SephardicGen.com: New searchable databases

SephardicGen.com holds excellent resources for those researching their Sephardic families from many countries.

Search the Consolidated Index of Sephardic Surnames with more than 85,800 names.

Among the new searchable databases on SephardicGen.com, compiled and maintained by pioneer Sephardic genealogist Dr. Jeff Malka, are the following:

– Dictionary of Bulgarian Jewish surnames
– Jewish surnames, Juderia of Tarrazona
– Personal files, Amsterdam Community, CAHJP
– Records of Portuguese Inquisition Trials (1583-1656, 1716-1717), CAHJP
– Victims of the Libya Riots
– Census of Jewish Family heads; Belgrade, Serbia
– Sephardic graves, Mount of Olives cemetery, Jerusalem
– VazDias database of aliases, Amsterdam
– Names from the Pautas (orphan girls, etc.), Amsterdam
– Names from the old cemeteries of Algiers

– Sephardic tombstones, marriages, births; Vienna, Austria
– Surnames from all Hispania Judaica books
– Tombstones, Trieste cemetery
– Jewish Surnames, Lebanon
– Craiova memorial of Jews who died in Balkan Wars and WWI

Access all these and many more here. Mathilde Tagger created these databases for SephardicGen.

Food: A taste of heritage

In Jerusalem, they lined up for a taste of Grandma’s cooking on Sunday at the first Festival of the Jerusalem Pot.

Trying to get a precise recipe from one of Jerusalem’s elderly cooks is impossible – they have neither specific quantities nor cooking times.

“It’s simple,” says Rachel Guate, who was preparing a couscous and a black-eyed pea dish, delicacies from her native Tripoli that are much more complex than this description would imply.

The cooking process will have to remain a mystery. When asked, Guate listed only some of the ingredients: white beans, mangold leaves “ground really well and fried,” stuffed intestines, some sort of beef patties that were cooked for hours, made from “beef fat, eggs, semolina, garlic and spices,” and couscous.

The festival attracted thousands of hungry residents into the city’s Mahane Yehuda market, reported Haaretz.

Some of the most famous home cooks were paired with famous chefs from local restaurants who helped the grandmothers make large quantities of traditional ethnic delights from many communities.

The enormous pots of food sat on improvised tables, while several road shows
offered additional entertainment. Unlike every other food festival that has been
held in recent years, this one offered a rare combination of roots, groove and
even Hassidic robes.

Chefs Keren Kadosh and Tallie Friedman, who organized the festival, visited each of the grandmothers in their own homes, eventually tasting food from 50-60 grandmothers. The event featured dishes from Morocco, Italy, Iran, Poland, Ashkenazi, Jerusalem, Kurdistan and Tripoli (Libya).

Nu? So where’s the cookbook? I’d buy one if it were available.

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The Jews of Libya: A rare glimpse

Little-known communities hold special interest for genealogists interested in Jewish history.

The recent documentary, The Last Jews of Libya, is narrated by Isabella Rossellini and directed by Vivienne Roumani-Denn.

It traces the final decades of an ancient Sephardic community seen through the eyes of the Roumani family. By the end of WWII, about 36,000 Jews lived there – there are none today.

Based on memoirs of family matriarch Elise Roumani, it offers interviews in English, Hebrew, Italian, Arabic, as well as archival film and photographs.

The family is from Benghazi and the film traces them from Ottoman rule through Mussolini and Hitler to their immigration when faced with Arab nationalism.

To learn more, click here.

The Jews of Libya: A rare glimpse

Little-known communities hold special interest for genealogists interested in Jewish history.

The recent documentary, The Last Jews of Libya, is narrated by Isabella Rossellini and directed by Vivienne Roumani-Denn.

It traces the final decades of an ancient Sephardic community seen through the eyes of the Roumani family. By the end of WWII, about 36,000 Jews lived there – there are none today.

Based on memoirs of family matriarch Elise Roumani, it offers interviews in English, Hebrew, Italian, Arabic, as well as archival film and photographs.

The family is from Benghazi and the film traces them from Ottoman rule through Mussolini and Hitler to their immigration when faced with Arab nationalism.

To learn more, click here.