--Yekhiel Shraybman, "Dimples", translated from Yiddish by Sebastian Schulman (Dirty Goat, issue 25, forthcoming).
Photo Credit: Robert Cohen
The Bessarabian Yiddish writer Yekhiel Shraybman's celebration of mamelige, that cornmeal staple of the Eastern European Jewish (and non-Jewish) diet, is but one manifestation of the food's significance in Jewish life. Mamelige is lauded far and wide to this day for its versatility, affordability, and heartiness. In the Podolian town of Bershad (in Ukraine, just northeast of Moldova), AHEYM recorded the recipe for mamelige that Elizaveta Bershad'skaya learned from her mother:
Because mamelige is parve -- that is, neither meat nor dairy -- it can be enjoyed with milk and cheese or with meat, making it an easy base for any meal. You'll notice that Dov-Ber and Elizaveta also discuss the texture of the dish -- for the mamelige to come out "as it should be", it must be firm enough to slice with a cotton string, a process also mentioned by Yekhiel Shraybman.
Mamelige has been well-document in the Jewish blogging world. See, for example, Leah Koenig, Robert Cohen, and Eve Jochnowitz for more tastes of this fabulous food.