Friday, December 27, 2013

I'm Not Sure What Disturbs Me More......

Perhaps I'm more sensitive because my job dictates that I always keep the NY Food Safety Standards in the forefront of my mind. 

Had the response been different, I could have lived with this misstep and not posted to my blog. But I strongly feel the need to have a voice.

According to established Food Safety Standards, food handlers MUST wear gloves when dealing with fully cooked food. 

I read with interest this post about a special parsha treat being prepared at a nearby bakery because (a) I on occasion eat the food baked from this establishment and (b) I have fond memories of these cupcake "frogs" (there was the year a certain child of ours was reduced to tears because we didn't realize that our teasing about "frogs in the kitchen" was being taken quite so literally.....).

What drove me to write this post here on MY blog, was the way in which a very SOFT comment on the blog in question was handled. Surprise, surprise - IT WAS REMOVED.

This concerns me on so many levels:
  • Is the blog owner completely disinterested in a very real food safety issue? (we don't know if this dipper [or the cupcake cutter in a previous photo] has an infectious disease or even remembered to wash his/her hands after using the restroom)
  • Will she pass the information along?
  • Are only "OMG... that's so cuuuuuute!" comments allowed on her site?
I fully understand the concept of filtering out offensive comments. Mine was not offensive. 

How could this situation have been handled better? For starters, I don't leave anonymous comments. If the blog owner truly did not want to have anything negative in her comments section, she could have emailed me with the email address provided and explained to me that although she was going to remove my comment, she was most certainly going to pass my concerns on to the bakery (or even better yet - she already had, and they were going to implement changes).

Maybe I still hope that the internet is not only here to entertain, but also to help make our world better...... 

Wednesday, December 4, 2013

Multiple Rants in One...

An unnamed Bais Yaakov High School has a percentage of out-of-town students who commute 45 minutes each day to and from school. 
Said school decides to hold a Chanukah Chagiga for the girls at night, at a time where local girls would have time to return home, hear lighting with their family and return to the school in time for the Chagiga. Out of town girls might need to miss lighting at home in order to attend the Chagiga. 
No transportation assistance is provided for the out-of-town girls (regular school bussing will not be available when the Chagiga is set to be over). 
Out-of-town girls question whether they want, or are able, to indeed return to school for this event. Teacher and school administrator insist that girls PAY for the Chagiga, even if they do not attend. 
When girls complain that the entire situation is not fair, coupled with the fact that they were given  only two day's notice of the festivities, they are told by school administrator "So move to ______ (the town the school is in) or build your own Bais Yaakov in your home town".


Pirsum Project - 8th Light

Thanks to itsagift for sending these lovely photos of a very lovely cake her mother made for Chanukah.
I certainly hope that there were some lucky little children around to ooh and ahh!!

In addition, since I am frequently a lone voice extolling the beauty and virtues of the majesty that is KAJ, I thought I'd direct you to the Treasures of Ashkenaz website, for their appreciative post about Chanukah in Breuer's.

Wednesday's Screenshot

I try not to rant (too much) about the pleasure today's society seems to take in bad grammar and malapropisms. Perhaps it's merely a function of poor education, but if I hear "I was by them for Shabbos" one more time.....

This screenshot illustrates another issue that's been bothering me for quite some time. It's a drop down menu from a website offering kosher food. It asks you to select your CITY (there is the word "region" in the English language, you know). Hmmm... who knew that New York doesn't fit the bill? It seems Brooklyn is now a city... as well as Queens and the Five Towns. Who knew?

Tuesday, November 26, 2013

You Make A Point.....

A photo is making the rounds on the internet, that I have seen ascribed to a letter to the editor in the Lakewood Voice, that makes an interesting point.
The writer of the letter posits that the current children's Chanukah Song "I Have A Little Dreidel" is not only outdated, because we no  longer fashion dreidels out of clay, but also teaches our children nothing about the Chanukah story as it pertains to dreidels, when in fact, it could.
The writer offers up the following alternate wording to the same much beloved tune, which stresses the Chanukah story in a more meaningful way.

When we were learning Torah,
And Yevanim came our way,
We put away our sefarim,
And dreidel we would play.

Oh, Dreidel Dreidel Dreidel
Oh Dreidel we would play
Until we could learn Torah
After the Yevanim went away

(HT: GW)

Addendum: This post has generated HUGE uproar off blog. People are very passionate about their opinions on this topic. Please note that merely because I posted the lyrics does not mean that I am in favor of what the writer says. (and I'd prefer if you all ranted in the comments section as opposed to in person and via email ;)

Get Ready For Another Pirsum Project!

I hope to continue the Guess Who's Coming to Dinner Pirsum Project again this year.
Please send your menorah (or other wonderful Chanukah) photos to

Monday, November 18, 2013

Thanksgivukkah Link Up - Cranberry Studded Pumpkin Challah

Unless you've been living under a rock lately, you are aware of the once-in-an-eternity overlap this year of the first day of Chanukah with Thanksgiving. In my opinion, the best and most comprehensive coverage of this topic can be found here.

Say what you will about the National Holiday. Whether or not you choose to observe it, one must admit that this unusual occurrence is fascinating to calendar aficionados as well as us "regular folk". I am finding that at this time I miss my father z"l desperately. He loved tinkering with programs he had written himself (Anyone remember the TI-59 precursor to modern day computers? You 'fed' the program in on magnetized strips....) that dealt with all sorts of Gregorian and Hebrew calendar issues. He would have LOVED this! 

Say what you will about turkey dinners. Whether or not you feel it is appropriate to have Thanksgiving Dinner, there has been a long standing Jewish tradition of making special foods and taking special steps to honor Shabbos Chanukah. I fondly remember my grandmother's stuffed goose (can you even get that anymore?) and my own attempts at duck a l'orange (too much fat... too little meat to be worth the effort). I have blogged about my Shabbos Chanukah table with all it's special accouterments. I have even blogged about the amazingly large Shabbos candles used for the menorah in shul at KAJ. I have always advocated using the seasons bounty, regardless of the season, to honor the Shabbos, to honor a Yom Tov and to honor Hashem. This year I thought it might be fun to create a new and special fragrant Challah for Shabbos Chanukah - CRANBERRY STUDDED PUMPKIN CHALLAH, which is baking in my oven and filling my home with the most glorious aroma as I compose this post. 

Cranberry Studded Pumpkin Challah

  • 2 packages active dry yeast
  • 1 cup lukewarm water, divided
  • 3 Tbsp white sugar
  • 1  whole egg
  • 6 egg yolks
  • 1/4 cup honey
  • 2 Tbsp oil
  • 2 tsp salt

  • 2 tsp cinnamon
  • 1/2 tsp allspice
  • 1/4 tsp ginger
  • Pinch of cloves
  • 1/2 cup brown sugar
  • 1 15 oz. can of pumpkin puree 
  • 8-9 cups all-purpose baking flour
  • Egg wash: 1 egg yolk mixed with 1/2 Tbsp water
  • Craisins (dried, sweetened cranberries)

Proof the yeast in 1/2 cup of the warm water and the sugar. Whisk in the remaining ingredients until smooth and then slowly add the flour until it is elastic and not sticky and pulls away from the sides of the bowl. Cover and let rise one hour. Shape into two large challahs (I even put aside enough dough for two small rolls as well...) and let rise another half hour. Brush with egg wash and stud with craisins.

Bake in 350 degree oven for 40 minutes.

As with other Kosher Connection Link Ups, please feel free to browse the blogs shown below for their creative take on this calendar coincidence.

Tuesday, October 22, 2013

Guess Who's Coming To Dinner Goes 3D

I just baked some delicious challah and thought I'd share :)Wait a moment... let the image load....and then move your mouse around over the photo.It's a shame they haven't figured out how to add smell yet..... ;)

Sunday, September 22, 2013

Thursday, August 15, 2013

How Much Do We Need To Hear?

.... more accurately - How much do we have the right to hear?
When news reports air about tragic circumstances, why is it OK to air the 911 tapes on EVERY major news outlet? I understand the public's "right to know", but when are the rights of the public eclipsed by the rights of the victims to privacy?
I have often wondered and worried about this and it was once again swept out of the dust-filled corners of my  mind this week, when a tragic plane crash prompted the media to air audio clips of a distraught mother's call to 911 upon the realization that her two daughters were in the room of her house into which a plane crashed.
Are not her primal screams private? 
It just felt wrong to be invading her personal horror that way.
How is this legal and even if it is legal, how is this ethical?

Sunday, July 14, 2013

Food Photo Sunday (Because I was too busy on Friday....)

Just for a change......
A tasting platter -
Stuffed Mushrooms (featured previously on this blog), paired with Hearts of Palm Dip in Pepper Boats with Sweet Potato Tortilla dipping chips.

Friday, May 31, 2013

J.G., J.D. - Mazel Tov Joey - Our Newly Minted Lawyer!

I posted Dean Victor Gold's remarks from Loyola Law School's commencement exercises in 2011 in a previous post, but they are more relevant to me today than ever before.
I am including his words here, for they contain quintessential truths about Hakaras Hatov.
"I do not remember who spoke at my law school graduation and I do not recall what was said. I remember only one thing, the serious expression on my parents’ faces after the ceremony.

As I stood there in my cap and gown, I thought that I looked like a clown so I did a little dance as a joke. My mom shot me a dirty look that told me, this is no joke. This is important to us. So I stopped dancing.

Neither my mother nor father ever had the chance to go to college, much less law school. Mom was an immigrant. Dad had to quit high school to go to work. They married during the Depression and had my sister and brother by the time Dad was drafted and went off to war. Their lives were hard. So my graduation from law school was no joke to them. I could see written in their faces the years of sacrifice that made my graduation possible and the pride they took in that accomplishment.

This is all I remember about my law school graduation but it taught me everything I needed to learn that day. It was simply this – be grateful. Be grateful for those people who helped you get here. For most of you, they are your parents, a spouse or significant other, maybe a friend or a teacher. Maybe it was a law professor or even a dean. Thurgood Marshall said, “None of us got where we are solely by pulling ourselves up by our bootstraps. We got here only because somebody bent down and helped pick us up.”

If the people who helped you are with you today, here is the first thing you have to do after all these speeches are over. Run to them. Find them. Give them a hug and say thank you. Then here is the next thing I want you to do. Take some photos with them. When you start to feel sorry for yourself in a few weeks as you are studying for the bar, take those photos out and look at them. Be grateful all over again. It will get you through the tough times that lie ahead.

After you become a successful lawyer, whenever you start feeling full of yourself, when you think you are G-d’s gift to the law, take out those photos again. Be grateful again. If those people are still around, call them and say thank you all over again. It will make you a better lawyer.

And finally, I want you to do one more thing. During the rest of your life, every time you look at the photos you take today, ask yourself this question: Does someone have a photo of you that reminds them of what they have to be grateful for? If the answer is no, then look around for someone who needs your help. Bend down and help lift them up. If the answer is yes, someone can be grateful for the help you have given to them, that is when you can stand up and do a little dance."
Mazel Tov Joey.
You have never set easy goals for yourself and you've always risen to the challenges you've set.
I can't wait to see what's in store! (and I look forward to dancing with you)

Monday, April 29, 2013

Mazel Tov!!

It's late, but I couldn't resist posting just one photo before I head off to bed ;)

... wonder if it means this is time to close the blog.......

Friday, March 22, 2013

Sinkers or Floaters? A Rhetorical Matzoh Ball Question!

Families around the globe have long debated the "sinkers of floaters?" matzoh ball question.
Do you prefer the light and airy "floaters" or the dense and chewy "sinkers".
Although my family is comprised of people from both camps, I maintain that it is a non-issue.
The only reason sinkers exist is because somebody somewhere couldn't seem to get the hang of the light, airiness, and her family just figured they'd make the best of a tough (pun intended) situation.

I've seen many matzoh ball recipes online, but NONE of them contain my foolproof "light and fluffy" ingredients. So after years of wondering if anybody else makes my recipe, I've just decided to share it here and find out.

Now keep in mind that Pesach presents its own special challenges, because nearly ALL of the ingredients I use are somewhat compromised/different in Kosher L'Pesach form. I suggest you try my recipe first with optimal non-pesach ingredients, though you can see from the photo above that they come out just great on Pesach as well.

The following recipe makes about 15-20 small matzoh balls, depending on how small you roll them. REMEMBER THAT THEY DOUBLE IN SIZE AS THEY BOIL!! I never make less than a quadruple batch of these. They freeze beautifully when drained (ask me about Press 'n Seal).

FLOATERS - What else?

  • 2 Tablespoons margarine (yes, I know... the Pesach stuff is nasty)
  • 2 eggs (the only ingredient that stays the same year 'round)
  • 1 heaping "knife tip" baking powder (oh, please... just go with on this one...that's how the recipe came to me - it's about a heaping 1/2 tsp...) (Pesach stuff isn't as potent I find, so be more generous, since this is the secret to the "no fail fluff")
  • Quick sprinkle of salt (Pesach salt is much saltier!!) Just a touch... remember you will be cooking this in salted water and then adding it to a flavorful (hopefully) soup.
  • 1/2 cup matzoh meal (the Pesach stuff I get seems to be whole wheat, which makes my matzoh balls (above) look browner than I'd like. Year round they they are much paler.

Mix the eggs and margarine well. Sprinkle on baking powder and salt and mix again. Slowly mix in matzoh meal. Refrigerate until firm. Roll into balls and drop into large pot of boiling salted water. Boil for 30 minutes. Drain.

Friday, March 15, 2013

Fallible Friday... "Say what?!?!"

Gotta wonder about that last line.....
Perhaps they need an English speaking editor.

Thursday, March 14, 2013


Just in time for Yom Tov, the kind folks over at have offered me the opportunity to do another review/giveaway.

Sometimes it's hard to tell from a photo, how a product will actually be "in hand" (or "on head", as the case may be....). I thought it would be interesting to try out one product from several different manufacturers, so that I could compare style, texture and fit of the various brands.

The first item I thought I'd try came from Cherie. It was a pretty Silver Jaguar Velvet Pre-Tied. The print is as pretty in person as it is in the photo and the velvet is super soft and rich feeling. The description listed "short" tails. I found the entire snood to be fitting with the "short" description. It is a close fitting snood without a lot of air space inside the back. I have longer hair so I would probably prefer a larger "pocket" but my hair fit in fine, even though it was definitely a closer fit than I am used to. 

My second choice came from Lady Bug. I chose a Sequin Leaves on Black Cotton Pre-tied. This is  probably the least "glamorous" of all my selections, but I'll bet you ANYTHING that it's going to be the one I grab for the most. The cotton is super soft. The longer tails fall nicely at the sides. There is no disturbing "ruffle" in the back that annoys me about most of the more decorative snoods. Comfy, comfy, comfy.

Another pre-tied I sampled came from DaCee Designs. The Black Lycra with Flower Emblem Bandana is similar, though a bit dressier than the Lady Bug snood above. I also find that it is a bit snugger on the ears. Some people like snoods tighter - some looser, so it's just your personal preference. The tails are a bit longer as well. This is one of those snoods with the "ruffle" that I talked about earlier, as opposed to just a covered elastic on the bottom.

Now for my big change (you know me.... change is NOT my middle name!), I went for this Sheer Floral Oblong Tichel with Fringes (in purple) because it caught my eye. Oh. My. Gosh!!! I loooove this scarf. The sheer fabric is shimmery, slinky (making it a bit slippery when tying) and gorgeous and I would wear it as an accent scarf with my clothing. I have NO IDEA however, what do do with it on my head. I wish I did. 
Good thing the website offers a hand-dandy tying guide!

So those were MY picks.
What are yours?
Your pick could win you a $20 credit towards any item on the site in our giveaway. Many items are less than $20, so you can get them free. If you'd like a more expensive item, simply pay the balance. For a chance to win, simply visit and leave a comment here telling me what your favorite product is, with a link. I will choose one winner at random on Sunday, March 24th, after 12 pm. Tweet about this giveaway and either email me the link to the tweet or post it in the comments section for an additional bonus entry.

In addition, as an extra gift to all my blog readers, My Headcoverings is offering a special spring discount code. Simply enter the code "SPRING11" at checkout, for 11% off your entire purchase.

So go forth and shop! :)
And be sure to share this giveaway with your friends.

Wednesday, March 13, 2013

Guest Services

I've written previously about how, as a hostess, I appreciate ambiance and the incumbency on hostesses to make their guests feel comfortable.

We recently had the pleasure of attending a fundraising dinner for Chabad on the Upper East Side, held at  Guasavino's, a New York City interior landmark located under the 59th Street Bridge.  I was fascinated with this venue, which I had never seen before. Another guest remarked that one usually associates those congregating under a bridge with indigents, not with those indulging in luxury. But luxurious it was. The high, vaulted ceilings and ful-length windows made for an impressive space. The lighting upstairs also added to the feel.

But by far, the most impressive guest service that I experienced nowhere else before was what I have decided to call "Reverse Coat Check".  There were no guests standing in line at a window with heavy outerwear slung over their arms awaiting a numbered ticket. Instead - Guastavino's staff were the ones to stand in line at the ready, awaiting each guest and taking  their coats to be whisked off to the coat room.
Very cool.....

Thursday, February 28, 2013

Wednesday, February 27, 2013

Somebody Got Hungry....

I came home from work yesterday to find only NINE of Haman's sons remaining on our front door.
I wonder which of the neighbors got the munchies..... :)

Sunday, February 24, 2013

Purim Seudah at Chez G6

...grammen may or may not be posted, pending all legal mumbo jumbo and releases signed in triplicate.

Monday, January 21, 2013

Mini Gourmet Apples for Tu B'shvat

Remember my penchant for minis?
These may the best ones yet.
Miniature gourmet apples.
How perfect would they be for Tu B'shvat?
How did I do it?
I simply used a melon baller on a granny smith apple, skewered the balls, dipped in melted chocolate and toppings.
The results are quite convincing... and no core :)

Wouldn't these be pretty at a kiddush?
Along with my Croatian Star Challahs, they would also tie in nicely with Rosh Hashanah.
You can also try using butterscotch or peanut butter chips for dipping.... the possibilities are ENDLESS.
Let me know if you try them and how they worked for you.