NCJW unveils new cookbook; JDRF’s Passport to a Cure

Not since 1901, when Mrs. Simon Kander of Milwaukee published “The Settlement Cookbook – the Way to a Man’s Heart” has there been so much interest in a new Jewish cookbook. Now from the National Council of Jewish Women – St. Louis Section comes “More Than Matzo Balls” with recipes for breads, soups, salads, main dishes, side dishes, pastas and deserts – in other words, more than matzo balls. Some of the recipes have been handed down from generation to generation, and this is the first time that many of them will be in print. All of the recipes have been tested and rated by volunteers, some 300 involved, who have found excellent traditional recipes as well as non-traditional ones like a brisket made with coffee and a peanut butter cookie with ground cumin. Among the testers and tasters are Cookbook Co-chairs Holly Bernstein and Cathy Einhorn, who have devoted countless hours preparing and tasting more than 350 recipes.

At 5:30 p.m. Thursday, April 29, NCJW will host its cookbook kick-off event at Plaza Frontenac’s Center Court. Twenty recipes from the cookbook will be prepared by women who submitted them – 10 appetizers and 10 desserts to be sampled along with what I am told are some terrific wines. The featured appetizers include dishes like Leslie’s Artichoke Spread, Buffalo Chicken Dip and Mini Knishes while the desserts include such delicacies as Bubbie’s Chocolate Chip Cake, Cherry Cheesecake and Mini Pecan Pies. The event is free and open to the public and best of all, “More Than Matzo Balls” will be there, hot off the press, for purchase. Actually, cookbooks can be purchased online right now at www.ncjwstl.org or from the NCJW office at 314-993-5181. The cost is $18 per cookbook or two for $30. Cookbooks ordered in advance can be picked up at the event on April 29. All proceeds will support NCJW-St. Louis programs for women, children and families.

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CRUISE ON OVER to the Kemp Auto Museum in Chesterfield on Saturday, May 8, for the “Passport to a Cure Dream Gala.” Now I know that this sentence is filled with mixed metaphors but it does explain and describe a major fundraiser for the Metro St. Louis/Greater Missouri Chapter of the Juvenile Diabetes Research Foundation (JDRF), which is looking to raise a million bucks at this event. The annual JDRF Dream Gala starts at 6 p.m. with cocktails and appetizers. For dinner, guests will visit three continents: South America, Asia and Africa. As outstanding party-givers, the committee, co-chaired by Connie Kurowski and her daughters Angela Daubach and Jennefer Delkus, has planned an evening with an international theme in food, d écor and entertainment. Tickets for the Passport to a Cure Cruise at $300 per person are available at 314-729-1846 or via email at [email protected]

Founded in 1970 by parents of children with type 1 (Juvenile) diabetes, the Juvenile Diabetes Research Foundation has raised and funded more than $1.4 billion in diabetes research. JDRF is a worldwide leader for research to cure type 1 diabetes and its complications. Until a cure is found, people with type 1 diabetes (an autoimmune disease) have to test their blood sugar and give themselves insulin injections multiple times or use a pump – each day, every day of their lives. And even with that intensive care, insulin is not a cure nor does it prevent its eventual complications, which may include kidney failure, blindness, heart disease, stroke and amputation. All proceeds from Passport to a Cure will benefit JDRF and its intensive research program.

On a local level the JDRF Chapter has great meaning to families even beyond research. Take Roger and Teri Cohen, for example, whose son Benjamin was diagnosed with type 1 (juvenile) diabetes at the age 15. Ben is now 18 and a senior in high school. He will graduate next month and go the University of Missouri – Columbia. Roger told me “In the initial stages of Ben’s diagnosis JDRF helped create a sense of community for him.

“He was diagnosed shortly before their retreat weekend. Benjamin went and it absolutely transfixed him so that he could feel like a normal kid. He still keeps in touch with kids he met at that retreat. As a family we keep in close touch with JDRF to take advantage of their educational tools and to learn about the progress of their research. I have a gut feeling that they are on the brink of finding the cure.”

From your lips, Roger, to God’s ear.

IF YOU WERE NOT IN ST. LOUIS 50 years ago when Second City performed at the Crystal Palace in Gaslight Square or if you missed the troupe at the opening of the new JCC, now is your chance to see Chicago’s legendary comedy theater. As a part of its 50th anniversary tour, the group will play the Touhill Performing Arts Center’s E. Desmond and Mary Ann Lee Theatre April 30 and May 1 for three performances -8 p.m. Friday and 5 and 9 p.m. Saturday.

Second City was founded in Chicago in 1959 and became a premiere training ground for the comedy worlds best and brightest. Some of its alumni include Alan Arkin, John Belushi, Bill Murray, Gilda Radner and Tina Fey. The traveling cast draws from the vast archives of material and produces a two-act review of the Second City’s celebrated brand of topical sketch comedy, hilarious songs and on-the-spot improvisation that changes with every performance. Tickets at $35 are available at the Touhill ticket office, online at www.touhill.org or by phone at 314-516-4949.