Chocolate covered strawberries come with a zillion bits of Jewish wisdom.
Simple, delectable cheesecake, cocoa-spice cake with strawberry frosting and orange chiffon cake with strawberry sauce are excellent Shabbat meal-enders.
Well, it is indeed winter here in the Holy Land. The warming lights of Hannukah have passed us by, and the days are still feeling short. Temperatures in the Tel Aviv area usually fall between 10C and 22C (50F-72F), while folks in the Jerusalem area suffer a bit more with temperatures getting as low as 0C (32F). Perhaps this seems laughable to folks in colder regions of North America, but keep in mind that our homes are not equipped for the cold, with most everyone depending on space heaters or dual heating/cooling air conditioner units. Luckily, Israelis are a warm and open people and are perfectly comfortable snuggling up with one another during these cold months. We all get by.
Many years ago, as I was just beginning to learn about eating locally, I took what felt like a big step: I promised myself I would only eat strawberries in the summer, when they were ripe in New York where I lived. I would celebrate summer with the sweet red juiciness of freshly-picked strawberries, and cast away their pallid, California-born cousins that would appear on fruit platters and dipped in chocolate at other times of the year. The switch hit home an important lesson: Eating with the seasons brought new treats with the passing of time. Waiting for those strawberries, I noticed the seasons change…and I enjoyed those strawberries ten times more than I had before, having waited so long to eat them once again.