Showing posts from February, 2012

Menorah: just on time

"There are images of dragons carved into the base."

"The steps are attached!"

"The branches are curved."

My year eight Jewish History class was examining the details on the Menorah depicted on the Arch of Titus. After listing the various descriptions on the board, we turned to a posuk describing the original Menorah.

I read the source aloud, "יוצאים מצידי-ה" I read the source aloud, then paused. "Hang on, what parsha is it this week?"

"Terumah!" they chorused.

Wow! Talk about timing...

The posuk we were referencing was in this week's Parsha!! That was just too perfect. Hence, I have a wee little Dvar Torah to post here.

What was the shape of the Menorah' branches? Huge debate. Rashi described the branches as protruding from the center of the Menorah at a diagonal. In his words, "לכאן ולכאן באלכסון". Rambam concurred with this view in his famous sketch of the Menorah. His son, Avraham, explained that his fath…

My Mayonnaise Jar

Ever tried scooping the dregs of mayonnaise out of the jar? Never fun. Some useful techniques are spoons, spatulas or turning the jar upside down so gravity can work in your favor.  Technique Two requires a bit more time, but saves dinner every day. Just grab the vinegar, olive oil and some spices and turn an "empty jar" into a gold mine!

Dietitians hate it, men love it... it's the  mayonnaise-based dressing. Preparing a salad is part of my daily dinner preps, so having a dressing handy is a great bonus. I'll give you the official recipe that I follow, though I generally just pour 'till I'm bored. Turns out different (but yummy) each time.

1/2 cup mayonnaise  1/4 cup olive oil 1/4 tsp. lemon juice (vinegar is a good substitute) 2 Tb sugar (I usually skip) Freshly crushed or powdered garlic salt and pepper to taste Oregano or 2 Tb soy sauce*
*This dressing is really a two-for-one. If you want Caesar Salad Dressing, use the Oregano. If you'd prefer a diffe…

Australian Words (part one)

Australians use the word nappy for diaper. When D was little I insisted on calling it diaper. Since he started creche (there's another word!) Australian words are slowly creeping into his speech, and mine by extension.

At first I thought the word nappy was related to the word napkin. You know, keeping clean and all.

Then I noticed another new Aussie word: serviette (pronounced so-vee-eht). Serviette is the British term for napkin, adopted from the original French. Sounds rather glamorous for a piece of disposable cloth, I would think. Formally, the napkin is the term employed by the upper class, whilst serviette was firmly lower or middle class. Funny, no? To my American ears serviette sounds more pretentious than the plain napkin. I've heard people call it serviette'kah, but that is just a yiddishism for the originally French word.

Either way, serviettes, napkins and diapers all serve to keep my children clean and home tidy. Who cares what they are called, so long as the…