Anytime between the end of November and the end of December, Jewish people celebrate eight nights of Hanukkah. Many people think that Hanukkah is just the Jewish equivalent of Christmas because both events are celebrated around the same time of the year. However, the timing is the only thing that these two holidays have in common…
Hanukkah celebrates the victory of the Jewish people over the Syrians who invaded and destroyed Israel. This holiday is nicknamed “The Festival of Lights” because the Jewish people found only enough oil in the ruins of their city to give enough light for one night, but miraculously, it lasted for eight.
This holiday is all about family, and a deep sense of respect and tradition. The silverware we used in our tablescape here belonged to one of our great grandmothers who brought it all the way from Poland in the 1930’s. We wanted to mix silver and gold with rich blue and purple jewel tones, to bring a modern edge. Since kids and adults both enjoy playing the dreidel game, we made sure to give everyone their own container filled with gelt (chocolate gold coins).
To celebrate the oil used for the miracle, we made two traditional foods fried in oil: Latkes (potato pancakes) and Sufganiyot (jelly filled donuts).
Here are our favorite recipes for both!
Usually Latkes are served with sour cream and apple sauce, but we wanted to change it up a bit. We topped half of our Latkes with crème fraiche and caviar for a savory finish, and then for some sweetness we topped the other half with a dollup of cherry preserves (a gift all the way from Italy!).
To complete the presentation of our tower of Sufganiyot, we garnished with fresh mint and tart berries, which go perfectly with this fried pillow of sweetness!