We finally got the chance to return to our original stomping grounds for another Pop Up Foodie Shabbat this past Friday. Inspired by Jon H's recent travels through Greece, we decided to do a Greek taverna themed menu for "My Big Fat Greek Shabbat." Then came the all important question: what do we cook? Whole fish, of course! Our original idea was to have a whole fish for each person or couple of people, but that was a fantasy--especially with how much seafood costs! Compormise: we do a big whole fish that's perfect for presentation and inspiration (see below) and then add more filets to fill people up. So that's how we came to meet our big fish friend, whom we dubbed, Hercules. Hercules was roasted whole with lemon, oregano, lemon pepper, olive oil, salt, garlic, parsley and over a bed of lemon slices and fresh dill. He was delicious and fed almost 20 people all by himself!
The final menu? Whole Roasted Red Snapper and Crispy Skinned Salmon, Greek Salad with lots of feta cheese tossed in a lemon and mint tzatziki dressing, and Orzo with Black Olives and Feta Cheese. Yum! Plus, baklava for dessert as well as Greek yogurt flavored with vanilla, topped with fresh mixed berries and honey. Super fresh and super delicious! Overall, an awesome event and can't wait for the next one. ευχαριστώ (Efcharistó)
As we continued to celebrate J2Food's 1st anniversary, we hosted another event in NYC. Shabbat Under The Stars ended up being a rousing success, especially thanks to the support of OneTable and Moishe House Without Walls, and we had over 100 people come for delicious Mediterranean food and an awesome rooftop Shabbat experience. We had young Jews from a variety of backgrounds, and it was wonderful to see so many new faces and bring the Pop Up Foodie Shabbat experience to the masses. Moroccan Spiced Grilled Chicken, Grilled Corn and Black Bean Salad, Roasted Vegetable and Pesto Pasta, Mediterranean Citrus Rice as well as a Spicy Chickpea and Eggplant Stew were on the menu, followed by decadent, homemade Peach Cobbler. Yum! We can't wait for the next event. Stay tuned!
In honor of J2Food's one year anniversary, we returned to Philadelphia--the City of Brotherly Love--where it all began last year, and partnered up with Hillel's Jewish Graduate Student Network for a Summer In The City Shabbat. We decided to go with an old school theme, and what's more old school than Italian? We got 40 people to come out for a delicious and homemade Italian buffet made up of some our signature dishes. Freshly baked garlic bread challah, tangy Caesar salad, pasta with slow cooked veal and beef bolognese, roasted chicken thighs with sun-dried tomato aioli, spinach and caramelized onions as well as a moist vanilla cake with macerated strawberries with balsamic. Mangia!
We had a blast last night at Tribe12 Fellowships's 2017 Launch Night at NMAJH! We're proud to have started our J2Food journey through Tribe12 and to be part of the Fellows' alumni.
Passover is one of our favorite holidays. Why? It's all about eating: three sheets of matzah, two Seder meals, gefilte fish, matzah brei...you name it! And, personally, it's all delicious. This year's holiday was an especially busy time for J2Food. Not only was there cooking to be done for two large Seders, but each of us hosted a Shabbat dinner in a different city across the country from each other! The first was the "Judios Unidos Seder" in Philadelphia featuring a delicious, Latin spin on the traditional Seder. The menu featured flavorful dishes like ropa vieja, "gefilte fish" ceviche, rice and beans and more.
Our second Passover Shabbat dinner was "Shabbat On The Bayou" in New Orleans' French Quarter, a special Cajun edition of Pop Up Foodie Shabbat with a bold menu of matzah meal fried chicken, spicy chicken and sausage gumbo, braised greens and more. Big flavor in the Big Easy! The food ended up being delicious, and might have to become a regular event!
Exciting news: J2Food was live on Empire Radio on February 24, 2017. Listen to us talk all about J2Food, our foodie mission, our Pop Up Foodie Shabbat program, and the future for J2Food's culinary journey.
Chanukah is a wonderful holiday. Is it because of the eight days of presents? Nope. The shiny gelt (chocolate coins) that you can win from playing dreidel? That's good, but still not the best. It's because everyone loves latkes. I mean, they're basically fried potatoes, and on Chanukah we're commanded to eat fried things. How awesome is that? But there's always the great latke debate: sour cream or applesauce? I've seen families and friendships torn apart over the answer...very sad. In our house, we are very diplomatic and serve both with out latkes (though personally I'm a bit more #TeamSourCream. #SorryNotSorry.
For this year's Chanukah, we teamed up with the Moishe House in Murray Hill, NYC. They provided the space, we made the food, and the people came and had an awesome time. On the menu was Baked Ziti wth Roasted Tomato Sauce and Ricotta, Homemade Pesto Pasta with Fresh Mozzarella, Sun-dried Tomatoes and Parmesan, and, of course, latkes. To make it extra special, we came up with a new latke recipe we like to call Spanilatkas, made with spinach and feta cheese. They were super delicious and perfect with some sour cream tzatziki sauce. Thanks for having us Moishe House, and Happy Chanukah everyone!
Not to brag, but we pretty much rocked the house at this year's Hazon Philadelphia Jewish Food Festival. J2Food had its own table in the Community Marketplace and, of course, we had to bring something delicious for everyone to taste. We made over 300 Stuffed Mushrooms that people seemed to love--they were vegetarian and stuffed with a mixture of cheeses, textured vegetable protein, bread crumbs, and spices. By the end of the day all the mushrooms were gone, which I guess means we did our jobs. It was great connecting with other Jewish foodies from Philly as well as the surrounding areas, and it was great to feed the masses :)
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We hope everyone had a wonderful Thanksgiving holiday weekend--we definitely did! It was filled with lots of eating, cooking, family, friends and shopping! Did you remember to get a great Black Friday deal?
The weekend started out with a wonderful Thanksgiving meal with all the traditional favorites: Roast Turkey with Cranberry Sauce, Brussel Sprouts, Sweet Potato Casserole, Cornbread and Sausage Stuffing, Green Beans Almondine, Lemon Pepper Crescent Rolls and Pumpkin Pie. If that wasn't enough, the weekend continued with Shabbatsgiving, a special holiday edition of "Pop Up Foodie Shabbat," with support from OneTable.
Finally, on Saturday night we catered a pre-game party and provided delicious appetizers like Buffalo Chicken Bites, Thai Chicken Satay with Peanut Sauce, Stuffed Mushrooms, Sweet Potato Pancakes garnished with Soy Sour Cream and Black Olive Tapenade, Grilled Corn and Black Bean Salad, Meatball Sliders as well as Vanilla and Peanut Butter Cookies. They were all a big hit and there wasn't much left at the end of the night.
Overall, a very successful and exhausting holiday weekend! And....we can't wait to do it again! Stay tuned for more great events with delicious dishes and fabulous feasts. Don't forget to check out J2Food's table at the Hazon Philadelphia Jewish Food Festival on December 11th!
So our first official Pop Up Foodie Shabbat event in NYC was a big success with almost 50 people attending! We were originally planning for about 20-30 people, but people were very excited to come for delicious dinner and it ballooned from there. Luckily, we were able to partner up on this event as hosts for Moishe House Without Walls and OneTable. OneTable is a program to help people attend or host a Shabbat dinner by providing hosting nourishment for food or entertainment costs, and Moishe House Without Walls has a similar program for community members who have participated in their retreats and Moishe House programs in the past.
We had access to a beautiful, large sukkah and courtyard on Manhattan's Upper East Side, and tons of people came out for our Italian themed meal. There was lots of wine, lots of delicious food including Pasta Bolognese, Chicken Marsala, Spring Pea Risotto, Brownie Pie, and even homemade Garlic Bread Challah with an Arugula Pesto. Yum! The night ended up being great with the weather clearing up just in time for a beautiful Shabbat dinner in (and out of) the sukkah. Stay tuned for the next event!