Discover more from Broccoli Rising, the Newsletter from Ellen Kanner
Broccoli Rising and Heaven Preserve Us
You don’t have to be Jewish to feel anguish over Hamas’ brutal attack on Israel, you just have to be human. You don’t have to be Palestinian to know Israel forcing 2.2 million people, half of them children, to flee their home is abhorrent, you just have to be human. And good news —we all are.
Our shared humanity is harder to spot these days. But I believe it’s still there. I have to To do otherwise means to despair, and honey, we can’t afford it. There’s too much at stake. Our human history has shown us what can happen when one people try to dehumanize another.
Look at Turkey
Look at Nazi Germany
Look at Russia not just now but before World War II
Look at Rwanda
Look at Bosnia
Look at Israel and Gaza now
It can lead to genocide.
Our human history has also enjoyed a few precious pockets of time and place when we’ve lived and loved together despite our differences. This is tougher to achieve, and impossible at a time of crisis, rage and grief, but trust me on this — peace tastes better.
It requires mutual trust and respect, seeing all of humanity as well, human.
And the really tough bit — it requires forgiveness, not because we all love each other, but because it’s the only way I know to release the pain and heal.
The fine print — all this takes leaders who value people over personal gain. Surely they’re out there. Vote for them. Support them. In the meantime, look out for yourself and for all of humanity. Start with what we have in common. The need to eat.
What, you were hoping for something loftier? Me too. We can get there together. But first we all need to eat.
It’s been argued that Jews have a unique history of preserving food. The truth is, Jews don’t have a lock on it. No one does. Humans have been preserving and fermenting foods for centuries, if not millennia.
Fermentation preserves food when resources or time are limited. Being run out of town? Preserved food has offered a snippet of sustenance and comfort on the journey, from Moses leading the Jews out of Egypt to the exodus today.
Fermentation creates hidden dimensions of flavor in the most humble food. Take a head of cabbage, give it salt and time and voila, it becomes sauerkraut. Mix flour and water, and with time, it metamorphoses from muck to a yeasty loaf of bread, crusty without, tender within. It reminds me of a Moroccan aphorism — by bread and salt, we are united.
Fermentation, also called culturing, is primal. It’s creation, not destruction, edible alchemy, not annihilation. We are all human. We are flawed. But we are capable of transformation. We can rise.
Preserving peace is hard. Preserving food is cheap and easy.
So here’s a good place to talk about my two-part fermentation workshop happening November 9 and November 16. It’s free, vegan and virtual and hosted by magnificent Miami Dade Public Library. Register now:
Sababa means everything’s great, Shabbat means sabbath. peace. Both seem aspirational at best these days. But once you get a taste for peace, you won’t settle for anything less.
Taste these delights too:
Belila, a breakfast bowl to start your day right.
Biblical barley and herb salad from Feeding the Hungry Ghost
The seven sacred foods of Judaism together in one salad
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