Interview with Hadassah Levy

Hadassah Levy Please welcome Hadassah Levy, website and social media manager for Jewish Ideas Daily and The Pet Wiki for today’s reader interview. She lives in Eli, Israel and with her husband and 4 children.

  1. What do you remember about family meals and your mother’s cooking style when you were growing up? My mother cooked typical American foods. Everyone who was home sat down together for a meal and the TV was never on, except for during the first Gulf War.
  2. How is your cooking style different from your mother’s? I like to make Chinese-style stir-frys, which my mother didn’t start doing until long after I had moved out. My husband’s love of spicy food has had some effect too, although the rest of us can’t handle anything too hot.
    What is your favorite gadget? I got a food processor when I got married as a gift and it has served me faithfully. I never shred anything by hand, and if it will really save me time, I use it for slicing as well. An honorable mention goes to my wok, which though not really a gadget, I could not live without.
  3. Do you entertain, and in what circumstances? What is the biggest party or meal you have hosted to date? I often invite people for dessert, or for an informal dairy meal. In my community it is customary for these types of gatherings to be pot-luck so I don’t have to make all the food. When my daughters were born I made parties where I bought or made all the food myself.
    Can you share a typical daily menu? Weekly menu? We usually eat a meat meal for lunch and a dairy meal for dinner. I work from home, so lunch is often leftovers from a large meal made over the weekend. I try to put a bit more effort into dinner, and I make things like homemade pizza, muffins, noodle casseroles and chow-mein.
    How has your cooking style evolved over the years? I go through periods of being more or less adventurous, and of course now have to cater to my children’s tastes as well as ours. One of my daughters is a vegetarian, which makes my beloved one-pot dinners into two-pot dinners.  I have recently stopped being scared of yeast and separation of eggs.
  4. What posts on CM have you enjoyed? Do you have suggestions for future posts?
    I especially enjoyed the post which was inspired by me, about cooking for a crowd and freezing in advance! I haven’t started making most of the menu for my party yet, but it’s coming soon, so I better bet going!
  5. What is the oldest item in your kitchen? The newest?
    The oldest items are my grandmother’s pots which she gave me when she decided she was too old to cook for large family gatherings. She passed away recently, so these pots have sentimental value as well, even though they are not of modern Teflon quality. The newest thing in my kitchen is my new set of Corelle dishes, since I decided it was about time I had enough dishes to feed my family and some guests without forcing my older kids to eat on plastic plates.
    What would you like to change about your cooking style in the coming year? I would like to add more dishes to my dinner repertoire and encourage my children to eat more vegetables without them knowing it.
  6. Please share a favorite recipe and cooking tips. One of my favorite recipes is noodles with tuna and cheese. I cook a package of noodles, drain it, and pour a small amount of water into the bottom of the pot. Then I melt 7 pieces of American cheese (or equivalent) in the pot. I mix tuna with mayonnaise, white pepper and salt in a separate bowl and add to the cheese. Once a sauce has been formed, I put the noodles back in, mix to heat and turn the stove off. It’s like a tuna casserole but without the need to turn on the oven (and it comes out much more moist).

Thank you for sharing, and good luck with the vegetables. I think the best would be for your kids enjoyed the vegetables and knew they were eating them!

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  1. I like the idea of the tuna with noodles and cheese, thanks!