We all get homesick. Don't worry.
Every Shabbat dinner at Chabad features a heaping five-course meal. With dishes prepared just hours before dinner, you can count on piling your plate high with love straight from a real mother's kitchen to her extended Jumbo family — it doesn't get much more homemade than that.
But sometimes you're just craving a little extra love.
Any recipes you submit will go straight to the Chabad Board. If they're kosher and doable, then we'll get right on incorporating your family recipe into an upcoming Shabbat dinner.
And if it's a big hit, then who knows? It might just become a regular staple...
Submit a Recipe!
I think I have an aunt Ruth, does that count? (The answer: not quite.)
What is Kashruth?
Kashruth (KOSH-root) is the area of Jewish law that looks at whether or not foods are kosher, or fit to eat by traditional standards. The Hebrew word kosher (KO-sure) literally means “fit" (and has come to be used more broadly to mean "legit").
In Judaism, to "be kosher" refers to food, i.e. whether it can be eaten by someone who "keeps Kosher." If you ask someone if they "are kosher," props to you for asking, but just so you know, they might think you want to eat them. Ask "Do you keep kosher?" or "Is this chicken kosher?"
DAIRY: Foods made from milk, like cheese, ice cream, yogurt, butter, and milk, of course. You might also hear it called the Yiddish milchik (MILL-hik).
MEAT: The flesh of a land animal or poultry, also known as the Yiddish fleishik (FLAY-shik)—by the way, we do offer a Yiddish class.
PAREVE (PAR-ev): All those things that aren't milchik or fleishik, like fruit, eggs, bread, fish, etc.
TREYF (trayf): Meat that isn't kosher. We're getting to what makes it kosher.
HEKSHER: A seal affirming that a food is kosher.
GLATT (glot): Determined to be of the utmost degree of kashruth.
First off, not all Jews nowadays keep kosher. You're not a "bad Jew" if you don't. And many Jews try to keep kosher to varying degrees. At the Chabad House, we keep kosher. If you want to start keeping kosher (to any degree), come talk to Rabbi Tzvi or Chanie sometime!
So, here are some rules.
Meat and dairy are never combined. Some people just won't eat both at the same time. Others have totally different sets of pots, dishes, tablecloths, and silverware for dairy and for meat (as we do at the Chabad House), and that means a meal will either be a meat meal or a dairy meal. Our Shabbat meals here are meat, so if your favorite dish is all about the cheese, we recommend submitting a different recipe. But if it's a soup that calls for butter or milk, for example, don't worry—there are lots of pareve substitutes (like margarine or soy milk), and many recipes can be transposed to be kosher.
If it's pareve, it's kosher. An apple is an apple is an apple. You can eat pareve foods with meat meals or with dairy meals. But for processed foods, since they might be coming from a facility where they could have been contaminated, they need a heksher to certify that they're kosher and pareve. Don't worry about this one for submitting a recipe, unless the key ingredient is some obscure Japanese brand of mushroom stock that is technically pareve but can't be verified.
What comes from a kosher animal is kosher, and vice versa. So if your recipe calls for horse milk (horses aren't kosher), we can't make that happen. Also, we don't have access to milkable horses.
So What Is/Isn't Kosher?
Here's a chart to make things easy.
Bottom line—no pork and no shellfish. We have a kosher butcher if we need to buy any meat.