I’ve been talking to everybody I know about Jewish food for the last few months. (A lot longer than that, but really focused on it now.) The most interesting thing to me is that my sister and I have opposite views on the important things. We grew up in the same house and had the same parents and grandparents cooking for us, so how did our preferences diverge so widely?
- Matzo Balls – I like them fluffy. Not super-fluffy so they’re falling apart, but fluffy so it’s not like I’m eating a cement ball. My sister feels that they should be firm enough that they’ll bounce off the floor and hit the ceiling if you toss one.
- Fried Matzo #1 – I like it sweet with syrup drizzled on top. She likes it savoury with butter and salt or some sautéed vegetables.
- Fried Matzo #2- I prefer using the pancake method – one single pancake of fried matzo, nice and brown on both sides. She’s of the “scrambled eggs” technique. You mix it up as it cooks and it doesn’t form that nice crust (“I don’t like it crusty!” says she. “Oh, I do” says I.)
- Even though we’re (both) Ashkenazi, I like to say that I have the taste buds of an Ashkenazi and her taste buds are Sephardi. A chicken dish I made last week was liked by all, but my lips went a little numb and I made the comment “cut back on the chili powder a little”. Her response “no, it’s good.”
This is just a sampling, I’m sure I could go on. Check back later for a new post, potential title “My Mother Prefers More Salt – I Prefer More Pepper”