Showing posts from May, 2008

restarting the menus

My apologies for the posting hiatus.  My wife went to the states for a week and our wonderful friends in the community decided to invite our family to shabbat meals for two weeks running.  I have major withdrawal syndromes from not cooking for more almost three weeks.  Today I hope to get back into the kitchen.
We have been inundated with requests for housing this shabbat.  A few weeks ago I got a call from someone named Shuli to come with one of her friends.  My parents are also in town and will be visiting with us.  We have had at requests for housing at least 15 people this shabbat.  Its the last official shabbat for the post-high school programs and everyone is scrambling for places.  We're full, but hope that at least some of those people can come later this summer or even next year (shana bet).
I havn't heard from Shuli since she reserved the weekend, so I hope that she is still planning on showing up.  Either way, we are ready and I'm cooking.
Shabbat Parshat Bamidbar D…

Increased prices for Kosher meat in the US

I just caught this report (here , here , and here) about a raid on the Agriprocessors Iowa meat processing plant in the US.   They produce the Supreme Kosher, Aaron's Best and Rubashkins line of poultry and meat products under a hechsher from Rav Weissmandl in Monsey,  NY.  The plant claims to be the largest Glatt kosher slaughterhouse in the world.
The federal search warrant alleged that most of the schochtim were non-US citizens (illegal aliens) from Mexico, Guatemala, Ukraine and Israel.  Even worse, there is a suggestion that the plant was used to produce illegal drugs.
Regardless of the true or veracity of these claims, the plant seems to be shut down for now.  This is going to directly impact the availability of Kosher meat in the US.  Fortunately, its the seven weeks (Shfira) and many orthodox jews eat meat only on Shabbat.
I am willing to believe that the owners undertook these illegal activities in order to provide kosher meat to the community and not to line their own pocke…

Who are we?

My wife left this week to visit her mother in Green Valley Arizona. My wife and her mother do not believe in taking time off. They think that a good vacation is one where you are doing things every day. My mother-in-law told the local synagogue that my wife would be happy to give a talk about Israel. She assumed correctly that my wife could not refuse.

So, I wrote her a speech. This is my version of the speech. Its been edited for the blog. I don't think she will present it in this form. If this doesn't engender comments to our blog, then nothing will!


Hi, my name is Leiah Jaffe. My husband and I moved to Israel from Pittsburgh 14 years ago. I have six boys ranging in age from 9 to 19.

I would like to tell you a little bit about my family and my community.

I was born in Coon Rapids Minn.. My family moved around some, to St. Paul, Pierre South Dakota, and finally Harrisburg. I lived in Harrisburg during the 3 Mile Island scare and I remember my father putt…

Post Pesach slowdown - Yom HaShoa

Pesach is over and the kids have gone back to school.  The post high-school students are nowhere to be seen.  Perhaps they are recovering from their Pesach vacations and travels.  Our house is quiet for once.  We even got invited out for dinner!
Yesterday (Thursday) was Yom HaShoa.  Every year, our twelfth grade youth put on a one hour program in commemoration of those who were lost.  This year, we also focused on those who survived and brought the country of Israel into existence.  Our community Rav spoke about the challenge that the world faces from those who openly call for the destruction of Israel.   Just as the world choose to ignore Hitlers calls for the destruction of the jewish people in the 1930's, so too we cannot ignore the calls of Moslem and Iranian leaders.   World leaders are hoping that these demagogues will loose power before they can implement their plans.  World War II was a direct result of this form of thinking in the 20th century.  I pray that the 21st centur…

Pesach 5768 (2008) - Last Day(s) Recap

Here is a picture (from my cellphone) of our second day guests from the second half of Pesach.  The boys in the striped shirt only held one day, while the rest were preparing to eat matza for another day....
From left to right: Robert, Chaim, Ami, Zack, Daniel and in front: Leah
Once again, no leftovers.   After pesach was over, Chaim mentioned that he can eat Gbruckts (re-cooked matza) on the eighth day of pesach.  So, I made a huge pot of Matza Farfel with whatever leftover celery and onions that I could find.  I wonder why I don't make that more often.