Religious fervour or love of baking?

Rosh Hashanah has just passed and Yom Kippur is coming up.  The Jewish holidays are upon us.  I consider this to be a good thing (all family politics aside).  Now, at this point you may be thinking “I’ve seen the category title “The Atheist Marries A Jew” so what is this Goddess talking about?  Has Zeus removed her wisdom?”  Nah, I just love to bake.

The Jewish holidays provide a great opportunity to feed people, and I like to do that.  The dinners are held at 1 of 3 homes and the dishes are divided amongst the families so that when it’s all brought together, there’s a complete meal for anywhere from 16-20 people, without any one woman having to do all that cooking.   Because I’m a good baker, I always get awarded dessert and if I’m lucky, Challah too.

So this past Rosh Hashanah, I whipped up a lovely round raisin Challah for our dinner and 2 to give away to friends of ours.  Add to that one apple pie and another apple crumble pie and my kitchen was a happy, humming hive of activity.

I get to repeat this for Monday night’s dinner, switching up the pies for a chocolate-cinnamon swirl coffee cake, cookies and keeping the Challah (only this time, keeping all the loaves for the family!).

For anyone that doesn’t know this, Challah is an egg bread that is traditionally served every Friday night dinner (also known as Shabbos or Shabbat dinner).  It’s also served at most Jewish holiday dinners, with the exception of Passover.  Having Catholic grandparents, I can say that Challah is very much like the bread I used to eat at their Easter dinners.  I find this quite ironic as it seems Easter and Passover frequently occur simultaneously.  Note my witty skit, used to illustrate the irony when the 2 holidays do collide:

Catholics: Hey Jews!  Look at us!  We’re eating bread!  It’s egg bread!
Jews: Hey Catholics!  Look at us!  We’re giving up egg bread for 8 days!  [quizzical head scratch] Don’t you call that Lent?

Riiight, back to the Challah.  I really like Challah.  I like to make it and I like to eat it.  So, when I feel like it, I whip up a loaf to be served with Friday night dinner.  Which usually means we do the “real” Friday night dinner thing and light Shabbos candles and Thor, Thor Jr and Little Athena say a prayer as the candles are lit and another when the bread is cut.  Most often, in our house, if I don’t pull out the candlesticks and/or make bread, Thor forgets to light the candles and we eat dinner like everyone else.  Just dinner, no religion.  It follows from all of this that bread drives religion in our house.    (Bread.  Baked by the Atheist.  How ironic!)

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