Saturday, December 02, 2006

Secret Ingredient

Latkes, potato pancakes, made during Chanukah, Festival of the Lights, holiday for frying, oh mercy, well it's because of the oil, of course, the miracle of finding oil to keep the eternal flame burning in the Temple, the one that got destroyed, oh yes it did.

Smashed, looted, desecrated, no more big splendor in the House of God, all for naught, despair so thick you could cut it with a knife, all gone, lost, forsaken, what dread, what terrible fears and glooms manifested among the newly dispossessed!

Who was it, I wonder, who saw the flame, the eternal flame symbol of indestructibility of light of the spirit, who saw and thought to keep it alive amid such devastation, such destruction? What would be the point? Surely judgment of fate was so evident as to overshadow any higher decree, what was there to save?

Why, I wonder, why did that person do it, why put the oil in the lamp, knowing there was not enough, not enough to last until further supply could be obtained, seems sort of cruel to build up hope only to have it crashing down, yet again, crashing and crushing the small spark of humanity flickering in the assembly, oh perhaps the fellow was mad with grief and simply holding on to habit, in some daze of horror, not even realizing what he was doing.

And yet it lasted, the fuel lasted far beyond the time it should have, as fate warred with spirit, oh a mighty battle, offering made, such trust, a naked plea to make the fates themselves weep and perhaps soften just a little, oh there would be hard times, hard times ahead, but for now, yes, now let the light continue, feed the spirit once again, and so it was and so the miracle of the lights.

And so the tradition of using oil in cooking during this Festival, and of course traditional food such as latkes, potato pancakes, a festive food, have it with applesauce or sour cream (and caviar if you wanna get fancy), or just with salt, heaped high on a big plate, whoo!

Carrots. That's the secret ingredient. Just a little, grated along with the potatoes and onions. Cuts the grease, gives a little sweetness, a little tiny kick, oh those are good eating.


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