Short order: The best things come in small packages

Don't you often get the feeling that eateries are out to lighten your pocket as much as possible before you leave their premises?

June 28, 2007 10:54
3 minute read.


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Don't you often get the feeling that eateries are out to lighten your pocket as much as possible before you leave their premises? It's happened, for example, that I have finished what turned out to be a mediocre salad - much of it "padded" with ordinary lettuce leaves - and felt mildly outraged at being required to fork over anything between NIS 35 and NIS 45, or even more. (Last year a kosher dairy restaurant in London's Golders Green charged me the equivalent of NIS 80 for a tuna salad I would be ashamed to put on my table at home - and didn't include bread.) All the more reason, therefore, to be delighted by the Angel's cafe-restaurant in my local mall, where I often end up doing errands, especially on a Friday. The cafe recently revamped its menu, including, in addition to its regular sandwiches, a selection of "mini-sandwiches." I've sampled them, and gone back for more. Some quite creative fillings are available in a 15-cm. white or whole-wheat toasted roll. For example: Bulgarian cheese with sun-dried tomatoes and basil; rich tuna salad with carrot, lettuce, tomato and pickle; egg, avocado, mayonnaise, red pepper and pickle; and Bulgarian cheese, antipasti and pesto sauce. The cheese is 5%-fat, which is fine with me. Initially, the price was NIS 10. A couple of Fridays ago, I saw it had gone up to NIS 12 (a little more for a smoked salmon option), but it still felt like a bargain. Takeaway remains NIS 10. I have a fondness for small things, perhaps because I'm something of a miniature myself, and so may be prejudiced. But it touched me that a large and successful chain should opt to cater to the customer who doesn't want - or simply cannot finish - a larger and more expensive portion (regular sandwiches cost NIS 22). As I've mentioned before, I generally don't recommend "products." But if something really appeals, I like to let people know. When you can sit and take a break from your errands while enjoying a cup of tea and a fairly substantial "bite" for a small outlay, it's something to celebrate. I ATE a scrumptious fish dish at a friend's house during a recent Shabbat lunch, and immediately decided to ask for the recipe. SHIRA'S SUCCULENT SALMON 1 cut of frozen salmon, any size, thawed 1 cup teriyaki sauce Dijon mustard Demerara (light brown) sugar Put the salmon in a baking dish and marinate it in the teriyaki sauce for up to two hours. Using a spoon, cover the surface with mustard (it must be Dijon). Lightly sprinkle a bit of sugar over the mustard and bake, uncovered, in a 180 oven for 15-20 minutes, or until done. Serve hot or cold. WITH A little time to spare before an appointment in a Jerusalem neighborhood near mine, I took a little stroll and came upon a cafe-bakery I had erroneously been informed had shut down. Seeing that business was brisk made me happy, since I suddenly remembered some amazing sweet treats I had occasionally bought from there that make an unusual accompaniment to a cup of tea or good coffee. They were freshly made that day, so I invited a friend over to sample them. They reminded her of a recipe she makes often (during Pessah too), so I asked her for it: ALMOND AND CINNAMON BALLS 3 egg whites 1 heaped Tbsp. ground cinnamon 1 2⁄3 cups ground almonds 1 cup brown sugar Powdered sugar for dusting Preheat oven to 180 . Beat the egg whites until stiff and dry. Add the next three ingredients and mix well. Form small balls, put them on a lightly oiled baking sheet and bake for 15-20 minutes. Roll lightly in the powdered sugar, and allow to cool. PARSNIPS are in season here again, and on a trip to a local supermarket which I know stocks them I bought a couple of kilos - but they were not at their best. I was distressed to find that they are still being wrapped in cellophane, which makes them deteriorate very quickly. When will the Parsnip Ministry rule that the so-called gezer lavan is not a "white carrot," but much more like a cucumber in its delicate nature, and insist that parsnips be sold loose, or in nets, which allow them to breathe? As someone who helped get parsnips into Israeli stores, I take this foolishness very personally, and can only hope that good sense will prevail.

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