Southern & Jewish
Southern & Jewish celebrates the stories, people, and experiences – past and present – of Jewish life in the American South. Hosted by the Goldring/Woldenberg Institute of Southern Jewish Life, posts come from educators, students, rabbis, parents, artists, and many other “visitors-to and daily-livers-of” the Southern Jewish experience. From road trips to recipes to reflections, we’ll explore a little bit of everything – well, at least all things Southern and/or Jewish. Shalom, y’all!
Like many Jews, I find my connection to Jewish holidays and the Jewish community as a whole through food. Self-reflection and meditation have never been my strong suits, so this set of holidays specifically can be difficult for me to relate to and find meaning in – but when I head into the kitchen, I can get into the holiday mindset.
Baking has always brought me peace and calm when stressed or overwhelmed, so using it to bring joy to other people and to do my own form of reflection during the holiday is incredibly helpful. I love finding special recipes for every holiday to share with my family and friends to show them how much I care.
Rosh Hashanah is one of my favorite holidays to bake for, as apples have always been my favorite fruit. The first time I made this recipe was for the first time I ever had the opportunity to host Shabbat dinner in college, so it holds a special place in my heart.
Here’s the recipe I use for Salted Caramel Apple Pie Bars (and yes, they’re as good as they sound).
I think the process of making these Salted Caramel Apple Pie Bars is particularly relevant—especially when you make your own caramel. Caramel is one of the more difficult things to make from scratch, as it cannot be left alone for even a moment. Caramel has to be constantly stirred for it not to stick to the pan and burn, giving you lots of time that you cannot busy yourself with multitasking. You must focus on this one thing. Some of the most special things, edible and otherwise, require care and reflection. Some of the most worthwhile projects require our undivided attention and effort.
Even for those of us who are not strong reflectors or meditators, having a moment to breathe is still helpful in this busy time of year. I hope this recipe brings joy to you and those you love. Shana Tovah!