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Deborah Rood Goldman

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Overhead view of hollandaise sauce and whisk in a pot

It’s often difficult to be funny in print, but reading the opening of Peter Gethers’ newest book, My Mother’s Kitchen: Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner, and the Meaning of Life, I found myself suppressing hysterical laughter in the quiet car of an evening rush-hour train. I can’t begin to imagine how his unselfconscious, authentic, and remarkably familiar persona would make me laugh in person. It’s fitting, I think, that last week – just before Mother’s Day – I finished My Mother’s Kitchen – this time alone at home, where I savored the poignant scene of celebrity chefs and restaurateurs...

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Holocaust survivor Sol Rosenkranz

When author June Hersh interviewed Holocaust survivors for her first book Recipes Remembered, a cookbook of their stories and recipes, she barely knew anyone who had endured this horrific time in history. Today, June counts the survivors she’s met among her dearest friends.

She recently teamed up with photographer Brian Marcus for a new book, Still Here: Inspiration From Survivors & Liberators of the Holocaust. When we spoke, June said that her attitude about the Holocaust hasn’t changed, but her understanding about how to move forward despite paralyzing odds has proven to be...

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Little girl from behind wearing superhero cape

Long ago in Persia, before tweets and 24-hour news cycles, a royal vizier named Haman had the ear of King Achashverosh, a foolish and malleable man. When a Persian Jew named Mordechai enraged Haman by refusing to bow down, Haman vowed not only to punish Mordechai, but to exterminate all the Jews of Persia. 

With Mordechai’s help, our hero was Esther, a smart and tenacious Jewish woman who bravely stepped up to the plate. Esther gained clout with the farshtinkener (stinking) king, and bravely worked to help thwart Haman’s wicked plan.  

Mordechai’s words to Esther speak...

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dreidels

When I was a little girl, my sisters and I were vaguely aware that my parents were always squirreling away small gifts that they would unearth and hurriedly sort behind closed doors just before the first night of Hanukkah. I would sit outside that closed door, excited at hearing our parents murmur to each other as they decided which daughter would get which gifts – based on age and interests – and made sure each of us received at least one special item. Half the fun was the anticipation. There were no lists of gift requests in advance; after all, there were seven of us girls.

A...

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Rabbi Evan Moffic, author of What Every Christian Needs to Know About the Jewishness of Jesus: A New Way of Seeing the Most Influential Rabbi in History (Abingdon Press), sees himself “as a guide for Christians and Jews through the landscape of first century Judaism,” presenting Jesus the way his Jewish contemporaries understood him and offering examples of how Christianity evolved from its Jewish roots.

ReformJudaism.org: What drove you, a Reform rabbi, to write a book about Jesus aimed at both Christians and Jews?

Rabbi Moffic: People asked me to write this book. They...

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