We went for a glorious bike-ride on Saturday. Before leaving, we chatted with our neighbour across the lane. He was happily chopping ice from the lane, thrilled to be outside in shirtsleeves. And so, as we rode north from the lake (that’s uphill…), we too had to stop to peel off scarves, mittens, extra sweaters, etc. etc. Because even though the gardens are still covered in snow, the sun was shining, and the roads were clear.
What a change from the weekend before when it took me twice the time it usually does to drive on snow-covered roads to get to work! When I got there, someone asked a colleague how her drive had been. Her reply: “Grim.”
The night after that dreadful drive, when it was still cold and snowy outside, we were rifling through the vegetable drawer to get the rapini and saw that there was quite as much as we had thought. There was only enough for one person. And there were two for dinner.
If there hadn’t been snow and ice all over the roads, we would have jumped on our bikes to race to the vegetable store. Walking would be equally treacherous and too slow (not everyone in our neighbourhood is diligent about clearing the snow from the sidewalk…). Of course, we could have taken the car. But that wouldn’t be right! (continue reading )
Bread Baking Babes (BBB) January 2017: Jachnun
This month’s recipe, jachnun, was chosen by the always intrepid Lien (Notitie von Lien).
Jachnun is one of those dishes that everyone in Israel loves […] to be prepared a day in advance and baked all night long, so that there would be hot food on the sabbath, when lighting fires is prohibited. […] Brought over by Yemenite immigrants from Aden […] Originally, it was baked under the coals in families’ outdoor tabouns, recall immigrants’ children. It’s traditionally served here with grated fresh tomato, skhug (Yemenite hot sauce), and a hard-boiled egg, cooked in the pot along with the dough. You can find it sold at roadside stands, restaurants and rest stops […] Mind you, there are people still making jachnun from scratch. (There are supposedly even people still baking it under coals — though not many.)
– Liz Steinberg, Jachnun — Yemenite breakfast, Cafe Liz
Jachnun, a hearty, heavy, crepe-like Yemenite bread, is most often served with grated tomato and spicy z’hug on Saturdays as part of the Sabbath brunch. Observant Jews who don’t cook on Saturdays place a tightly covered pan of jachnun in a barely warm oven on Friday night (or drop the tin in the embers of the taboon and slow-bake it until they pull it out Saturday and serve it for lunch. Traditionally one egg for each guest is baked on top of the dough within the sealed tin; when they are peeled and quartered the next day, the shell and the white are deeply browned. […] This is hearty, heavy eating at its best — eat one or two pieces and you’re happily satisfied for hours. […] Do remember that it bakes for twelve hours.
– Uri Scheft, Jachnun, Breaking breads: A New World of Israeli Baking, p.149
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