Kaitlyn’s husband, Aaron, joined the family six years ago. On our first Shabbos together, I prepared Susie Fischbein’s Yerushalmi Kugel from her Kosher by Design cookbook. Aaron, always the gentleman, complimented the kugel profusely, telling me that it reminded him of a delicious kugel he had tasted in the Geula neighborhood of Jerusalem years ago. Trying to impress my new son-in-law, I prepared that same kugel for him each and every time he would come for Shabbos.
I served him Yerushalmi kugel every Shabbos for the first four years they were married.
Yes, four years.
To be fair, when I joined the Respler family, my father-in-law a’h would bring a bottle of Ginger Ale to the Shabbos table every time I visited. He knew how much I enjoyed Ginger Ale. And, I noticed. And, thirty years later I no longer savor Ginger Ale, though Ginger Ale still makes me think of Dad.
Over time and with a gentle comment from Kaitlyn, I came to realize that although delicious, this kugel needed a break.
I guess times have changed. And, just maybe, Yerushalmi Kugel is different than my favorite soda.
I stopped preparing Yerushalmi Kugel for Aaron. And, I let it go.
That is, I let it go until the last time Kaitlyn and Aaron visited. After all, it was nearly two years since I stopped the Yerushalmi Kugel barrage.
I reinvented the Yerushalmi Kugel recipe. It is now simpler. It does not use margarine. It has less sugar. And, it looks like a challah.
I served it once again. Aaron just smiled.
4 cups water
1/2 cup oil
2/3 cup sugar
1 tablespoon freshly ground black pepper
2 teaspoons salt
12 ounces fine egg noodles, uncooked
4 tablespoons brown sugar
2 tablespoons vegetable oil
In a large pot, bring the water, oil, sugar, pepper and salt to a boil. Turn off the heat and add the uncooked egg noodles. Stir. Cover the pot and let stand for at least 15 minutes.
In a separate bowl, combine eggs, brown sugar and oil. Add mixture to the noodle mixture and stir until well combined.
Generously grease pan or silicone challah mold with nonstick spray. Brush generously with oil or coat with parchment paper. Pour batter into prepared pan and bake at 375 degrees F for 1-1/2 hours.
Remove kugel from the pan immediately when done.
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