A few months ago (which now feels like at least a year ago), Esti Vago, one of the people I work with most closely on Family Table, was making an upsheren for her son. Esti is make-something-from-nothing creative, one of those people whose love language is crafting amazing and wondrous things for her family, and I knew she’d have lots of great ideas for all of you. So I’d been telling her for ages that I wanted her to document it, we’d send a photographer and put it in the magazine for Lag B’omer. As it got closer to the upsheren, we even spoke about bringing Esther Ottensoser on to shoot some parts in Lakewood.
The plans seemed nice and tight, but in the end I chose to take a different path. I’ll explain.
I’ve always thought a lot about the upsheren content we put in the magazine, and I know how much people have used our themes from over the years on their own scale. On the other hand, I think upsherens hold a place in many peoples’ hearts as a sweet, holy, innocent simchah, the last place we’d want to divert attention and focus from what’s really important. So, back in the dead of winter, I decided to skip the adorable themed event and instead print a collection of ideas to enhance any upsheren.
Recently, while I was planning some Shavuos content with Esther O., she said, “Chanie, imagine if we’d done Esti’s party!”
I laughed. A fully decked upsheren that was planned in February would have been completely inappropriate this May. What we planned for this year really highlights the only “socializing” option there is — driving around town, mishloach manos style, the precious three-year-old bringing little packages of excitement to share with people he loves.
Crispier than Ever
If you have time and patience, here’s how I like making schnitzel: flour - egg - crumbs - egg - crumbs. It’s a double layer of crispy, enough said!
We Love a Good Shortcut
If you want to skip the dredge station, make a batter like a tempura batter. First dredge in seasoned flour, then dip in batter and fry!
Flavor on Flavor
Throw a few garlic cloves and some onion into the oil you’ll be frying in. The difference they make is subtle but delicious!
If for whatever reason you think your schnitzel is under-salted, you can sprinkle salt on it the minute it comes out of the frying pan. At that point the salt will still dissolve, and the flavor will be delicious.
(Originally featured in Family Table, Issue 691)
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