When Jewish and Italian Cuisines Collide

I get very excited when I find myself in the midst of spontaneous cultural exchanges.
After all, that’s the motivation for “Pronto Marcella”. Cooking for, and with, Italians is one of best ways I know of to share experiences and promote magical moments where language and cultural barriers disappear.

I often find myself cooking for Italians.While this might seem intimidating, I have found my friends, (who live in what some people consider to be the number one foodies paradise) to be enthusiastic and supportive of new cuisines.
Last year I made a version of my grandmother’s potato kugel but added pumpkin and other vegetables. Electra told her friends how delicious it was and now they keep asking her for the recipe.
Today I decided to make kugel again and try to record the recipe. No easy task because I made it up as I went along.

But here goes:

Peel and grate 4 large potatoes and rinse well under cold water in a sieve. Drain and press out all water in a kitchen towel.

Grate 1 small pumpkin, skin and all, (no need to peel it)
Grate 3 large white onions

Mix all the veggies together in a large bowl
Add 4 eggs
3/4 cup of flour
salt and pepper
chopped parsley

Continue mixing until well blended
add about 1/2 cup olive oil

Oven temp is 350F or 175 C

In a large baking dish, pour olive oil to cover the bottom.
Heat in oven until very hot.

this is what it might look like before  it goes in the oven

this is what it might look like before it goes in the oven

Pour in the mixture (it should sizzle) and cook until crispy. This should take about an hour but you’ll know it’s done when it is crispy and the oil is bubbling.
Eat right away!


Variations: Use carrots, sweet potatoes, zucchini, squash or other vegetables. Next time I’m going to add one grated apple. I’ll report back about how it tasted.

Buon Apetito!

Barbara enjoye her lunch

Barbara enjoye her lunch

My next challenge is to write this recipe in Italian with Italian measurements!

Three of us ate almost the whole  dish!

Three of us ate almost the whole dish!

4 thoughts on “When Jewish and Italian Cuisines Collide

    • it has been an amazing trip- so many unique experiences for me! I have just arrived in Girona, just outside Barcelona. So I should have many stories to share when I come back! See you soon!

    • Si! I do! and it was fabulous.
      Understand that I make up this recipe, then record it after, to the best of my knowlede. In America, I would add 2 teaspoons of baking powder- I don’t think this exists in Italy. If you make it , be sure to tell me how it turns out!

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