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Robust, Rich Tishbi Reds: Perfect With Cheese and Crusty Breads

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When I was asked to try a few of Tishbi Winery’s most elite selections before Shavuot, it was with a considerable thrill that I asked the winery’s importer, The River Wine’s Ami Nahari, to help me reach the winemaker, Golan Tishbi, and get his advice on how best to decant and serve the wine for my tasting...

S&S Cheesecake Offers Delectable Delights in Time for Shavuot

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S&S Cheesecake has been a staple at its Riverdale location, 222 West 238th Street, for generations. As Yair Ben Zaken, the bakery’s current owner, says, he followed in the footsteps of his father-in-law, Fred Schuster, who was a Holocaust survivor who escaped from Germany. After settling in Manhattan, he worked in a bakery and perfected his skills as a baker.

In 1960, Shuster opened his first bakery where he was making all the necessary staples expected at a bakery: danishes, bread, cakes and cookies. With support from the neighborhood, the bakery thrived. But soon, Schuster noticed that the cheesecakes were the bestsellers. This prompted a switch for the bakery to specialize...

A Special Sauce Saves the Day

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Sometimes, it’s easy to fall into a cooking rut. You know what I’m talking about—you make the same dishes over and over again and wonder why no one is eating them anymore.

Lately, when I go into the supermarket looking at the vegetables, I realize there aren’t that many original choices. Sometimes I’ll buy all of them—Brussels sprouts, asparagus, zucchini, string beans, peppers, broccoli and cauliflower. And I’ll make all of them. And I’m so tired of them. I know there are endless variations of combinations of said vegetables. But sometimes I am so stuck, and make popcorn cauliflower for the millionth time.

So when my son Daniel said “Give me the cauliflower” I...

Strawberry Shortcake, Cream on Top

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People seem to think that cheesecake is the only dessert for Shavuot. And there are so many different variations of cheesecake that there isn’t even enough holiday to eat them all. (It almost seems like a good reason to make Shavuot eight days!) Even I tend to think of Shavuot as the “cheesecake holiday.” So how did that happen? How did cheesecake become synonymous with Shavuot? If I can hazard a guess, I would say it’s because most of our holidays are centered around meat meals, and Shavuot is pretty much the only time we are supposed to make a festive dairy meal (for many, many reasons, as my research revealed). Most desserts can be made parve, but cheesecake? There is just...

Memories of Shavuots Past

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In our family, as a child growing up, I remember the chart that my mother would hang over my father’s armoire. It was her annual sefirah chart. If we would each remember to count sefirah each day our reward would be an individual cheesecake. Interestingly, perhaps a sign of the way things used to be, my mother never counted sefirah. It was the man’s job together with his children. Three cheesecakes in a family one might think is excessive; then again, none of you have ever tasted my mother’s cheesecake. I taste it in my mouth to this day. It was sweet and tart and had an amazing, soft crust, and regrettably she never passed on her recipe to me. I still wonder what ingredients were...
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