Vegan PB and J Bars and Flashback Friday: Bat Mitzvah Edition!

It peanut butter jelly time!

I think you will like this post…..

But I’ll be honest. I’ve been suffering from severe lack of blog post creativity. I feel that I’ve been losing my edge and maybe even a couple of readers as well these past couple of weeks.

Instead of some wacky diet tips to try out or weird terminology, I thought I’d write a little about my past. Very appropriate since its “Flashback friday”.

This flashback is about my bat mitzvah, which actually occurred on November 11, 2000.

see, no need for 300 people, just a bunch of friends can be classy too!

For you goys (or non jews) out there, bar (for guys) and bat (for girls) mitzvahs are a right of passage when you enter puberty. Usually the age is thirteen although sometimes girls have it at twelve. I had it when I was thirteen (even though I dont think I hit puberty until I was maybe fourteen). In the US at least, the boy/girl generally reads from the torah (for which they usually prepare for several months in advance). The parents throw a party (maybe two, usually a luncheon and a dinner) and the kid gets a ridiculous amount of money. That’s the gist of it.

My parents, true to their unconventional way to raise me, gave me control a little of my bat mitzvah.

No, it was not on a boat, it was a recreation room at a fancy shmancy Bel Air gated community that had a pool on the bottom floor from where the party was. I thought this lifesaver would be a good photo opp. And for the record, my hair is not naturally like that! I regret that crimp job I got done, but it was VERY cool at the time, because I am always VERY cool!

So, being a little younger than most of the people in my grade, by the time I was thirteen, I had already been to hundreds of bar mitzvahs (yes, hundreds). So I was an expert at what worked and what didn’t.

So for one, I knew I did not want to read from the Torah! Most Jews in the US would say that was cheating because the whole purpose of the lavish party is that you worked so hard to prepare for that reading. Well you know what? Girls in Israel traditionally don’t read and an eighth grader has plenty of homework as is! My parents didn’t object. We also were never really religious and probably blacklisted from local temples because my mom sent me to Jewish day school with a ham sandwich.

Second, limit the number of adults. What I hated from all the bar mitzvahs I had was that the would have an “adult” side of the room and a “kids” side and they basically surrounded the dance floor. Nothing is more embarrassing than shaking your ass to the thong song while grandpa Borris watches you as he finishes us his appetizer. So yea, no adults. I wanted it to be my party, not my parents’. Once again, no objections from the “rents”. I think my parents were more concerned about their own embarrassment.

yes, thats me on the floor swing dancing. Even though this does not look by any means elegant, I actually won three swing championships!

Third, have many food options. I can write a book about the art of Bar/Bat Mitzvah food. Its not like wedding food. The stars of the show are kids, who even at 12 or 13 can be picky. But you don’t want it to be pizza and punch like at birthday parties. I also know its always fun to have different “stations” to choose from.  A friend of mine (who for the record was extremely wealthy) had Wolfgang Puck himself churn out pizzas! Not to mention a sushi station, a DYI sundae station, and a made to order stir fry stations. We were not rich. So we had to take that down a notch. But we did have the caterer do an “Italian” station with pastas, garlic bread, lasgna, and some more carby goodness, as well as a Mexican station with DYI tacos, taquitos, chips ‘n salsa, and quesdillas. So everyone would get something. And I think my mom requested a salad in there for some green. For dessert, I decided to ditch the sundae bar (by that time, it was SO overdone) and did a “krispy kreme bar”.  The day of my Bat Miztvah, I had my dad risk his life and go to the most ghetto part of LA (where the closest krispy kreme was at the time) and order 100+ doughnuts. At the party, we provided a selection of toppings and they could top and decorate their doughnut to their liking. I was clever!

This was about a year before my eating disorder began. I wish I could look at that picture now and have no energy about it. And for the record, doughnuts are awesome, but I'm not a krispy kreme fan. Too sweet and someone please tell me how its krispy?

However, the day of, I woke up with the worst sore throat of my life! The kind that hurts even when you dont swallow! I went to the doctor a 10am and practically begged him to put some sort of numbing medication so I wont feel it for the party. He refused, ass hole.

So I was basically sucking on Halls throughout the whole thing and I couldn’t talk much either. O well, I guess perfection is impossible because aside from my throat, I had a blast.

my mom and me, and that poster everyone signs before they come in. She decided not to do another round of chemo a few months before that, so her hair grew a little.

The sad thing was, my mom was losing her battle with cancer. She died about a month after. This was one the last times I saw her all up and at em. She was bed ridden about two weeks later and then transported to the hospital two weeks after that. She looks pretty sick in the pictures, but she was beautiful regardless. I really didn’t know how severe it really was at the time, and I surely didn’t think this would actually take her life. I really admire how she let me be who I wanted to be and let me do what I wanted to do. I never got grounded, my parents believed I’d suffer for my mistakes when I made them, no use locking me in the house or room.  She totally helped me pull off an awesome party that i think even made my “rich” friends jealous. I didn’t have Elton John preform. I didn’t have henna tattoo artists or glass blowers. I didn’t have Emeril or Bobby Flay catering (although I wouldn’t have minded Julia Child’s expertise!). I didn’t even have more than 10 people over 14. But what I did have was an awesome time that I will never forget.

my krispy kreme glasses, they were all the rage, I swear.

Ok, so now for the food portion of the program…..

In a bowl mix the following ingredient (hands work best, a fork will be fine too):

-1/4 cup peanut flour

-2 tbs oatmeal

-1/2 cup of oatbran

-1 tbs of stevia baking blend (any sweetener you choose, or omit)

-1 slightly overripe banana

-1/4 cup of milk (any milk, almond, soy, coconut, dare i say it, the “moo” kind, but I used coconut)

-your favorite jam (I used the crofters superfruit!)

Simply mix all the ingredient (aside from the jam) in a bowl and pour into a greased loaf pan. It wont make a loaf, but this is a small serving (excellent if you don’t like making a huge ass batch for yourself!). If you pour it on a cookie sheet it will resemble a very sad pancake. Anyhow bake at 400 degrees for about 20 minutes. Then, pour on the jam to create a thin layer on top. Bake it off for ten more minutes and then stick it in the freezer for about an hour (just to help it set, we aren’t making popsicles here!). Cut into “bars” and inhale.

End 🙂

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29 thoughts on “Vegan PB and J Bars and Flashback Friday: Bat Mitzvah Edition!

  1. Great post! You have not lost your blogging mojo at all! I am so glad to see a picture of you and your Mom. She was very beautiful! She has the same “look” that my Mom had after going through chemo, but yet still gorgeous. My Mom had myeloma and has been gone 4 years this past September – but even with all her treatment she was beautiful until the end – just like yours. Oh how I miss her…..
    I hope to make those bars this weekend – I have all the ingredients and they look fab!!
    That party looks like so much fun and I love the krispy kreme glasses!

    Missy

  2. I always was jealous that I couldn’t have a bat mitzvah. Looks like so much fun!

    You look adorable with the lifesaver. I am also cracking up about the ham sandwich!

    Yes, I agree Krispy Kreme is way too sweet.

    Your mom is so beautiful. That is a great picture of the both of you!

  3. Where are my peanut butter and jewlly bars. Sorry…I have a friend who’s a jew and we crack on her all the time. All in fun 🙂 She cracks on me for being a Gingerkid “daywalker”.

    You look so much like your mom. I can see where the beauty comes from.

    I love your blog. You could blog about nothing and I would still love it!!!

  4. Thank for sharing so much of your life! I always find it very interesting to get a look into other religious or family traditions – the opportunities are so rare mostely!

    What a crazy emotional day that was – pleasure and grief lying so close to each other! I’m so sorry you’ve lost your Mom at such a young age!

    A thing that made me smile while reading was how your passion about food and pleasing people via food already showed. I think you planned the perfect buffet, and you put so much thought into it! At the age of 13, I didn’t care about food very much.

  5. This kind of makes me want to be Jewish just so I can have a cool party. Then again, I think I would rather have been your friend and just attended yours, as it looks pretty kick-ass. I agree the mom pic was very touching–it’s nice to put a face with all the great stories!

  6. Loved the story & pictures, which proves you haven’t lost your blogging edge. I bet my son would like those bars. Or at least, he’d like to help make them–He’s a big fan of kneading dough!

  7. When I saw “bat mitzvah” in the title, a chill ran down my spine… I seriously try NOT to remember that period of my life!! 😉 All the same, it’s interesting how different yours was from mine (big shock — not ;)). I was twelve, and I didn’t read from the Torah either. But that’s because Orthodox girls don’t do that. I wasn’t shedding any tears over it, believe me.

    ❤ ❤

  8. You swing danced! That is super cool. It really looks like an amazing party and it is pretty cool that you were able to plan it the way you did. You clearly always had a knack for creativity for food, because that donut bar idea is so clever! I love things like that at weddings and parties (a mac and cheese bar would be awesome). Those bars look great, too!
    I am glad that you were able to have one last awesome celebration with your mother. She looks gorgeous in that picture.

  9. Those sound like pretty lavish parties! Did you really see elton john at one?

    I only had a couple sleep over birthday parties. Well, I did have one at the skating rink when I was really little. But it doesn’t count, because I don’t remember it! I much rather enjoy being a party attendee! I think it’s the part of me that hates the attention!
    🙂

  10. I may not be commenting all the time but I’m definitely reading! As for lack of creativity… are we reading the same posts? Haha! Seriously though, I’ve highly enjoyed reading everything you post and I constantly gain and lose readers all the time. That shizz happens.

    I’m a bit jealous that you got to have such a cool party. It looks more fun than all my birthday parties put together.

  11. haha i have SO many jewish friends now and i had none when we were all 13 which sucks because i totally wanted to go to a bat/bar mitz!

    for the record i think the world’s best doughnuts are the crumbled enttemans ones (spelling?) or the sprinkled glazed doughnut holes!!!!!!!!!

  12. You just brought back memories for me…I had a bat mitzvah and attended a lot of them as well, except I’m in Toronto so even the rich kids didn’t have Wolfgang Puck. Although Joshua Jackson came to one of them…supposedly a family friend? Anyway, you’re right that all of them were the same. Maybe I should have decided to branch out like you did, but instead I followed the crowd and my parents wishes, and my bat mitzvah was much like everyone elses with a group of adults and kids (except much smaller, because we werent rich either). It was really interesting to read about yours- love the pics.

    • they are all similar, but i think each one is special. And the most important thing is that the kid himself has fun. No one famous attended mine, except for me, cause I am famous 😉

  13. I always wished I had more Jewish friends when i was younger, because I was jealous of their parties. It wasn’t until college that I became friends with what I call the “Jew Crew”!! haha… I didn’t get a party out of being friends with them, but they are awesome nonetheless! haha… okkk yes, I just posted that…
    I sometimes find it helpful to reminisce of days before my ED started…. but usually it makes me sad. I just start thinking about how much better things were back then, and even in “recovery”…. aka, eating/ following my meal plan for a good 9 months now… I don’t feel like i can ever have that life back. Its still just so hard….
    What did you feel writing that? Any strong feelings in either direction? or just fun to think of you childhood?

  14. I wish I had peanut flour 😦

    … Don’t feel bad! I get writes block all the time, and the words will come when you’re ready. This was a very enjoyable post actually.. I love reading people’s flashback Fridays! (You’ve kind of got me thinking about doing my own..)

    Can I just say that you look AT LEAST sixteen in most of those photos?! I can’t believe you looked so old for you age. I looked like ten when I was fourteen 😮

    • really!? everyone said (and still say) how young I looked! People are so surprised I’m not in high school and even passes college aged kids! I have a feeling when i get old, I’m gonna look REALLY old!

  15. You look so much like your mom! What a beautiful lady! I grew up with a lot of Jewish friends and have nothing but fond memories of awkwardly dancing to “my heart will go on…”

  16. Pingback: Twice Baked Cinnamon Potatoes, 15 Truths, and a Lie | Eden's Eats

  17. eden i love this post. it’s really touching. the picture with your mom and your writing about her is….well leaves me speechless. I cant describe it.
    I think its kind of SO nice to see the pics of you with the donuts. You said you have energy about them…(such a nido phrase) …does that mean it bothers you to have pics like that?
    just curious.
    thanks for sharing this though. You and i are alike. I kinda wanted to break loose and did a sorta out of the norm bat mitzvah also, although i DID read torah. WHAT A BUMMER that was! 😉

    • thanks for the lovely comment. What I meant by “energy” is that they are kind of a fear food of mine and I admit I love doughnuts. I love them and yet I can’t eat one without feeling guilty. I can’t just be neutral about them. I dont know if that answered your question but i did my best.

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