Category Archives: Food

Choose the Right Apple – Baking, Snacking, Salads

While apples can be found in grocery stores all year long, there is a huge difference between a lovely, ripe, firm piece of fruit and a mushy, mealy discolored blob. Fall, of course, is the best season to buy and eat apples; this is also the time when the price is the lowest.

Personally, I am a HUGE fan of apples, provided they are extremely crunchy. To me, there is nothing less appetizing than a Red Delicious, but a Honeycrisp or a Crispin is very high on the list.

It’s interesting that different types of apples have different features, making some good raw and others best cooked. Within the past decade, I’ve noticed a much wider variety being offered in every store, even places like Walmart. If you’ve never experimented with some of these, it’s definitely worth a try.

Apples for Cooking:

These are excellent when lightly sautéed, either as a side dish or as part of a meat-based entrée.

  • Granny Smith
  • Cortland
  • Gravensteins
  • Fuji


If you’re inclined to make your own, these are good options.

  • McIntosh
  • Honeycrisp
  • Empire
  • Golden Delicious

Apples for Salads:

Look for something crunchy and slice it thinly.

  • Granny Smith
  • Gala
  • Jazz
  • Ginger Gold

Apples for Baking:

When baking, the sturdier the apple, the best.

  • Pippin
  • Winesap
  • Golden Delicious
  • Cortland
  • Rome Beauty
  • Jonagold

Apples for Snacks:

  • Braeburn
  • Honeycrisp
  • Fuji
  • Gala 
  • Jazz
  • Crispin

Apples for Rosh Hashanah:

All apples turn brown after cutting, but certain types keep a bit better (mind you, nothing lasts forever, and a cut apple is best eaten quickly).

  • Gala
  • Cortland
  • Empire
  • Cameo
  • Ambrosia

Caramel Apples:

Use something sour to balance the sweet coating. Granny Smith works wonderfully.


What is your favorite apple?

One-Pan Rosh Hashanah Chicken Dinner

Don’t have the time or energy to cook a huge meal for Rosh Hashanah? This recipe for a One-Pan Chicken Dinner from the Boston Globe has got to be the easiest holiday meal I’ve ever seen.

It contains a delicious mix of white and dark chicken pieces, shallots, carrots, honey, and apricots, along with various spices and braising liquids. Using standard orange carrots along with purples ones makes such a colorful plate.

If you’re not an experienced cook, first time host, or otherwise nervous about cooking/entertaining, a one-pan meal is nearly foolproof and will significantly cut down on stress and chaos in the kitchen.

Frivolous Kosher & Halal Lawsuits

Anyone who’s ever eaten at a fast food restaurant knows that your meal is not prepared with loving care. The goal is to serve customers as quickly as possible, which often results in mixed up orders that contain low quality junk.

That’s why I’m surprised about two lawsuits recently filed in Detroit. Customers who follow Kosher and Halal diets claim that they were served bacon at KFC and Denny’s. Do I doubt their sincerity? Absolutely not. I’ve eaten plenty of fast food in my life and 9 times out of 10, something goes wrong, particularly if you place a special order. Many fast food workers are teens who pay no attention to detail. Good luck getting something as simple as extra pickles, let alone trying to explain complicated dietary laws to someone who has no idea what they are, nor do they understand why it’s important.

While I believe that reasonable accommodations should be made, there’s no way to ensure that a commercial kitchen can prevent cross contamination 100% of the time. Anyone I know who is strict about their diet, whether it’s Kosher, Vegan, gluten-free, or nut-free, simply will not eat out at a conventional restaurant. In a perfect world, everyone would get what they want, when they want it. But you truly can’t expect to order from a dollar menu and think that you’ll receive a gourmet dish. It’s just not reality.

In both lawsuits, the customers admit when they complained, Denny’s and KFC offered to remake their food and/or return their money. That demonstrates that it was not ill intent, just the typical bad service/bad food we have all come to expect in a modern world that’s rife with cost-cutting measures and overworked, untrained staff. 

My guess is that both suits will be dismissed, due to a lack of merit.

A Jewish Twist for Burgers (Yum!)

Ever wanted to take a standard burger and kick it up a notch? My Jewish Learning has a great article about adding “Jewish Flair” to your grill.

A few of the recipes include:

  • Cumin-Spiced Burgers with Harissa Mayo
  • Za’atar Burgers with Horseradish Aioli Quinoa
  • Chickpea Burgers with Creamy Tahini Sauce

The one I’d most like to try is the grilled pastrami burger with onion rings. How amazing does this look?!

Talk about a savory, salty snack attack. Yum!