By Erin Davis, Shabbatness
Last month, my 90-year-old, 4'10" Nana Roza Goldberg baked over 1,000 hamentaschen from scratch in the same little kitchen in Jacksonville, Florida, in which she's baked numerous delicacies since immigrating to the U.S. after surviving the Holocaust. Since my recent 29th birthday, Nana has been particularly distressed that I am the only one of her grandchildren who has hit this age unmarried. This past Purim, she packed two additional "special ingredients" in her famous annual batch of hamentaschen: love, in hopes that it infects all who eat it; and extra sugar, because "no man likes a tiny tucchus like yours!". With these two magical ingredients, she made only one request - that they be served after a Shabbat dinner hosted in my home. "Shabbat," she says, in her thick Polish accent, "is magical - nothing brings together nice Jewish boys and girls like a good, home-cooked Shabbat dinner." Although I may not believe the majority of my grandma's superstitious advice nor indulge in her tucchus-plumping tactics, I couldn't agree more strongly on her belief in the power of the Shabbat experience.
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