Bamitbach

Sharing Food and Memories with Friends and Family

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September 10, 2017
Irene Saiger

9 comments

Fig and Date Syrup Challah

The past few days have been filled with worry, not always at the forefront of my mind, but ready to surface at any given moment.  As Hurricane Irma began to pound Florida, those of us who are far away feel powerless, and all we can do is stay-tuned and pray for the best. My sister […]

Double Chocolate Biscotti

July 14, 2017

Today I unexpectedly found a chocolate biscotti.  The cookie had somehow fallen into a bowl perched on the edge of my kitchen counter where I discovered it poking out from the jars of vitamins. I had baked several batches of cookies on a Sunday just a few weeks ago in preparation for the out-of-town guests coming in for my youngest son’s wedding. Now two weeks later this single biscotti and a few cases of leftover wine in the living room are the only traces left of more than a year of planning .  

The wedding reflected the taste and personalities of the bride and groom. Not only was it fun but it was unique as well. The venue, Big Daddy’s Antiques, is a warehouse filled with, of course, antiques.  I loved being surrounded by things that had history and found it comforting and familiar. It wasn’t bright and shiny, but worn and warm like our family chuppah that’s been in use for several generations.   

It was the “wedding weekend ” they had hoped for.  Aufruf,  Shabbat dinner, pre-wedding drinks at a brewery, the main event, brunch for out-of-town guests, and two evenings of Sheva Brachot.  For six days many of us moved in unison, from Beverlywood to the Arts District to Culver City, Ladera Heights, and Westwood. We had food from Ta-eem Grill, Joan’s On Third, Tarte Catering and Got Kosher, as well as various dishes and home-baked goods that were prepared by friends and family.  It was a weekend of feasting and celebration, sharing the joy we all felt for Anna and Micah.  We laughed and cried, but now it’s time to settle back into our routines.  Then again, maybe I can linger with the memories for a few more minutes over that last biscotti. 

Double Chocolate Biscotti  Adapted from David Lebovitz 

2 cups flour

3/4 cup cocoa powder

1 teaspoon baking soda

1/4 teaspoon salt

3 large eggs

1 cup sugar

1 1/2 teaspoons Madagascar Bourbon Pure Vanilla Paste

1 cup pareve chocolate chips

For Top

1 egg mixed with 1 tablespoon water

2 tablespoons Turbinado sugar

Preheat oven to 350 degrees.  Sift together dry ingredients. In a large bowl beat eggs with sugar and vanilla paste. Stir in the dry ingredients, add the chocolate chips, and blend.  Line a baking sheet with parchment paper.  Divide the dough in half and roll into two logs. Transfer the logs onto a baking sheet, and gently flatten the top.   Brush beaten egg wash over logs and sprinkle with sugar. Bake for about 25 – 30 minutes or till almost firm.  Let cool for about 15 minutes, slice with serrated knife and place cut side down on cookie sheet.   Bake another 10-15 minutes.  Should feel dry and firm. 

April 3, 2017
Irene Saiger

15 comments

Chana Chat (South Asian Garbanzo bean salad)

Yesterday, just about a week before Pesach (Passover), my kitchen and dining room table were covered in flour.  Mounds of dough were portioned out around the edge of the table, potatoes were boiling in the kitchen, and salad ingredients were being chopped on every available surface. My daughter-in-law, Elizabeth, is involved in an organization called […]

July 22, 2016
Irene Saiger

10 comments

Stewed Okra (Bamia)

It has been a long time, too long, but summer feels most like summer if you can let things go.  I have not been blogging or cooking very much, but I have been sitting in my yard, harvesting tomatoes, kale, and zucchini from the garden, plus enjoying the very first blackberries that our newly planted […]

September 11, 2015
Irene Saiger

16 comments

Manya’s Pineapple Kugel

Superstition comes to me easily.  I can’t take all the credit, some of it was passed down by my Eastern European Mom who would be very proud of how successful she was in training me to look for “signs” everywhere, both good and bad.  Unfortunately there were a few minor glitches that happened to me […]

August 3, 2015
Irene Saiger

10 comments

Blueberry Cobbler

It’s on summer days when the hours are long, that I miss it the most, the kind of communal feeling  that existed when I was growing up in our apartment in the Bronx.  It was a time when everyone knew the names of their neighbors, and had a relationship with them.  Most of the women […]

June 12, 2015
Irene Saiger

8 comments

Peanut Butter and Jelly Cookies

June gloom has settled over Los Angeles.  After a tough week, I couldn’t wait to get home this afternoon knowing just what to do to help me feel “sunny,”  even if the weather isn’t cooperating. Lately I’ve been keeping a close eye on my backyard. I’ve picked the first blackberries from the bush we planted […]