Tasting memory

Every year Buzz Feed and the New York Times and Hadassah Magazine all have new recipes for the High Holidays. What my family wants is the old fashioned and traditional. growing up the foods of Rosh HaShanah were a meat tzimmis and stuffed cabbage. 

My mother only made those dishes for the new year. I can understand avoiding making stuffed cabbage, it's a pesky job. Tzimmis though is easy.

Last night I started the tzimmis right after Shabbat ended. I started out by browining the onions and the meat and then kept adding vegetables to the pot as they got cut up.
This is a huge pot, the one that usually cooks our Thanksgiving turkey. This pot can hold a 30 lb turkey.
What goes into the tzimmis you ask?
beef in big cubes
white potatoes
sweet potatoes
lima beans
cinnamon, allspice, ginger, paprika, brown sugar, sour salt

Eventually the tzimmis looked like this. I put the tzimmis in the fridge and then  I went to sleep.

While the tzimmis was cooking I peeled cabbage leaves.
Sweat that cabbage
Peel those leaves, two soup spoons do a good job helping to peel off the leaves. If you core the cabbage well the job is made much easier. 

Today I stuffed the cabbage.

If you nip out the tough stem then rolling is much easier.

You fold left and right over the meat and then roll the leaf up from bottom to top. Put some cut up cabbage leaves  in the bottom of the pot so the cabbage roll's don't burn. Keep rolling and filling up your pot. I ran out of cabbage so just let the rest of the meat just be meatballs.
My friend Anne will be horrified at the raisins, but tough noogies, they belong there.But if I ever make stuffed cabbage for Anne i will leave out the raisins for her. I didn't take a photo of the completed stuffed cabbage but trust me, it got cooked.

We have roasted tomatoes for the salads both nights.

I made a plum tart.
I realize that the holiday food doesn't need to exactly replicate the food in our memories, it just has to evoke those memories.

Wishing all of you a sweet and healthy new year.

שנה טובה


  1. Yeah yeah yeah, you and my Mom. I'd eat them with raisins (horror) just to eat stuffed cabbage, love the stuff. I missed the Polish festival at St Somebody Unpronounceable in Dorchester this year and have not been in the mood to make them myself. Enjoy! Ann

  2. My stuffed cabbage has no raisins and is not sweet. Make it twice a year for Rosh Hashanah/Sukkos and Passover.
    Along with brisket, corned beef, and salt and pepper noodle kugel. All traditional just what my family loves. I also look at lots of recipes but end up making the usual. Why mess with perfection?

  3. Anne B, I would so make them for you.

    HeleneK- where is your family from in Europe?? I think that Poles like their food sweet and Litvaks like the salt pepper. growing up the tzimmis and the cabbage were the only sweet main dishes in the repertoire. I have a fondness for sweet/savory.


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