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Shelley's Tov Meod Teusday!!

Again we have the privilege of having Shelley’s Contribution on our blog!!!

This blog post was meant for last Teusday, my sincerest apologies for the delay:

In memory of my grandmother, Lil Shafran, Leah bat Yosef, z”l.

I am the bearer of an invaluable treasure trove of memories of the most elegant and regal women I ever had the merit of knowing. My maternal grandmother was everything to me. She carried herself with poise and grace, her stylish appearance an external mirror of her inner refinement. And while my grandmother always made certain we were well fed and satiated she did not fit the mold of the typical “Jewish Bubbie” piling plates high with artery clogging delicacies while gently urging her grandchildren to “eat more”. She was a woman of moderation. She paced herself. The gentle urgings were to take just what you need and when you’re full to stop.
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This post is dedicated with gratitude to my best friend, Sharona Nissimi Makabi who has shown me and continues to show me the meaning of true friendship. May her father, David Ben Sarah have an enormous refuah shleima.

Harnessing the Power of Female Friendships

Health Benefits and the Power of Friendship among Women:

A study out of UCLA suggests that women respond very differently than men when under stress. The female body in its infinite wisdom increases it’s oxytocin response when under stress and this helps to buffer the fight or flight response naturally drawing her to tend to children and gather with other women. When a woman engages in this tending or befriending more oxytocin is released and this counters stress and produces an overall CALMING response. This is very different to men who produce testosterone under stress, which appears to decrease their levels of oxytocin and they often benefit a great deal from hibernating and working through stress on their own.


The famed Nurses’ Health Study from Harvard Medical School found that women with more closer friendships were less likely to lead a more joyful life and less prone to developing diseases or physical impairments as they aged. The results were so striking that researchers concluded that not having close friends was as detrimental to one’s health as smoking or carrying extra weight.


The “tend and befriend” notion that was developed by Drs. Klein and Taylor from UCLA helps explain why women are repeatedly outliving men. Researchers have demonstrated time and again that social ties reduce our risk of disease by lower blood pressure, heart rate and cholesterol. Essentially, our friends are contributing to our longevity…possibly adding years to our lives. In addition to this when researchers studied how well women functioned after the death of their spouse they found that even in the face of grief, women who had a close friend and confidante were more likely to survive the experience without any new physical impairments or permanent loss of vitality.

As women, we bond over many things, love, friendship, life, exercise, cooking and food of course! As we settle into the loveliness of December, putting on those long johns, lighting candles and maybe going to sleep earlier than we normally would…lets take a look at how we can warm up from the inside out with a delicious new soup!

Jill’s Heavenly Thai Soup

This recipe was created by my genius, amazing friend, Jill Zucker. It is a soup that will warm you from the inside out and make you smile from the first bite!

2 Cans Coconut Milk
4 Cups Chicken Broth
Fresh Shitake & Oyster Mushrooms
Baby Corn
Fresh Ginger, ½ inch thickness sliced
Lemongrass 2-3 inches or more
Dlat (Israeli Pumpkin), 1 cup cubed
Shredded cooked chicken breast (can be taken from soup when cooking chicken broth)
Curry Seasoning or Curry Paste
Fresh scallions & Cilantro to garnish

Simmer chicken broth with sliced mushrooms, ginger, and lemongrass for 20-30 minutes. Add coconut milk and the rest of ingredients. Before serving pull lemongrass and ginger out and garnish with cilantro and scallions.




Shelley Shafran Insights for Tov Meod Teusdays!

What’s a girl to do when it’s overcast and grey? My mind was alight with visions, wrapped in warm blankets sipping hot chocolate before a roaring fireplace before the sharp chill seeped in through the cracks and corners ushering in a winter sadness and melancholy. So what do you do when you live in a small Jerusalem apartment with no fireplace to speak of and the only glow before you is a computer screen? How do you nourish yourself when the hot cocoa of your fantasies gives way to a sugar crash and lethargy of your nightmares? I present to you my “instant” sustainable mood-booster. Read more



Let Thy Food Be Thy Medicine!

Recently, I’ve seen quite a bit of research discussing the link between the Strep infection and Obsessive Compulsive Disorder, most commonly known as OCD. According to investigators at the National Institute of Mental Health, studies done on childhood-onset OCD showed a striking connection between sudden, abrupt onset of OCD symptoms and various types of auto-immune diseases. Read more


POST Festival ROSH HASHANA/SUKKOT & Pre-Thanksgiving Food Fest preparation guide

Feeling sluggish?

Overly emotional?

Have you seen your reflection in the bottom of a pie dish recently?

Finish a half a cake and cant figure out where it went?

Self Caring Steps to Letting Go of the Guilt with Food Festing:

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