At sunset tonight, until one hour after sunset tomorrow, Jews around the world commemorate Yom Kippur, the holiest day of the year.
After that unfortunate golden calf incident, Moses had to spend three months on Mt. Sinai pleading with G-d to forgive his people. Every year since that time, the Day of Atonement is observed. Yom Kippur is a day of praying and Torah reading, a day to reflect upon any wrongs that may need righted, and day of fasting.
For a day of fasting, Yom Kippur certainly requires a lot of cooking. Our family traditionally enjoys a larger lunch on the day before the fast and then we have chicken soup with matzo balls before the fast begins. The fast is broken the next night with a “breakfast for dinner” theme – usually eggs, bagels and smoked salmon. (This depends upon where we are on Yom Kippur, of course. It is good to be flexible.)
Of course, I baked a loaf of Challah – this time topped with poppy seeds, black sesame seeds and white sesame seeds.
This year, I went with an Erbriaca (Italian Jew) theme for our lunch. I made lamb meatballs with sundried tomatoes (and basil, egg, garlic breadcrumbs, garlic, onion and pecorino) and served them with very lightly dressed spaghetti pasta.
Is there anything more satisfying than a meatball?
Five o’clock found me back in the kitchen preparing My Matzo Balls.. I am quite particular about my fluffy floaters and want the dough to rest precisely one hour before boiling. Any longer and they seem to be hard and nobody wants a hard matzo ball.
Okay. That is a lie. Apparently there are some people who prefer hard matzo balls.
They just don’t eat at my table.
There was chicken to poach. Carrot curls to steam.
And matzo balls to boil. It all comes together with a delicate stock in a pretty bowl of lusciousness.
It isn’t proper to brag during Yom Kippur, but dang if that isn’t a gorgeous loaf of Challah.
I say this too often, but it is a great comfort to know millions of people around the world are preparing the same foods, saying the same prayers, lighting candles and preparing for another year. May you all enjoy a peaceful Yom Kippur, may your fasting be easy, may you find peace and may your favorite college football team win tomorrow.
Until my next update, I remain, your idol-free correspondent.