Making Grits in Israel

Every Shabbat (Saturday) morning, Devin and I make a big Southern breakfast with some nice Israeli touches. We usually have scrambled eggs, smoked goose breast (instead of bacon), humus, olives, and... GRITS!

Yes, grits!

Well, our grits are actually something called polenta. The color is a little more yellow and the grains are just a tad bit smaller than the fluffy white grits I grew up eating in North Carolina, but its close enough. And they look nice too. We store them in a glass jar on our counter alongside some white rice and black-eyed peas. Our plan is to grow the collection of grains and beans overtime.

Since I was raised in the age of instant grits, Devin and I have had to experiment to get the water ratio and seasoning right. The first batch we made was very bland (sorry Cy and Jill), but now we've got it figured out. They take quite a bit of salt, pepper and butter for starters. Devin so kindly made Bojangles seasoning for me, so I have been adding that, as well as goose breast fat, and a little cheese. They are pretty perfect. I even like the yellow color.

I believe it is the Lord's kindness and mercy on my transitioning process that we found grits in the shuk a few weeks ago. It would have been heart breaking to think about raising a family without the yummy goodness of grits.

Everything is different and new in my life right now, so the little bits of home the Lord provides are encouraging. Our life is exciting, wonderful, and a tremendous blessing, but its not always easy. Last week was particularly difficult. I cried three times in one day, all because:

1. Devin's birthday cake did not turn out how I hoped it would. The frozen blueberries I used melted and created a purple mess! Fortunately, it tasted great, but as a visual artists... I wanted it to look nice too.

2. One of Devin's birthday presents (herbs for our window herb garden) ended up being a poisonous plant. The sales woman at the plant store speaks Hebrew and I still only speak English. Something was lost in translation.

3. Both of us had terrible sinus infections at the same time.

4. And we received disappointing news that it will take longer for our wedding gifts and furniture to arrive than we had expected.

Now, none of these issues are really all that bad, and realistically, they aren't even all that terrible piled on top of each other either. It was all just a matter of culture shock. Sometimes tasks that are easy in America are difficult in Israel. That was the problem with the birthday cake and buying the plants. And things will just be this way from time to time. Such is life as an immigrant.

Nonetheless, the Lord is faithful. I see this in the big things, such as His provision of an amazing husband, a great job, and believing friends in our neighborhood. And in the small things, like our Shabbat morning yellow grits. As we feast on this special treat, I taste His goodness in my life.

callie m.

Related Posts:
Adventures in the Shuk
Sojourning: Homesickness
Shabbat Letter: Foreigners and Shabbat
Start Your Family

If you liked reading about Grits, check out Faith Dwight's post on Scrambled Eggs.


  1. oh, no excuses for crying. sometimes little things are just overwhelming. it's ok. but the herb story does seem almost comical, b/c it sounds SOOO dramatic. "i almost poisoned my family."

    the grits sound like what we ate in brasil, but i think those were pale yellow. and yeah, i had a hard time seasoning them, the salt and butter there were way different than what i was used to in the states.

    i sent you a loooong email on facebook with a recipe. yea!!


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