Coming Out of Left Field

Sunday, October 04, 2009

Some holiday humor

With Jewish holidays in full gear, it seemed like a good time to pass on a list of food "definitions" that's been circulating in e-mail. Enjoy!

~snip~

Latkes
A pancake-like structure not to be confused with anything a first class health restaurant would put out.. In a latka, the oil remains inside the pancake. It is made with potatoes, onions, eggs and matzo meal. Latkas can be eaten with apple sauce but COULD also be used to comb your hair, shine your shoes or lubricate your automobile. There is a rumor that in the time of the Maccabees, they lit a latka by mistake and it burned for eight months. What is certain is that you will have heart burn for the same amount of time It tastes GOOD, but will stop your heart if the grease gets cold..

Matzoh
The Israeli's punishment for escaping slavery. It consists of a simple mix of flour and water - no eggs or flavor at all. When made especially well, it could actually taste like a cardboard box recycled from the Tel Aviv city dump. Its redeeming value is that it does fill you up and stays with you for a long time. Sometimes for too long and it is recommended that you eat lots of prunes with it. If the prunes do not work, try castor oil....or even gun powder as a last resort before a surgeon has to mine it out..

Kasha Varnishkes
One of the little-known "delicacies" which is even more difficult to pronounce than to cook.. It has nothing to do with varnish, but is basically a mixture of buckwheat and bow-tie noodles (not macaroni). Why a bow-tie? Many sages discussed this in the Old Testament and agreed that an ancient Jewish mother decided, 'Son, you can't come to the table without a tie' or, G-d forbid, put an elbow on my table?' If Mamma said "bow ties', you better believe that's what the family used, even if they had to invent them on the spot.

Blintzes
Not to be confused with the German war machine's: 'blintzkreig'. Can you imagine the Jerusalem Post in '39 with huge headlines announcing: 'Germans drop tons of cheese and blueberry blintzes on Poland - shortage of sour cream expected.' Basically this is the Jewish answer to Crepe Suzette. They are actually offered on the menu at the local International House of Pancakes, but no one there knows what the hell they are. In ignorant bliss, they often serve them frozen from the blintz factory. No modern American woman will take time to make them if she can find a grocery store selling frozen ones. (Assuming she can find someone in that store that knows where they are stored.)

Kishka
You know from Scottish Haggis? Well, this ain't it. Remember what I say if you should go to the highlands. You do not want to eat Haggis....no matter how much Scotch you've downed. In the old days they would take an intestine and stuff it. Today we use parchment paper or plastic (made in China ). And what do you stuff it with? Carrots, celery, onions, flour and spices. But the skill is not to cook it alone but to add it to the cholent (see below) and let it simmer for 24 hours until there is no chance whatsoever that there is any nutritional value left. The gravy can be purchased in bulk at all southern Bisquitville drive-thrus.

Kreplach
It sounds worse than it tastes. There is a Rabbinical debate on its origins. One Rabbi claims it began when a fortune cookie fell into the chicken soup. Another claims it started in an Italian restaurant, and the owner yelled at the chef, 'Dis apasta testes lika krep!'. Either way it can be soft, hard, or soggy and the amount of meat inside depends on whether it is your mother or your mother-in-law who cooked it. Tastes best if made in a Manhatten deli where they serve the soup by the barrel load.

Cholent
This combination of noxious gases had been the secret weapon of Jews for centuries. The unique combination of beans, barley, potatoes, and bones or meat is meant to stick to your ribs and anything else it comes into contact with. Precusor of the invention of Superglue. At a fancy Mexican restaurant (kosher of course) I once heard this comment from a youngster who had just had his first taste of Mexican fried beans: 'What, they serve leftover cholent here too? A Jewish American Princess once came up with something original for guests (her first and probably last cooking attempt at the age of 25): she made cholent burgers for Sunday night supper. The guests never came back. The dogs ate the burgers....but later threw up and had to be taken by ambulance to the pet emergency room.

Gefilte Fish
A few years ago, an Israeli politician had problems with the filter in his fish pond and a few of his fish got rather stuck and mangled. His son (5 years old at the time) looked at them and asked 'Is that why we call it 'Ge-filtered Fish'?' Originally, it was a carp stuffed with a minced fish and vegetable mixture.. Today it usually comprises of small fish balls eaten with horse radish (pronounced, 'chrain' to rhyme with 'insane', which you have to be to inflict it on your innards) is judged on its relative strength in bringing tears to your eyes at 100 paces.The VERY NAME OF THIS DISH FRIGHTENS FULLY GROWN AND SOPHISTICATED GENTILES and they actually run when it is merely mentioned.

Bagels
How can we finish without the quintessential Jewish defense weapon, the bagel? Like most foods, there are legends surrounding the bagel although I don't know any other than it was first discovered when unsugared donuts accidentally petrified. There have been persistent rumors that the inventors of the bagel were the Norwegians who couldn't get anyone to buy smoked lox. Think about it: Can you picture yourself eating smoked salmon or trout on white bread? Rye ? A cracker? Naaa! The Israeli Defense Forces research lab looked for something hard and almost indigestible which could take the spread of cream cheese and which doesn't take up too much room in desert-maneuvers-ration kits. And why the hole? The truth is that many philosophers believe the hole is the essence and the dough is only there to indicate where the hole is placed. It remains an eternal existential discussion topic. Meanwhile the Gentiles discovered they like them and are now getting as fat as the Jews eating at McDonalds.

~snip~