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Nov 10, 2003 01:17 PM

Jewish food's integration into mainstream America

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Hi -- I'm a journalist at The New York Jewish Week writing on the above topic -- anyone have good/funny examples or stories to share? I'm thinking of things like green bagels on St. Patrick's Day, matzoh ball soup at every Greek diner in the NY metro area, books titled "Chicken Soup for the Christian Soul," things like that....thanks. -Debra

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  1. How about bagels at fast food places like Burger King -- with ham or bacon!

    2 Replies
    1. re: Nancy Berry

      Or the thread on the General Topics board, that dealt with the joys of matzoh brei fried in bacon fat...

      1. re: galleygirl

        Thought that was sacrareligious (sp) fat or peanut oil but bacon..yechh

    2. One of the first things you see when you walk into the BJ's Wholesale Club in Fairfax VA is a display full of tubs of rugelach.

      I can only imagine how some of the customers pronounce rugelach!

      3 Replies
      1. re: Bob W.

        Along those lines is hamentaschen available in delis and non-kosher bakeries all year round.

        1. re: AndeB

          At Sam's Club here in The-Middle-of-Nowhere, Minnesota, huge signs over the food kiosks trumpet that they serve "Beef KOSHER Hogdogs" (they bold and capitalize the KOSHER). Hebrew National has done a good marketing job convincing the non-Jewish, non-kosher public of the superiority of kosher hotdogs. What was their slogan? "Because we have to answer to a higher authority?"

          1. re: Garris

            It's ironic, isn't it, since most orthodox jews don't consider Hebrew National's kosher supervision adequate.

      2. the fact that kosher chicken and turkey is being trumpeted by foodies of every religion and no religion because it's always juicy so you can skip the brining step.

        1. Here in Boston when bagels were starting to go mainstream maybe 60 years, some bagel places started to spell them baigels. This practice still goes on, see link below. I understand this was done so the Gentiles could pronounce them correctly.


          2 Replies
          1. re: Mark Rifkin

            1 - nearly every greek diner in nyc offers challa french toast
            2 - you can buy knishes on the street (even if they are terrible)
            3 - every greek diner in nyc offers blintzes with sour cream
            4 - coffe shops in nyc have boxes of matza on hand during pesach

            1. re: sarah

              Matzah has become a very popular year-round dieter's food -- made easier, I would suspect, by the advent of flavored matzahs -- onion, poppy, and of course "everything" matzahs. There's (almost) no need to slather on the Temp-Tee!

          2. Yes, I remember a diner in DC having a "passover special" for a bagel with lox and cream cheese.

            And I could go on and on (and often do) about what has happened to my beloved bagel. Cosi's squagel is probably the worst offender, followed closely by the ham and cheese donut-shaped-bread known as a "breakfast bagel" at BK (mentioned elsewhere).