Thursday, August 06, 2020

Mango Memories & No Work Mango "Sorbet"

I think I ate my first mango in London.

We were there for two years in the mid-1970's. All sorts of imported "exotic" fruits and vegetables were available in Golders Green. Many were even from Israel. My Cousin Fran from Brooklyn visited us one winter day and brought a big bag of delicious fruit as a house gift:
"I figured that this was the best of kosher food for you, especially since I don't know what's kosher here."
Back to the mango:
Mango, avocado, artichoke and other Israeli staples weren't seen in New York when I was growing up. Certainly they weren't in our neighborhood stores, and my parents were pretty adventurous when it came to trying new foods.

It's not that mango wasn't for sale in Israel. During our early years in Israel, I was happy with the better than in New York standard high quality summer fruit like melon, watermelon, bananas and peaches. Davka, those weren't all that great in London. Imported lost some of the quality I had gotten used to.

I had read about the high healthy vitamin content in a mango so I bought some. They were a hit with me and our daughters, especially with the fussy eater. Mangoes are expensive, so I never used to buy them very often.

Now, when I buy mangoes for myself, I use them to "make sorbet."

  • freeze ripe mango
  • remove frozen mango from freezer
  • thaw enough to cut slices
  • eat
  • One of my sons takes the chunks of frozen mangoes, mashes them by hand or in food processor and refreezes to serve more impressively as "sorbet."

Can anything be easier or more delicious?
Bonus:Totally healthy and no added sugar!

Wednesday, July 29, 2020

"One Pot" Meal, Fish and Vegetables

There was a time when I planned on writing a cookbook. I thought of calling it "The Lazy Cook Cookbook," because I don't like complicated food preparation. This "One Pot" Meal of Fish and Vegetables served over simple cooked salad is so typical of the my sort of cooking.

This "One Pot" Meal of Fish and Vegetables can actually look quite impressive if you bake it in a nice dish. The colors can be stunning. Use any of the following ingredients or others. There's no real "right or wrong." Not all the ingredients are included in this version. Please let me know how your version came out, thanks.

fish, filet or whole fish
sweet potato
fresh garlic
lemon or just some juice

Layer in your baking dish. To keep the fish moist, cover with onion or squash. Dribble a bit of vegetable oil before baking 190 Centigrade/380 Fahrenheit. 

Check that vegetables are soft and fish fully cooked before taking it out of the oven. Enjoy

Wednesday, July 22, 2020

Shiloh Hakeduma, Tel Shiloh, Perfect Outdoor Site for All Ages

Kenes Shiloh #9
Rosh Chodesh Av
This week I was at Biblical Shiloh aka Shiloh Hakeduma, Tel Shiloh twice. It's walking distance from my house, although the trek uphill from there to my house isn't easy. Yes, sometimes even I take rides. Shiloh Hakeduma, Tel Shiloh is an outdoor archeological site with indoor and outdoor activities, plus shaded areas. It's the actual Biblical location of Shiloh, where Chana prayed for a son, and the Tabernacle stood for close to four hundred years.

Sunday afternoon/evening was the 9th Kenes Shiloh, Shiloh Conference. Attendees came from all over the country, though fewer than usual.

As usual it began with an archeological tour of Tel Shiloh. Even this year when the foreign archaeologists and their crews weren't able to dig, there were still home-grown archaeologists, and we got reports.

The second section of the program was streamed online for those who couldn't attend in person. And those of us who did attend had the choice to sit indoors or outdoors.
This morning I went back down to Tel Shiloh, since it's Rosh Chodesh Av, the beginning of the Jewish Month Av. I've been organizing Women's Prayers at Tel Shiloh for many years. This time we were surprised to find a group of man just finishing off their prayers. Since Tel Shiloh is outdoors the permitted number of attendees is larger than in a synagogue. They finished just as we were about to say the Hallel, which we sing out loud.

Our attendees were both live on site and via zoom. I have a feeling that even when these restrictions are over, speedily in our days, people will still request to attend by zoom, since it's convenient for those not able to travel.

Rosh Chodesh Ellul will be two days, and I'll publicize exact time etc as soon as we decide, Gd willing.
On our way out, we discovered another outdoor prayer group. I'm very happy that people are coming from all over the country to doven/pray here in Holy Shiloh.

For more information about Biblical Shiloh aka Shiloh Hakeduma, Tel Shiloh Phone: 02-5789122,  Fax: 02-9948011, or click here.

Wednesday, July 15, 2020

Rosh Chodesh Av, Women's Prayers at Tel Shiloh

Please wear masks, thanks.

Next week is Rosh Chodesh Av. Because of the heat, we'll be starting a bit earlier than usual, at 8:15am. We hope you can join us for our traditional Women's Rosh Chodesh Prayers.

תפילת נשים ראש חודש אב
שילה הקדומה, תל שילה
יום ד' 22\07 8:15 בבוקר
כולן מוזמנות

Ancient Tel Shiloh
Wed. 22\07 8:15am
All Invited

We sing Hallel out loud together and say the rest of the dovening quietly on our own.

Shiloh Hakeduma, Ancient Tel Shiloh is a beautiful archeological site which interests all ages. You can arrange special tours and more. For more information:
Phone: 02-5789122
Fax: 02-9948011

Monday, July 06, 2020

Easy to Make, Healthy Salad, Mostly From Cans

Yes, I call this salad "Easy to Make, Healthy Salad, Mostly From Cans." And it's not an oxymoron.

It can also be titled Corn, Bean and Tomato Salad, Corona Lock-down Recipe #4, because the canned food was delivered to us as part of the senior citizen care package at the height of the corona lock-down. Following are the first three recipes I developed with canned food from the carton:
If you had inspected my pantry before getting these COVID-19 "care packages," you'd have found almost no cans, not even tomato paste. The few cans would have been "food gifts" from the Purim mishloach manot. But suddenly I found myself with all sorts of canned food and decided to make up recipes.

This salad is also a great vegetarian-vegan "one pot meal." It contains protein plus raw and cooked vegetables. Of course you can substitute different types of beans and vegetables and add more fresh salad. Just looking at it you can probably guess almost all of the ingredients:
canned corn
canned white beans
diced tomato
diced onion
coarsely ground pepper
dehydrated dill
dressed with a bit of olive oil and lemon juice
Yes, that's it. Think of the recipe more as inspiration than an exact recipe. Try it, and tell me how yours turned out and how you varied it. Enjoy in good health.

Thursday, July 02, 2020

FINALLY! The Pool is Open

Totally heavenly.

That's how I felt after 50 minutes activity in the local swimming pool. Our usual summer pool season is three months, but this year we had a late start. That's  because all the government corona COVID-19 restrictions had our local council in a tizzy. They were too afraid of investing money to begin the process of opening the pool. What if the government wouldn't permit pool openings?

The biggest difference is that this year there isn't a kiddy pool, since even in regular, will we ever return to those days, years the kiddy pool is usually an infection problem.

Chlorine is a disinfectant, and the pool is full of it. That's why I'm not afraid to enter the pool. To be extra careful, I'm sticking to the early morning hours.

Our local Shiloh Swimming Pool only has "separate hours," meaning males and females swim at different times. The pool is also fenced in so people can't watch us.

As you can see, I wear a "modest" bathing suit, which doubles as a skin protector.

Actually, the pool opened yesterday, but women's hours were at night. I took a one hour fitness walk, instead of swimming. The water was perfect temperature this morning. I was surprised. It usually takes a few weeks to get so warm.

Thank Gd for the swimming pool. I don't need to go away for a "vacation." My "vacation" is right here in Shiloh.

Monday, June 22, 2020

All For NS13.50, Less than $5-

Travelling on public transportation here in Israel is discounted for senior citizens, and if you know how to buy the "all day inclusive" chofshi yomi tickets, even for youngsters prices are very reasonable.

Things have been simplified. The country has been divided into districts. And to make life easier for the drivers and also speed up the trip for the passengers, we have to buy our tickets before boarding the bus. You either buy from special machines or a phone app, which unfortunately isn't compatible to all phones or use a special attachment, which costs only NS5- on your computer.

We have the special attachment. Just plug it into your computer, and register on the Ravkav site. Once you stick your actual Ravkav card into the plastic reader, you'll see how much money is in your card and all sorts of ticket possibilities.

You can choose your type of ticket and the date you need to travel. We generally buy the "all day inclusive" chofshi yomi ticket for the "Jerusalem Metropolitan Area," which not only covers Shiloh to Jerusalem  but as far as Ein Gedi to the southeast, Hebron to the south and includes Gush Etzion, Mevasseret Zion and Maale Adumim.

And the all day travel costs us only NS13.50. It would be double if we weren't senior citizens. That's still not much money at all.

For a bit more money we can buy a Jerusalem-Dan District all day ticket which would take us to Tel Aviv and beyond. There are more options. All can be found on the site.

Happy traveling!

Tuesday, June 16, 2020

Fantastic Israeli Second Hand Book Store

When I was looking for English children's books as presents for my grandchildren, one of my daughters introduced me to REBOOKS, סיפור חוזר Sipur Chozer. REBOOKS is a chain with a few branches in Jerusalem. We went to the one in the center of town, 4 Shmuel Hanagid Street, Sunday-Thursday 8:30-16:00, Tel. 035341400 just above the Horse Park.

When we walked in a young man greeted us and took our names and phone numbers. He wrote them with the time we were in the store, so if Gd forbid anyone in at the same time would be diagnosed with corona  COVID-19, we can be notified easily.

You can see the hand sterilizer easily available, and everyone is masked.

The book shop is clean and well organized. I was extremely impressed by the large selection of English language books, even for young children.

To simplify things for customers and staff, all books cost NS20, though if you donate books you'll receive a coupon per book, allowing you to buy one for only NS15-

Rebooks calls themselves a "social bookstore chain," because it's actually a retraining/rehabilitation project for those recovering from psychiatric conditions.

I was very impressed by the service and told them I'd be recommending them to everyone.

Sunday, June 14, 2020

Keeping Busy Without Leaving Home Much, Corona COVID-19 Lock-down

Real life in the Corona COVID-19 Lock-down or just trying to stay healthy and sane

I have been enjoying classes via zoom and learning with my study group on Skype. I multi-task by crocheting while at the screen as you can see.

I've even discovered that with the equipment I have, I'm best off using both my computer and phone simultaneously. Microphone and audio are via my phone. But since the phone only shows a maximum of four other participants, I simultaneously zoom on my computer. Before you ask why I don't just use the computer, I must make it clear that my computer doesn't have a camera and mic. Yes, I understand that they sell attachments that would add those capabilities. I'll have to get one if I decide to zoom the Yom Iyyun Tanach (Bible) Study Day at Herzog this summer. Zoom really eats up the phone's battery power.

You can see how I use both phone and computer participating in Matan classes. Their special summer program is scheduled to suit both the "Israel clock" and North America. But I've signed up for Yael Leibowitz's  "Confronting the Other." 

As much as I miss why weekly "vacation in Jerusalem," I do enjoy the convenience of studying from home. I've also been having great fun watching shows, musicals, movies, tv shows etc from my phone and computer all for free. I even march around the house watching on my phone instead of walking outdoors.

BBC Proms' Oklahoma was superb! 
How are you coping with today's restrictions? Or are you ignoring them?
Just stay healthy and happy. I'm doing my best Gd willing.

Monday, June 01, 2020

First Trip Out of Town Since Corona COVID-19 Pandemic

I ate delicious Orange Soup in Piccolino
I must tell you the truth. If I hadn't had a dentist appointment this morning, I never would have left Shiloh. But our dentist is in Jerusalem, and the appointment had been postponed for long enough. Corona COVID-19 Pandemic or not, I masked up and got on the bus.

It took a lot of self-control, but I decided that I wasn't going to confront anybody not wearing a mask. Though I'm debating whether or not to report the bus driver to the authorities. Most of the passengers on the bus wore masks, at least most of the time and other parts of their face. Davka, in Jerusalem the compliance rate of mask wearing was better than in Shiloh, especially on public transportation.

First glimpse of Jerusalem!
Of course I had to take off my mask at the dentist and at Piccolino. The dental staff was suited up in disposable suits looking like characters in a science fiction movie.  Aren't we all?

Besides the bus from Shiloh to Jerusalem and back, I traveled in the lightrail and a couple of other buses. The city seemed a bit less crowded than usual. Restaurants and stores seem to be suffering greatly. There are very few customers.

Before returning home, I bought more of the "jersey" or "t-shirt" yarn to crochet more small rugs, hotplates and potholders. When I had stocked up a few months ago, I was certain that I had a supply that would last me a few years. Zooming has gotten me crocheting a lot, and my family and friends are happy the get the results of my hobby.

The only little "incident" was on the lightrail when a woman began yelling at another one for not having her mask on. A few others joined in taking sides, but I had promised myself not to "make waves." The unmasked woman put her mask on eventually, after she finished her phone call.

May we all be healthy, and may this Corona COVID-19 pandemic end soon, Gd willing.

Helpful reminders to clean and mask at Piccolino.

Sunday, May 31, 2020

Simply Delicious Power Salad

Here are the Ingredients*: beet, celeriac, carrots, apple and raisins
For the dressing, just some olive oil and freshly squeezed lemon juice

Either a hand shredder/grater or a food processor. Use the shredder attachment. This is one of the most important attachments to my food processor. It's the only one I've ever had to replace. The last time it broke I ended up buying a new food processor in an outlet store for less money than the attachment would have cost me, if I had even found one. My food processor is very old.

1- Rinse all the vegetables.
2- I only peel the celeriac and beet.
3- Cut to the size that can easily be shredded.
4- Put all the shredded vegetables in a bowl.
5- Add raisins.
6- Pour olive oil over the ingredients.
7- Squeeze sliced lemons.
8- Let it sit for at least half and hour, on counter or table if you're serving it immediately, and in the refrigerator if the salad is for another time.
9- Stir before serving.

Perfect healthy, colorful salad.
Easy to make
*Quantities are flexible, and you can add different dried fruit, canned pineapple, cabbage either red and/or green.

Variations are certainly permitted and encouraged. How did yours come out?

Thursday, May 28, 2020

Fellow Blogger Bloggers, What Changes Will There Be?

I just noticed this notice from Blogger. Do you know anything about it?

In late June, the new Blogger interface will become the default for all users. The legacy interface will still be optionally available. We recommend trying the new interface by clicking “Try the New Blogger” in the left-hand navigation. Please file any critical issues encountered. Read more.

This is't the first time Blogger has made changes. I've been a Blogger blogger for about twenty years, and I feel like an idiot.

Does anyone really know what this announcement means? Is there something I must do? Please answer in the comments, thanks.

confused and looking for wisdom