We, Gabrielle Rossmer Gropman and Sonya Gropman, are a mother-daughter team. We have been researching the food of our heritage. Gabrielle – or Gaby – was born in Germany and moved to New York City with her parents at the age of one. She grew up in the neighborhood of Washington Heights, where the large German-Jewish community spoke German (und Gaby sprecht immer noch Deutsch) and their traditional foods were readily available. Sonya grew up in Boston with regular visits to her grandparents’ home in the New York area. There she ate copious amounts of wurst, brown breads sliced on a hand-crank slicer, her Oma’s meat soup with matzoh balls and her Opa’s ambrosial potato salad. She has loved their food from a young age.
Gaby has had dual careers in art and mediation. She administered the Harvard Mediation Program for 20 years and now has a consulting firm for international mediation training and study tours. She regularly works with colleagues in Germany as a mediation trainer. As a sculptor, Gaby has shown her work extensively; her most recent one-person show in April, 2012, was at Ceres Gallery in NYC. An installation about her family history was exhibited in her birth-city, Bamberg, Germany, in 1991, and spurred her interest in the culture of German Jews. Her artist’s website is gabriellerossmer.com At home in Boston, Gaby cultivates a backyard garden that includes a large raspberry patch which every year provides jars of raspberry jam – much as her grandmother Rosa produced in Bamberg 100 years ago.
Sonya is a visual artist working in a variety of media including paper, embroidery and photography. She published photographs in There Magazine based on a 24-hour project in Berlin, Germany in 2007. She has been a decorative painter of faux finishes and murals, and a production designer for feature film. She is the coordinator of her local CSA (community supported agriculture), Farm Spot, which partners a local farm with members of her neighborhood of Jackson Heights. Her blog eat+art+word combines her interests of the visual and the edible. She lives in New York City where she is currently studying German.
We started this blog to create a community where people can gather and share stories, recipes, information and inquiries about the food that German-speaking Jews ate in Europe. And still eat today.
We want to help preserve this distinct culture and we invite your participation.
We welcome your comments, your questions and your feedback. And, of course, your recipes! Please drop us a line, we’d love to hear from you! german.jewish.cuisine (at) gmail (dot) com