November 19, 2017

My Most Favorite Food Restaurant Turns Kosher For Passover

My Most Favorite Food Restaurant – Open Chol Ha Moed Passover 2012 & Year Round

My Most Favorite Food is a wonderful restaurant that boasts a rich & flavorful history in the city of Manhattan.  In its present Upper West Side of Manhattan location, it caters to the large Jewish & kosher-keeping community who live and thrive there.  Their menu offers a full range of delicious healthy foods for gluten-free & gluten-lovers alike.  They offer a wide assortment of seasonal salads, grilled/baked fresh fish and the traditional home-made pasta dishes found in most dairy restaurants.  They also have a mouth-watering menu of fresh home-baked desserts, available to eat or take-out.

The owners of My Most Favorite Food found me through this website and invited to come and eat in the restaurant to write a review.  That was an opportunity I didn’t want to pass up since, first, I was familiar with the older, My Most Favorite Dessert Company and was curious to see why the name & location change and second because, well, who doesn’t need a night out in the city with the hubby (on the house!).  So, while my review may subconsciously be skewed by the fact that I got a night out on the house, I can definitely say that after my meal, I would go there again as a paying patron, in a heart-beat.

The restaurant is gorgeous and fitting to the upper west side location with its combination of red brick warmth and full length cool city windows.  The serving staff were attentive, knowledgeable and provided us with a relaxing and pampered experience.  And the food was superb.   I am on the Dukan Diet which means I am wheat, gluten & pasta free.  So the grilled Salmon and Greek Salad were my choices.  My husband, on the other hand, can keep skinny while still eating an entire plate full of baked ziti at 10:00pm (which was when we finally got the kids to bed & drove out to the city).  My salmon was wild (which is much healthier than farm-fed), fresh and perfect.  My husband’s pasta was just as delicious and fresh.  For purposes of this review, I made sure to taste my husband’s My Most Favorite Cheesecake and regretfully, it was so good I couldn’t stop with one bite!  Had it not been so close to Passover, I would have brought home half the take-out bakery goods for Shabbat.  And the other half as guilt offerings for my kids for leaving them with a babysitter for the evening.  They have these adorable little mini-cupcakes & cookies beautifully decorated for the kids.  They were just too pretty to leave in the store!

However, I think what’s most notable about this wonderful restaurant is the lengths they go to to satisfy their customers.  Some of you may know that when I’m not running The Kosher Shopaholic, I do business coaching for a living.  So I am accustomed to noticing a star when I see one.  Not many business owners would expend the amount of effort, time and money to turn an entire (pasta, pastry, cake) restaurant and off-site commissary Kosher for Passover. But My Most Favorite Food, catering to the needs of the surrounding Kosher community does.  You can live anywhere in the US and still order from their wide assortment of “I-can’t-believe-its-Kosher-for-Passover” selections as they ship throughout the country.  Of course, if you live closer by, you can call in an order for delivery or better yet, take the whole family out to eat there for Chol Ha Moed.   And after the seders moms, you deserve a break! 

Click here to see their full Kosher-for-passover menu.  And if you do go visit them, make sure to tell them I sent you!

BTW – the dessert in this picture is their success cake: layers of almond meringue with French vanilla crème, garnished with toasted almonds.  Available for passover and year round!

Manischewitz Matzah Factory Tour: A Photo Journal

I was invited to go on a private media tour of the Manischewitz Matzah factory in Newark, New Jersey.  They are at the end of their Shmura Matzoh run for the Passover season, 2012, and allowed us in to watch as they made the last few batches (or few thousand boxes) of shmura matzoh.  Next week, when most of us Jews are turning our kitchens over to ready-for-Passover dishes and utensils, the Manischewitz factory will already be turning thier Kosher-for-Passover factory back to year-round, non-passover status (not to worry, they shut down the entire week of Passover)!

With my handy iPhone 4, I was able to take some magnificent pictures and videos of the matzoh making process in their new state-of-the-art facility.  I’ve compiled them into a photo-journal for your enjoyment.

 

 

 

Kosher Certification Apps {FREE}

Kosher Guides

I just added a new folder to my iPhone which I labelled, Kosher Guides.  In it I have all of the Kosher Certification Apps, which happen to be FREE.  You can download any or all of these apps onto your iPhone or iPad:  cRc Kosher (Chicago Rabinical Council), OU Kosher, OU Passover, OK VegGuideOK Kosher Food Guide.  These apps are available for the iPhone and iPad.

cRc App

In the cRc Kosher App, you can look up products by category -beverages, foods, fruits and vegetables, liquor and even a slurpee section. The cRc Kosher app also has a Recommended Agencies page where they provide the symbol of all Recommended or ‘kosher’ kosher certifications in the US and all around the world.  This is probably one of the best features from all of these free apps since if you are in a store and see a symbol you don’t know, you can just quickly check your iPhone to see if its on their list.  If its on the list you know its an acceptable certification.  I find a lot of products from Trader Joe’s where I don’t recognize the Kosher certification and once I research it, it turns out to be fine.

OU App

The OU Kosher App allows you to search to see if a particular product is Kosher, provides Kosher Alerts on products that have lost certification as well as lists all the newly certified products.  A Website and Kosher Hotline number are also included for additional questions right at your fingertips. I’ve called the OU Kosher Hotline number of times (especially before Passover ) and they are quick to respond and very helpful.  The OU has a separate OU Passover app you can download which is a tremendous help around Pesach time listing all their products that are and are not kosher for passover.

OK Guides

The OK Kosher Food Guide lists all of their certified products and includes an OK Passover guide in it.  The OK Vegetable Guide is a separate app, created to help the Kosher consumer learn the most thorough methods of cleaning and checking vegetables for insect infestation teaching methods that were originally developed for the mashgichim in OK restaurants who wash and check large amounts of produce without compromising Torah standards.  Due to popular demand these guidelines are now available to the Kosher consumer in app form and online at OK.org site.

These are some really helpful apps, from some exceptional companies, especially at Passover time and all FREE!  Download them all now and let me know how you like them!

For more free apps, check out these 16 free fitness & weight-loss apps.

Super Sale On Embroidered Yarmukes & Learn How To Revitalize Old Ones

How To Revitalize Old Yarmulkes

Do your kids’ yarmulkes always get crumpled & ruined?   Are you in need of some new Yarmulkes for the kids for Passover?

Would you like to learn how to revitalize your old worn out tattered yarmulkes?

Watch this video by Abbey creator & designer of Not2Shabbey and learn how to salvage those tattered Yarmulkes to make them look new again.

Coupon Code For Embroidered Yarmulkes

TODAY ONLY all yarmulkes are on sale at reduced prices from Not2Shabbey.com ! Save an additional 10% off when you use promo code YMLKA10 at checkout.  Sale ends at midnight March 14, 2012 – Happy Shopping :)

Want to win a Not2Shabbey hand painted glass ribbon bowl – enter the contest here!

 

 

How To Talk To Your Child About Personal Safety: Free DVDs & Educational Material From Ohel

Protecting Your Child – Essential Tools For The Most Important Conversation You Can Have With Your Children

Ohel has free educational brochures & DVDs for parents.  The DVD is called, Unwanted Touch by Dr. David Pelcovitz & David Mandel and the brochures are “How To Talk To Your Children About Personal Safety” & “How To Talk To Your Children About Trauma & Tragedy”.  You can order these FREE materials from the Ohel Website here.   These materials were funded by Ohel’s Cherish The Child Initiative.

These materials are FREE & in my opinion as a parent and MSW (social worker), are a must have in every home.  Read and watch these materials, learn how to talk to your children about difficult issues that must be addressed and add a higher level of protection to each child in our communities.

OHEL Children’s Home and Family Services was established in 1969,is to protect and strengthen individuals and families by meeting the diverse social service needs of the community through programs of excellence.  OHEL serves communities in New York City, the surrounding Boroughs, Northern New Jersey, Southern Florida and worldwide on the web. OHEL is driven to constantly supersede all professional and regulatory standards. Leveraging OHEL’s experience and reputation, we seek to proactively identify community social challenges by pioneering new programs that elevate the lives of individuals and families every day.  For more about OHEL Services visit their website here.

 

The Complete Bentching CD & Newest Bentching App

The Complete Bentching CD & Newest Bentching App

The Bentching App Lite is now FREE on iTunes.  Scroll down to bottom of page for link to skip the review of this beautiful new app & go strait to the App.

The Bentching CD and The Bentching AppTM is a totally unique and personal way to learn the traditional Jewish “Grace After Meals” prayers & tunes and provides musical enjoyment for the whole family. It is a beautiful musical arrangement of Bentching by professional singer/Chazan Adam Davis offered in either CD or App format.

The Bentching App is the newest creation featuring the same musical arrangement as the CD but for use on your iPad (iPhone app coming soon) and is based on highly acclaimed “Complete Bentching CD”.

The Complete Bentching CD or App is for adults and kids alike, when using the app you can sing along with the apps Hebrew or English transliteration or use a bentching card of your own.  Best of all, it offers beautiful musical arrangement and vocals.   It is truly a pleasure to listen to as its done by professionally trained singer Adam Davis.   The app lets you see the hebrew words as you hear them but you can follow along even if you don’t read Hebrew since it also has english translitteration.

This would make a great gift for young children to help them learn and love traditional bentching tunes.  It is also a really beautiful gift for someone who is new to Bentching or hasn’t mastered Hebrew reading yet (since it has English Transliteration).

Here’s some of the praise for “The Complete Bentching CD”.

“An absolute pleasure to listen to it”
“My Kids and I have literally worn out your CD from listening so much, please send me another copy!”
“My Husband loves your CD and has learned the Bentching!
“Thank you so much , I’m not longer embarrased at family meals and weddings, I can follow and sing along !”  “I used your CD to learn the Bentching and I lead the Bentching at my brothers wedding – thank you so much !”
“Thank you for what you’ve done here for so many families and their Shabbos tables!”

Vocals by Cantor Adam Davis, an Orthodox Chazan in Johannesburg, South Africa. His vocal repertoire spans the Classical, Pop, Contemporary genre. He has recorded 3 CD’s and a host of individual songs by artists such as Josh Groban. Adam Davis has studied under Cantors Nathan Gluck, at Yeshiva University School of Music in New York under Chazan Malovany, with Rabbi-Chazan Benzion Volpo in Johannesburg,with Alexander Izbitser in New York and voice with Eugenie Chopin.

iPad/iPhone App Development: 

www.appster.co.za

Bentching App Lite – Free now in iTunes here.

Special Introductory App Price $1!

GET  the App NOW  on iTunes

Get the CD NOW here.

Kosher Food & Wine Experience, 2012 – Sold Out to over 1,000 Consumers

Welcome to the 6th Annual Kosher Food and Wine Experience, well vicariously, at least!

Kosher wines & culinary treats from all over the world were showcased at the KFWE2012.  It boasts the most comprehensive tasting of Kosher wines in north America with more than 200 wines from 40 wine producers as well as an extensive selection of kosher liquors.

Sponsored by Royal Wine Corp, the KFWE 2012 was sold out with close to 1,000 paying consumers who got to sample from the vast portfolio of Royal Wine Corp wines, featuring as well the best selection of Kosher food, liquors and wines in the world.

At the afternoon tasting, open only to trade professionals and press (me!) I was able to taste some of the newest wine & liquor products on the market like Morad Winery Danue Passion Fruit wine made from Passion Fruits (not grapes), rendering them a ‘shehakol’ wine was one of my favorites.  Tart and fruity it tasted like an exotic vodka mixed drink.  Its definitely going to grace my Purim table and make it into some of my upcoming Purim Mishloach Manot packages as well.  Speaking of Vodka, Distillery no 9 introduced its brand new Kosher for Passover and all year round Vodka today at the show as well. They kindly mixed it with some grapefruit juice for my late morning breakfast treat!   That’s me holding both the vodka & my drink at 12 noon today!

After all the alcohol, I found my way to Pomegranate.  Actually, they found me since their waiters were walking around with their delicious offerings.  I took pictures of as many trays as I could manage while still eating and drinking.  Pomegranate showed off their creative and award winning chefs with their home-made Corned Beef (I could use some more right now, please), signature dip bar and butcher block.  Some of the exclusive delights they were passing around featured some of the tastiest dishes I’ve ever had: Prosciutto, Tongue Polonaise, Wasabi Coconut Lamb Quenelles.  All from a grocery store!  One that is setting a new standard in the kosher market.  And lets not forget the marketing standard they set with their brilliant Yalili music video as well! Remember that?  I’m a fan of everything Pomegranate and will be giving myself a break this Passover when I order their Corned Beef, Tongue Polonaise and Wasabi Coconut Lamb Quenelles instead of attempting to cook anything nearly as good myself!  Hey, Ari, maybe you’ll send a few pound of these my way for the shout-out  :  )

There was a vast array of other culinary options that I was unable to sample since I came to the afternoon event (who could I possibly find to put 4 toddlers to bed for me so I could stay on…?).  But here are some of the delights the lucky 1,000 consumers and additional press & trade folks got to sample.  A selection of homemade Sushi from AviGlatt.com, Short Rib Sliders from Bistro 1310 of Borough Park, Barbecue Oxtail from etc. steakhouse of Teaneck, New Jersey (they are the one’s who won the KosherFest Cook-off a few months back), Jack’s Gourmet Mexican Style Chorizo sausages, JoBurg Dried Beef (Biltong) Carving Station, Le Marais Smoke Duck Breast,  Meat Me’s Peking Duck, Silverleaf Caterers Tiramisu Cake-Up, Sushein of Lower Manhattan’s Crispy Cake with kani & fresh tuna, The Reserve of Lakewood’s Seared Prime Beef.  Drooling yet?

Back to the wines.  Royal Wine Corp announced the first two wines from their newest kosher winery in the Pacific Northwest: Oregon Pinot Noir and a Washington Meritage.  Bartenura celebrated New York’s Big Blue superbowl win with a, you got it,  Big Blue Bottle of Bartenura Sparkling Moscato, all of course, featured at the KFWE.  And the nicest news, for sustainability enthusiasts and our environment is that Royal Wine Corp has gone “Green” with their newest solar power system on the roof of their New Jersey headquarters.   What’s not to like about this company!?

See you all next year at KFWE2013 – I’ve already booked my babysitter!

Check out my Facebook Page to see my live coverage of the event and in case you missed it, make sure you read my review of this past years’ KosherFest, 2011 as well.

Free Tax Services

Free Tax Services

You know the old adage, ‘there are two things in life you can’t avoid –  death & taxes‘?  How about changing it to, ‘there are two things you can’t avoid: Passover & Taxes” they always are at the same time of the year and always require a lot of preparation!

Get ahead and save a ton of money on your taxes by taking advantage of any one of these free tax servics.  (Pesach saving posts are coming soon…)

TurboTax is offering a free online Federal Tax edition.  This year’s version has been brought up to date with the latest tax laws.

You can get your taxes done for free at one of more than 3,000 Walmart tax service in-store kiosks by either H&R Block or Jackson-Hewitt Tax Service.  They use the 1040EZ to file.

From now until February 29th, H&R Block will be offering free preparation of 1040EZ forms at some participating 250 Wal-Mart stores.

Jackson-Hewitt will provide free prep of the 1040EZ during the tax season at about 2,800 Wal-Mart stores.

To find a Wal-Mart store tax prep kiosk near you by, enter your zip code here.

Save 30% on the Top 10 Jewish Women’s Books

Save 30% on the Top 10 Jewish Women’s Books

Jewish eBooks is a great way to own your favorite books by the best Jewish authors, at seriously reduced prices since the price of eBooks are significantly less than the price or regular books.  Now,  Jewish eBooks is offering 30% off the top selling women’s books for all Kosher Shopaholic readers!

Take Rebbetzin Tziporrah Heller’s newest book, Here You Are , it retails in hardcopy for $25.99 is regularly priced $12.99 as an eBook but when you apply the 30% off code it only costs $9!  Super savings!

To take advantage of this amazing deal just enter the promtion code: JEB30KOSHER at checkout.

Buy any of these best selling books at 30% off now!

Green Fences by Riva Pomerantz

Here You Are by Rebbetzin Tziporah Heller

Breaking Point by Riva Pomerantz

Sun Inside Rain by M. Bassara

Terra Incognito by Libi Astaire

The Magic Touch by Gila Manolson

Outside, Inside by Gila Manolson

Captive Soul by Shoshana Schwartz

30 Seconds to Emotional Health by Miriam Adahan

Autumn Rain by Rachel Schorr

How to read eBooks

Jewish E-Books can be read on an iPad, iPhone, iPod Touch, Nook, Android, Sony Reader and more popular eReaders & tablets as well as through Adobe Digital Editions Reader on your PC.

After you’ve made your purchase on Jewish eBooks, you will recieve an email from them to download your eBook.  Once you click on the download link you are ready to read it on any device you have downloaded it onto.

Contest Rules:  this code can only be used one time per customer, value of 30% off any of the above ebooks books.  Expires Feb 15, 2012

 

Win a Freeda Wig Makeover: FREE!

Have you seen the newest viral video?  Freeda ambushes Jew In The City and gives her a wig makeover!  Its loads of fun and helps to explain the beauty behind wig wearing Orthodox women.  Take a look at this great video and share it with your friends.

Now, JITC & Freeda Wigs is giving you a chance to win such a great makeover as well!  Here is how to enter:
1. Like Freeda Wigs and JITC on Facebook (you can make sure to Like Kosher Shopaholic too but its not required for this contest)
2.Share the JITC/Freeda makeover video on your wall with the message “I’m entering the Freeda Sheitel Makeover Contest…”
3. Are you stuck in an old style? Do you need a new look? Will a new style help your career? Your social life? Send in your story ,
pictures and /or videos together with info of whom to contact should you be chosen for the ambush makeover.

Send all emails to MAKEOVER@FREEDA.COM  Freeda will send you a confirmation email and terms and conditions once we receive your entry.  Freeda will choose a random winner from all qualified entrants. Stay tuned for contest updates and good luck!