Tel Aviv Diary January 6-10, 2019 - Karen Alkalay-Gut

Tel Aviv Diary January 6, 2019

Karen Alkalay-Gut

January 6-10, 2019

January 6, 2019

what a storm! We walked out of the doctor's office and it was getting windy, but by the time we left the pharmacy next door it was beginning to rain, and we had a block to get to the car and out of a storm that I haven't experienced in Israel.

But it was worth going to the doctor. This is our old doctor who left the health service to go into more natural medicine and we supplement the advice of our health service doctor with her recommendations.

January 7, 2019

let me explain further. The health service has become very crowded and even more impersonal that usual, even though it is pretty efficient considering what it has to deal with. i can usually get appointments with specialists quickly and they usually remember me and my case, and if something is seriously wrong, the process of hospitalization is speedy and free. the fact that it's overcrowded and people get lost in the shuffle is not their fault. that's just about government money. but the recent todo over the botched operation of Major General Giora Eiland that has left him in constant pain and unable to function properly, even though it was done privately, has prompted many people to go back to the old idea of 'second opinion'. it is a system i thoroughly endorse and usually double when there is some doubt or complication. but our second doctor is about general health - not just specific problems, and we try to figure out the problems and solutions together. so we spent at least two hours yesterday talking about what we ate, what we sleep, etc. and i really feel that even though she isn't always right, she's a great health companion. Especially for a questioner like me. i often turn every question inside out and up and down.

January 8, 2019

Because people keep asking me about Amos Oz, and what i think of him, here it is: - He wrote because he had to, because he had something important to say, not because he wanted recognition. This is what made him dear to me. He spoke fluently because it was important for him to get his message across and not because he liked appearing before a crowd of admirers. The few times i spoke with him he was gracious, generous, and warm. he was truly interested in others, and loved the warmth of communication even though he was never 'intimate.'

i was at an evening where everyone talked about recipes, and when i went home i had to explain to myself why i rarely work from recipes. And this came out:

How My Mother Made Chicken Soup

Here’s what you do to make chicken soup just like my mother.

1. You go to the chicken yard and look at the chickens.

2. You pick a healthy-looking chicken and watch it. Is it walking around all right? Is it eating? Does it fit in with the other chickens?

3. You take your selected chicken to the shochet. You don’t have it sent, because the selection could get mixed up with another chicken. You want to be sure it’s your chicken.

4. Next to the shochet there should be a chicken-plucker who will not only pluck the chicken but will burn what is left of the feathers on his Bunsen burner.

5. You take the chicken back to the shochet to get the head removed.

6. You take the chicken home, and make sure there is no blood in the neck veins.

7. You open up the chicken and examine it. Is every organ in place, is it whole, is it clean? If not you have to bring it to the Rabbi to see if it is kosher.

8. You examine the organs and the unlaid eggs to be put into the soup and put them aside.

9. You rinse the chicken thoroughly

10. You salt the chicken with coarse salt.

11. You place your chicken on a slatted wooden board and lean the board on the inside of the sink

12. You wait up to an hour for the blood to drip into the sink.

13. You rinse the chicken three times to remove all the salt and what is left of the blood.

14. You take out the breast and put the rest of the chicken (excluding the liver and the other innards except for the eggs) in the pot with water, some carrots and celery and a little salt and bring to a boil.

15. Once the chicken boils, you have to watch as the scum on top gathers, and skim it off. This can be done at least three times and you should be watching because, as my mother said: the soup of a cook who sits on her behind – stinks.

16. Let it cook an hour or whenever you’re ready.

17. In the meantime, make the noodles (a bretl lokshen)

. a. Knead the noodle dough (flour and water and maybe an egg) on the kitchen table

b. Roll out the dough so that it covers the table.

c. Sharpen knife.

d. Slice the dough into noodles.

e. Cook the noodles in boiling water.

18. Let the soup cool.

19. Take the chicken out of the soup to be broiled so it looks as tempting as the breast you are about to broil.

20. Put noodles into individual plates

21. Add heated soup

22. serve

23. Enjoy!

January 9, 2019

this recipe explains the way i learned how to cook. the big problem was obtaining quality materials. the way they were cooked was always different because obtaining the ingredients was the hard part, not getting them together. now that all possible ingredients are always obtainable and the quality seems to be under control, it is a different story.

January 10, 2019

As i sat down to write this evening i was suddenly reminded of Dahn Ben Amotz's Diary of a Nine Year Old Boy.It's in hebrew so few of you can understand it, but here is the jist. The kid gets a diary and is told to write in it every day, but for a few days he just lists his daily routine - getting up, washing, eating, going to school. it starts getting interesting, and then he gets miffed at the teacher and puts a bomb under her sear. When he goes home to tell his father what he did, father tells him he had to go right away apologize back at school. the kid answers "what school?" this reminded me of the politics here today.

As i sat down to write tonight i was suddenly reminded of Dahn Ben Amotz's <. to diary

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