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CHEESECAKE FOR SHAVUOT by Allison Ofanansky

CHEESECAKE FOR SHAVUOT

By Allison Ofanansky (Author) , Eliyahu Alpern (Photographer)

Age Range: 4 - 8

Pub Date: March 1st, 2013
ISBN: 978-0-7613-8126-6
Publisher: Kar-Ben

An appealing photo essay follows Israeli children as they work in their school garden and kitchen.

Color photographs, in close-up detail, capture a teacher and her middle-grade students as they plant wheat in the fall and watch it grow with the help of winter rains. In the spring, the grains are harvested, and the stalks are dried in the sun. Threshing, winnowing and grinding follow. The class brings the gleanings to a petting zoo and feeds them to some goats. They then use their wheat, along with cheese from goats’ milk, to prepare a cheesecake and decorate it with strawberries from the school garden. As explained in an afterword, the Jewish holiday of Shavuot, “weeks” in Hebrew, is celebrated in late May or early June as the time that Jews were given the Torah. The biblical story of Ruth (who gleaned wheat) is read at this time. And why a cheesecake? Shavuot is also a celebration of both the grain harvest and fruit harvest. In addition, mother goats have more milk in the spring, which makes eating dairy products a holiday tradition. Children who participate in community and/or school gardening projects will find kindred spirits and useful information here. Recipe included.

A holiday-cum-gardening-cum-food adventure in one neat package. (afterword) (Informational picture book. 4-8)