Author Archives: maxinesp

Celebrating the Great Jewish “Jester”

By Maxine Springer

This past weekend, Mel Brooks was recognized (along with Bruce Springsteen, Robert De Niro, Grace Bumbry and Dave Brubeck) at the Kennedy Center Honors at the John F. Kennedy Center for the Performing Arts in Washington, DC. Here’s what President Obama had to say about the hilarious actor/director/comedian:

Many believe that Mel Brooks has majorly impacted the concept of Jewish film. In Moment’s feature on Great Jewish Films, several of the critics and scholars interviewed include his films in their picks of top five Jewish films.

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Add pomegranate to your Thanksgiving menu

By April N. Baskin

I still remember the taste of the fresh cup of freshly squeezed pomegranate juice I bought from old Chasid pushing a tiny wooden cart on a chilly day in Tzfat last winter. I love the tangy flavor of fresh pomegranate and with it being the pomegranate season, there are endless opportunities to indulge.

In our September/October issue, cookbook author Joan Nathan explored the rich history of the ever-appealing pomegranate, taking special note of its presence in Persian cuisine as well as her family’s favorite ways of enjoying the treasured fruit:

“I remember my children’s delight when a Persian family taught us the technique of drinking the juice straight from the hard shell. They rolled a pomegranate along a countertop until all the crunchy sounds stopped, then pierced it with a skewer, inserted a straw into the hole and drank.” Continue reading

Jewish Justices Brandeis and Frankfurter as Stamps


By Maxine Springer

A new series of postage stamps celebrating four U.S. justices includes Louis Brandeis and Felix Frankfurter, two of seven Jewish justices in the history of the High Court.

Brandeis, a Zionist who once said, “To be good Americans, we must be better Jews, and to be better Jews, we must become Zionists,” was known as the “people’s justice” for his defense of civil liberties. He served on the Court from 1916-1939. Read more about Brandeis in Moment’s review of Louis D. Brandeis: A Life.

Frankfurter, the first naturalized American be to appointed to the Supreme Court, served from 1939-1962. Before joining the Court, he was an adviser to FDR and a friend of Brandeis.

Read more about Jewish justices in Moment’s cover story about religion and the Supreme Court, where scholars discuss whether the religious beliefs of justices influence their legal opinions.

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Have a Sweet Rosh Hashanah with Apple and Honey Challah

Courtesy of Jenna at ModernDomestic

Courtesy of Jenna at ModernDomestic

By Maxine Springer

Here’s a great idea (trust us, we’ve gotten to try it courtesy of our friend Jenna at ModernDomestic) for a delicious treat that’s especially wonderful for Rosh Hashanah: A scrumptious apple and honey challah!

Although Jenna isn’t Jewish, she talks about her appreciation for the interesting connections Judaism has with certain foods.

It’s no wonder that there is a plethora of Rosh Hashanah recipes for apple honey cake – in fact, the apple honey Hanukkah cupcakes I made in December would be a perfect (non-kosher) Rosh Hashanah dessert. But I decided to go a different route, and made challah with apples and honey, using a recipe I found on the King Arthur Flour Web site. Challah also plays a symbolic role in the holiday – it is traditional for Jews to eat challah dipped in honey at Rosh Hashanah – and I liked the idea of a recipe that combined all the symbolic elements in one

Jenna brought over her challah to Moment‘s office last week for a taste-test. We gave it the Jewish grandmother’s seal of approval.

Bring in Moment Facebook Fans, Get a Free Subscription!

Moment Facebook

Are you a Facebook fan of Moment Magazine? Now is the time to show your Moment pride! To celebrate the Jewish New Year, Moment is holding a fan appreciation contest. Bring in 10 new fans to our page and get a free digital or print gift subscription for the year! Have your friends message us with your name when they join. Once you get 10, you’ll receive a free subscription that you can keep or send to someone as a gift! Bring in 100 fans and we will give you 12 digital subscriptions and 3 print subscriptions for your friends and family! Just think: Without spending a penny, all your holiday shopping can be done…

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Remembering Patrick Swayze in a Jewish Film

Dirty-DancingBy Maxine Springer

In Moment‘s article about great Jewish films, author Lester Friedman picks Dirty Dancing, starring Patrick Swayze, as one of his favorite Jewish films. He says,

This is one of the few films set around a Jewish-American woman and centers on her maturation during a summer when she is vacationing with her family at a resort in the Catskills. In a reverse of traditional morality, the non-Jewish male lead is in some ways the moral center of the film.”

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In Favor of Franken


After months of wondering and waiting, the Minnesotra Supreme Court decided in favor of Al Franken. To learn more about the funnyman-turned-politician, Check out Moment‘s cover story about Al Franken from our archives.

And Happy 4th of July!

A Message from Moment Magazine

Despite the comments of ADL’s Abe Foxman, BeliefNet’s David Klinghoffer and others, we at Moment stand by our decision to include Rabbi Manis Friedman’s response to the question in the Ask the Rabbis section in the May/June 2009 issue: How should Jews treat their Arab neighbors? As we do for every issue, we invited a wide range of rabbis to comment on a question. We do this because it’s important to hear what different people think, even when we don’t agree with them. Incidentally, all the comments but one were more or less the same;  only one took a different stand.  Surely that very minority opinion deserves to be heard, even if it’s offensive to a lot of people. It’s crucial to know where people in our community stand. We can’t pretend different opinions don’t exist. This is why an independent publication is valuable and it is what makes Moment unique. Read the magazine and you will learn surprising things in every issue. Eric Alterman writes for us, as does David Frum. In the next issue we will hear from Gershom Gorenberg and Benny Morris. And of course, our Ask the Rabbis question and responses will be as provocative as usual.

—Editor Nadine Epstein and Moment editorial staff

Menachem Z. Rosensaft: “MSNBC’s deafening silence on Buchanan’s Holocaust denial forum”

In an op-ed for the Jerusalem Post, Menachem Z. Rosensaft writes about how he discovered a Holocaust denial forum hosted on Pat Buchanan’s website and how it quickly disappeared once the news appeared in a New York Daily News article. Rosensaft discusses the hypocrisy of the fact that Buchanan has since appeared several times on MSNBC. Read the full story here.

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Statement By Chabad-Lubavitch World Headquarters

The following is a statement from the Chabad-Lubavitch World Headquarters regarding the recent comments in Moment Magazine by Rabbi Manis Friedman.

Regarding recent comments made by Rabbi Manis Friedman in response to a question posed by Moment Magazine, we vehemently disagree with any sentiment suggesting that Judaism allows for the wanton destruction of civilian life, even when at war.

In keeping with Jewish law, it is the unequivocal position of Chabad-Lubavitch that all human life is G-d given, precious, and must be treated with respect, dignity and compassion.
Statements and opinions expressed by individuals do not necessarily reflect the position of the Chabad-Lubavitch movement. Lubavitch World Headquarters is the only office authorized to speak on behalf of the movement.