The holidays are coming, and I’m extra excited this year. Not only do I have a Hanukkah novella out, but I get to share a bit about the holiday, and a favorite recipe, with you!
For those who are unfamiliar with Hanukkah, it’s an eight-day holiday that celebrates the Maccabean army’s successful rebellion over Antiochus, who had banned Jewish religious practice way back in the 2nd century BCE. When the Maccabees reconsecrated the Temple of Jerusalem, there wasn’t enough oil to light the lamps, and according to Jewish legend, one small pot of oil—enough for one day—lasted for eight days, giving enough time to find more. What does all that mean?
Well, it means we light eight candles—one per night—to celebrate the miracle of the oil, and we eat lots of oily foods during the holiday. Usually, that means donuts and latkes. But our family makes fried Oreos.
One summer, my husband and I attended a country fair, and one of the fair foods was fried Oreos. They were delicious! So good, in fact, that I searched online for a recipe, and now that recipe has become “mine.” Family and friends insist I make fried Oreos every Hanukkah. And, if we’re not seeing people for Hanukkah, they request I make it at other times of the year.
So, I thought I’d share the recipe with you:
1 package Oreo cookies
2 cups Bisquick pancake mix
1.5 cups milk
3 teaspoons oil
vegetable oil for deep frying
1. Blend Bisquick, eggs, milk and 3 tsp oil until smooth.
2. Preheat deep fryer to 375 (use a candy thermometer if frying in a pan).
3. Dip the cookies in the batter mixture until totally covered. Place in the hot oil (cookies will float).
4. Keep checking and turn over the cookie when bottom side turns brown.
5. Keep a close watch because it only takes a few seconds to burn.
6. Remove cookies and place on paper towel.
7. Serve warm, with powdered sugar, chocolate syrup or ice cream.
Now, about that novella. Jessie, the six-year-old daughter of my hero, Benjamin, would LOVE this recipe. She likes everything about Hanukkah, especially when she gets to celebrate it with her grandmother, who also happens to be the neighbor of her kindergarten teacher, Rachel. Harriet, the grandmother, wants her son to be happy, and thinks Rachel is the perfect one to make that happen. Benjamin isn’t so sure he’s ready to start dating again, after the death of his wife. Rachel isn’t sure about it either. Not only is Jessie her student, but she’s hoping to foster a child in the new year and doesn’t want anything to interfere with her plans.
I won’t tell you anymore, but if you’re looking for a short, funny and sweet read, this story is for you.
Let me know how you like it, and also, let me know if you try my recipe!
Blurb, WAITING FOR A MIRACLE:
Benjamin Cohen, widowed father of six-year-old Jessie, is doing his best to hold it together through order and routine. The last thing he needs is his matchmaker mother to set him up with her next door neighbor, no matter how attractive she is.
Rachel Schaecter's dream of becoming a foster mother is right within her grasp, until her meddlesome neighbor tries to set her up with her handsome son. What's worse? He's the father of her favorite kindergarten student! She can't afford to let anything come between her and her dream, no matter how gorgeous he may be.
Can these two determined people trust in the miracle of Hanukkah to let love and light into their lives?
Six-year-old bodies were good at many things— bouncing, hugging, and racing. Rachel was thankful they were also good at hiding her surprise. Never in her wildest dreams did she imagine her favorite student, and her student’s father, would be at her neighbor’s house the same night she was invited to celebrate Hanukkah.
She met the hard gaze of Jessie’s father across the room. Eyes narrowed as if he suspected her reasons for being here. His broad shoulders were stiff. His jean-clad muscular legs were spread apart in a solid stance. Square hands fisted at his sides, and one of them held a menorah. Did he plan to throw it or club someone with it?
Giving Jessie a last pat, she rose. With an arm around Jessie, she extended her other hand to her father. “Happy Hanukkah.”
“Oh, please,” Harriet said, “Such formality between you two. Rachel, this is my son Benny. I mean Benjamin.”
Benny. Rachel filed the information away for later, along with his flushed skin at the nickname. Interesting.
“And Benjamin, this is my neighbor, Rachel. We’re not at a school event. You can call each other by your first names.” Harriet pointed at Jessie, who gripped Rachel’s hand so hard, Rachel’s fingers lost their circulation. “Except for you,” Harriet added. “You have to call her Ms. Schaecter.”
Jessie giggled. “Yes, Grandma.”
Barnes & Noble: https://www.barnesandnoble.com/w/waiting-for-a-miracle-jennifer-wilck/1134117349?ean=2940161018385
Jennifer started telling herself stories as a little girl when she couldn’t fall asleep at night. Pretty soon, her head was filled with these stories and the characters that populated them. Even as an adult, she thinks about the characters and stories at night before she falls asleep or walking the dog. Eventually, she started writing them down. Her favorite stories to write are those with smart, sassy, independent heroines; handsome, strong and slightly vulnerable heroes; and her stories always end with happily ever after.
In the real world, she’s the mother of two amazing daughters and wife of one of the smartest men she knows. She believes humor is the only way to get through the day and does not believe in sharing her chocolate.
She writes contemporary romance, some of which are mainstream and some of which involve Jewish characters. She’s published with The Wild Rose Press and all her books are available through Amazon and Barnes & Noble.