A follow-up on Food Friday

First of all, a follow-up on Friday's dinner. Dinner was delicious. But,  our guests didn't show up. The misunderstandings were all cleared up at Saturday morning services.

The ice cream went along with my son when he slept over at a friend's house. They were happy to have the ice cream. We were happy to have a kid free evening.

Switching topics here. Purim is fast approaching. My student had seen this costume on  line. My student is 13. She has enough brains to know that a full-on sexy pirate costume is not exactly appropriate for her, especially since she is planning to wear the costume when she reads from the Megillah at her Orthodox day school.

We found a piece of white cotton gauze in my stash. My student made a raglan sleeved peasant top out of the cotton. We added big cuffs and elasticized the join creating a gathered cuff. My student wanted a vest like garment to mimic the corset like garment in the photo.

Although the gauze peasant blouse is an actual wearable garment ( We all have seen ready-to-wear put together more shoddily), My student was ready for the corset/vest to be a quick-and- dirty garment. The black knit I had on hand wasn't very stretchy. We used a tank top of my daughter's as a starting point. I was glad to see that my student was able to make the sort of mental calculation that is so useful when drafting clothing without a pattern. My daughter's tank was larger than what my student would wear. The black vest fabric had little stretch, so it made sense to draft the vest the same size as my daughter's tank.

It's the sort of calculation that can be a little hard to codify but nice that my student has internalized it . She wanted a wide scoop neck for the vest and a v-eed hem. She sewed up the side and shoulder seams and was done. The fact that this is a costume means that we don't have to worry a whole lot about finishing the vest nicely with niceties like hems.
My student plans to make a matching costume for her friend. I gave her enough of the knit so she can construct the vest on her own. She is awaiting more cotton gauze from an Internet supplier. We may have to improvise a pirate shirt out of a. thrift store man's dress shirt


  1. Great post on your student and creativity. Purim coming...Wondered if you make Hamantaschen for Pumim and if you might share a favourite recipe. Years ago lived by a bakery that made ones with poppyseed and would love to attempt some.

  2. I don't make hamentaschen all that often, which doesn't mean that I don't have a strong opinion about them. The mealy cookie dough hamentanschen are just plain nasty and I don't eat them. I prefer the ones with the thin crust the texture of fruit leather, that or the joy of my child hood, the challa dough hamentaschen t5hat the Boston bakeries used to make when I was a kid.

    I also am a stickler for traditional fillings, poppy seed, prune and apricot.
    My husband who grew up with a mother who didn't bake, is a hamentaschen slut. He will eat any hamentaschen that comes his way with pleasure.

    My friend Marla makes the best hamentaschen. Unfortunately she has moved about an hour north of the city. Marla posted on facebook that she isn't sharing the recipie...but I do know that a good version is in the Lubavich cookbook from the 1970's.

    I like a poppy seed filling that has chopped fruit and nuts added to the mixture and isn't too paste-like.

  3. Alas, the Lubavich cookbook isn't available through our library here. Your blog has me looking up words here and there. "Challa", this time. I understand what you're saying. I think I've had the cookie dough-like hamantanschen (and now I'm spelling it correctly) and it wasn't at all as good as the ones from that bakery. The latter must have been made with challa dough. Thanks for the guidelines on what to look for in a recipe.

  4. Shelley's Garden-

    I would try this recipe. It is from the just post WWII Jewish Cookery by Leah Leonard. I have made it a couple of times but not recently. It had the right leathery feel to the dough, you end up with a smooth textured dough, not a mealy mouth-full of Crisco filled crumbs.

    4 c sifted flour
    1 tsp baking soda
    1/2 tsp salt 4 eggs
    1 c honey warmed
    1/4 lb butter or shortening ( I think my mother used oil- we never owned Crisco)

    sift dry ingredients into mixing bowl, make a well and add the wet stuff in order given. Mix with wooden spoon . Roll out on floured board to 1/4 inch thickness. Cut into rounds using a glass or a tea cup.If yu have a round biscuit cutter use that. Fill with filling . Bake in 350 oven 25 -30 minutes. She suggests brushing tops, but does not say with what, i would suggest a dilute egg yoke wash.
    I see in this cooke book using babka dough for hamentaschen as well. I haven't seen the yeasty ones here in New York. Maybe they exist in Brooklyn but not here in Manhattan. I miss them.

  5. Thank you, Sarah, for the recipe. I'm looking forward to trying this.


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