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The reason it reminds you of a financial piramyde is that it IS a financial piramyde. Go away spammer/ ganef.J - Please delete the above message.PS The chazerai looks delicious, though I have to confess I like Brasilian food better than Argentinian. Just as with music, you have to have some African/native influence to spice things up or it is boring. The Israelis did well to steal the recipes of the Arabs because Eastern European food was also somewhat dull, with horseradish being the closest thing to anything spicy.K
I deleted the ganef. HORSERADISH ! Now that I think it, you are right. Ashkenazi food is overrated. In my opinion, Spanish food and vine is the best. I also like Spanish architecture and interior design. I like the Spanish lifestyle, with the sacred "siesta" and the late evening "tertulias" and "veladas" at the coffee table.
I hate to tell you but the Spanish stole much of their food (at least the part of it that is not pig) from the Arabs (and probably the Jews) also - arroz, almonds, citrus, sugar, eggplants, cinnamon, saffron - these are all legacies of the Moors.Generally the Jews do not, with small exceptions, have a cuisine (or an architecture, or other arts) that is uniquely their own - they are always influenced by the people that they live among (and vice versa). Many of the Ashkenazi recipes are more or less identical to the local goyish recipes, especially the foods which the Christians once ate on Fridays and during Lent when meat was forbidden - for example pierogi (called vareniki in Ukraine) filled with potatoes and cheese. I have eaten in (non-Jewish) Polish and Ukrainian restaurants and many of the dishes were shockingly similar to my mother's recipes.It must be kept in mind that for much of the year in Eastern Europe (in the days before fast transport)there was very little availability of fresh fruits or vegetables for much of the year, except for things that would keep well in cellars. On Pesach the karpas or green vegetable on the seder plate was often a slice of potato (not green at all) because this was the closest thing you could get to a living vegetable in Poland in March. So they made do with what they had, but of course with such a meager variety of ingredients (made even more meager by kashrut) it is hard to compete with a Mediterranean cuisine with its abundant produce much of the year, rich olive oil, etc. (aceituna = al zeitun).K
It is not chazerai - everything is beef and potentially kasher. One cause of the general poverty of Eastern European Jewish cuisine is... the general poverty of Eastern European Jewry. Famine was widespread, each winter thousands died of hunger. There was an enormous floating, nomadic population of luftgeschefters, schnorrers and homeless people. We have conveniently forgotten the misery of the schtetl.
Even the chorizo? Is that a beef sausage?Although they were mostly poor, especially by modern standards (where there is now more prosperity than there has ever been), there was of course a gradation - there were people who were relatively better off also, and yet even for them the variety of what was available out of season was very limited. Yes they could have a goose in February but no salad to go with it.My father was quite poor before the war, and yet he spoke of people who were even poorer, so poor that they could not afford to heat their hovels. When you would enter their house in winter the walls would be glazed with ice - the humidity of their breath would condense on the walls and freeze. At least in Haiti the poor are warm. He used to laugh at the idea of "poor people" in America, because the ghetto poor (fed with welfare benefits) is for the most part extremely obese - in Poland there was no such thing as a fat poor person - the terms were mutually exclusive.K
There are no rules about the the meat that goes into a chorizo, and some say that to enjoy a chorizo you shouldn not investigate its content. In Argentina, in my times, beef was so abundant and cheap that no pork was used to fill the chorizo and other delicacies. This fatness epidemy is very recent. When I was a child, parents were always worried about our weight, loss of half a kilo sent them into a panic. Round cheeks were considered healthy and beautiful. One of the reasons we went to Argentina was the abundance of food.
There are recent studies that indicate that the elderly who are moderately heavy outlive those who are very thin. I see this among my relatives - all my aunts and uncles of my parent's generation (except for the youngest brother) are gone except for the one aunt (who BTW survived Auschwitz) who was always (and remain) "pleasantly plump" or zaftig ("juicy"). The ideas about what is "healthy" in popular culture are often completely wrong and have more to do with fashion than science. At one time being fat was associated with being rich (see Nazi cartoons of fat Jewish bankers) but when modern agriculture made food cheap then the wealthy could no longer show their status by competing to be the fattest, so they switched the game around to see who (especially the women) could be the thinnest. The Duchess of Windsor, that noted authority on health and morality, pronounced that "you can never be too rich or too thin".K
I have the impression that skinny women look younger and are more attractive and sexy.
No, very thin women look older because their skin hangs off them, and below a certain weight, they lose the hourglass shape that heterosexual men find unconsciously attractive (since it denotes health and childbearing capacity). Anon.
I agree with Anon. But still the cultural norms have changed. W.H. Taft was the U.S. President in the early 20th century. He weighed 340 lbs (155 kilos). No 155 kilo man could ever be elected US president today - it would be seen as some sort of moral defect not in keeping with the norms of the higher social classes from which Presidents are supposed to be drawn. Obama is as thin as a rail - his father was from a Nilotic tribe, the Luo, who are tall and thin. K
The cultural norms have changed, but the biological ones haven't.Just check out the pictures on the wall when you next get your car serviced. Anon.
But culture influences our idea of beauty. If you see "French postcards" from the 19th/early 20th centuries, they are quite overweight by modern standards, even the standards of pinup calendars, putting completely aside the anorexic waifs seen in ladies fashion magazines.K
Yes standards change, because the current fashion industry is now dominated by men who are not interested in having children.So the 'women' now look androgynous, or even like members of the opposite sex. None of this is accidental.For the paranoid, like me, there is a sinister explanation for everything.Anon.
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