A Grain of Salt

When reading the news, always take what you are reading with a grain of salt.

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Mikeitz 5765-2004

"Pharaoh's Dream: Learning Through the Nuances" by Rabbi Ephraim Buchwald In this coming week's parasha, parashat Mikeitz, we are presented with a unique opportunity to see the…

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Emor 5774-2014

“The Sadducees and the Counting of the Omer” by Rabbi Ephraim Z. Buchwald Among the 63 mitzvot (24 positive and 39 negative) found in this week’s parasha, parashat Emor, is the mitzvah of…

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The Original Employee Discount

Those who work in retail are often compensated with a special employee discount on goods sold in the store. In the days before retail, when the majority of the population worked in…

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After A Snack

After eating a meal with bread, Birkat Hamazon/Bentching/Grace After Meals is recited as a way to thank and acknowledge God’s gift of sustenance. But what does one recite after eating a…

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A Chocolate Treat

How does a Jewish Treat become a chocolate treat? When the topic of the day is about the Jewish connection to the early trade of chocolate, we find the perfect reason to feature a Treat…

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Re’eh 5766-2006

"Adding or Subtracting" by Rabbi Ephraim Z. Buchwald Parashat Re'eh is a rich and colorful parasha that contains 55 mitzvot, 17 positive and 38 negative. Among the most intriguing of the…

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Terumah 5765-2005

"Identifying the Essentials of Life" by Rabbi Ephraim Z. Buchwald This coming week's parasha, parashat Terumah, is the first of four parashiot: Terumah, Tetzaveh, Vayakhel, Pekudei, and…

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How the Hechsher? Is it Kosher?

In addition to enabling the mass production of dry goods, clothing and automobiles, the industrial revolution allowed for the commercial production and distribution of prepared foods.…

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Sunday Brunch Special

In honor of Jewish American Heritage Month, Jewish Treats has chosen to feature the food that many feel epitomizes Jewish culture: the bagel! The actual Jewish origin of this food is, to…

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Behar-Bechukotai 5766-2006

"The Economics of Torah" by Rabbi Ephraim Buchwald The very last chapter of the book of Leviticus chapter 27, which concludes this week's double parashiot Behar-Bechukotai, focuses on…

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Vocation

“If a man ploughs in the ploughing season, sows in the sowing season, reaps in the reaping season (and etc.)...what is to become of the Torah?” (Talmud Brachot 35b).  This question,…

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Acts of Nature, with a Little Help

Our Rabbis have taught: On entering the barn to measure the newly harvested grain one shall recite the benediction, ‘May it be Your will O Lord, our God, that You may send blessing upon…

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Have You Threshed Recently

Not too many people have the opportunity to thresh their own grain nowadays. Even the original physical method of threshing has been replaced by large, automated threshing machines.…

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Benjamin, The Son of Jacob

The youngest of twelve brothers and one sister, Benjamin, the son of Jacob, appears in the Biblical narrative to be a passive personality whose life is seemingly dictated by the fate of…

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Mikeitz 5770-2009

"Pharaoh's Dream: The Variations and Nuances" by Rabbi Ephraim Buchwald In this week's parasha, parashat Mikeitz, Pharaoh's dream is repeated three times. The dream is first recounted in…

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Nitzavim-Vayeilech 5773-2013

"They’re Not Laughing At Me Anymore!" by Rabbi Ephraim Z. Buchwald In this week’s double parashiot, Nitzavim-Vayeilech, Moses gathers all the People of Israel together, re-enters them…

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Jews and Chocolate Chips

Happy National Chocolate Chip Day, not to be confused with National Chocolate Chip Cookie Day, which falls annually on August 4th. Legend maintains that chocolate chips, also known as…

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Korach 5765-2005

"Lessons from the Rebels" by Rabbi Ephraim Z. Buchwald In this coming week's parasha, parashat Korach, we learn about the infamous rebellion of Korach and his cohorts against G-d and…

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Fyvush

There are certain entertainers who are known by their first name, such as Matisyahu, Madonna, Cher, Eminem etc. Others are known by their first name, despite widespread knowledge of their…

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A Farewell Note

Dear Jewish Treats Reader, Ten years ago, on June 30, 2008, NJOP posted its very first Jewish Treat. We have come a long way since then, covered a wealth of topics, and explored…

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Whose First Fruits

When the Oral Law was first codified, most Jews lived in agrarian settings. Today, being less familiar with agrarian culture, some people find it difficult to relate to some of the…

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Flexible Invention

This summer you probably enjoyed a plethora of cold, refreshing drinks and a good number of them were possibly sipped through a straw while sitting by a pool (if not, we are allowed to…

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For Better Bread

When Charles Fleischmann (1835-1897) and his brother Maximilian (1846-1890) came to America (Cincinnati, Ohio), they were shocked and dismayed at the quality - or lack thereof - of…

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Weekend

What are you doing this weekend? Actually, most people take their weekends for granted and forget that the five day work week was a victory won by the labor movement of the early…

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W Tea

Although many Jews were active in the leadership of the Russian Revolution, and the government of the Czar was less than friendly to the general Jewish population, there were many…

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Whose First Fruits?

When the Oral Law was first codified, most Jews lived in agrarian settings. Today, being less familiar with agrarian culture, some people find it difficult to relate to some of the…

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Whose First Fruits

When the Oral Law was first codified, most Jews lived in agrarian settings. Today, being less familiar with agrarian culture, some people find it difficult to relate to some of the…

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Whose First Fruits

When the Oral Law was first codified, most Jews lived in agrarian settings. Today, being less familiar with agrarian culture, some people find it difficult to relate to some of the…

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Sweet

"There is always room for sweet things." Although this quote comes straight from the Talmud (Megillah 7b), it is a common sentiment among many cultures. In the lifetime of Abaye, the sage…

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