Special Holiday Issues

Ten Choices For The Four Cups

New wines to brighten up your holiday table.

Special To The Jewish Week
04/05/2011

As April nears every year, it is not only accountants who find themselves in an annual crunch. The month between Purim and Passover is the busiest period of the year for those who work in the ever-growing kosher wine industry. Wine producers and importers rush to get their new wines to market, and many wine merchants will sell more kosher wine during this four-week period than they sell in the other 48 weeks of the year combined.

These new wines, from Israel and the United States, are among a crop of new products that reach the market in time for the seder

A ‘Knead’ To Bake

Proponents of handmade matzah hope to reclaim a mostly lost practice.

Special To The Jewish Week
04/05/2011

Every spring, after she finishes scrubbing and scraping the kitchen for Passover, Rabbi Ruth Abusch-Magder can’t help but rejoice. But for her, the celebration isn’t merely a private utterance of gratitude, but a full-blown party: an annual matzah-baking bash, which includes a dozen or so friends and their children kneading and rolling and pricking and baking — and a fair amount of nibbling too.

Rabbi Ruth Abusch-Magder, at one of her matzah-making parties. Courtesy of Rabbi Ruth Abusch-Magder

Passover 5771

A Jewish Week Special Section - The Taste of Freedom: Passover 5771

04/05/2011

Passover 5771: Retelling the Story, Haggadah publishing trends, tweeting the seder, keeping the second seder fresh.

 

Passover 5771

L.A. Jewish Soul

Simon Rutberg’s collection of Jewish music — reflects his eclectic musical background.

Special To The Jewish Week
11/23/2010

It looks ridiculously easy. You pull together a dozen or so of your favorite recordings, put them on a CD and release them to an adoring public. But it took Simon Rutberg a dozen years to bring to fruition a lifelong dream, a compilation album that showcases his favorite Jewish and Yiddish classics, sung by an unlikely group of pop, rock and classical artists.

Happily for Simon, the album, “Jewish Soul: The Heart and Soul of Jewish Music” is ready for Chanukah.

Simon Rutberg with Jackie Wilson in the early ‘60s, right. The “Jewish Soul” cover.

This Year, Ditch The Frying Pan

The other miracle of olive oil.

Editorial Assistant
11/23/2010

On Chanukah we celebrate the miracle of olive oil — instead of lasting just one night, according to tradition, it managed to stay lit for eight whole days. Today, our culinary celebrations often bypass the miraculous olive oil, and go straight for doughnuts deep-fried in vegetable shortening, and latkes browned in canola oil.

This Chanukah, enjoy a healthier and more flavorful dinner by ditching the frying pan and letting the pure flavors of the olive oil shine through in your food — with some help from two kosher food experts: Ronnie Fein and Gil Marks.

Bartenura olive oil, left, is imported from Italy. Kvuzat Yavneh comes from the Israeli kibbutz of the same name.

For A Funky, And Fair Trade, Chanukah

Cool and stylish gifts for the Festival of Lights.

Special To The Jewish Week
11/23/2010

Like the holiday of Chanukah itself, some of the best gifts have great stories behind them. Here are some suggestions of gifts that have tales of hope, gifts that advance good works and help illuminate the world, creating miracles.

 

Caffeinated Goodwill

Grounds for celebration: Dean Cycon’s “Sculpt your own cup” coffee blends offer beans from 13 countries.

Sparks Of Life: Chanukah 5771

Cool gifts, healthy olive oil, and more.

Staff Writer
11/23/2010

Cool gifts, healthy olive oil, and more.

Jhonson Augustin’s tree of life, combine art and spirituality.

The Road Back Home

Modern and classic works offer roadmaps
for the path of spiritual return.

Special to The Jewish Week
08/31/2010

Finding a theme for the newest YouTube video of the National Jewish Outreach Program (NJOP), “Soul Bigger,” should have been easy — the topic was Rosh HaShanah/Yom Kippur. But when the first version of the lyrics came out, we questioned whether the repeating motif of repentance sounded too much like a church revival meeting. However, we realized that teshuvah (repentance in Hebrew) is one of the most beautiful and spiritual concepts in Judaism, far more so than any fire-and-brimstone idea that the word “repent” may conjure up.

A Holocaust survivor discusses every human’s power of choice in this book about repentance.

Teshuvah, In Three Acts

A rabbi reflects on the struggle to restore wholeness
in the lives of three congregants.

Special to The Jewish Week
08/31/2010

It is ironic that so many Jews engage in active religious Jewish life primarily around the High Holy Days, a time of year with a set of rituals that call for such intense engagement. Many of us go to High Holy Days services because we are on autopilot — that is what we are expected to do as Jews at this time of the year. But the goal of these Days of Awe is to jolt us out of the automatic and to pay attention: to bring a greater mindfulness to our actions.

The Jacob Javits Center on the West Side of Manhattan.

Healing At The Seashore

For one ex-cancer patient,
studies in the sun kept a promise to God.

Special to The Jewish Week
08/31/2010

During my medical school training in Tel Aviv, I used to grab my books, head to the beach, and study in the sun. While my fellow colleagues locked themselves up in the library or their bedrooms, I chose to study outdoors.

In remission from leukemia, a medical student embraces nature, taking her books to the sunny, sandy beach of Tel Aviv.
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