I have a truly bizarre relationship with Jerusalem. (Read more about it here –that’s my super secret pseudonym). I love that city like no place else on earth, but every time I’m there I feel like I’m being psychologically (and to a degree, physically) pummeled. When I was younger I always wanted to make Aliyah and live in Jerusalem. These days aliyah is not at the top ofÂ my list, and if I went, I’d probably want to live somewhere a little more mellow, like Beer Sheva, or Petach Tikva, but I can’t imagine going more than a week in Israel without spending the night in Jerusalem.
If you’ve never had Jerusalem Kugel –I am so so sorry. It is amazing. Sweet and spicy and greasy and amazing regardless of temperature. I like to serve it as a side dish on Shabbat, but a non-Jewish friend who I once had over for Shabbat dinner took as taste and said, “I cannot believe you are trying to pass this off as if it was potatoes or rice. This is straight-up dessert.” Which, okay, I understand that. It is pretty sweet stuff.
If you’re one of those non-sweet-loving mutants, or if you just want something complementary, try borekas, savory pockets of dough with potatoes or spinach or cheese inside. They don’t get any better than the kind you buy in the shuk in Jerusalem, but the homemade variety are excellent, too.
Pronounced: a-LEE-yuh for synagogue use, ah-lee-YAH for immigration to Israel, Origin: Hebrew, literally, “to go up.” This can mean the honor of saying a blessing before and after the Torah reading during a worship service, or immigrating to Israel.
Pronounced: shuh-BAHT or shah-BAHT, Origin: Hebrew, the Sabbath, from sundown Friday to sundown Saturday.
Pronounced: yuh-ROO-shuh-LIE-yum (long i), Origin: Hebrew, Jerusalem.