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Pascale’s Kitchen: Refreshing drinks, morsels to break Yom Kippur fast

SC 09/09/2021

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Yom Kippur is the holiest day on the Jewish calendar, and fasting is the most important part of the Day of Atonement. Many Jews who do not consider themselves religious continue to fast every year on Yom Kippur, since that is what helps us to clear our mind, body and soul and engage in a deep reflection of the past year. As a result, we take the meals right before and after the fast very seriously. 
It’s important to end your fast slowly, with small amounts of easy-to-digest food, so as not to overwhelm your digestive tract. If you eat too quickly, or eat heavy foods straight away, this will most likely make you feel poorly. The first thing you need to do after ending a fast is to replenish your liquids. Many people concentrate on the fact that they are hungry after fasting, and don’t take the time to hydrate themselves before eating. Becoming dehydrated is the biggest risk when fasting – especially in climates where it is still hot outside when Yom Kippur rolls around. We need to be careful and take care not to become dehydrated. 
After the fast has ended, it’s important to drink slowly, and not to chug a 1.5 liter bottle of water right away. This way, your body can gradually return to its normal state. It’s best to first drink a glass of plain water, although some people prefer to drink a refreshing glass of limonana (lemonade with ground mint leaves); subye or papitada, a Balkan drink made from melon seeds or falooda siv, a sweet and tangy drink made from fruit that hails from Persian cuisine. This cold dessert is sometimes made with noodles.

Some people prefer to first sit down for a few minutes with a hot cup of herbal or green tea or a coffee and eat a few dry cookies or biscuits with jam, which helps to bring our blood sugar level back to normal. 
Below, you will find recipes for limonana made with lemon verbena or medicinal geranium leaves; subye/papitada (melon seed drink); falooda siv (apple drink); orange cake and sesame cookies. 
Wishing everyone an easy fast.

Learn more about Pascale’s Kitchen here>>

Savta Esther’s orange cake

Bake in a greased and floured bundt pan with a 26-cm diameter or in a wonderpot 
4 eggs
1 ½ cups sugar
1 ½ cups flour, sifted
½ cup ground almonds
½ cup oil
½ cup orange juice
1 tbsp. lemon zest
1 tbsp. orange zest
1 tbsp. cognac 
½ tsp. vanilla extract
½ tsp. rum extract or orange liqueur
1 packet baking powder
Beat the eggs with an electric mixer. Once soft peaks form, gradually add the sugar. Beat another eight minutes or until stiff peaks form. Fold in the flour and ground almonds a little bit at a time. Add the oil, orange juice, lemon zest and orange zest. Add the rest of the ingredients and mix well. Pour the batter into the pan and bake in an oven that has been preheated to 180° for 35-40 minutes, or until it turns golden brown, the cake feels spongy, or a toothpick comes out clean. Let cool.
Level of difficulty: Easy
Time: 1 hour
Status: Pareve


Sesame cookies

Makes 25-30 cookies.
1 cup self-rising flour
1 cup sesame seeds
Pinch of baking soda
Pinch of salt
2 tbsp. ground almonds
1 tbsp. raw tahini
½ cup brown sugar
1 packet vanilla sugar
1 large egg
4 tbsp. oil
2 tbsp. orange juice
½ cup sesame seeds
Add all the ingredients to the bowl of an electric mixer fitted with a dough hook and mix on medium speed until the dough is mixed well, a little oily and not sticky.
Get your hands wet and form balls with a three centimeter diameter. Place the sesame seeds in a small bowl and roll each ball in the seeds. Cover a baking pan with baking paper and place the balls on the pan with plenty of space around each one. Gently press down on balls with the palm of your hand. 
Bake in an oven that has been preheated to 180° for 10-15 minutes until they turn golden brown. Remove and let cool. Store in an airtight container. 
Level of difficulty: Easy
Time: 25 minutes
Status: Pareve


Limonana (lemonade with mint leaves)

Makes 6 cups 
6-8 tbsp. sugar (or honey)
4 lemons
6 cups water
Serving additions:
1 lemon, sliced thinly
1 orange, sliced thinly                                                       
Handful of mint leaves
Handful of lemon verbena leaves or ¼ cup of medicinal geranium leavesfa
Pour the sugar into a large pitcher. Squeeze the lemons and add the juice to the sugar. Mix well. Add the water and mix well. Taste and adjust flavoring according to taste. 
Before serving, add the lemon and orange slices, mint and lemon verbena leaves (or geranium leaves). Mix well, add ice cubes and serve. 
Level of difficulty: Easy
Time: 10 minutes
Status: Pareve

 Subye/Papitada (melon seed drink) (credit: PASCALE PEREZ-RUBIN) Subye/Papitada (melon seed drink) (credit: PASCALE PEREZ-RUBIN)

Subye/Papitada (melon seed drink)

This refreshing drink from Balkan cuisine is made from dried melon seeds. It’s known as papitada in Greece and subye in Turkish. 
Makes 2 ¼ liters
300 g dried melon seeds, unpeeled and ground finely
2 ¼ liters water
Sugar, to taste
Cheesecloth or similar cloth
Pour the ground seeds on top of the cheese cloth and tie tightly. Submerge the cloth with the seed powder into the water. Place in the fridge and leave for two or three days. You can open up the cloth every so often and stir the powder a little, then close and place back in water. Next, add the desired amount of sugar and stir well. Serve with ice cubes. 
Level of difficulty: Easy
Time: 30 minutes, plus soaking time
Status: Pareve


Falooda siv (apple drink)

This drink can be prepared in two ways. In the first, it’s prepared with lemon slices. In the second, it’s made like granita with ground hazelnuts or pistachios. 
Makes 6-8 servings
3 cups water
¾ cup honey
3 tbsp. sugar
¾ cup lemon juice
2 drops of rosewater 
5 apples, grated
Serving suggestions:
First version: 3-4 slices of lemon 
Second version: 50 g. chopped pistachios if making granita
To prepare the first version, pour the water into a large bowl. Add the honey, sugar, lemon juice, rose water and grated apple. Mix well and store in the fridge until serving. Add the lemon slices and ice cubes before serving. 
If you would like to make the granita version, pour the water into a pot and bring to a boil. Add the honey and sugar and mix until they’ve dissolved. Add the rest of the ingredients and mix. Pour the mixture into a rectangular baking pan and cover with plastic wrap. Place in the freezer for 90-120 minutes or overnight. Remove from the freezer 10 minutes before you plan to serve drinks. Grate the frozen drink and serve in bowls topped with ground pistachios. Serve cold. 
Level of difficulty: Easy
Time: 10 minutes, plus freezing time
Status: Pareve
Translated by Hannah Hochner. 


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Co-Host for Coffee Mouth Scarecrow Show. Retired NAVY Chief/Flag Writer Psalms 118:24 This is the day which the LORD hath made; we will rejoice and be glad in it.

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