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  • alte kaker

    n. Elderly person, old-timer; "A crotchety, fussy, ineffectual old man" (Rosten).

  • Ashkenazic

    adj. Adjectival form for 'Ashkenazim', "The name given to the group of Jews who were originally from Germany and France, and their descendants" (JPS).

  • babka

    n. "A loaf type coffee cake" (JPS).

  • bagel

    n. "A leavened, firm, doughnut shaped roll" (JPS).

  • blintz

    n. A folded thin pancake filled with cheese, fruit, or potatoes.

  • bris

    n. Circumcision ceremony; the celebration surrounding it.

  • bupkis

    adv. Nothing.

  • Chabad

    n. An outreach-oriented branch of Hasidic Judaism that follows the Lubavitcher Rebbe. Chabad has thousands of branches around the world, including at many college campuses.

  • challah

    n. "The braided egg bread that traditionally is eaten on almost every Jewish holiday and [the Sabbath]" (JPS).

  • chuppah

    n. "The Jewish wedding canopy; that is, the cloth under which the Jewish wedding ceremony is conducted." (JPS)

  • chutzpah

    n. Guts (positive).

  • Cohen

    n. "A male descendent of the family of Aaron, of the tribe of Levi. Aaron and his descendants were consecrated to the service of God... in the Tabernacle... in the desert and later the Holy Temple" (Steinmetz). Often poorly translated as "priest," though the term "Levite" or "Aaronite" is more accurate, especially due to Christian usage (Steinmetz).

  • dreidel

    n. "A small, four-sided spinning top used in a game during Chanukah" (JPS); the top itself.

  • farkakte

    adj. "Lousy, messed up, ridiculous." (JPS)

  • farmisht

    adj. Mixed up, confused, crazy.

  • gefilte fish

    n. Minced sweet or sour fish, cooked in balls or a log and sliced. [lit., "stuffed fish"(JPS), since the chopped fish used to be placed back in the fish for cooking.]

  • goy

    n. A nation, but not the Jewish nation.

  • hamentaschen

    n. "Small, triangular-shaped cookies filled with fruit or jam that are eaten on Purim." (JPS)

  • heimish

    adj. At home, comfortable.

  • kibbitz

    v. "To socialize aimlessly...To carry on a running commentary." (Rosten)