Who knows—perhaps it was for a time like this that you became queen?” Esther 4:14
This week the Alpha Bakers made Hamantaschen, pastry cookies with a poppy seed filling that are served on the Jewish holiday of Purim. Purim celebrates the triumph of the Jewish people over a plot by an evil oppressor named Haman. This story is familiar to both Jewish and Christian believers and is detailed in the Book of Esther.
Judy shared some of the treasures of Judaism with this clueless Catholic girl. The joy she takes in her faith and heritage is inspiring, and it never diminishes her deep respect for other people's faith traditions. I am so lucky to have had her as an older "sister" when I was a young bride.
I grew up in Fort Lauderdale, Florida, where there is a large and vibrant Jewish community. That means there is no shortage of great Jewish FOOD! Bagel shops, delicatessens, restaurants and bakeries are easy to find in south Florida.
Thus, I have sampled Hamantaschen many times, but the recipe from The Baking Bible is far superior to anything I have tasted before. As Rose puts it, the cookie dough is always "sturdy" in bakery Hamantaschen. Even if the filling is good, the cookie dough always reminded me of stale Pop Tarts. The Hamantaschen were always the size of the palm of your hand, too--way too much of a not-great thing.
I hope that Judy and her beautiful family had a happy Purim yesterday, and thanks, everyone for stopping by my Artful Oven!