Tuesday, March 29, 2016

Challah, Torrijas, And Paisley Brocade

Our so-called "holiday rental" on the 8th floor of our building is a dump. Broken windows taped over, splintering door frames, awful smells from the kitchen, "sliding" windows and doors that don't slide, showers that only dribble. The beds are so unbelievably old and awful that there's no hope of getting any sleep. Besides, god only knows what lurks inside the mattresses. But, after hearing our tale of woe-is-us, Santi has made a point of getting our master bedroom back in order every afternoon, so we have been able to sleep at home — with the cats.

SUNRISE FROM THE EIGHTH FLOOR.

Anyway, the view from higher up is fun for a change. The neighbors kindly let us connect to their WiFi. The work downstairs is nearly done. Dudo knows where to hide and when to emerge. Moose hasn't completely figured out the routine, but he's still adorable. And The Goddess Elena made another batch of Torrijas before Semana Santa ended (see previous post).

MY SECOND ROUND OF TORRIJAS FROM THE GODDESS ELENA.
(SAN GERALDO HAD ALREADY EATEN HIS AT SIX A.M.)

A bit more detail on the recipe:
Elena adds a lemon rind, a cinnamon stick, and a lot of sugar to the milk she slowly simmers on the stove. She uses special bread for torrijas, but I haven't been able to find a description of that specific bread, as most recipes simply call for "stale" bread. I would guess Jewish challah (egg bread) would make for great torrijas.

AT MY BAR MITZVAH RECEPTION, JUNE 1967. MY FATHER AND I WATCH AS MY
MATERNAL GRANDFATHER CUTS THE CHALLAH AND BLESSES THE MEAL.
(DON'T YOU WISH YOU HAD A BLUE PAISLEY BROCADE TUXEDO?!?)


36 comments:

  1. Your new temporary living quarters sound 'lovely'!! I hope they charge what it is worth...next to nothing.
    I am sure that bread your grandfather is cutting would be perfect for Torrijas....dense and sweet.
    Now for that tuxedo.....and a cummberbund too! Pretty snazzy I'd say! Still have it?
    Haven't heard Manhattan Transfer for years....thanks.

    ReplyDelete
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    1. Jim:
      I'll be "negotiating" the price when we move out today or tomorrow. They were "asking" what a typical vacation rental would cost in this building off-season. My father would call that "balls." I thought that tuxedo was very cool and I still do. It was very trendy at the time. And, no, I don't still have it. But, if I did, I'm sure it would be a perfect fit.

      Delete
  2. I do wish I had a blue brocade tuxedo. And I love Manhattan Transfer!

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    1. Michael:
      I noticed you can buy these vintage tuxedos on eBay. But I haven't found this particular blue paisley brocade.

      Delete
  3. So Dudo and Moose were living the high life--even with the reno--while their two dad's were slumming it upstairs! Sounds about right ...

    PS That bar mitzvah jacket is fab-u-lous!

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    1. Bob:
      Dudo and Moose have been living the "hiding" life during the renovations... while we slum it. I really liked that tux!

      Delete
  4. As Dorothy said, "There's no place like home." And there is nothing like a blue paisley brocade tuxedo - thank goodness. Cheers!

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    1. Wilma:
      You're right on both counts. My cousin had a blue mini-roses brocade tuxedo. It couldn't hold a candle to my paisley!

      Delete
  5. Ah I had one for my senior prom.... hey they were the "in" thing.....

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    1. Willym:
      Yes they were. We were so cool!

      Delete
  6. You look sharp, and a bit worried about that loaf of bread being cut.

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    1. Stephen:
      My father and I were always a bit "iffy" when my grandfather had a knife in his hand.

      Delete
  7. mazel tov! hope you get to move back into your permanent home soon! now I wanna piece of challah...

    and I just figured it out - you and I are the same age!

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    1. anne marie:
      Wow. You're 27, too?!? Time flies, doesn't it? The big renovations should be done today.

      Delete
  8. I'm so jealous that you have all those photographs of time gone by.... I asked my brother recently if he had any of Ma's old photos... guess not. By the way... you look older than 13 there...

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    1. Sharon:
      I always looked older because of my height. However, I never acted older.

      Delete
  9. Love the Bar Mitzvah photo, and nice to see your father :) -- grrrrrreat tux!
    Geeeze, do you think they actually normally rent that place??
    Can't wait to see photos of the renovations!

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    1. Judy:
      I have the original bar mitzvah album. Lots more fun photos to share. We learned from the next door neighbors that this place is usually used only during summer. At least a month of that is by the owners themselves who refuse to improve or even maintain the place. If they DO rent it, I'm sure no one comes back a second time.

      Delete
  10. Very stylish the blue brocade tuxedo, looks like a young Dean Martin.

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    1. Laurent:
      I was so cool. The Kid Brother (age 7 at the time) had a matching tuxedo.

      Delete
  11. I hate that you're stuck in that awful place but thank heavens you can at least sleep at home! You're looking awfully stylish!

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    1. Cranky:
      Really nothing to complain about (and yet...). I think we'll be moved back in this afternoon! Yes, I I have always been a fashionista.

      Delete
  12. Reading about your woes and that terrible apartment, I wonder is there not a Ritz Hotel in your neck of the woods for gentle folk like yourself to go to?

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    1. Laurent:
      There are loads of hotels within 10 minutes of us. And we debated going "Ritzy." But we hated the idea of paying for this apartment, which we had already hauled our computers and loads of stuff into, and then paying for a hotel room, too (which wouldn't give us the space for everything). So, we've simply been making fun of this place all week.

      Delete
  13. What a beautiful sunrise! :)

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    1. Snoskred:
      I could post a sunrise photo (or 12) every day.

      Delete
  14. Look at you! I want to pinch your cheeks - sweet young mensch! And that's one big challah, as big as the torah cake. Mazel Tov, young man! Guess what I had for breakfast? Challah. Coincidence that I'm seeing this today? Heck ya. I never have Challah for b-fast, but my boss made some over the weekend and offered me a loaf. Who could say no to challah? I'm k'velling over this post. I hope you scored big money for all that work - could not have been easy to bite into that challah. xx

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    1. Robyn:
      I'm glad you noticed the torah cake (of course you would). I wonder if that's sacrilegious. Then again, I'm one big sacrilege, so I don't care. Huge reception and, yes, scored big money. I don't remember eating any challah that night.

      Delete
  15. Love the jacket..we has a sofa covered with same material when i was a boyxx

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    1. John:
      I really did love that tux and still do. I bet you wish you had that sofa now...

      Delete
  16. Ditto to all--the view, the Bar Mitzvah photo, the tux and Manhattan Transfer...

    My evening just got so much better. :) "Boop-bop, boop-bop..."

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    1. Michelle:
      I love it all, too. But so glad the religious rites are ancient history!

      Delete
  17. Replies
    1. Spo:
      Well, I hope you don't wear it with your viking helmet.

      Delete
  18. One of the things I am most looking forward to about visiting Spain (apart from meeting you!) is the FOOD.

    And that tuxedo jacket is awesome!!

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    Replies
    1. Knatolee:
      We have the best local place(s) for you to experience the food. Sorry I don't still have the tuxedo.

      Delete

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