שלום לקולם אני פה בארץ....And Eating MAMAGLIGA
שלום מישראל. אני פה בארץ. מה שלוםכם? אני יושבת עכשיו בבית של אח של בעלי. קוראים לו מורדכי. אני למדתי
לכתב עברית לפני הרבה שנים. סלח לי על השכיות
For those who may not have learned Hebrew in their course of life's studies, this is what I wrote, or attempted to write, in my measly Hebrew.
Hello from Israel. I am here b'aretz (which translates to in the land and means "in the land of Israel".) How are you all? (which means y'all for my Texan readers.) I am, at the moment, at the home of my husband's brother,Mordechai and his wife Georgie (I didn't really write the Georgie part in Hebrew because it was giving me a headache to get it right, even by my current standards of Hebrew writing.) I learned to write in Hebrew a very long time ago. So, forgive me the mistakes.
According to Mordechai, there was at least one mistake in every word I wrote. Oh well. It's the effort that counts, no??? But סןף סןף (finally) my husband corrected my errors (so, what else is new?) and the above Hebrew content is A-OK!
I had not planned on posting from here, but here I am doing just that. It is 9:15 PM here, 1 PM back home and I hear preparations downstairs for dinner. We've already eaten breakfast (around 10:30 AM), which consisted of coffee, fresh assorted rolls, a variety of cheeses, the best of which is called Bulgaria cheese and the closest we have is Feta, but this is saltier and moister and yummier. They have feta also, but so far, we haven't found the equivalent of Bulgaria at home. For lunch (about 2:30 PM) we ate a meal prepared by Georgie's friend, Simone (Simone and her husband, Izu....a familiar form of Itzchak, shared this and yesterday's lunch with us). Simone and Izu are originally from Romania and Simon'e cooking has that Rumanian Flair. The meal started with ciorba (soup).
1 large onion chopped
1 large carrot chopped
1/2 red pepper chopped
about 10 cups of chicken broth
16 oz can of baked beans in tomato sauce
1 lb pasta (macaroni, curly pasta, etc)
sausage, chorizo cut up in 1/2 inch pieces. Beef Sausage preferred and a must if made in Israel
Saute onions in large pot that will hold all ingredients. Add carrots, red pepper and then the sausage, sautying each in turn for a few minutes. Saute sausage. Add chicken broth.
Add can of beans. Cook to a boil. Add pasta after about 10 minutes of boiling. Let it bubble about 15 mins or until the sausage is soft.
Serve Ciorba and Smile.
After the soup came what is considered RomaniaÂs most novel dish.Calledd mamagliga, a hard or soft cornmeal mush, which is boiled, baked or fried (I think ours was baked). It comes out looking like a big blob of yellowey, jelloey mush (fear not, it has no jello and tastes much better than it sounds or looks). We were informed that it is not to be eaten by itself but with something else, which in our case was to be stuffed cabbage. Both the stuffed cabbage and the mamagliga were absolutely delicious.
Lest there not be enough food, a large Israeli salad (generally consisting of some combination of small cut up pieces of tomato, cucumber, sometimes lettuce, sometimes onions or scallions) was also served and another dish of chicken with boiled sweet potatoes. Desert was Turkish Coffee and chocolate covered wafers. We never leave the table hungry.
Which brings me to the present time of almost 1 AM. We finished eating dinner about a half hour ago. Dinners are light since the mid-day meal is the larger of the two. Tonight we had a plate of vegetable....tomatoes, cucumbers and green peppers cut in large, lovely slices, adorning the plate in a circle. On the table were also cottage cheese, Bulgaria cheese, slices of bread, large green olives, sardines (one of the very few things I do NOT like) and borekas (for the uninitiated, this is a kind of pastry filled with meat or cheese, in this case cheese since in Israel most people, even if they don't keep kosher, do not mix milk and meat.) We sat and gabbed, sliding as easily from Hebrew to English, as the fine Israeli wine slides down our throats.
It is late and I need to sleep, so I will wait for a future post to describe the walk I took today and any other pieces of mind-flow related to this Israeli adventure. For now it is time for bed......לילא תןב (I'm pretty sure I've erred in the spelling the Hebrew translation of good night, but blame it on fatigue and the fact that my translators are all sleeting.)
שרןנה (Sharona....aka Sherril)