Meet Fanny and Hamutal. Fanny made Aliyah to Jerusalem from Switzerland 2 years ago, and Hamutal moved to Jerusalem 4 years ago from Ramat Gan. She’s just back from teaching Hebrew in France for 7 months. They met each other at English Literature Studies at Hebrew University and hosted a Shalom al Lechem Shabbat dinner last week!
Find out how they usually celebrate Shabbat!
What was you Shabbat dinner tradition back at home?
Fanny: It was different than here and there wasn’t a strong feeling before Shabbat like in Jerusalem. We had big dinners every few weeks with Kidush and HaMotzi. Usually my mother made chicken and potatoes in a very special way, but there were also a lot of salads and loads of desserts.
Hamutal: I grew up in a vegetarian house so there was mostly a diary kitchen. We had loads of greens, pies, soups, and salads. We didn’t have traditional food, and every Shabbat there was something else to eat. My mom usually made the food, but each member of our family knows how to cook. I started learning when I was only 3 years old. We’re a very Ashkenazi family, but all of us really hate traditional Ashkenazi food, so my brother makes Moroccan soup and the rest is just vegetarian.
What do you usually cook for Friday dinners?
Fanny: Today I don’t cook what I used to eat at home, and I tried to adapt to the local culture and food, so now it seems reasonable to me to eat Hummus on a Friday night. But I also like to bring a Swiss touch to the Shabbat table, in the form of fondue raclette – a little heated plate that goes on the table, on top of it there’s a bowl with melted cheese on it and everyone can dip whatever they like: potatoes, peppers etc.
Hamutal: Usually for Shabbat dinners I’m a guest and not the host. I bring good wine (one of my favorites is Har Gamla) and I bring dishes that are based on a lot of vegetables. Also Hila, my flatmate and I have a funny tradition to eat in fancy dishes and drink orange juice in wine glasses.
What did you ask our cook to make and why?
Fanny: I asked for a birthday cake like my mom makes – it’s a layered chocolate and whipped cream cake.
Hamutal: I obviously asked for a dish with a lot of vegetables and a Spanish Empanada – for my Spanish boyfriend!