Unless you’ve been living under a rock, you’ve heard about the rare convergence of Thanksgiving and the second candle night of Hanukkah, affectionately trademarked Thanksgivukkah, by Boston marketing specialist, Dana Gitell. Well, I got to wondering how my Jewish-American friends are celebrating this hyped holiday.
Erika Kerekes, of In Erika’s Kitchen is looking forward to Thanksgivukkah because, “It will make BOTH holidays more festive.”
And while latkes seem to be high on everyones hybrid holiday menu, Evan Kleiman, host of KCRW’s Good Food says, “Much to my shock and surprise, my 93-year-old mom says she wants mashed potatoes NOT latkes for Thanksgiving.”
In true holiday spirit, Valentina Wein of Cooking on the Weekends sums it up with the sentiment, “Not a lot changes for us, because every holiday in our house is mostly about the family coming together and sharing delicious food. This year though, instead of the usual small decorative pumpkins, gourds and flowers, the menorah will be the centerpiece of the table.”
So what’s on the table this Thanksgivukkah? And what exactly is there to be thankful for?
A Rare Occurance 1 of 8
Thanksgiving was proclaimed a U.S. federal holiday in 1863 by President Abraham Lincoln. FDR moved Thanksgiving to the fourth Thursday in November. So, because of the lunar calendar, the earliest date Hanukkah can be is November 28 (the 25th of Kislev on the Hebrew Calendar). Which means, the next chance at Thanksgivukkah will be 2070 . However, quantum physicist Jonathan Mizrahi, at Sandia National Laboratories in Albuquerque, calculated that the next time the first full day of Hanukkah will fall on Thanksgiving is in the year 79811. So I say, party like it's 1999.
Photo Credit: Public Domain
Better Leftovers 2 of 8
Dreidel Made Out of Helium 3 of 8
This year, the Macy's Thanksgiving Day Parade will include a giant helium filled dreidel balloon in honor of Thanksgivukkah.
Photo credit: Driving the Northeast
Deep Fried Turkey 4 of 8
If you have ever wanted to deep fry a turkey, there is no time like Thanksgivukkah. Evan Kleiman says of all the hype surrounding Thanksgivukkah, "It was inevitable given the combination of rich Thanksgiving food and frying oil."
Eating foods fried in oil is a Hanukkah tradition that symbolizes the menorah in the temple that miraculously burned for eight days, even though there was only enough sacred oil for one.
Photo credit: James McCauley
Latkes! Latkes! Latkes! 5 of 8
Who doesn't love the flatter, wider cousin of the french fry? It seems for many families celebrating Thanksgivukkah, either the mashed potatoes or the sweet potatoes will be off the table.
Erika will be making her Rainbow Latkes and Apple Pear Sauce (above), while Valentina will be making her Gluten Free Potato Pancakes minus the usual onion-apple compote, because, as she says, "No need since they'll be slathered with gravy from the turkey."
And speaking of gravy, what about Evan Kleiman, who's Mom doesn't want Latkes? Evan says she's, "thinking of making the bizarre Dutch treat Bitterballen or Fried Gravy Balls."
Now that's what I call a true hybrid of Thanksgiving and Hanukkah!
Creative Marketing 6 of 8
If you've already ordered your Challurkey (Challah in the shape of a turkey) from Bibi's Bakery & Cafe in Los Angeles, you're in luck. If not, you'll have to wait till next Thanksgivukkah.
After a mention on the Thanksgivukkah Facebook Page (yes, there's a Facebook page), the bakery had to declare that due to overwhelming response, they were no longer able to accept orders.
Of course, you can always try to make your own fowl shaped Challah at home.
Evan Kleiman’s Apple Pie 7 of 8
Donuts!!! 8 of 8
There is a lot to be thankful for this Thanksgivukkah, and here are just 8 great reasons why.