Contest to Celebrate 30,000 Facebook Friends


Happy Tuesday, cooking friends!

To celebrate hitting 30,000 “likes” on Facebook, I’ve decided to thank all of my loyal readers by launching an exciting new contest this week. By popular request, this giveaway will be open to anybody and everybody who follows my site, whether or not you use Twitter or Facebook! It’s a fun one this week, folks. You’re going to want in on this!


1) SUBSCRIBE to my website. You can do this by entering your email address in the “Subscribe” box located in the upper right hand corner of my blog home page (click the underlined link to open the blog home page in a new window). When you subscribe, a confirmation email will be sent to your email address. Be sure to confirm your subscription by clicking the link in that email. If you’ve already subscribed to my website, no need to subscribe again– your email address is already in our database.

2) COMMENT on this blog post. Just scroll down to where it says “Leave a Reply” and let me know two things– what is your favorite Jewish food, and why do you read The Shiksa in the Kitchen Blog? Make sure you comment here on my website and answer those two specific questions. Feel free to voice your support on both Facebook and Twitter to help spread the word about the contest!

That’s it! The contest ends on Monday, February 7 at 12:00pm PST. Winners will be announced that afternoon.

Just follow those simple steps, and you’re entered to win one of three fabulous prizes…


Pylones Cheese Grater

How cute is this girl?? Grate your cheese in style with help from Little Mrs. Pylones!  :)


Martha Stewart Collection 6-Piece Melamine Bowl Set

I adore these mixing bowls, I use them almost every day. They’re extremely durable, and they come in such pretty colors.


KitchenAid 5 Qt. Stand Mixer in Empire Red

This stand mixer is gorgeous, stunning, and amazingly functional. I have the exact same model in Pistachio Green. She’ll become your new baking BFF. I think she belongs in your kitchen. What do you think?  :)

I’ll pick my top ten favorite entries based on the creativity of your comments. Those ten names will be placed in a hat, then drawn at random to determine the three top winners.

Best of luck to you all!

xo Tori Avey
The Shiksa in the Kitchen

Comments (285)Post a Comment

  1. My absolute favorite dish to make is tabeet & pacha. I remember my grandmother making this dish on cold days and it warmed the house up and brought warmth to our bodies.
    I found your blog through Facebook and enjoy it because it provides me with recipes and interesting foodie facts. Plus I am going to get married soon and need all the lessons I can get from your blog! Keep them coming! Your the best!

  2. I enjoy reading everything you publish. I am originally from Montreal, Quebec and live in East Texas for the past 27 years. I terribly miss Jewish cuisine.I grew up with European grandparents and they cooked wonderful things all the time. Those were some great memories of my childhood. Reading your blogs brings back memories.
    I thank you for creating your website.

  3. What is your favorite Jewish food?
    Wow – do I have to pick just one? Lets go with Mandel bread (or latkes, or kreplach or…) – cant get enough of it.

    Why do you read The Shiksa in the Kitchen Blog? It doesnt matter where I am, what I am doing, your blog takes me to a warm safe place – I can smell my mothers cooking – I am home.

  4. My favorite–that is a tough one, but Potato Knishes are at the top. I read the blog since I am the Shiksa in my husband’s family–and no one seems to have any of the family recipes!

  5. I do not have a favorite yet..I do love the knishes but am just experminting with Jewish cooking. We are not Jewish but seventh day adventist so we also believe in clean and unclean meats etc. I am loving all the new recipes that are open to me. thank you and keep up the wonderful work

  6. Favorite food? So hard to choose but I love potatoes – Latkes!

    I found you on Facebook, learned you had a blog and read the history you shared about your family and subscribed to your site. I am not Jewish or a Shiksa, but once worked with a Jewish man who married an gentile who also became Jewish – they are a wonderful couple and he shared all kinds of things about his faith, customs and food [even brought some in to share]. I love learning about everything, and thank you so very much for sharing.

  7. My favorite are the kashs knishes I used to get on the street in Brooklyn. It is refreshing to find a site that keeps the traditional cooking alive and adds modern variations too. I sometimes had a tough time finding new recepies to try until I found your site. Thanks for what you do,

  8. I love Jewish food period! If I have to pick a favorite, it would probably be latkes…any variety! I read The Shiksa in the Kitchen because that’s what I am too. I love the recipes but I enjoy the history lesson just as much.

  9. My favorite Jewish food is chocolate babka. Gefilte fish runs a close second (seriously).

    I read because I am also a shiksa, and I can use all the help with cooking/baking that I can get!

  10. Slowly the white dream wrestles to life
    hands shaping the flour and the dough
    the cold flesh kneaded by fingers
    moving to and fro–

    she beats the mound to remove the bubble
    she smiles at me and says “it’s no trouble”

    one of the greatest days of my life,
    is when i married my Baking wife..

  11. I’m Romanian and my husband is Russian Polish, so we know and LOVE Eastern European food! The baked goods you have on your site remind me of grandma’s cooking. Now that I’m a grandma, I’m trying to perfect baking them. I learned of your site on facebook.

  12. Found your website through a link posted by a friend on facebook – thank you Michelle! Loving what I have read so far, looking forward to making the rugelach with my 11 year old son – an aspiring baker! Favorite Jewish food – Challah – so versatile! Keep up the great work!

  13. I like Noodle Kugel. I do not have a Jewish background, but I love cooking. I love your Facebook and your blog. You make everything sound interesting and fun. Not to mention, your pictures which certainly helps in recreating your dishes. I loved your recipe on Falafel with the pictures. I want your cookbook when it comes out. I like your Italian plates. You are certainly a talented writer and pretty too. Thank you from a cooker in Alaska needing some color!!!

  14. challah
    I have several recipes. I watched my mother make it, and several Jewish neighbors…but have never ‘mastered’ the method to the tender sweet egg bread.

    I enjoy new recipes – like the format and photos of your blog.

  15. My favorite jewish dish wouldhave to be Chulant even though I love all jewish food ! Kishka and of course Morrocan Lemon Chicken with Olives is to die for and list would be way too long to name them all.

    I absolutely love your Shiksa recipes and suggestions you give. Everything I have tried has been fantastic and very user-friendly.Your choices are very yummy and others are garuanteed to love it too !

  16. I love Challah,makes the best french toast and bread pudding. I am not sure if I am a shiksa or not. My mother was raised in Latvia during WWII. The war front went over their property and they were put on a list to be transported to Siberia labor camps. They went into hiding for several months eating potatoes supplied by neighbors. They were Jewish, however, they hid their heritage to live, as many did. They passage to a displaced persons camp in Germany, where she met my father, they married and came to the US. She was always so afraid, we never knew she was Jewish until the past few years, we all suspected. I want to embrace my heritage and start taking classes with a local Rabbi.. Thank you Tori. I have been making some dishes and surprising my Mom..She gets tears in her eyes..It is the best in the world. She is the best Mom in the world.

  17. I found you on Facebook . I don’t know how you ended up on my page, but I am really okay with it. I like trying new foods, so here I go. I had a Jewish friend at work and she would bring in food for special occasions and I loved it. So, now I want to try to do it myself. I don’t know what my favorite food is yet, but I’m sure I will love the rugelach. Keep doing this blog, because I really want to learn how.

  18. How can one pick a favorite Jewish food? I love them all (almost) and I love to cook. I love making Cholent, and my kids love challah and matzo ball soup. I like reading you blog because I find it interesting to see how your recipes differ or are the same as some of the recipes handed down by my parents and grandparents. I am always interested in how other people do things but i will never understand corn flakes on a noodle kugel.

  19. I enjoyed braiding the Challah and then making Bread Pudding later with left over Bread. I love the Hannuka recipees..Latkes and the jelly filled do-nuts. I am a Christian and know the importance of The Jews returning to Israel from all over the world in this time period..I love learning about the foods and the feasts and holidays and the meaning behind each. I have loved your fresh approach towards teaching ab out the food and culture.

  20. I actually started to follow your FB postings because I found them to be so upbeat. I love the recipes !!! I read through each one and it makes me want to drop everything and head for the kitchen. I enjoy you sharing about what may be going on in your life, especially your trips. Thank you for being so dedicated to your readers !!

  21. I have not yet figured out what my favorite Jewish food is – I’m still experimenting!

    I read The Shiksa in the Kitchen because I love finding new recipes for all types of foods!

  22. My favorite Jewish food is blintzes. Not only are they versatile in that you can fill them with so many variants, but the word “blintzes” comes from the Ukraine. My heritage includes Ukrainian ties, so I’m always a little excited when I discover something awesome and Ukrainian! I’ve only recently discovered Shiksa in the Kitchen, but I’m already addicted. It combines so many of my favorite things – good, cultural recipes, interesting facts behind the foods and a creative woman writer (like me)!

  23. My favorite Jewish food is blintzes. Not only are they versatile in that you can fill them with so many varients. But, “blintzes” are from the Ukraine. I love when I can find something that celebrates my Ukrainian heritage and is also delicious! I only recently found Shiksa in the Kitchen, but I’m already addicted. The site combines so many of my favorite things. Good, cultural recipies, interesting facts behind the food and a creative woman writer (like me)!

  24. I love Jewish fusion cooking. hot ‘n spicy peanut sauce chicken is #1 with sushi hor d’oeuvres that my husband makes. I am not a shiksa. I was born Jewish and so is my husband. I love your site though. We live in Israel.

  25. I just remember visiting my grandmother and walking into her house. It always smelled so good, no matter what she was cooking. It didn’t matter what she was making…it was all good, all my favorites.

    But since I am dating a shiksa, I guess I would have to say my favorite is noodle kugle. I actually got her to make one. She did great and she really liked it.

  26. I have to pick ONE favorite Jewish food – Impossible! Okay, I’ll try. It’s probably Challah. It’s so good with Shabbos dinner, or as french toast, or even just fresh from the oven with butter. Yum! It was one of the first things I learned to make. I am a converted Jew – for almost 25 years now! Since I didn’t have a Jewish back ground to learn all the great Jewish recipes from family members, I had to rely on my mother in law – until she passed away a few years ago. She was a really great cook and especially a great baker. Her recipes are delicious but hard to follow – you know the “old ways” of using a “glass of sugar” – which turns out to be an old jelly jar glass! or a “pinch of salt”. I had to be with her, in her kitchen, and once she measured out things I would then put them in measuring cups, spoons, etc. It was the only way to learn to make “Bubby cookies”, which my sons LOVE and a few of her other recipes. I never did get to see her make her famous chocolate torte or her babaganush. I love your recipes. I still get to feel like I’m learning “family secrets”. Thank You.

  27. My favorite Jewish food is Kasha Varnishkas, (Kasha & Bowties) and it turns out that kasha is very healthy. Who knew. I wonder why it’s always made with bowtie pasta. I suppose any pasta could be used.

    I love your blog. Your tutorials and pictures are wonderful. I’ve never been successful with Mandel Bread (which I love), but your recent tutorial has inspired me to try again. Keep up the good work.

  28. Challah,, i LOVE challah..

    i asked you for a great recipe, and you responded, in short order.

    you have CLASS!

    I read and pass-on many things, and print enough recipe’s, that the people at the ink-store, are mighty grateful..

    keep it up…..PLEASE…..

  29. I love all you Jewish cooking. but my favourite is unstuffed cabbage,

    knish,mujadara,challah bread ! I grow up with jewish family nix to my

    house in Morocco. I enjoy reading the shiksa in the kitchen because the

    food, and recipe’s are fantastic. I all sou lived in N Y C Brooklyn . Now I’m

    in Miami Florida for 20 years. And I do need this recipe’s………….Thank
    you so much……….LOVE YOU

  30. I stumbled on this website after making Challah for my boyfriend last Hanukkah. I feel I should mention that I come from the most WASPY of WASP backgrounds while my boyfriend is Jewish, so this promised to be an adventure in cross culture culinary land. I’ve always loved cooking, particularly baking, and wanted to show off my supreme bread making skills. I got a recipe from an old bread book of mine which did indeed come out beautifully. My first attempt at the 6 strand egg bread was difficult, but produced a delicious loaf of goodness. Sadly though, the book left much to be desired in terms of the cultural context of the bread, but how complex could it be? And anyways this was just a gesture of kindness, not a full on celebration.

    I showed up at his house, and gleefully presented my bread and said something along the lines of, “Look babe, I made CHallah, God’s double portion bread!” He smiled, and began to laugh under his breath. What was so funny? The bread looked and tasted wonderful. How had I made a dud? I used kosher salt, honey, the whole nine yards. What did I do wrong? I needed answers. After he stopped snickering he revealed to me that challah is pronounced Hal-lah. I had been pronouncing it with the same phonetics of a Ch-Ch-Chia pet. Who put the “C” in it then? I was not pleased. Not pleased one bit.

    However, I was hardly defeated, I’m in it for the long hall with this relationship, which meant I was going to have to educate about Jewish cuisine, and this website is the perfect messenger for that. I find this site fun, and wonderfully approachable. For everything I make, the cultural context and stories of the people that I am falling in love with is told with a witty grace. Plus, The food is simply amazing. The same guy teasing me for my CHallah is now begging me for more latkes. Too bad, because I am going to eat them all.

    My personal favorite though is falafel, something I gorged myself on in my vegan phase, and now get to return to like a good ole friend.

    So thanks for making all that possible, and I’m staying hungry, so don’t quit blogging.

  31. I have never joined a blog before but I saw yours through one of my friends on Facebook and, seeing a new recipe so close to the holiday (and just being curious), took a peek. I cook both Ashkenaz and Sefardic cuisine and found a variety of recipes that came from both sides. A lot of your recipes are those that I make for my own family but have variatiuons that kept surprising me and interested in trying them out. It also helps that your recipes are easy to follow and understand; I especially love the way you give the background and symbolism of each food, it adds spice to your recipes :) I can’t tell you what my favorite Jewish food is, I have a different one for each holiday! However, I can tell you that my food comes out best when I cook from my heart for my family.

  32. Ever so simply, Latkes. When I was in 3rd grade my teacher wanted to expose us to different cultures and traditions. It was the “holiday season” and I fell in love with those potato pancakes. I eat them all throughout the year, but I always feel special when I make and share them in December.

    And I read this blog I certainly dont know everything I would like to know about Jewish cuisine. And information presented here is readily available and (pretty)easily comprehended. Plus it totally make me hungry looking at stuff and I certainly love trying to make new things, and improving on things I already make.

  33. My favorite jewish food has to be a tie, well, a 5 way tie:
    vegetarian stuffed cabbage
    warm beet borscht
    cheese blintzes
    and finally….kasha and bowties.

    Love your blog.

  34. …forgot to say why I read your blog.

    Your photos are beautiful, they exhibit your passion for cooking.
    I’ve made so many of your recipes, they are always so delicious. You bring excitement back to the kitchen. Most of all, your blog brings me back to my gramma’s kosher kitchen, the days when I’d help her cook for shabbos and the holidays.

  35. I do not have a favorite Jewish food, but I like the idea of Kosher cupcakes. I’ve subscribed to your blog and “liked” your FB page because an old friend has converted and I would like to be able to cook for her when I go back to visit where I grew up later this year. Thank you for sharing your time and expertise!

  36. Hi,
    I just found your Blog while looking for a recipe for schmaltz. The recipe you gave is the one I followed to make 2 pints of beautiful schmaltz. I will come back here often.

    My favorite Jewish recipe is chopped chicken liver, probably because it reminds me so much of my grandmother.

    Thank you for a great blog, I’m glad I found you.

  37. My favorite dish has to be the brisket I make. It just falls apart when you pick it up. It is the first dish to be totally finished before any other dish on the jewish holidays. I stumbled across your page and have been a fan ever since. I love how you show the steps for making the actual food and I have come to find many different recipes that I never even knew existed.

  38. My husband, three children and I all love Matzah at passover … we love to be creative making things like Matzah pizza, or drizzling it with chocolate and caramel for dessert. We also love potato latkes, and my husband can’t get enough of challah bread every week.

    I love reading your blog because I love to hear your journey into Judaism and I love the recipes you post. It’s so neat to read the story you post with a lot of recipes about history, where the recipe originated, etc. Of course getting such great recipes to try is AWESOME too!! Thanks for writing this blog and keep posting … I love reading it!! (P.S. – I could make your recipes even faster with the help of your cool giveaways … especially the kitchen aid mixer (big smile) … :)

  39. I discovered your website via Facebook.
    I immediately shared it with three friends.

    As to Jewish food….I love latkes……..and Challah–be it fresh sliced or toasted, plain or buttered…or, or, or! And thanks to other replies jogging my memory: chopped chicken liver.

    I could use some helping with making latkes….although, lazy me, I feel the secret is in the grating of the potatoes. Not too fine, not too coarse? I’ve yet to master it. I’ve never found anyone who could make latkes as good as my Grandma Anna–they had the crispiest outside. Second in line was a Jewish restaurant/deli back in the 60s on Wabash in Chicago’s Loop; wish I could remember its name. A favorite memory is of making Challah with my daughter–both of us for the very first time–and it turned out perfect.

  40. I found your site looking for a rugelach recipe and it looks wonderful. My mom loves rugelach and her birthday is coming up, so I thought I might try my hand at making some.

  41. My favorite Jewish food is Matzah ball soup…I eat it constantly in the winter and quite often in the summer too! With or without noodles it is the perfect precursor to a good meal or it can be a hearty meal all by itself.

    I follow your blog because I too am embarking on the journey to convert. My boyfriend/soon-to-be fiance is Jewish and comes from a very religious family. Your recipes, tips, and insights are invaluable to someone who is just beginning to find their way into Judaism. I may have mastered the rules of keeping kosher but I certainly have not mastered many Jewish dishes, but I have mastered some thanks to your recipes. I thank you for sharing your creativity and expertise in a way that is open and inviting to all those that find themselves in similar shoes to ones that you once wore.

  42. Shalom, Tori!

    I am a native New Yorker, and a Jewish one at that! I know several people who, for various reasons, have embraced wholeheartedly our religion which is based on wonderful traditions that have captured their hearts. Around 15 years ago, my ‘almost’ Orthodox Jewish friend from Canada, met the ‘love of her life”, Richard. Of course, Richard was not Jewish. After a couple of years, Richard converted. Richard had a daughter, Christine, a beautiful very blond, fair-skinned child who lived in Germany and decided she wanted to live in the United States with her Dad. A few years later, at about 12 or 13, Christine decided she too wanted to become a Jew. The name she chose as her “new life” name is, like yours, Tori.

    I read, enjoy, and I am drawn to you and your blog because you are the epitome of Jewishness (if that is a word, but I know you understand what I’m saying). You bring’ out in me my roots and the memories of family, friends, and love. I can ‘feel’ it all through your writing and how you’ve put yourself into so many lovely recipes. The presentation on your beautiful dishes always completes the picture for me. Also, you break down and demonstrate through your words, and many times pictures, exactly how you’ve made your various dishes. This, too, shows how important “doing it the way it was meant to be” is to you, and how you’ve managed to encompass the entire feelings of being a Jewish woman.

    All of the older generation, and families living in close proximity are now just my memories of days gone by. Happy memories which cannot be duplicated again. One of my many favorite memories when I was living with my Mother and Grandparents because my Dad was in the Navy, and overseas, was one that repeated itself often. I was 5 or 6 yrs. old and my Bubbe Ida was lovingly preparing the shells for her homemade blintzes. Almost as fast as she could turn them out of her frying pan onto a neatly laid out white dish towel, I would run into the kitchen, grab one, and quickly run out the door laughing hysterically because I ‘won’. In her broken English, but mostly Yiddish, Bubbe would yell at me, kiddingly, with that smile in her voice. Those memories are brought to mind many times as I enjoy your blog.

    Words cannot express the absolute joy you bring into my life. I am very blessed with a most loving husband, children, and grandchildren. I am not my immigrant Grandparents and always feel that my children have missed something having a modern Mom.

    Thank you, “the Shiksa”, who is more Jewish than many who are Jewish by birth. We are fortunate to know you and have you as part of our family.

    At this very moment, I’d have to say my favorite Jewish food is totally homemade blintzes; either Cheese made with farmer’s cheese or Potato made with fried onions and, of course, schmaltz (chicken fat… unhealthy, but sooo good)! Yum….I can taste those blintzes now! :-) Guess I know what I’ll be making this week.

    Shalom, again ~ Elaine

    P.S. – I am 68 yrs. and remember hearing someone being referred to as a Shiksa by a Jewish family member or friend. The word at that time was definitely not meant as a compliment but rather to point out the fact that this person was NOT a ‘real’ Jew. There were many prejudices that were successfully covered up by Yiddish words, which is now a long-lost language. It was a language which grew out of so many immigrants from Poland, Russia, and Germany who managed to concoct a language so they could communicate among themselves. And, even when they managed to learn English, there was rarely a sentence that did not contain, at least, a couple of Yiddish words.

    I was not a very obedient child, if you will, but my parents always told me that Yiddish, or actually Jewish as it was called at home, was a “secret” language and I should not listen. Much to my sadness today, that was one of the few things I actually ‘listened’ to and consequently never really learned Yiddish. Today, I speak a handful of words, and my husband, who is not Jewish bur who loves a Jew, has learned almost all of the words I know and uses them correctly when the situation arises! The word “Bubkis” which means nothing, or actually having ‘less than nothing.” Is freely used by Michael at the correct time. This warm, cute smile always comes to his face afterwards, as would to a child’s face when he’s used/done it correctly. I don’t think he even realizes he is smiling so everyone can see, but “I” know what that smile is. Jewish has a way of creeping into everyone’s heart if they’re lucky enough to be around it for a while.

  43. I’ll be honest, I haven’t had an oppurtunity to taste much Jewish food and I feel a little deprived. I live in the south, so if you want barbeque and fried, well I have it, but I want something more. I had matzoh ball soup one time and I think that the heavens opened up and birds starting singing…it was amazing and I have craved it ever since. A steaming bowl of that soup with light dumplings and a few half sour pickles on the side sounds wonderful while I’m sitting here in the cold. I stumbled onto your blog looking for some Jewish recipes and I am in love. I love learning about food and traditions, so your blog is perfect! Come on, share the love with a southerner and help me win a mixer to help me make some killer matzoh ball soup! We can negotiate a trade for some authentic Carolina BBQ!

  44. Knish is on the top of the list. I love to cook and you have the best of the best directions. Thanks!

  45. There are so many wonderful and delicious Jewish foods, but I think my all time favorite is matzoh ball soup. I read the blog to get new ideas for dishes, and to hold on to my roots 😉

  46. My favorite Jewish food? Chopped liver

    I love your site because of the recipes and your photos are great too!

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