Posts Tagged ‘Sabbath’

The voice of the Lord hews out flames of fire” (Paslms 29,7)

קול ה’ חוצב להבות אש” תהילים כ”ט, ז”

Imagine the synagogue, Friday night. We had sung already a few songs, leading up to this one: Psalm 29, “Mizmor Le-David“. Everyone stands up for this song. It starts quietly, even though it already has rythm. Even the first chorus is still relatively quiet. But now everyone is loosening up, all the synagoue is singing, some are clapping or stamping their feet, swinging hips, dancing in place. And it gets stronger and more moving, now there is rythm, now there is passion, and we get to the line above. Everyone yells out when we get to “fire“. And in the last verse and chorus the feeling and joy run high, and you can hear the entire congegration also from outside, and we welcome the Shabbat with open arms, preparing for Lecha Dodi which offically brings in the Shabbat.

This is my favorite song. This is my favorite line. This is how I love to start the Shabbat, in joy, and music, and dancing. And this is how I love to start the new week, in singing and remembering the strength and joy and passion of a hall full of men and women singing together.

Have a great week!

This is the original version of Rabbi Shlomo Carlebach Z”L. It doesn’t have the punch of all of us singing together, but it’s good 🙂

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I had fresh mushrooms, cottage cheese, and leftover pasta. I decided to make a mushroom pasta casserole instead of my regular pasta casserole. I also incorporated into it some frozen basil and froze from it 1/2 cup excellent mushroom stock.

The frozen basil:

I love fresh herbs. However, I don’t always use all of them in time. I used to chop basil small with a bit of olive oil and freeze in ice-cube trays, but it’s a lot of work. So I scouted the Internet a bit and tried a different method: freezing the leaves whole. I had a lot of fresh basil and fresh oregano. It’s very easy:

1. Remove the leaves from the stems. With basil, this is the longest step because you have to pick of each leaf individually. However, the leaves grow together so it isn’t a problem to grab a bunch and pick them all off at once. The oregano was easy – simply grasp the top of the stock firmly with one hand and with two fingers from the other hand pull the leaves off from up to down (against the direction of the leaves). They go out easily. If your oregano stalk has lots of branching stalks, this will remove the entire branch, and you can repeat on the sub-branches.

2. Wash well and let dry.

3. Place in freezer-safe boxes with a lid. Do not pack too much or you will crush the herbs.

4. Freeze.

5. When you want to use, take out the amount you want. They do not clump and thaw extremely quickly, so you can chop them up and put them in your cooking. Because they discolor and wilt a bit, they aren’t so good uncooked (in a salad, for example).

I froze oregano and basil using this method.

Mushroom pasta casserole


250 gr. fresh champignon mushrooms
about 150-250 gr cooked pasta
250 gr cottage cheese
1 egg
2 slices yellow cheese
2-3 handfuls frozen basil
handful Parmesan cheese (optional)

Wash and slice mushrooms. Place in microwave save cooking dish with a lid (a Pyrex is great, or I use the Tupperware microwave cooker). Sprinkle a little salt and microwave for 2 minutes on high (there is no need to add water or oil). If not cooked microwave another minute. Drain the mushrooms, reserving the liquid. This is quality mushroom stock. Use in risottos or anything else requiring mushroom stock, or freeze for later.

Preheat oven to 180 degrees. Cut the yellow cheese into small cubes. Combine all ingredients into a large casserole dish (I use 22 cm by 22 cm). Sprinkle Parmesan on top.

Cover with aluminium foil. Bake for 30 minutes.

Mushroom Casserole

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Our Meatloaf

Whenever we want an easy tasty main dish for Shabbat, we make meatloaf. To heat foods on Shabbat, we put them on a Shabbat hot-plate, which is mildly hot. For a dish to be really hot it needs to stay there at least an hour. There aren’t many dishes that don’t loose taste or texture as a result. This dish is one of them.

In addition, it’s tasy and easy, and usually disappears over the course of one meal, especially if we have guests. In the rare cases that one slice was left, it’s a great addition to salad, transforming a simple salad into an excellent, healthy meal. It’s also great in sandwiches.


500 gr ground beef
one onion, diced small (but not necessarily minced)
1 egg
2-3 tbsp breadcrumbs (I make my own)
1/3-1/2 cup ketchup (it’s not an exact science)
1 heaped tsp Dijon Mustard
parsley/coriander/celery leaves, dried or fresh, minced (optional, however much you want)

Mix all the ingredients together. Place in a loaf pan and flatten. Cover with aluminium foil and bake for 30 minutes at 200 degrees. Remove foil and bake for an additional 15 minutes to brown.

It’s good with the parsley/coriander/celery and without. I don’t buy it specially for this recipe, but If I have some celery leaves that need using, or parsley, or I feel like a change and I have dried parsley/coriander flakes, I add it. So far, no matter what I did to it it tasted great.

Bon Appetit!

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