When a big snowstorm hits, Monty Nudelman happily shovels his neighbors' sidewalks, driveways, cars, and steps—until he hurts his back. Now he can barely move! He can't even make his Shabbat lunch. Luckily, his neighbors have all made cholent—a delicious Shabbat stew. The neighborhood kids form a "cholent brigade" to bring Monty Nudelman a tasty feast. Cholent to the rescue!
Brr! Winter came late and mild here in southern NM, but just looking at Harmer's illustrations of Monty shoveling snow made me shiver. It is pretty safe to say I am not a winter weather person. I do love a good deed and a shared meal, though, and this simple story expresses the fun of both without an ounce of preachiness. Herman includes a recipe for cholent at the end. Friends who got instant pots for the holidays can speed up the cooking, especially the beans - or would that ruin the atmosphere of good smells all night long? Hmm...technology vs. comfort smells...our new debate topic!