Wednesday, 14 September 2011

Full circle - Frittata for Jack & Becca

If you wait long enough, life comes full circle, as has been the case with my family. 

Bubbie Gertie and Zaida Sam had 6 kids…my Bubbie Lou was one of the eldest, and Uncle Paul was the youngest.  And so began the bridging of generations.

Bubbie Lou and Zaida Bernie, Mom’s parents, lived on Leopold Crescent in Regina.  “Bubbie” Lily and “Zaida” Jack Jampolsky lived 2 doors down.  Their daughter, Anita, would later marry my Uncle Paul.  The families were close and grew up together. 

Fast forward 40 years, and 2 provinces east.  Carlo and I became friendly with Michael (Paul and Anita’s son) and his wife Kate, who were living in Toronto.  We all came together at Mom and Dad’s for the holidays, and soon started hosting the minor holidays (Channuka) at our homes.  Sara was born and then 5 months later Lilyanna came along.  They grew up as cousins and playmates, seeing each other on special occasions.  Four years later Jack was born, and Rebecca followed 5 months later.  Believe me, no prior planning was involved in the timing!!! 

Our lives ran parallel courses, with the girls going to the same Hebrew school…and then Carlo and I decided to move...our house sold quickly, and I became frantic as each house we found wasn’t “the one”…I was convinced we would end up living in my parents’ basement, a less-than-thrilling prospect with 2 young kids.   Then one night, I came home to discover a new pile of MLS listings, and one of the houses was on Michael and Kate’s street – about 5 houses away, if you took the house numbers into consideration.  So we went for a showing, and I could envision my young family growing up in this house…it definitely had the potential to be our home.   Lo and behold…it was 2 houses away from Michael and Kate’s, not 5….do you see the circle closing?!

To make a long story short, we bought the house and have lived 2 doors down from Michael and Kate for almost 8 years.  Our kids have grown up together, and Jack and Lily have a little sister, Paige, who came along on my dad’s birthday…so many coincidences!

But….the story does not end is really just the beginning…because there was something different with Becca and Jack…this indescribable bond that has strengthened with each passing day.  It encompasses Sara, Lily and Paige too, but something stands out where Becca and Jack are concerned.  They started Hebrew preschool together at the age of 3, always having each other’s back…and then went on to become the best of friends on the block…playing together after school each day (Jack was at a French Immersion school, Becca was not).  Then, 2 years ago, Jack joined Becca at her Hebrew School, and the adventure began! 

Jack would join us for dinner on Thursday nights (early dinners are a must - how can you study on an empty tummy??) and he was such a gourmand, always appreciating my cooking.  What a pleasure to cook for someone who thought my tried and true recipes were new and delicious!

Last year Becca and Jack started at a new school in our neighbourhood…Kate and I were as excited as the kids, eagerly anticipating their spending the year in the same classes in Hebrew and public school - but it was not meant to be.  They were at the same school, but in separate classes.  None-the-less, every morning Becca marched to their place for a smoothie made by Kate, and every Thursday (and some Sundays) Jack came over for a pre or post Hebrew school meal. 

We assumed this pattern would continue in 2011.  So…I dropped Becca to school on the first day, and she was sooooo happy!  She was placed in Mrs. D’s class – a teacher she has coveted since last year.  I left school, floating on my own little cloud, knowing that Becca was off to a good start.  I texted Kate to see how Jack was doing (FYI – both Sara and Lily were starting high school that day so we were running on crazy busy schedules that didn’t quite mesh enough for us to take B & J together) and he was in Mrs. D’s class too!!!!!  Yay!!!!  Our day just went from great to fabulous!   Becca came home to report that she and Jack are even seated in the same table group – life is good.

For those of you who are wondering, Sara and Lily both had fantastic first days at high school, and things only improve for them as the days turn into weeks!  And Paige is happily attending school with B & J, and they look in on her at recess, making sure all is well in her world too!

But, the point of this story … no, I did not forget … is that I am getting back into my school year routine of making dinners that translate into leftovers our kids will willingly take for lunch the next day.  I pulled out my frittata recipe for dinner last Wednesday…this happens to be one of Jack’s all time favourites - he will eat 2 or 3 generous servings of the frittata every time I make it.  So, of course, Becca and I informed Carlo that he needed to send a healthy serving of frittata for Jack’s lunch the next day too.  Becca reported that he happily announced to their classmates that this was his favourite when she presented it to him at lunchtime, and I received a text from Kate (or so I thought) asking me for the recipe.  Turns out that Jack loves it so much, and decided that Kate was taking far too long to request  it on her own, so he took her phone and texted me himself, posing as Kate! 

So, Jack, this blog entry is dedicated to you, my honorary son, so your Mom (who my daughter seems to think is her mom too) can make it for you if I fall down on the job!  xxoo  B’Tayavon and Buon Appetito!

Naomi’s Frittata:
1  pkg spaghetti
1 diced pepper (any colour – we love orange and yellow)
1 diced onion
2 chopped green onions
1 tin sliced mushrooms
4 or 5 eggs
1 tsp onion powder
1 tsp paprika
¼ C grated parmesan cheese
½ tsp salt

Method: Cook spaghetti as directed on package.  At the same time, sautée the onions, green onions, peppers and mushrooms over medium heat, using either 2 tbsp margarine or canola oil. Beat eggs in large mixing bowl, gradually adding all the seasonings and cheese.  Add drained spaghetti and sautéed veggies to the mix and toss.
Spray a large, non-stick frying pan and add mixture, cooking on low heat (4 or 5) for about 5 to 7 minutes.  Using a plate, flip the frittata (check to make sure it’s done first, use a spatula to lift the edge, should be light golden brown).  Lightly spray the pan before cooking the other side of the frittata.  Cook the second side for another 5 to 7 minutes.  Remove from heat, and slice (we cut into squares).
Our family like it with a side salad (Greek salad is a favourite) and some Frank’s Red Hot pepper sauce.

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