Archive for the 'Humor' Category

Interfaith Hillel Sandwich

If Peeps were made with kosher marshmallows, could this become an acceptable alternative to the traditional Hillel sandwich? You decide! Chag sameach.



Cartoons and Candy

When I was little, about six, seven years old, my favorite after-school cartoon was the Steven Spielberg-produced “Animaniacs”. I don’t know how many of you watched this charming variety show starring the pun-spewing Warner siblings Yakko, Wakko, and Dot, but this little gem of animation was the origin of such now-classics as “Pinky and the Brain”.

Many of the show’s musical numbers stayed with me for years and remain with me still, but this particular one, entitled “Be Careful What You Eat”, popped into my head the other day as I read the ingredients on a popular candy bar which shall remain nameless. Whenever anyone asks me why I avoid sodas or popular brands of chips, I direct them to this song. Watch it and reach for the vegetables.

Jonathan Safran Foer on Last Night’s Colbert Report

For those of you with basic cable and can stay up until 11:30pm, may have caught this interview last night. If not, here is the bit including the end of the interview where Colbert eats bacon in front of Foer. It’s worth checking out and worth checking out his book too.

The Adventures of Todd & God: Bal Tashhit

This year my New Year’s resolution was to waste less food, and I guess I was on the same page as, um, God, because the newest video from is all about Bal Tashhit, the commandment from the Torah that prohibits wasteful destruction. In the past God has appeared to Todd as an orange, a female house DJ, and Flava Flav’s long lost twin borther. But this episode, God upped the ante–he appears as Al Gore.

Kosher “Organic Batter Blaster” vicariously attends the Hazon food conference


My dear friends The Wandering Jew and David Levy over at Jewschool, sick with envy that they couldn’t attend the Hazon Food Conference this year, produced this tongue-in-cheek video to vicariously participate nonetheless. Please enjoy their playful snark as we consider how the hell this product fits into the eco-kashrut movement.

Bagel Showdown: New York vs. Montreal


This is a tale of two cities, each with a venerable Jewish culinary legacy that claims boasting rights to the world’s best bagel. Until now, these parallel universes have existed at a safe distance. But Mile End – a new Quebecois-style restaurant opening next month in Brooklyn - will bring the long-standing New York/Montreal bagel standoff to a head. In preparation, I consulted the experts about which “roll with a hole” steals their hearts, and their stomachs.

Read what they said below – and for more on Mile End, check out my article in Edible Brooklyn.

The Dessert Holiday

I am VERY honored to have the chance to join the Jew and the Carrot writing community! Thanks for taking a moment to read my first post, which originally appeared here.)
- Leon


Judaism divides the calendar into regular days,  (like Purim and Rosh Hashanah) and festivals (like Passover and Sukkot). As American Jews my family adds to that secular holidays – some which we embrace wholeheartedly (Independence Day, Thanksgiving), some which we wrestle with (Halloween, Sweetest Day) and those that we dismiss out of hand (Valentine’s Day. And thank you Rabbi Joe Black for giving us a song for that very dilemma!)

Healthy Snacks on Halloween? Boo!


I don’t wish to disappoint anyone, but this post does not contain any recipes or ideas for healthy snacks to give out to your trick-or-treaters this Halloween.  Actually, it is an appeal for just the opposite.

I overheard an acquaintance telling someone how they would be giving out “healthy snacks” to young trick-or-treaters for Halloween.  The other replied:  “You know, that’s such a great idea.  I should do that.”

Now, I know there are many foodies reading this blog (including myself), but I couldn’t help but find myself feeling a bit sorry for the kids who would be knocking on their doors expecting Reese’s Peanut Butter Cups this Saturday night, only to find a vegan oat-bran something-or-other dropped into their plastic pumpkin.

Dessert Hummus?! What is the World Coming To?


I love hummus. I really do. I had some this morning for breakfast. I will probably have some with dinner. I seriously considered running away with my favorite hummus-seller in Machane Yehuda when I lived in Israel. But even I have never really considered the possibility of a sweet hummus. I mean, at its base hummus is mashed chickpeas. And when I think chickpeas I don’t think dessert.

Well lucky (?) for me, there are people in the world who don’t think the way I do when it comes to chickpeas. They saw hummus as a dessert-in-the-making. And they added some cocoa powder and some sugar (sugar! The humanity!) and they called it Chocolate Hummus.

You’re the Jew in my Coffee…

Cross-posted at

a tiny bottle of pharisaer
Tiny Vial of Pharisäer

What do you put in your coffee?

Pharisees of course

Ever-sensitive to appearances of Jewish references in popular culture, I was a bit surprised to read Maureen Dowd’s headline in the New York Times on Sunday, July 19, 2009: “Pharisees on the Potomac”

I did not see any mention of late antiquity in her column and it was not until a number of hours later that I realized she had used the Christian allusion to Pharisees as hypocrites! Shame on her and shame on her editors (I wonder if William Safire saw the column). As the Wikipedia makes quite clear:

The Chicken or the Ache?

In my hard-core college vegan days, when I toted around a copy of John Robbins’ Diet for a New America like it was from Mt. Sinai, I often wondered how I would approach the subject of meat eating with any future children I might have. The idealized plan that I came up with (while still a bachelor, of course), was that we would have a strictly vegetarian household until my future children reached the age of Bar/Bat Mitzvah. At that point, I would give them a copy of Robbins’ well-written argument against consumption of animal products, take them on a tour of the closest factory farm and/or meat processing facility, and then let them make their own informed adult decision about whether they wanted to consume meat from that point forward. If they choose to eat meat at that point, more power to them.

Of course, nearly twenty years later as the (flexitarian? vegewarian?) parent of two toddlers, things are not so cut and dry. Nowadays, Michael Pollan’s Omnivore’s Dilemma has replaced John Robbins on my shelf, and we are indeed an omnivorous household. Things seemed to be going smoothly – we support our Tuv Ha’aretz CSA, shop at Whole Foods (or at least the organic aisle at Stop & Shop), and  try to follow Reb Pollan’s core dictum: “Eat Food, Not to Much, Mostly Plants.” We try to keep limit any meat we consume in the home to that produced in a sustainable, ethical manner. Emergency roadtrip Burger King stops aside, we’ve done a decent job of modeling the ideals of eco-kashrut to our kids.

Ask the Shmethicist: WWMPD? (What Would Michael Pollan Do?)


Oh dear readers, the Shmethicist has been AWOL for a while.  But now I’m back and better than ever (not unlike that pea soup that was even more delicious when we reheated the leftovers!).

Dear Shmethicist,

I am currently feeding a family of four (two adults, two toddlers) on a very small food budget ($150 a week).  A couple of years ago, my husband and I were able to buy all organic dairy and produce, and free range meats and eggs.  Now, it is a rarity.  Our costs are so tight, that even at $150 a week, we only cook nice dinners on Shabbat.

We have noticed a difference in how we feel and would absolutely love to do this again. We do not have our own yard in which to garden, which I would love to do someday.  There are several farms near here, but they are not open to the public (instead, they drive their goods to the farmers markets in the large city, which is over an hour away and which we cannot afford to drive to regularly, at $20 gas for the trip and $10 parking for the day).

Beet Haikus from the Scottsdale Hazon CSA


Thanks to the Scottsdale Tuv Ha’Aretz Hazon CSA at the King David Jewish Community Day School for sharing these Beet Haikus! Look for a new contest soon!

Lower School Division

First Place (Tie)
Avery Polster (4th Grade):

Beets are delicious
Full of deep purples and reds
Great with jicama!

An Ode to Seltzer


There is indeed something Jewish about seltzer.

From whence exactly this Jewishness derives, I’m not so sure, but I do know one thing: I LOVE MY BUBBLY WATER.  And so, I give you my most recent episode of Cookin’ titled, “Fo’ Shizzle My Fizzle.”

To see more videos visit but for now, drink up!