Warning: Cannot modify header information - headers already sent by (output started at /var/www/vhosts/laurelbarr.com/httpdocs/wp-content/plugins/cb-simple-video/shortcode.php:32) in /var/www/vhosts/laurelbarr.com/httpdocs/wp-includes/feed-rss2.php on line 8 Cantor Laurel Barr http://laurelbarr.com Creating Moments To Remember Thu, 29 Dec 2016 20:19:35 +0000 en-US hourly 1 http://wordpress.org/?v=4.2.4 The Saddest Month http://laurelbarr.com/the-saddest-month/ http://laurelbarr.com/the-saddest-month/#comments Sun, 02 Nov 2014 22:37:47 +0000 http://laurelbarr.com/?p=839 Continue reading ]]> I’ve pulled out the down blanket, sweatshirts and boots. The skies have turned grey and windy and the forecast is for wet snow and 38 degrees this weekend! I know I just complained about the heat in Orlando so I have no right to say a word about this cold weather. But it comes so quickly without any gradual descent or warning. With the holidays behind us, we enter the month of Chesvan, or Mar, bitter, Cheshvan, called such because it is a month without any holidays. But let’s be honest, we can all use a bit of a break from climbing up and down ladders putting the sukkahs away!

But in this month we will still enjoy Shabbat as we always do but with the smells of Cholent, the all night stew with kishka, in my house. It’s disturbing, in a good way, to wake up in the middle of the night, to the glorious aroma of Cholent simmering away. It’s hard to wait til lunchtime to enjoy its scrumptiousness but eating it before its meaty flavors are properly melded would not be sensible.

So here’s to a so-called bitter month. I’m going to make it joyful anyway with challah and Cholent!

Easiest Cholent recipe: (adapted for extra ease)!

  • 6 potatoes, cut into large chunks
  • 1 large onion, cut into chunks
  • ½ bag of dried beans (Navy beans, kidney, etc) There is a mix in the store already
  • combined. 1 ½ C or more
  • ¼ C duck sauce. (I use apricot jam mixed with bbq sauce)
  • Meat, at least a pound and a half. Flanken is great!
  • Dry chicken soup mix, salt and pepper
  • Frozen Kishka ~

In a slow cooker place: ½ of the potatoes, ½ the onion and all the beans. Pour duck sauce over.

  • Put meat on top of beans. Lightly salt (because of the soup mix), but pepper liberally.
  • Add remaining potatoes and onions. Sprinkle 2 TBL of chicken soup mix on mixture.
  • Add water to cover plus ½ inch. Place frozen kishka on top.

Cover and cook on low, overnight, at least 10 hrs. Turn to warm. It is so easy and delicious and gets better as it sits!

Bon Appétit! B’taiavon

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It’s Show Time! http://laurelbarr.com/its-show-time/ http://laurelbarr.com/its-show-time/#comments Thu, 23 Oct 2014 20:52:58 +0000 http://laurelbarr.com/?p=794 Continue reading ]]> OK… After years of writing articles for a weekly temple newsletter, I’m excited to head out on my own, planting seeds and kernels from my Jewish world, to grow into the many hearts and minds that will,(hopefully), be following my posts. With the help of some of the incredible team members at The Chad Barr Group, the creative designer, Lihi Ben Zaquen, technical whiz, Jake Ross, and of course the cyber strategist behind the site, Chad Barr. I am very excited to share with you my experiences with the hope that you will continue to enhance my life with the bounty of yours and together showcase a Jewish life filled with joyful spirit.

So, nu? Let’s begin…… (big breath)….

I just returned from an extended trip to sunny Florida where I spent Sukkot with my daughter, son-in law and grandkids. When I arrived the kids were putting on the finishing touches to their beautiful sukkah, hanging garlands cut and strung from swimming pool noodles, (a genius idea in place of the soggy, weeping paper garlands that droop and tear in the rain), and homemade painted and bedazzled artwork by my grandkids to welcome the ushpuzin, their Sukkot guests.

The first meal in the sukkah is always so exciting; the prayers, blessings and special round challahs drizzled with honey shared while sitting elbow to elbow in the flimsy walled booth, and incredibly humid Florida heat. Nothing like the chilly Sukkot gatherings we share up north where hot soups,casseroles and steamy cups of tea are the usual sukkah fare.

Weather aside, this holiday always reminds me of the fragility of life. In an instant, a gust of wind or heavy rain can blow the sukkah over and end up crumpled in the yard just as our lives can change in a blink of an eye. We are commanded to sit in the sukkah, surround ourselves with family and friends and rejoice in the holiday no matter the weather and feel God’s presence as did our ancestors long ago. I’m back home in the cold, windy Cleveland weather, but I can still feel the warmth of Sukkot in my heart with gratitude for all the blessings I enjoy each day.

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