Kosher Goes Fashionable: Part 2

So what is being done in Seattle to make the kosher lifestyle easy and fashionable again?

Catering and cafes such as Leah’s offer takeout food that is neither meat or milk, known as parve. Shabbat, or the Sabbath, is a particularly stressful time for eating because no cooking is allowed for 24 hours on Friday and Saturday. Leah’s makes it easy to grab a full meal and simply reheat.

Another important move is integrating kosher food with “regular” food. Nearly all chain supermarkets in Seattle have kosher aisles of varying extensiveness, ranging from a small section in non-Jewish areas to full aisles in areas like Mercer Island and University Village. This also allows a full selection of traditional and organic produce, which needs no kosher certification.

Many traditional food providers are also providing a wider selection of kosher food integrated into their normal goods. For example, both the University Village QFC and the Mercer Island Albertson’s are certified to carry kosher meat alongside their regular items. The Noah’s in the University Village QFC is mostly kosher, and the Krispy Kreme on 1st is all kosher. This sense of integration is important to many Jews today.

The U Village QFC and Mercer Island Albertson’s are also particularly accommodating during Passover, a holiday during which kosher restrictions are extended to not eating any wheat, barley, oats, spelt, or rye. Last year the QFC provided a full aisle of kosher for Passover food, while the Albertson’s was veritable paradise with nearly 10 aisles.

Perhaps most importantly, UW’s Hillel, a community organization for Jewish students, last year opened Café Levine, a near-campus spot for kosher café fare.

Keeping kosher is never going to be as easy as an unrestricted diet, just as it is not easy to be gluten-free or vegan. But with the help of modern, quick-and-easy cookbooks as well as establishments sensitive to kosher needs, maybe a few more Jews will decide to adopt the lifestyle.


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