By Amy Smith, Administrative & Development Coordinator
Food is undoubtedly an important part of our lives. Some of my favorite memories involve meals with family and friends, and my husband and I make a point of eating breakfast and dinner together every day. But with the opening of Chosen Food (if you’ve been living under a rock, you might not have heard that we’re opening a major exhibition about Jewish food this Sunday, October 23, from 1-4 pm), I’ve started to think differently about food.
There are meals I can’t forget, like my wedding reception in St. Michael’s, Maryland. Rather than a traditional sit down dinner, Tom and I opted for a classy brunch on the water. The meal consisted of all of our favorite breakfast foods, including Challah, bagels and lox, and an omelet station. For a personal touch, our wedding cake (white cake with raspberry filling and a butter cream frosting), was adorned with two custom made Bichon Frisé sugar cake toppers. These were to resemble Jack and Max, our two Bichon Frisés who served as flower dog and ring bearer in the ceremony. The cake toppers, seen below, will appear in the Banquet Hall section of the Chosen Food exhibit.
Then there are the meals that are bittersweet. Last Sunday at the Jewish Museum, JMM trustees and staff gathered for a traditional Jewish brunch to wish Anita Kassof, former Associate Director, farewell before she starts her new job as Deputy Director of the Museum of Jewish Heritage in New York. JMM President Larry Caplan, new trustee Saralynn Glass, and Executive Director Avi Decter all said a few words, and welcomed Deborah Cardin into her new role as Assistant Director.
This morning, I helped JMM Education and Program staff stuff bags with food samples for the Chosen Food public opening. During the opening on Sunday, the first 500 visitors will receive an assortment of Jewish goodies, including Tam Tams and Great Kosher Restaurants Magazine. In the afternoon, I took a trip to the Towson Town Center to pick up a Pottery Barn glass dome to display the cake toppers in the exhibit, and stopped at CVS on the way back for some chocolate for our Collections Manager and Photo Archivist who, like many of our staff, are feeling the pressure of the looming Sunday opening.
Much of my day revolved around food – packaging it, shopping for it, talking about it, writing about it, and eating it. As I reflect on various memorable meals I’ve shared with friends and family over the past few months, what strikes me is that food has the ability to bring people together.