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Saturday, December 4, 2010

Symbolic Foods of Hanukkah


The Hanukkah Plate.

The food art is made up of a dreidel, a four-sided spinning top used to play games during Hanukkah. The letter  ג (gimel) when facing up means the player gets everything in the pot.

The ג is made with strawberry jam and the driedel is made from traditional foods, such as Latkes, Sufganiyah, Jam, Sour Cream, Applesauce and Gelt (chocolate coins).


Telly from Sesame Street shows us how to play the Drediel Game.

Traditional Hanukkah foods are fried and/or contain dairy, in particular cheese. Oil played a significant role in the Hanukkah story as a small jug of oil miraculously provided fuel for the Temple Menorah for eight days. Dairy symbolizes the victory of Judith, a young widow who over took the enemy camp by feeding the general with salty cheese that required lots of wine to quench his thirst.

The “Latkes” (potato pancakes) or “Sufganiyah” (fried doughnut filled with jelly or custard and topped with powdered sugar) are traditional foods seen at Hanukkah. Latkes remind us of the food hurriedly prepared for the soldiers as they went into battle. Latkes are usually served with sour cream and applesauce on the side.

In 17 century Europe it became customary for parents to give small sums of money to their children to donate to their teachers. The students learned how to give charity in light of commemorating the events of Hanukkah. In the 20th century, an American confectionary manufacturer came up with the idea of making Hanukkah “Gelt” from chocolate. They made the first chocolate wrapped coins specifically for Hanukkah. The Hanukkah gelt symbolizes the tradition of giving charity to commemorate the Miracle of Light.

Nechama Cohen, the author of the “Enlightened Kosher Cooking” shares "Low-Carb, Sugar-Free recipes to bring Joy this Hanukkah."  The “Enlightened Kosher Cooking” is a contemporary and classic recipe book designed for health-conscious people, as well as those living with serious health concerns, such as diabetes. The focus of the book is on healthy cooking with a balanced, moderate, long-term, informed approach to food.


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