[Sca-cooks] New Challenge
judith at ipstenu.org
Fri Aug 21 09:21:05 PDT 2009
On Aug 21, 2009, at 10:59 AM, Deborah Hammons wrote:
> I have a first question. What would a Spanish jew have eaten who
> "kept kosher" of their time eaten just before they were expelled
> from Spain? And the Moorish counterpart living in Spain at the same
For the most part, anything that was eaten by the others in the area
-- as long as the meat was from a kosher animal, slaughtered in a
kosher fashion; as long as the seafood had both proper fins and proper
scales (no catfish, shellfish, crustaceans); as long as there were no
dairy products served in the same meal with meat/poultry products (or
byproducts, such as chicken broth, or ghee); and as long as it was
cooked and served using vessels and utensils that had only been used
in kosher cooking, for their own category of food (meat dishes, dairy
dishes, and 'parve' dishes -- parve means anything that's neither meat
nor dairy, such as eggs, grains, nuts, fruits, vegetables). Fish is in
a special category. It's parve, but it can't be eaten WITH meat. You
serve the fish dish, then remove the fish and the plates/utensils,
bring out the meat plates/utensils, and finish the meal. You can eat
fish with dairy if you're Ashkenazi, and some Sephardi Jews also eat
dairy with fish, though not all.
If the non-Jewish folks in your area ate kugel, bagels, borshch,
kishkes, kasha varnishkes, chicken soup with noodles and/or balls of
dough (matzah)... that's what you ate, too. If the non-Jews in your
area ate cherry chicken, lamb biryani, stir-fry from a wok, apricot
beef tajin, saffron rice, and made their chicken soup with rice or
millet, that's what you ate, too.
If everyone around you ate pork, you'd create a substitute by finding
a meat with a similar texture and the ability to take on other
flavors, then give it a bit of extra salt (because pigs don't sweat
their body's toxins out) and some more spices, add a bit more chicken
fat if you wanted a fattier cut, and voila -- "pork." Anything you can
do with pork, you can also do with chicken, guinea fowl, or turkey.
If the local cuisine depended a lot on mixtures of meat and dairy
(such as a lamb marinated in yogurt sauce, or in modern times,
pepperoni pizza or a cheeseburger), you'd choose whether to have the
meat or the dairy be 'real' and then find a substitute for the other
ingredient -- or just remove it. I've made some quite nice 'yogurt' by
mixing almond meal with water, sometimes egg, and tiny amounts of
vinegar, heating it, then letting it rest in the fridge for a day. And
yes, tofu is Period, for much of the world. Fermented legumes, whole
or pureed, are a very fine meat substitute. So are non-fermented
legumes, eggs, and mushrooms.
For every non-kosher taste, there is an equivalent kosher ingredient.
You just have to be diligent and creative in your search for it,
Passover's rules are HELLA complicated, and I don't want to go into
them here, but it is a HUGE pain in the tachat. let me tell you.
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