually an apple or a quince. Of course, that should come as no surprise considering Marks is the author of the “Encyclopedia of Jewish Food,” and the James Beard award-winning cookbook “Olive Trees and Honey,” among others.

Marks: “Coming home” to Israel.
Syndicate content