Friday, November 14, 2008

To Some Jews, Faith Means Lox, Bagels & Seinfeld

I read that somewhere & it just made me laugh a little.

I grew up a Jew, just not a practicing one. We grew up in the Bronx as part of a huge melting pot. I had black friends, Irish friends, Spanish friends. It was awesome. But we seemed to be the only Jews. When I was younger I wondered where the others were. Hah. I even got tied to a pole when I was younger because I was the little Jewish girl. I laughed about it later with the kid who did it. For a long time, after getting out of the Bronx, we went back often to re-visit those good times with friends who were still there.

I had such a fun-filled childhood, living in a 5 story building, always hanging out on "the stoop," friends calling up to us from the street to our 3rd story window, asking if we could come out to play. The ice cream truck would come by & we'd have mom throw money out the window with something heavy to weigh it down. Fun times. A time when it was safe for a bunch of kids to be running in the streets because we were all looking out for each other.

We celebrated Christmas because it was fun but we also put up the Menorah out of respect for the Jewish traditions. Yeah, we were like that.... Later my sisters & I were all dating someone of a different nationality & so we called ourselves the League of Nations. But I digress...

While my faith has changed since I was younger, I still hold onto what is considered an important part of Jewish cuisine. The Bagel with Cream Cheese & Lox.


Nova Lox is a salmon fillet, thinly sliced, lightly salted & smoked & very delicate. Ordinary Lox is similar but much saltier. It was introduced to the United States through Eastern European Jewish immigrants.


The only way I eat it is on a lightly toasted bagel, with a schmear of cream cheese, thinly sliced onions & black pepper. I often slice up some tomato as well. Some people do the capers but it's not my bag. We enjoy this for breakfast, lunch or dinner. A package is usually good for 3 bagels & I enjoy mine open faced with not too much salmon on each side.
This is to us what grits are to Southerners. I know some of my friends up North have never had grits & I know many people who have never tried Lox. 


You can usually find 2 different types of Lox at the supermarket near the fish. I always get the one that says Nova. It is more delicate & less salty than the other package normally labeled as just Lox. If this is something you've never tried, you ought to. You'll either love it or hate it. But at least you can say you tried it.
Well, I really enjoyed sharing this with you. I didn't plan on talking about my childhood but it seemed natural once I got going.
Have a great weekend!!!!!!!!!

40 comments:

sassy stephanie said...

I can't I can't I can't. An old boyfriend of mine LOVE cream cheese and lox. I just can't do it.

KDLOST said...

my hubby will be obsessed with this. oh, and he is also obsessed with my matzah ball soup...and all things lentil... goodness, he's picky, but if it's jewish cuisine he's more than likely going to LOVE it!!!

great story about your upbringing, too. i grew up with a big melting pot as well... but in a river town... in the south!! black, white, jewish, lebanese, and italian mostly. i guess i feel at home in NOLA because it's like that here, too...plus cajun/creole... :) good times.

Tam said...

I have had it and my husband really likes it. I am not a Salmon person. We have a Bagel place here in Savannah and that is what my Hubs orders! Give me a bagel and cream cheese and that is it. NO Salmon for me.

Mary said...

Definitely something my husband would LOVE to try, thanks!!!

Erin said...

I LOVED your story and I want to hear more ~ so fun were the days when you didn't have to be afraid to play outside or talk to strangers, ya know! I love salmon, but I am a little intimidated by the lox bagel. :) Have a fabulous weekend!
~Erin

Jen said...

I so wish that I had had that for breakfast, yum! And I am not Jewish.

scargosun said...

I LOVE this! The only thing I add that is not in keeping with the Jewish way (and I am a recovering Catholic) is I add capers.

Rebecca said...

Mmmm..that looks yummy! I need to make my breakfast.


You grew up in a way that I have only seen on TV - that is so cool!!!

gingela5 said...

Great post! I've never tried lox before. I actually never knew what it was! Thanks for sharing!

Kacey R. said...

Thanks for sharing such fun memories with us. I love that yoru Mom threw money out the window for the ice cream truck. I can just invision it all and it sounds like so much fun.

Brian is all about Lox & Bagels, but I'll stick with my grits and hashbrowns. :O) I'll have to let him know about the Nova. Have a wonderful weekend!

Lump said...

omg I love those!

sounds like you had a very interesting and fun childhood. I want to go to New York! I imagine it to be like the mob movies. ;)

TattooedMinivanMom said...

I learned something new about you. Huh. Thought I knew it all...can't eat salmon though. I only do shell fish...unless it's battered and fried as in fish and chips. Love ya! Kissy,kissy,hug,hug.

Carrie said...

I love hot smoked salmon, but I'm not the hugest fan of cold smoked salmon--it's a texture thing.

Therefore, my husband only gets this when we go out. However, I love hot smoked salmon just like this but with capers, because they are my bag, baby!

Erika said...

Thats looks sooooo good!
Erika

Coco said...

I love lox and bagels as much as I love my grits!

Hubby is out of town this weekend, I might have to run to the store for some yummy smoked salmon and bagels. He is not a fan.

Have a great weekend, lady!

Lorie said...

I have never tried Lox, but now I want to! And I am glad you talked about your childhood!

Life with Kaishon said...

What beautiful childhood memories. My best friend, David the Lawyer, is Jewish. A lot of people at my job think I am Jewish too because David and I used to hang around together so much. That is just fine with me! Kaishon tells people he is part Spanish, African, Jewish, and Muslim. He cracks me up. Hope your weekend with the dinasours is wonderful. I will show Kaish the video!

jsprik said...

thanks for sharing your story!! i remember back when it was safe to roam the neighborhood, too. i can't even let my 12 year old walk to her friends house by herself anymore...we just had an attempted abduction on the main road in our dinky little town of 500. i live in a very rural area, and i still don't feel safe to let her roam. i remember being gone from sun-up to sun-down with my friends and not having a care in the world--good times :) where have they all gone?? :( have a great weekend, hugs and prayers...

Carrie said...

What a great way to get that Omega 3! I love the cream cheese the best but I know the fish is good for me so I would try this.

Ritch in Love said...

Ahhh...the Bronx...a home I will always loved...though my time there was only a year....giving you an award tomorrow. :)

The Happy Housewife said...

My husband loves that stuff, me not so much, but I like it more than when I was younger. When I was growing up all my friends were either Jewish or Catholic, I had no protestant friends!
Toni

Life On The Tail Of A Comet said...

Sometimes I just crave this. I prefer a whole wheat bagel and I only like real cream cheese in the block- not the whipped stuff. I like it when capers are added as well.I have a place in my neighborhood where you can buy cream cheese with caviar in it. I tried to do it myself and it was good but I mushed up the caviar in the process- it wasn't as pretty. I sent my little blonde girl to a Jewish preschool one year and we had so much fun because we celebrated all the holidays in addition to our own. The traditions are wonderful!
Thank you for sharing that!

Texas Mom said...

Wow, what a neat coincidence. I'm headed to DINOLAND with my daughter tomorrow! I LOVED your post too. I'm of Hebrew and German descent, so I call myself a Heinz 57.

PS) I posted about creamcheese yesterday. We must be thinking the same stuff!

Angela said...

Ah, I love learning new things about you! I always thought growing up in NYC sounded like it would be so much fun. I grew up in a small town in southeast Tennessee, about as far from big-city as you can get. I remember reading the Judy Blume books (remember SuperFudge and Tales of a Fourth Grade Nothing?) and thinking how much fun it sounded as they lived in the "big city."

I do adore smoked salmon. Personally I love it on those little square breads you can buy in the deli - I occasionally make party trays with it with like rye bread, pumpernickel, cream cheese and then I add shallots (slightly milder) and capers. Yum yum!

Melissa Lester said...

I enjoyed reading about your past. Maybe that's why you relate well and develop close relationships with so many people. I think I would like bagels and lox!

avtcoach said...

I have to admit my ignorance of Lox and now am glad to know because I love Salmon and would love the Salt! I love what I learn on your site!! Can't wait to see what you are cooking for your parents this weekend!

Tabitha Blue said...

Sounds good... never have tried it :)

The Nice One said...

Ooooh...bad sister-in-law memories come with bagels and lox!

The Mrs. said...

I am an honorary jew, the only wasp in my town and I loooved partaking in bagels lox and cream cheese but I add capers!!!

Piece o' Coconut Cake said...

Sesame seed bagel, double toasted, whipped cream cheese (light and airy), red onions and tomatoes on mine please. And don't forget the HUGE mug of coffee. Ahhh, Sunday mornings...

Renée aka Mekhismom said...

So, so yummy! I miss my New York bagels and hate that I have to settle for below par bagels since I live in the South. I can't wait for my next trip up North. Bagels and lox. uhm uhm good!

Nazarina A said...

My Sweetie who is Polish and I would often go and have a bagel and lox for breakfast at this well known place in North Miami Beach.
I love how you have presented yours so fresh and delicious. Thank you for giving me a little bit of your background, so now I know the perfect little gift for you!!!

Jamey said...

Come get your award, check you might have more than 1!

The Blonde Duck said...

I still owe you for the links. You have no idea how thrilled I am! You have saved my life!

Pam said...

I've never had lox because it always freaked me out. I think I will have to try it now - this looks really tasty and easy.

Michelle said...

We are having a "Thanks for giving a rat ass" breakfast for the teachers on Friday and I am bringing them bagels, lox and cream cheese. It's a fav in the family.

Ace C said...

I always wanted to sit on a stoop, but I had to settle for a porch.

Kelly said...

I've always wanted to try this..
And thanks to you I will!!! :)
I've missed reading your posts!
hope you are well and happy!

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