Sharing Food and Memories with Friends and Family

July 4, 2013
Irene Saiger


Irma’s Sumi Salad

IMG_1290My children attended Akiba Academy, now known as Sinai Akiba, from grades K-8.  When Norm and I chose that particular school, the decision was based on reputation, philosophy, and location.  We were young parents and had no idea how that choice would impact not only the lives of our children, but our lives as well.  My children made life-long friends at Akiba, (my older son is now related to one of those friends) and some of our closest friends were also found in those classrooms.  Our family benefited in ways that we didn’t anticipate, by meeting and becoming friends with Jewish families that came from places like Iran, Mexico, Russia and Egypt. Being Akiba parents influenced our decision to send our children to Camp Ramah, (where our older son met his wife) it exposed us to more observant families, influencing the way we practiced Judaism, it opened our eyes to the benefits of Jewish education which ultimately led to the decision to continue with our children’s Jewish education through Shalhevet and Milken Community High School.

When I look back, I realize how significant those relationships were, in spite of how young our children were at the time.  That community of children and parents stood by each other through good times and challenging times, through celebrations and unfortunately, through losses.  I love that so many of them and so many of us are still in touch.  I love that early this morning my daughter called wanting my recipe for Sumi salad,  a salad I first tasted in the Silberman home over 20 years ago, shortly after David and Aaron met in Kindergarten. What better way to celebrate the 4th than with a recipe for a salad that was given to me by a friend I met through Akiba, who was born in Egypt, raised in Israel, and living in America.  Happy 4th to all and thank you Sinai Akiba.

Irma’s Sumi Salad

1 head shredded cabbage (or 1 bag)

8 green onions, thinly sliced

2 packages of Ramen noodles or a kosher equivalent.  Just use the noodles, not the seasonings

1/4 cup toasted sesame seeds

1 cup slivered almonds, toasted


1/2 cup frozen apple juice, thawed

1/2 cup rice vinegar

3 Tb dark sesame oil

1/2 tsp salt

1/4 cup sugar

Combine salad ingredients in a large bowl.   Take bags or Ramen and without opening them, break noodles in the bag with your hands or a rolling-pin.  Add to salad.   Mix dressing ingredients and pour over salad no more than 15 minutes before serving so noodles stay somewhat crispy.  Serves 6




14 thoughts on “Irma’s Sumi Salad

  1. I made this for MAj Jong game! I am sure to be invited back

    I just added chicken and snow peas, deliciosu

  2. Hi, Irene.

    I love to read your blog. It takes me down memory lane and I enjoy going there.

    I have had the good fortune to enjoy your sumi salad many times. It is delicious.

    Lots of love,
    Your shvester

  3. This looks amazing, and so much easier than I thought!

  4. Beautiful, Irene. Thank you and Shabbat shalom!

  5. Irene, the same holds true for us. I remember leaving Ariel with you and Susan Andron while I went school shopping, ending up choosing SAA. The school, the library minyan and Camp Ramah were the foundations upon which our lives were built. We all became family and despite the distance and the different paths taken still feel that strong bond. Thanks for bringing back those wonderful memories.

    • Thank you Esther!! We share lots of wonderful memories and it’s nice that somehow those early connections last. I look forward to seeing Maayan at the Spiwak wedding!


  6. Hi Irene, I loved your post! I love hearing of yours and the kids journey. How sweet to honor your friend of 20 yes by posting this recipe! I’ll have to try it with a gluten-free substitute for the noodles. Sounds yummy! Happy 4th…Love to you all! Candi

  7. OMG I really wish we were back at the school and enjoying the sights and sosunds of the youth of the future>>> love you all happay fourth and go red white and blue

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