My first experience of a Shabbat dinner was at my husband’s cousins’ place quite early in our relationship.
By now I knew a few things about what it meant to be Jewish. I had been briefed on the fact that there were blessings and candle lighting and a slap-up meal, although dairy with meat wouldn’t be happening, there would probably be brisket.
I was of course a bit nervous because I hadn’t met much of his family before now. They were lovely of course, although clearly just as hesitant as me about how I was going to handle this new experience. I don’t think they associated with terribly many non-Jewish people to be honest.
The whole experience left me with several questions:
- Why does my husband like gefilte fish?
- Why would anyone eat chopped liver?
- Why would anyone miss chopped liver enough to make a vegetarian version? Although I can see the similarities in texture between mushrooms and liver to be fair…
- Where have Israeli pickles been all my life?
- Why do I feel as though I have finally come home?