Saturday, April 2, 2016

Poetry Month, Day 2 - Delicatessen

Today's word, DELICATESSEN, was given to me by my mother, Marcia!  It seems fitting since I'm sure she's the person who brought me to my first deli.  

The two delicatessens I remember most from my childhood are Ashkenaz and The Pickle Barrel.  Anyone else remember them?

The deli I go to most often now is Max and Benny's, because my brother loves it.  Here's a picture just for him!

A lesson at the Delicatessen

I’ve learned a few lessons at delicatessens,
like how to tell nova from belly.
And how to finagle a true Jewish bagel,
and why they put fish balls in jelly.

A hot bowl of soup is a cure for the croup -
whether matzo ball, kreplach or noodle.
Tongue and pastrami are not like salami
and kugel is nothing like strudel.

Whatever the name, it is always the same,
in any and all Jewish delis.
No matter the crowd – it’ll be really loud
and it’s always a great kind of smelly!

Glossary for those not familiar with Jewish food:
~ Nova and Belly are types of Lox.
~ Finagle is Yiddish and means to get or achieve by guile.
~ Fish balls refers to Gifilte Fish, which is a blend of chopped white fish, 
eggs, matzo meal and seasonings that are shaped into balls or ovals.  
The meter in "gifilte fish" was killing me so I used fish balls instead!
~ matzo balls and kreplach are like dumplings and are served in chicken soup
~ Tongue is often served in Jewish delis (not eaten by me!)
~ Kugel is a baked noodle casserole

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