September 14th-15th-16th 2020 – Shana Tova!

Changes in deliveries over the holiday season:

DURING THE WEEK BETWEEN ROSH HASHANA AND YOM KIPPUR:

  • Monday deliveries move to Tuesday, September 22.
  • Wednesday deliveries as usual, September 23.

DURING THE WEEK BETWEEN YOM KIPPUR AND SUKKOT:

  • Monday deliveries move to Tuesday September 29 (Note: there will be no bread available, and probably no sprouts)
  • Wednesday deliveries as usual, September 30.

DURING THE WEEK OF CHOL HAMOED SUKKOT, THERE WILL BE NO DELIVERIES, i.e. no deliveries on Monday, October 5 or Wednesday October 7.

We’ll be back acharei hachagim!

Those who wish to increase the size and/or contents of your pre-holiday box, please inform us as soon as possible.

May the year be sweet, healthy and happy,

From all of us at Chubeza

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Reminder: We ask your help in returning your empty cartons to us for recycling. Kindly leave the boxes flat and open for our loyal delivery people.  Here’s their demonstration in this instructional video.

Thanks!

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May this year bring an end to grief
May it begin with joy and relief
After such a grim and trying year
Welcome oh new one, at last you are here!
A new year to bestow its grace upon
Both you and me and everyone.
A good year will bring about
Peace everywhere, without a doubt
May this year bring an end to grief
May it begin with joy and relief

Anonymous (translated by A. Raz)

Wow, it’s been one hell of a year.

Each new year, just before Rosh Hashana, we customarily send festive greetings, our hearts swelling with joy and anticipation at the upcoming holidays. This is so much harder when dealing with a year of which over half was/is challenged by the COVID pandemic, with no end in sight. Not to mention the extreme weather conditions and natural disasters out there as well.

And yet – despite this long, challenging time we’re enduring, the seasons continue to change, and the cycle of life is still doing its thing, reminding us that there is still cyclic motion, change and the comfort of transformation even within hardship, as the new year comes a’tapping at our doors.

In Jewish tradition, there are in fact four new years: (Nissan, Elul, Tishrei and Shvat) with each ‘new year’ serving a different aim: The month of Tishrei is our very own Rosh Hashana – for the farmers growing vegetables in the fields. The perfect logic of this timing is something we actually can feel. Our bodies, which sweltered over the long, exhausting summer days, are softening and cooling down a bit, basking in the lower temperatures (take our word for it, they are falling, despite the extremes) and earlier sunsets. Autumn is when the field completes its annual cycle: summer yields are ending, and autumn plants have already acclimated in the field to await the first showers and new beginnings. Chaperoning these winds of change are hopes and wishes for a blessed, fruitful and rain-blessed year of health and comfort, growth and livelihood.

These hopes are tangibly expressed in the blessings and symbols of the holiday. The Talmudic sage Abaye, who was probably in charge of the Holiday Food Column, is the one who invented the symbolic dishes for the Talmudic table. In Tractate Krittut 6, 1: “Said Abaye: Now that you have mentioned that the siman has significance, every Rosh Hashanah, one should eat a pumpkin, lubia, leeks, beet greens and dates.”

The Simanim express the seasonal variation that the holiday table offers, bringing together guests of all sorts: from the leafy greens (Swiss chard), the legumes (lubia beans), the princess of onions (leek) and the gourds. Plus, of course, the pomegranate and dates, apples, honey and fish – all showcasing the bounty that this blessed land naturally provides each season.

And as we sit round the festive table, this year especially, and think about the passing year (what we resolve to discontinue) and look forward to the new year (and what we hope it will bring), the seasonal meal suggests we linger in the present, eat something that is in fact here and now, being harvested in our fields as we speak. And together with what was and what will be, to experience that which is presently on the tip of our tongues and taste buds, crunching in our mouths, and smacking our lips in pleasure, remembering that amidst the challenge, hardship and concern, we are surrounded with so much growth, abundance and goodness.

May we enjoy a good and blessed year!

In keeping with the ancient Chubeza tradition – here’s our very own blessings for our Chubeza vegetable symbols:

New Zealand Spinach: May we acknowledge our strengths to survive and flourish in green freshness, even when the heat is on. (Spinach is the green that flourishes happily during intense heat.)

Silka (beet greens, Swiss chard): May we beet off self-doubt and undermining criticism, and may we cultivate a confident, strong, supportive spine as oh-so-stately as the chard’s.

Lettuce: Lettuce lovingly think of our grandparents celebrating alone, away from the familiar family festivities. And lettuce know to appreciate and not take for granted the loyalty of those who remain with us, now and forever.

Potato: May we learn from mistakes made in the past, of others and of our own. May we remember to vary our fields with many yields, and not only count on the simplest and most common. (And the explanation is right here).

Sweet Potato: May the color orange go back to being a joyful heartwarming color as opposed to a signal of upcoming danger as the light changes from green to red. May we view each other in a humane and united light (like the orange that brings together red and yellow) and not divided into one sector or another.

Leek: May we have the patience to grow unhurriedly and diligently, and the understanding that sometimes, in order to reach ripeness, one must grow very slowly. And spring no leeks.

Eggplant: May we try and succeed to see the light, whiteness and faint but beautiful purple hue within the murky dark that hides the soft insides.

Squash: May we squash pessimistic thoughts by remembering the circular essence of nature: a time to downscale or restrain ourselves is followed by a new era carrying growth and abundance in its wings. (The spring squash bade us farewell at the peak of summertime, but will return again in fall.)

Pumpkin: May we persevere till the end of the pandemic at all hours of the day – not just till midnight, when we turn back into pumpkins…

Onion: May we be granted the wisdom to acknowledge the many and varied layers that life is comprised of, that people are made of, and that reality is created from. May we strive to gently, with consent, peel them off, rejoice in the many echelons, and arrive at the sweet heart.

Pepper: May we be blessed with the skill to pepper our speech with just the right phrases, without overdoing it. And when life gets salty, may we stand beside it to add some spice.

Cucumber: May we develop the sensitivity and ability to listen and feel the sweetness within what starts out seeming boring and bland.

Tomato: May we enjoy a year full of juice, color and sweetness.

Basil: May we always notice the fragrance of blossoms, ripe fruit, fresh grass and rain-drenched soil. May we stop to take a deep breath of these fragrances, and remember to respect and cherish our oh-so-taken-for-granted breathing.

Coriander: May we rejoice in the difference in people’s tastes, in the differences between us, in the wonderful variety and vibrancy created by a symphony of opinions, varying faces and opposite choices. May we refuse to allow the voices dividing “us” and “them” to lead us. (Coriander may very well be the most controversial vegetable, and still it shares an honored space in your boxes.)

Parsley: May we allow the good things to enter, fill and cleanse us from the poisonous and harmful. And may we live sparsely, as the parsley.

Okra: May we gaze at the stars at least one night every so often to feel the lightness of our minuteness and the strength of being part of the vast cosmos. (Slice the okra horizontally to see stars.)

Lubia/Black-eyed Pea: May our shiners be only from this pea.

Corn: May we have a bright, sweet and delicious year! And may some dinners be as easy as just peel, bite, and bask in the glory.  (You heard it ear first….)

Pomegranate: May our hands be filled with bountiful earthly missions, as the seeds of the pomegranate:

Mallow (chubeza): This September, may we try to remember when life was sweet and oh, so mallow. Renew our days, as of old!

So, here’s to the New Year, to great expectations and wet wonderful showers: Please, oh please, may they come in due time, in the proper measure and quantity. May they satiate the human salad of this country, and the animals crying out for drink, the dusty plants growing grey at the edges, the flying insects, the crawlers and jumpers, the rocks and clods of earth that so deserve the blessing of rain.

And here’s to the greatest hope and blessing of all: May the COVID pandemic end swiftly and completely, may we resume “normal” life, and may we not soon forget the insights we’ve gained through these challenging times.

Wishing you the fulfillment of your hopes and prayers, for good and for blessing, for happiness and growth, for health, for a good life and for peace. Shana Tova!

From the entire Chubeza crew in the field, the packing house, the office and on the roads: Alon, Bat-Ami, Dror, Assaf, Orin, Yochai, Maya, Mohammed, Ali, Majdi, Hott, Thom, Vinay, Montry, Nopadol, Yonatan, Melissa, Ruthie, Alon, Chana, Eyal, David, Lev, Alon, Ziv, Tamir, Matan, Barak, Melanie and Aliza

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THE VEGETABLES BEHIND THE BRACHOT IN THIS WEEK’S HOLIDAY BOXES:

Monday: Lettuce, bell peppers/potatoes, corn, leeks, cucumbers, tomatoes, New Zealand spinach/Swiss chard, slice of pumpkin/butternut squash, coriander/ parsley, eggplant, lubia Thai yard-long beans/okra, pomegranate.

Large box, in addition: Basil, sweet potatoes/zucchini, onions.

FRUIT BOXES: Bananas, mango, yellow apples. Small box, in addition: Pears. Large box, in addition: Peaches

Wednesday: Lettuce, potatoes, leeks, cucumbers, tomatoes, New Zealand spinach/Swiss chard/basil, , slice of pumpkin/butternut squash, eggplant, sweet potatoes, onions, pomegranate. Small boxes: bell peppers/okra

Large box, in addition: lubia Thai yard-long beans/okra, corn, coriander/parsley, bell peppers.

FRUIT BOXES: Bananas, plums, yellow and green apples. Small box, in addition: Pears. Large box, in addition: Grapes