Musings on Passover

As Pesach draws closer, I’ve been thinking a lot about preparations for it. The cooking, the cleaning, organizing guests. The more I think about it, the lonelier I get. I live in Florida now with my fiancé and we don’t have many Jewish friends here. All my family is back in MA and I can’t afford to take the time off to fly back up. I miss the people, traditions, and fun we would have every year growing up. Especially because I don’t really get to see or experience them anymore. I know it wouldn’t be the same even if I did fly back up because several of my family friends whom I miss terribly have moved around the country and won’t be there regardless.

I’m trying to establish new traditions here and invite the few friends we are close to and/or invite friends who don’t have a seder. I still feel lonely. I worry because I haven’t gotten official rsvps from those we’ve invited and I’m worried it’ll just be the two of us for one, if not both nights. I love my fiancé, but the thought of chag with just the two of us is depressing. He’s not Jewish and is still learning about each holiday as it happens. So the intuition and knowledge isn’t there yet. I belong to a shul here too but don’t feel connected to it.

Last year we had one set of friends over the first night and just the two of us the second night. I honestly don’t remember if I did a proper seder the second night.

Maybe these depressing thoughts are punishment for not going to barre class this week (so I can clean, shop, and cook for Pesach around my work schedule). Any other people experience similar thoughts near Pesach?

I am excited to cook again this year, even if it’s a bit daunting. I found some new dessert recipes I’m interested in but am unsure if I’ll genuinely have time to cook them. Whatever I end up making, I’ll share next week so you can enjoy for the end of your Pesach.

Shabbat shalom v’chag pesach sameach! L’shana haba’ah b’yerushalayim!

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Potato Keilbasa Caserole

My boyfriend made a wonderful potato, turkey kielbasa, and cheese casserole (of sorts). He just added that, some non-stick spray, and butter into our baking dish, and baked it to almost perfection.

He used our small hand mandolin to slice the potatoes really thin and stack them sideways. Then we added the turkey kielbasa and cheese on top and baked at 425*F for like an hour or so. The potatoes didn’t quite cook all the way through as much as we (really my boyfriend) would have liked, but cooking sections in a pan the following morning for breakfast was amazing. We’ll definitely try it again and try to work out the kinks so it cooks more thoroughly next time.

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Do you all have any advice on how to cook it better? Let me know if you do, because I’d love to try them.

Need Cooking/Baking Ideas, Help?

My boyfriend and I have a loaf of bread that we want to do something with before it goes bad, like bake some sort of breakfast cake thing or something. So far nothing in my searches have really turned up. I think we wanted to do something breakfast-related but, to be honest, we could do any time of day.

Any suggestions?

And whichever recipe we do use, I’ll totally let you know how it comes out.

Thanks all!

Chag sameach!

Dinner Success!!

Made dinner tonight. TOTAL SUCCESS!

Tilapia was on sale so I got 4 fillets. I then marinated it in Publix Honey Dijon Mustard Lite salad dressing for about 20 or so minutes. I sprayed a 9″x13″ pyrex with some cooking spray and sliced a couple lemons to line the bottom. Laid out the fish on top (with the leftover dressing) and squeeze some lemon juice on it. Baked in a 375*F oven for 25 minutes. Totally amazing, especially once you spoon some of the dressing/sauce back onto it.

As side dishes we made some sushi rice in our rice cooker and an Israeli salad. Just some diced grape tomatoes, cucumber, olive oil, salt, pepper, and lemon juice.

We also opened my birthday wine! It was a bottle of wine we bought for my birthday but hadn’t had yet. It was Casa Rosa Rivata Rosso. So it’s a light red (almost rose but not quite) sparkling wine. Totally meant to be chilled and served with dessert. Oh well. Still good when not following the directions 😉

Time to enjoy some ice cream. Have a good night all! Good luck with your own cooking adventures. Hope they’re just as tasty.

Hamburger Night

My boyfriend and I embarked on an epic HAMBURGER NIGHT! Including making homemade burgers, fries, and cookies.

So here we go!

Hamburger. My boyfriend made these in our skillet/frying pan (we’re not allowed grills and haven’t gotten a grill pan yet). We used either 80/20 or 85/15 ground beef, ground pepper, garlic, salt (or more likely garlic salt), and I think he added onion powder and sriracha sauce (which he puts on everything). And we used buns from the Publix bakery:

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I was in charge of the fries and the cookies. I used really big white/yellow potatoes, which probably was a mistake, but they came out really nice anyways. I got to fry (using vegetable oil) them in our awesome new Ikea wok. I added freshly ground salt after using our Mickey salt grider/shaker that I bought my boyfriend in Disney as a housewarming gift (also have the pepper one too).

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Now to be honest the cookies weren’t homemade. We bought the Publix Greenwise cookies that you break apart and put in the oven. I think we baked them for a little too long but otherwise they came out wonderfully. They weren’t overly sweet but still nice.

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Hope you enjoyed and take this as an inspiration to do some home cooking of your own.

Craziness abound

Hey ya’ll

craziness abound here. so here’s a rundown of what’s happened recently and what’s going on as we speak:

1. worked 53 hours last week on top of class. gahh!

2. my roommate Julie left me for a little bit to take part in her sister’s wedding (MAZELS!!!). she’s back now…and has a new boyfriend!!!!!!!! so adorbs 🙂

3. after work on sunday, hung out by my friend derek’s place….until it was like 6am. crashed at his place for like 1.5 hours before driving the five minutes back to my apartment and going to work at 11am. long as day.

4. one of my contacts fell out yesterday on my drive to work, so i worked with only one eye in all of yesterday.

5. my roommate Bri officially left this morning (self termed. Disney just wasn’t the place for her)

6. WE’RE GETTING A NEW ROOMMATE IN LIKE 45 MINUTES!! Don’t even get a day to mourn Bri leaving. We’re speculating things about her; but all we know is her first name. so we’re crazy cleaning and rushing to organize life so we don’t make the worst first impression on her. but unless she’s an international programmer or something i think she just turned 21 and is moving into non-wellness housing (21+ housing. basically we can have alcohol).

7. I made steak (technically sirloin or something like that) marinated in like a honey pineapple BBQ glaze or something like that. I just pan seared it (or fried it as my roommate Cassie would say)Image

and rice pilaf 🙂
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8. I finally saw the legendary 3 o’clock parade in magic kingdom the other day. New life goal- BE in the 3 o’clock parade

9. my boyfriend finally stood up for himself at work and is putting his apartment together and everything 🙂 so proud and happy for him

10. my class is going to studios on thursdays. we have to go on rides. life is hard isn’t it.

11. all i want in my life is gefilte fish, humus, challah, and alcohol. miss my chabad family ❤

i guess that all for my crash course update 🙂 have fun everyone and don’t forget to make magic!