Monthly Archives: September 2011

Jewaicious Re Kiddush

When saying kiddush (a blessing), many people use a silver cup or goblet, some use gold or even glass.  One can use any cup.  I personally own a silver goblet that I treasure (shown in the photograph above).  It is only used for kiddush.  Reciting kiddush is a mitzvah.

It is a Torah commandment to recite kiddush before the evening meal on Shabbat eve and on Jewish holidays.

For those of you that do not understand the significance of kiddush, why not visit Judaism 101, and read about the Shabbat ritual of kiddush and other traditions regarding Shabbat.  The entire kiddush is shown in both Hebrew and English.


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Filed under Judaism, Photography

Jewaicious Recommends Books for Women

I am a collector of prayer books, and am recommending four particular books that I feel are excellent sources for women.

A Jewish Women’s Prayer Book, by Aliza Lavie

Seyder Tkhines, by Devra Kay

Hours of Devotion, by Dinah Berland

Waiting for Rain, by Bryna Jocheved

During this High Holy Day season, one can never have enough to ponder.  Quite often books will give one extra inspiration towards their reflections on the past year and the year to come.  These book are excellent to have on your nightstand to refer to throughout the year, also.

All of the books offers something positive and affirming for women.

I wish you all a happy New Year, filled with sweetness, love, joy and inner light.

Shana Tova!

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Filed under Judaism, Non-Fiction, Photography

Jewaicious Pound Cake Recipe

The above photograph was taken of my regular/”leavened”  pound cake while it was cooling off on a rack on my counter top.  Unfortunately I didn’t capture it when it had powdered sugar sprinkled on it.  But, nonetheless, my family and friends gobbled it up last year during our Rosh Hashanah dinner.  I put the pound cake on a large circular tray, positioned apples around the pound cake, along with some honey in slender bowls for dipping.  I also alternated bowls of orange marmalade for the pound cake.  I think it made a nice presentation.

Here are two recipes.  One is leavened and one is unleavened:

Regular or “Leavened” pound cake

2 c. flour
2 c. sugar (sugar substitute works quite well)
2 sticks butter, softened
1 tsp. each: almond and lemon flavoring
2 tsp vanilla (I use two for a sweeter taste, but some might like a less sweetened cake, and one tsp of vanilla will work well)
5 eggs

Mix all ingredients (adding the flour a little at a time) and spoon into greased and floured bundt pan. Bake at 350 degrees for about 1 hour, depending on ovens.  Mine took 50 minutes.

Unleavened pound cake

1 cup butter softened
4 eggs or egg substitute (I used egg substitute)
1 cup sugar or sugar substitute (I used sugar substitute)
2 tsp.vanilla
1 tsp each of almond flavoring and nutmeg
1/4 tsp. salt
2 c. flour (for Passover use 5 /8 cup of potato starch for each cup of flour)

For the unleavened pound cake, one must remember that it will not rise considerably like the regular or “leavened” pound cake will.  It will be a heavier consistency.


-Cream softened butter gradually adding sugar until light and fluffy looking
-Add vanilla flavoring and add eggs one at a time
-Sift together flour, salt and nutmeg.  Gradually add dry ingredients to egg, sugar and butter mixture and beat until thoroughly blended
-Turn batter into greased bundt pan. Bake at 325° for 1 hour (or until a toothpick comes out clean. Some ovens need a bit more or a bit less time. Mine baked in 55 minutes.
-Cool cake in pan for ten minutes, then move to a wire rack to completely cool
-Sprinkle with powdered sugar, or serve with your favorite topping, such as orange marmalade.

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Jewaicious – Venting

Venting, is a way of discharging anger, and a way of emanating one’s feelings and/or thoughts.

We are asked to try to vent our feelings and thoughts regarding another person/s during the High Holy Days.  We are also asked to forgive those individuals we feel have wronged us in some aspect.  That doesn’t mean we have to agree with them, or side with them, but put simply, it means to forgive them.

In my opinion, in order to forgive others, we must first learn to forgive ourselves for what we feel we have done to others, or for what others think we have done to them.

I hope the New Year brings you peace and contentment in ridding yourself of harboring ill will, anger and frustration towards yourself and others.

Shana Tova!

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Jewaicious Review – Jewish Pirates of the Caribbean

   No, this is not a book about a popular theme park ride, or a book about a series of films originally based on the name of a theme park ride.  It is a factual and historical book about pirates of the Caribbean…Jewish Pirates of the Caribbean.

If you are looking for a fascinating book detailing the history of Jewish pirates of the Caribbean, then this is the book for you!  Jewish Pirates of the Caribbean: How a Generation of Swashbuckling Jews Carved Out an Empire in the New World in Their Quest for Treasure, Religious Freedom–and Revenge, by Edward Kritzler, jumped out at me in the book store, beckoning me with its visual hook.

It was an intriguing and nonstop read for me. To call it fascinating, would be oversimplifying the historically accurate book.   The pages are filled with intrigue and compelling content, and intense documentation on the settling of Jews in Jamaica.  From sailors and spies, to swashbucklers and rogues on the high seas, to scoundrels and scallywags, to investors and merchants, to ship magnates and buccaneers, bankers and historical figures, the book often reads like an adventure story, when in fact it is based on historical reality.  Kritzler has certainly done his research, and his efforts are much more than spectacular!

I don’t want to spoil the book for anyone. It is a must-read!  Jewish Pirates of the Caribbean, by Edward Kritzler is a book that is in my personal library.  It is a book of immense historical importance. I  highly recommend it to everyone!

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Jewaicious Review – The Town Beyond the Wall

   Once again, in The Town Beyond the Wall, Elie Wiesel has brought us a novel in which he infuses pieces of himself within the pages, through the narrator, named Michael.  Michael is a Jew, and he is a survivor of the Holocaust. He is haunted by the past, by memories that he tries to hold on to, holding on literally for survival.  He is in constant search for validation and the meaning of life. He ruminates, contemplates, and examines, but he does not always find answers.

Some circumstances hold no answers, and there are no clear cut reasons for the occurrences.  The novel questions whether you can return to where your life began, to where you spent the first youthful formative years of your life, to where your life as you knew it ended, and not feel some form of pain or suffering.  The clear message is that to do so would be to blot out those who came before you.

Wiesel implies that suffering is man’s worst nightmare, where cowardice and courage can’t blend together with a firm, peaceful or true resolution. It is either one or the other, but not both.  He is masterful in his writing, and leaves us to ponder much. I have never read a book by Elie Wiesel that I didn’t like, and The Town Beyond the Wall is no different.  In fact, it is intense, compelling, thought-provoking, and is a novel that caused this reader to weigh, with deep thought, the aspects of remembrance and its extreme importance in all facets of life.  I highly recommend it to everyone.

I personally own and have read this book.

All reviews, prose, poetry, photographs and writings are copyright of Jewacious, and may not be reproduced or used without my express permission.

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Filed under Historical Fiction, Holocaust/Genocide, Judaism, Novels