This year, make it a Yum Kippur – We can help!
Yom Kippur is one of the most significant holidays on the Jewish calendar. This special day is traditionally marked by a period of fasting, reflection, and repentance by those who observe. As the sun sets, signaling the end of Yom Kippur, a much-anticipated meal known as the “break-fast” takes center stage. This gathering not only answers the call around physical hunger but also carries deep cultural and spiritual significance for those who partake. Among the various delicacies served during this occasion, bagels and all the accoutrements stand out as an integral and cherished part of the meal. You can read more about the significance and history of this day here.
For now, let’s briefly explore the meaning behind the break-fast meal, the symbolism of bagels, and a selection of delicious, traditional dishes (with modern-day twists) that will have your friends and family in awe.
Wait, don’t you mean “breakfast”?
Not exactly. The “break-fast” meal is a welcomed feast for the eyes (and rumbling empty stomachs) and also symbolizes renewal and new beginnings. It falls on the first few days of autumn which is also considered to be a season of renewal. It’s a time for families and communities gather, share their experiences of the day, and strengthen their connections year after year. As the fast is broken, there is a collective feeling of unity and moreover, a appreciation of life, giving way to a sense of gratitude and humility. It’s a custom celebrated around the world, which according to scholars and historians dates back to the beginning of time!
But um…where do bagels come into the picture?
This much is true. Among the array of foods served during the break-fast meal, bagels have earned a special place on the table over the decades. The origins of the bagel can be traced back to Eastern Europe, where Jewish communities flourished. The unique round shape of the bagel, often likened to a ring, is thought to symbolize the cyclical nature of life, continuity, and the cycle of the year Bagels are also known for their chewy texture and dense interior. This hearty quality is a nod to the resilience and strength. The process of boiling and then baking the bagels before consumption is reminiscent of the tradition of boiling dough before baking it in ashes, which dates back centuries. Pretty cool, right?
Another reason bagels have become such a staple during the break-fast meal is their symbolism of wholeness. The circular shape signifies completeness, making them a fitting choice for a meal that marks the end of Yom Kippur—a day of spiritual rejuvenation and self-restoration. By the way, as you may know, we use honey in our water when the bagels go through the boiling process. This means our wood-fired bagels on your table furthers the notion of making it a sweet new year!
What should I serve my hungry guests?
Bagels with Lox and Cream Cheese: This classic combination brings together the chewy delight of a fresh bagel, the velvety richness of cream cheese, and the savory goodness of smoked salmon. Capers, red onions, cucumber, red pepper and fresh dill can be added for aesthetics and variety. Elevate your platter by including whitefish salad. We make this fresh in house! It’s always a crowd-pleaser with the young and the young-at-heart.
Shakshuka: Not to be confused with Shakira, shakshuka consists of poached eggs in a flavorful tomato and bell pepper sauce. Served with crusty bread or bagels, this Middle Eastern favorite adds a touch of warmth to the meal. It’s also a visual stunner, adding color and texture to your table. It’s hearty and satisfying. Here’s one of our favorite recipes from famed Philly Chef and author, Michael Solomonov.
Quiche: A great quiche never goes out of style. From Bougee to Bohemian, quiche can be filled with an assortment of ingredients such as spinach, mushrooms, cheese, and onions. Its flaky crust complements the chewiness of a bagel perfectly. And yes, real men do eat quiche. Kick up your quiche a notch by adding lox bits! For extra flavor, add Spread’s veggie cream cheese to your egg mixture before baking. #yum!
Baked Goods: Alongside bagels, consider serving an array of baked goods like challah, a braided egg bread with a slightly sweet taste. Rugelach, a pastry filled with nuts, chocolate, or fruit preserves, is also a delightful addition. Chocolate Babka is also an awesome addition.
Yogurt Bar and Fruit Platter: A refreshing fruit platter adds a touch of lightness to the meal. Fresh fruits like berries, melons, and grapes provide a balanced contrast to heartier dishes. Fresh fruit is a nice counterbalance to selections that are on the savory or smoky side. Sharpen up your knife skills. Save some money by cutting the fruit yourself and displaying in a beautiful bowl or a carved-out watermelon half.
Savory Breakfast Casseroles: Prepare breakfast casseroles filled with eggs, vegetables, and cheese. These casseroles are not only delicious but can also be made ahead of time, making them a convenient choice. This may also be a great option for utilizing leftovers post break-fast meal. Most casseroles also freeze well so you can relive the magic of the Yom Kippur flavors along with your pumpkin spice latte at a later date!
Fresh Salads: Go global! Infuse some international influences into your salad making prep. Go Asian or Israeli. Give guests an unexpected offering that highlights other cultures to signify inclusion and acceptance. Incorporate trending flavors and ingredients. Looking to see what flavor profiles are on the minds of culinary. Search here! You’ll find a plethora of ideas and recopies right at your fingertips.
Taking on the responsibility of preparing this epic meal for others can be a bit overwhelming. That’s where we come in! You can order up to 7 days ahead right on our website for pick up or delivery. Having a large crowd? Contact our catering department and our planning experts will help you create a meal to remember. We are taking orders through September 22, 2023 for Yom Kippur…or…um…Yum Kippur.
Here’s wishing you and yours a happy new year and an easy fast!