Shabbat

Hosting a Shabbat meal is a wonderful way to spend quality time with family and friends without the distractions of the everyday (email, ringing cell phones, distracting smartphone messages…). It also offers an amazing template over which to create rituals and traditions that add new meaning and sustainable flair to the experience. Hazon offers the following resources to help you Green Your Shabbat and discover, “What makes this Shabbat meal different from other Shabbat meals?”

 


Involve your friends.

Don’t take on the local kavannah alone – get your friends involved! If no farmer’s market is readily available at which you/your guests can buy local produce, what other criteria can you use for buying locally or sustainably? Perhaps everyone will pledge to use no plastic bags in their shopping (including those little bags for vegetables and fruit!) or to bike to their supermarkets instead of hopping in a cab with an armload of groceries. ChicoBag is a great resource to find reusable bags, especially made for produce.

Potluck.

Involve your friends in more than the “no plastic bag” pledge, encourage them to create their own dishes and bring them over!

Utilize peoples’ skills.

Maybe someone is a great baker—ask him to make challah. Someone else might have a knack for roasting her own peppers or making fruit preserves—find a way to use that as well! Don’t feel afraid of using people’s skills to lead the blessings either! If friends and family at the table feel more comfortable with certain blessings, empower those at the table to share the blessings and take leadership of the ones most familiar and meaningful to them.

Take a Food Tour.

Invite friends and family into the conversation about where ingredients for your shared meal will come from.  Take a few minutes before, during, or after your meal to go around and have each person explain what is on their plate, where it came from, and who helped to get it to your plate!

Family Partnership.

If multiple family trees are present at your Shabbat Table, it is nice to involve each other in trading family traditions, culture, ways that Shabbat has been celebrated in the past, and ways you might like to celebrate it in the future. Learning from each others families is exciting, interesting, and an easy way to bring meaningful,  new traditions  of which you have witnessed the origins, at future Shabbat tables.

Bless your meal together.

Other than the traditional brachot (blessings), birkat hamazon (grace after meals), invite your guests to discuss whom they want to thank before, during, and following this unique meal and encourage them to create their own blessings or songs if they so choose.

Eat together.

With intention. In silence. Try spending the first 10 minutes of your meal just enjoying the food and company without speaking. It might feel a little strange at first, but see if you can relax into the idea. And of course you can share your experiences afterwards!

Learn together.

Identify a learning coordinator for your meal who will come up with questions to lead the discussion around the table, and identify short texts that can be learned together.

Discussion Starter Examples:

  • “What does sustainable mean to you?”
  • “How is your relationship to this meal different from other meals knowing how it was prepared and where the ingredients were purchased?”
  • “What is the connection between Shabbat and having a sustainable meal?”

Texts are another great way to create an order and guide your meal. Here are some examples:

  • Hazon’s book “Food for Thought” curriculum book is an incredible resource for relevant texts!
  • Highlights from Michael Pollan’s The Omnivore’s Dilemma
  • Barbara Kingsolver’s Animal, Vegetable, Miracle

An Activity for Your Classroom

In today’s world, we are often ignorant of the many steps and people involved in bringing food to our table. In the consciousness of many children (and adults too), flour is something that comes from the grocery store in a bag with a knight on it, and challah magically appears on the Shabbat table each week. This short activity helps to bridge that gap in our mind and illustrate the process to make challah, from the soil to your mouth.

Download this set of 16 cards, and ask your students to put them in order, whether by taping them on the wall, or standing in a line and moving around (it is even more fun if you challenge them to do it silently!).

After successfully completing the exercise, ask questions such as:

  • Were there any parts of the process that surprised you?
  • Were there any parts of the process that you had never heard of before?
  • What are some ways that we can be mindful about the process that it takes to get all of our food from the farm to our forks?

Download: Soil to Challah Cards

Share Your Stories:

Have you used the Soil to Challah activity in your community? Did you have a great conversation or did it inspire you to take action? Send an email to foodeducation@hazon.org with your story and you could be featured in an upcoming Hazon blog post.

Brakhot Cards Answer Key

Here is the correct order for the cards:

  1. Soil
  2. Plow
  3. Sow – plant your seeds
  4. Water, weed, and tend your seeds so they grow into wheat sheaves
  5. Reap – cut down and gather wheat sheaves
  6. Thresh – cleaning process to remove stalks and leave just the wheat kernels
  7. Winnow – separate the wheat grains from the husks
  8. Grind – break the wheat kernels into tiny pieces for flour
  9. Yeast & Water- making the dough
  10. Knead
  11. Rise
  12. Bless- separating, burning and blessing a piece of dough before baking
  13. Bake dough
  14. Challah
  15. Bless- blessing before eating
  16. Eat

Part of greening your Shabbat table involves paying attention to eating seasonally. Here are recipes for each season that will help you to keep the food at your Shabbat table sustainable, healthy, and delicious too!

Summer

Summer Quinoa Salad

Summer Quinoa Salad

Recipe originally from The Jew and the Carrot 

  • 2 cups quinoa
  • 3 ears fresh corn or 2-3 cups frozen corn
  • 1 butternut squash, peeled and cubed
  • 2 limes, juiced
  • 1/2 cup scallions, finely chopped
  • 2 cloves garlic, minced
  • 1 jalapeño, minced
  • 1/4 cup olive oil
  • 1 pinch salt
  • 1/2 tsp cayenne
  • 2/3 cup pine nuts or toasted almonds

Roast corn on a cookie sheet with a little bit of olive oil. Sprinkle with salt and cayenne. Bake at 350 degrees for 20 minutes or until the kernels are light brown. Mix around a few times during roasting process.Roast small cubes of butternut squash in a separate pan (they cook at different speeds so it’s easier to keep them separate) with olive oil and salt. About 30-40 minutes or until the squash is soft and brown on the edges.

Rise quinoa. Add 3 3/4 cups to 4 cups water to the quinoa, bring to a boil, cover, and let simmer for 20-30 minutes or until water has been completely absorbed. Chop remaining ingredients and juice limes. Toast nuts or almonds. Transfer cooked quinoa to a large bowl and let it cool for five minutes. Then add olive oil, salt, and fresh garlic. Add corn, jalapeño, squash, scallions, and lime juice. Toss and adjust seasoning as needed. Garnish with pine nuts or almonds. 

Fried Zucchini Flowers

Fried Zucchini Flowers

Recipe originally from The Jew and the Carrot 

  • 3/4 plus 2 tbsp all purpose flour
  • 1/4 tsp. salt
  • 1 1/2 tbsp. olive oil
  • 1 egg yolk
  • Pinch nutmeg
  • 3 tbsp. dry white wine
  • 3/4 c. cold water
  • Oil for deep frying
  • 1 egg white
  • 16 male zucchini flowers or 16 sm. spinach leaves
  • Salt

For batter: sift flour and salt into medium bowl. Add next 5 ingredients one at a time in order given, blending well and making sure batter is smooth. Cover and let stand at cool room temperature (do not refrigerate) for 2 hours.

When ready to serve, heat oil for deep frying to 375 degrees. Beat egg white until stiff. Fold into batter, blending well. Dip flowers one at a time into batter and add to oil (do not crowd). Fry until golden brown, about 1 minute per side. Remove with strainer or slotted spoon and drain on paper towels. Transfer to dish, sprinkle with salt and serve.

NOTE: The male flower is a bright orange blossom and develops only a small thin stem that does not grow into a vegetable. Yield: 16 pieces. 

Pareve Rhubarb Muffins

Pareve Rhubarb Muffins

Recipe originally from The Jew and the Carrot 

½ cup parve margarine
1 cup sugar
1 large egg
2½ cups all-purpose flour
1 tablespoon baking powder
½ teaspoon cinnamon
½ teaspoon salt
1 cup vanilla soymilk
2 cups rhubarb, diced small
12 pecan halves

Preheat the oven to 400° F. Grease 12 muffin cups or line with paper cups.

Cream the margarine and sugar. Add the egg and blend well.

In a separate bowl, combine the flour, baking powder, cinnamon, and salt.  Add to the margarine mixture alternating with the vanilla soy milk. Do not overmix.

Fold in all of the rhubarb at once.

Spoon the batter into the muffin cups, distributing evenly. Place one pecan half in the center of each cup on top of the batter.

Bake on the center rack for 30 minutes or until a tester inserted in the center comes out clean and the tops are lightly browned.

Makes 1 dozen. 

Fall

Apple-Honey Challah

Apple-Honey Challah 

Recipe originally from The Jew and the Carrot 

  • 1/2 tablespoon active dry yeast
  • 4 tablespoons granulated sugar
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • 1/2 tsp cinnamon
  • 1/8 tsp freshly grated nutmeg
  • 4 1/4 to 4 1/2 cups all-purpose flour
  • 1 cup of warm milk (whole is best, low-fat is ok too)
  • 2 eggs + 1 for the glaze
  • 4 tablespoons of olive oil + 1 teaspoon for greasing the bowl and another for the glaze
  • 3/4 tablespoon dark wildflower honey
  • 1/2 cup diced organic dry apples

In a large bowl using a whisk combine the yeast, sugar, salt, cinnamon, nutmeg and 1 cup of the flour. Add the warm milk, 2 eggs, 4 tablespoons of olive oil, then the honey. (Add the olive oil first, then use the same measuring spoon to add the honey – residual oil on the spoon will make the honey slide right out.) Vigorously mix the ingredients until smooth, scraping the sides of the bowl halfway through, about 3 minutes. Add the remaining flour 1/2 cup at a time, alternating with the apples, which should be added in handfuls. Switch to a wooden spoon when the dough becomes too thick for the whisk. Continue mixing the dough until it is too stiff to stir.

Turn the dough out onto a lightly floured surface and knead until soft and springy, about 4 minutes. If the dough is sticky, dust with flour 1 tablespoon at a time – just enough to prevent it from sticking to the surface. The dough is done when it’s smooth and small air bubbles show under the skin. If you press your thumb into it the impression should bounce back. This is a slightly firm dough, which is exactly what you want for easy braiding later on.

Place the dough in a deep container greased with 1 tsp of olive oil. Turn the dough once to coat the top and cover with plastic wrap. Allow it to rise at room temperature until doubled in bulk, about 1 1/2 to 2 hours.

Line a baking sheet with parchment paper or lightly grease it with non-stick spray. Gently deflate the dough by pressing your fingers into it, then turn it out onto a lightly floured surface.

Braiding: There are several ways to braid your dough, using anywhere from 3 to 6 strands (or more!)

Preheat your oven to 350 degrees F and place the braided dough on your baking sheet, cover loosely with plastic wrap and let rise until almost doubled in bulk, 30 to 40 minutes. If you are using a loaf pan, likewise loosely cover your dough with plastic wrap and let rise until almost doubled in bulk, 30 to 40 minutes.

Just before the rising time has finished whisk together 1 egg and 1 teaspoon of olive oil, this is going to be the glaze for your bread. Gently brush the dough with a thick layer of it. Place the dough in the oven and bake for 30 to 35 minutes, or until the bread is a deep golden brown and sounds hollow when you thump it on the bottom. If you are using a loaf pan you can test your bread by covering the pan with a clean kitchen towel then, while wearing oven mitts, flipping the pan over so that the bread falls into the towel. Thump the bottom. If it does not sound hollow place the pan back on the bread, flip it over, and put it back in the oven for another 5 minutes or so.

When your bread is done transfer it to a baking rack to cool. Allow to cool completely before slicing – or at least wait until it’s warm, not hot – then enjoy!

Arugula Salad

Wilted Arugula Salad with Sauteed Leeks and Apples

Recipe originally from The Jew and the Carrot 

  • 1 bunch arugula
  • olive oil
  • 1 leek, white and light green parts only, thinly sliced
  • 1 apple, cored and sliced (these first three ingredients all came from my box)
  • balsamic or cider vinegar
  • walnut oil
  • handful of walnuts, toasted
  • cheese optional

Wash and dry the arugula. Put it into a salad bowl.

Heat olive oil in a skillet, and add leeks and a pinch of salt. Sautee for a few minutes, and add the apple slices. Saute a minute more, and then add enough vinegar just to cover the apples. Lower the heat, allowing the apples to absorb the vinegar, and for the rest to reduce a bit.

While still hot, pour the apple mixture over the arugula. Add the nuts, and cheese if desired. Finish off with a touch of walnut oil, and salt and pepper. A salty or pungent cheese can be added if desired.

Zucchini Pancakes

Zucchini Pancakes

Recipe originally from The Jew and the Carrot 

  • 1 ½ pounds zucchini
  • 6 scallions, thinly sliced
  • ¼ cup chopped fresh dill or 1 tablespoon dried dill
  • 8 ounces low-fat feta cheese
  • 1 teaspoon paprika
  • ½ cup whole wheat pastry flour
  • 3 eggs, beaten
  • Olive oil for frying

Grate the zucchini coarsely. (A food processor works well.) Add the scallions, dill, cheese, paprika, flour and eggs.

Heat the olive oil in a large skillet. (I use a non-stick pan.) Drop the zucchini mixture by large tablespoons and spread them out to make thin patties. Cook until crisp and brown on both sides.

Makes about 24 small pancakes.

Apple and Pear Crisp

Apple and Pear Crisp

Recipe originally from The Jew and the Carrot 

Filling:

  • 2 medium sized pears (like Red Anjou), peels left on, cored and chopped into 1/2 inch pieces
  • 2 medium sized apples (like Rome or Winesap), peeled, cored, and chopped into 1/2 inch pieces

Crisp Topping:

  • 3/4 cup unbleached flour
  • 3/4 cup brown sugar
  • 1/2 tsp cinnamon
  • 1/2 tsp ground ginger
  • 1/2 tsp salt
  • 1/4 cup rolled oats
  • 1 stick (8 tablespoons) of cold butter, roughly cut into chunks
  • Optional: 1/4 cup crystallized ginger pieces, chopped finely

Instructions:
Preheat your oven to 350 degrees F.

Gently mix the apple and pear pieces in a bowl and evenly distribute them in a round, 8-inch ceramic or glass pie dish. Set aside.

Mix the flour, salt, sugar, cinnamon, ground ginger, oats and (if using) crystallized ginger pieces in a medium-sized bowl. Add the butter and, using a pastry cutter or your fingers, incorporate the butter until the mixture roughly resembles cornmeal. Spread the topping evenly over the apple and pear and put the crumble in the oven. Cook until the fruit is bubbly and fragrant and the topping is very lightly browned and, well, crisp.

Winter

Root Vegetable Soup

Creamy Root Vegetable Soup with Honey Crisped Walnuts

Recipe originally from The Jew and the Carrot

  • 1 tablespoon extra-virgin olive oil
  • 1 tablespoon unsalted butter
  • 1 pound onions, roughly chopped (about 4 cups)
  • 4 to 6 peeled garlic cloves
  • 2 tablespoons finely chopped fresh ginger
  • Sea salt or kosher salt
  • 2 pounds assorted winter root vegetables, such as rutabaga, carrot, parsnip, turnip, celery root, and sunchokes, peeled and roughly chopped (about 8 cups)
  • 2 teaspoons fennel seeds, lightly toasted and finely ground
  • 1/4 teaspoon ground turmeric
  • 6 cups water or vegetable stock
  • 1 cup heavy cream or half and half ( from a grass fed cow please)
  • Freshly ground black pepper
  • Chopped fresh parsley, for serving
  • Honey-Crisped Walnuts, for serving

Heat the oil and butter in a heavy, 4 to 5 quart saucepan over medium heat. Add the onions, garlic, ginger, and 1 teaspoon salt and stir well. Cover the pan and simmer over medium-low heat until the garlic and onions are soft and juicy, 15 to 20 minutes.

Add the root vegetables, ground fennel, and turmeric. Raise the heat to medium-high and cook, stirring, for 2 to 3 minutes. Pour in the stock or water and bring to a boil.

Reduce the heat to low and simmer until the vegetables are completely tender and crush easily against the side of the pan, 30 to 40 minutes. Add the cream and simmer 3 to 4 minutes. Using an immersion blender (or working carefully in batches in a food processor or stand blender), purée the soup until smooth, then season with black pepper and additional salt, as desired.

Serve hot, garnished with chopped parsley, and honey-crisped walnuts.

Honey-Crisped Walnuts

Sweet, crunchy roasted walnuts are the perfect accompaniment to everything from breakfast yogurt to salads, cheese platters, and creamy root vegetable soups.

  • 1 teaspoon unsalted butter
  • 1 cup walnut halves and pieces
  • 3 tablespoons honey
  • Fine sea salt

Preheat the oven to 350 degrees.

Rub a small baking dish or pie plate with the butter. Add the walnuts and drizzle evenly with the honey. Roast, stirring every 5 minutes, until golden brown, 13 to 14 minutes.

Scrape the walnuts onto a plate, season lightly with salt, and let cool. The walnuts will keep in an airtight container in the freezer for up to 3 months.

Beet and Carrot Burger

Baked Beet and Carrot Burger with Brown Rice, Sunflower Seeds, and Cheddar Cheese

Recipe originally from The Jew and the Carrot

  • ½ cup sesame seeds
  • 1 cup sunflower seeds
  • 2 cups peeled, grated beets (2 medium beets)
  • 2 cups grated carrots (about 4 carrots)
  • ½ cup minced onion
  • 2 eggs, lightly beaten
  • 1 cup cooked brown rice
  • 1 cup grated Cheddar cheese
  • 1/2 cup vegetable oil*
  • ½ cup finely chopped parsley
  • 3 tablespoons flour*
  • 2 tablespoons tamari
  • 1 clove garlic, finely chopped
  • ¼ teaspoon cayenne pepper

Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Lightly grease a baking sheet.

Place a small, heavy skillet over medium heat. Add the sesame seeds and stir them until lightly browned and fragrant, 3 to 5 minutes. Remove from heat and transfer to a small bowl.

Return the skillet to the heat and add the sunflower seeds. Stir them until lightly browned and fragrant, 3 to 5 minutes. Transfer them to the dish with the sesame seeds.

Combine the beets, carrots, and onion in a large bowl. Stir in the sunflower and sesame seeds, eggs, rice, cheese, oil, flour, parsley, tamari and garlic (your hands work best here). Add cayenne and mix until thoroughly combined.

Using your hands, shape the mixture into 12 patties and arrange them in rows on the baking sheet.

Bake the patties until brown around the edges, about 20 minutes. Unless they are very large and thick, it should not be necessary to turn them. Serve alone or on buns.

Baklava

Baklava

Recipe originally from The Jew and the Carrot

  • ½ cup shelled pistachios
  • ½ cup shelled walnut pieces
  • ¾ sliced almonds2 cups sugar + ¼ cup sugar
  • 1 cup water
  • ½ cup honey
  • 1 star anise
  • 1 cinnamon stick
  • 3 ounces almond paste (marzipan)
  • 7 sheets phyllo
  • About ¼ cup canola oil or melted butter for dairy meal

Preheat oven to 350

Place all the nuts on an ungreased cookie sheet. Lightly toast the nuts until they are golden brown. Let cool.

Transfer the nuts to a food processor, add the ¼ cup of sugar and pulse until the nuts are slightly ground but chunks remain.

Transfer the nuts to a mixing bowl. Break up the almond paste with your fingers and mix it into the nuts.

Place the water, remaining sugar, honey, star anise and cinnamon stick in a medium saucepan. Bring the mixture to a simmer and turn off.

Place a sheet of phyllo on a cutting board or work surface. Lightly brush the phyllo with canola oil. Place a second sheet on top of the prepared sheet and lightly brush it with oil. Continue in this manner until all sheets are brushed.

Place the nuts on the prepared phyllo and spread them to cover the bottom 2/3 of the phyllo. Roll the phyllo away from and press down to form a slightly flattened log.

Place the log on a baking sheet. Score the baklava with a sharp knife every 1 ½ inches. Brush the baklava with the remaining oil. Bake for 15-20 minutes until lightly browned. Pour the hot syrup over the baklava and allow the syrup to penetrate the cut pieces and drip down the sides.

Cool thoroughly before serving

Spring

Israeli Salad

Israeli Caprese Salad

Recipe originally from The Jew and the Carrot 

  • 1 medium sized ball, fresh mozzarella
  • 15 fresh basil leaves, washed
  • 2 ripe heirloom tomatoes
  • 1 Tbs Olive Oil
  • 1 1/2 tsp za’atar
  • sea salt / fresh pepper

Slice the mozzarella into 1/4 inch thick rounds. Slice the tomatoes the same way and remove the seeds. Arrange mozz, basil, and tomatoes on a plate – you can do this any way you’d like, but the traditional way is to layer them in an alternating pattern. Drizzle with olive oil, sprinkle with za’atar, salt, and pepper. 

Vegan Cholent

Vegan Cholent

Recipe originally from The Jew and the Carrot 

There are two ways to make cholent – in a pot to eat right away and in a crock pot, which gives you a yummy, hearty Shabbat lunch meal. Both methods are included below.

  • 2 Tbs Olive Oil
  • 1 large onion, cut into medium-dice
  • 3 garlic cloves, minced (eh, why not four?)
  • 1/2 tsp of tarragon
  • 1 tsp of caraway seeds
  • 1 tsp salt
  • several pinches of freshly ground black pepper
  • 1/2 cup vegetable broth
  • 2 bay leaves
  • 1 cup peeled, sliced carrots (about 1/2 inch thick)
  • 2 medium sized potatoes, peeled and cut into 3/4 inch chunks
  • 2 medium sized sweet potatoes, peeled and cut into 3/4 inch chunks
  • 1 (15-ounce can) tomato sauce
  • 3 cups water (+ 1 cup vegetable stock for crock pot method)
  • 1/2 cup textured vegetable protein (TVP) chunks
  • 1/2 cup bulgher
  • 1 cup canned and drained lima beans or green peas
  • 1 (15 ounce) can kidney beans, drained and rinsed

Preheat a large soup pot over medium heat. Saute the onions in the oil until translucent, 5-7 minutes. Add the garlic, tarragon, caraway seeds, salt, and pepper. Saute until the garlic is fragrant, about a minute more.

Method One: Pot

Deglaze the pot with the veggie broth. Add the bay leaves, carrots, potatoes, sweet potatoes, tomato sauce, water, TVP, and bulgher. Mix together. Cover and simmer for about 30 minutes, until the potatoes and carrot are tender. Add the lima and kidney beans and cook until heated through. Serve like crazy. Ess gezunterhait.

Method Two: Crock Pot

Deglaze the pot with veggie broth. Pour deglazed mixture into a large crock pot and add bay leaves, carrots, potatoes, sweet potatoes, tomato sauce, water, vegetable stock, TVP, bulgher, lima beans and kidney beans. Mix together and let sit – with the crock pot turned OFF – until about 30 minutes before Shabbat. (This mixture can be made right before, or made in the morning and stored, covered, in the fridge). About 30 minutes before Shabbat, turn your crock pot to either “low” or “keep warm” (Depends on how insane your crock pot is – mine cooks like crazy no matter what, so I leave it on “keep warm”). Let the mixture cook sloooowwwwly, until lunch the next day. 

Lemon Cheesecake

Creamy Lemony Cheesecake

Recipe originally from The Jew and the Carrot 

  • 2 eggs
  • 1 1/4 cups sugar
  • 2/3 cup sour cream
  • 1 tsp vanilla
  • 1 Tbsp flour
  • zest of 1 lemon (optional)
  • 24 oz cream cheese
  • 1 graham cracker crust

Preheat oven to 325 degrees.

Let all ingredients including eggs come to room temperature.

Beat eggs and sugar until well blended, then stir in sour cream, vanilla, flour, and lemon zest. Fold mixture into cream cheese until smooth. Do not overmix.

Pour into graham cracker crust. Bake in oven for 50 minutes, then turn oven off and leave cheesecake for at least 5 hours, and no more than 8. Do not peek or open oven door.

Cool and serve (tip: Dip the knife in hot water before you make each cut to avoid jagged edges).

Go Local

Set a kavvanah (special intention) to “go local.” Whether you decide to make all your dishes from scratch, or purchase some things ready-made, make a pledge to feature ingredients and dishes that are locally grown. Remember that the definition of “local” is loosely defined – so decide in advance where you want to draw the boundary. Even if you don’t manage to eat all local, all the time in your day-to-day life (and really, who does?), Shabbat is the perfect time to strive for that ideal. See just how local you can go!

Local Produce

Getting your produce from a local  farmers market, food co-op, or CSA (check out Hazon’s CSA Program), are all great ways to bring local produce directly to your Shabbat table. This gives you the opportunity to celebrate Shabbat with a healthy festive feeling, and a means for bonding with the community surrounding you over the plentiful benefits of sustainable local food!

Kosher Sustainable Food Options

Wine…

If you are comfortable drinking non-kosher wine, try to find a bottle (or box) of wine grown and produced close to home. If you prefer kosher, check out this kosher organic wine list. The Jew and the Carrot has a great article on what wines to pair with your Shabbat meal!

Meat…

Recent scandals in the kosher meat world have led many to reconsider what kosher meat really means. While we might have at one time assumed that kosher meat was healthier and more sustainable, in fact most kosher meat is raised the same as conventional non-kosher meat. However, a small number of crusaders have launched companies to make sustainably raised kosher meat available.

Cheese…

Until recently, the world of kosher cheese was pretty bleak. On the one hand you had shrink wrapped, industrial produced (but kosher certified) brands like Miller’s. On the other, you had artisanal, raw-milk and hand-crafted (but not kosher certified) cheeses. These days the tide is turning, now there are options to have your kosher cheese and eat ethically too!

Chocolate…

If you think it is impossible to indulge in chocolate treats with out stearing clear of the Hershey’s and Nestle products, you are luckily incorrect! There are many chocolate snacks that are organic, fair trade, cane-sugar sweetened, vegan, and kosher certified!

Hazon Producer Guide

See the Hazon Produce Guide for some suggestions which expand on the above sustainable, kosher food products.

Clean Up Green

After your sustainable meal, clean up with green cleaning supplies like Seventh Generation, or Ecover. Invite your friends to help you wash dishes and put leftover food away. Whether or not you made all the food yourself, or invited friends to help, clean up should be a communal effort (which is more sustainable for you)!

Make Your Own Cleaning Products!

  • Baking soda – cleans and deodorizes
  • White vinegar – cuts grease and cleans windows
  • Coarse table salt – removes rust
  • Washing soda – cuts grease and removes stains
  • Vegetable-based liquid soap (castile soap) – is a general all purpose cleaner
  • Hydrogen peroxide – removes stains
  • Toothpaste – polishes silver
  • Hot water – added to baking soda makes an effective scrubbing paste
  • Microfiber cleaning cloth – reusable rather than paper towel
Learn more about Green Cleaning Products at Grassroots Environmental Education.

Further Resources for Greening your Shabbat:

Download a copy of Hosting a Sustainable Shabbat Dinner.

The Hazon Seal of Sustainability provides a roadmap to advance sustainability-related education, action, and advocacy in the Jewish community. In 2016, a pilot cohort of Jewish institutions across the country is working to receive Seal certification.

The Green Kiddush Guide has specific suggestions on how to schedule and promote a vegetarian Green Kiddush, a list of concrete ways to make it “green,” tips associated with each suggestion, and templates of educational signage.

Food for Thought was designed with the Shabbat table in mind. It helps to frame the conversation with friends and family, and provides insightful discussion questions for all to ponder.

Email foodeducation@hazon.org for further information or questions.