VaYeishev: Bereshit (Genesis) chapters 37 – 41
We are introduced to Joseph and his brothers this week. They were shepherds. It seemed Joseph stayed at home with their father Yaakov rather than go out into the fields with ten of his siblings. There was a lot of jealousy for more than one reason.
At one point in this week’s Torah portion Joseph was sent out to the fields to look for his brothers and report back to Yaakov. They had gone to Shechem with their flocks, and then traveled on to Dothan. Joseph went to Shechem but couldn’t find them. A man- we suspect that he was an angel- and redirected Joseph to Dothan. The brothers saw him approaching. To paraphrase Maurice Sendak, they “made mischief of one kind and another”. They resented Yaakov’s favouritism of Joseph and probably also resented the fact that their brother was comfortable at home while they took care of the flocks. They threw Joseph into a pit and gave him to Midianite traders who then sold him to Ishmaelite traders.
I’ve often wondered about the brothers out in the fields, sleeping and eating there. What did they have for lunch? What were they eating as Joseph approached? Many Israeli cookbooks feature eggplant recipes, and I thought- could the brothers have enjoyed something like roasted eggplant?
Roasted Eggplant with Silan and Tomatoes
1 medium eggplant 1 – 2 Tbsp. freshly squeezed lemon juice
1 Tbsp. raw tehina 1- 2 Tbsp. olive oil
1 Tbsp. yogurt sprigs of fresh parsley, cilantro or hyssop leaves
1 tomato halved, cored, and diced 1 crushed clove of garlic
1Tbsp. silan or dark honey sea salt and crushed pepper to taste
The roasted eggplant is delicious with warmed or toasted pita and a good glass of beer.
and Shabbat Shalom.