The miracle at the center of the Hanukkah story centers around a small cruet of oil that miraculously kept the eternal flame in the Temple of Jerusalem burning for eight days when everyone thought it would only last one. Therefore, it was decided by future generations of Jews that the best way to celebrate Hanukkah would be by eating lots of oil — more specifically, food fried in oil. In most parts of the world, Jews eat pancakes, or latkes, but in Israel, they eat jelly-filled doughnuts, called sufganiyot, a combination of North African pastries called sfenj (fried balls of dough dipped in honey) and European jelly-filled doughnuts. According to one source, sufganiyot were popularized in the 1920s (when Israel was still called Palestine and governed by the British) by a labor organization that argued that while latkes could be made at home, it took a professional to make good sufganiyot, which meant more work for bakers. Here’s a list of bakeries that are selling sufganiyot this Hanukkah in Chicago, one for each night.
As of August 20, the city has mandated that everyone wear facial coverings while indoors. For updated information on coronavirus cases, please visit the city of Chicago’s COVID-19 dashboard. Health experts consider dining out to be a high-risk activity for the unvaccinated; the latest data about the delta variant indicates that it may pose a low-to-moderate risk for the vaccinated, especially in areas with substantial transmission. The latest CDC guidance is here; find a COVID-19 vaccination site here.Read More