2017-08-02 / Voice at the Shore

Challahs for sale! Chabad challahs a hit at the shore

By ELLEN WEISMAN STRENGER
Voice shore editor


Chabad’s Tova Rapoport sells challahs to shore summer resident Stacy Hunn, who is a regular customer. Chabad’s Tova Rapoport sells challahs to shore summer resident Stacy Hunn, who is a regular customer. Every Friday morning, Stacy Hunn stops at the Chai Center in Ventnor for challahs and knishes.

“ They’re the best ever,” said Hunn, a shore summer resident from Huntingdon Valley, PA.

Hunn is not alone. From 9 a.m. to noon on any given Friday during the summer, you are likely to find a small crowd of people surrounding shaded tables laden with challahs and knishes just outside the entrance to the Chai Center, the headquarters for Chabad at the Shore, at 6605 Atlantic Avenue.

Among the many types of challah sold, raisin is clearly the most popular; even before 11 a.m. only one remains on the table. “It tastes a lot like a cinnamon roll,” says a hungry young man who buys it and begins devouring it right away.

The opportunity for schmoozing seems almost as enticing as the challahs.


Summer resident Gail Roman (left) with her daughter, Rebecca Shenkman, and grandchildren Danielle and Jacob, at the Chai Center’s Friday morning challah sale. Summer resident Gail Roman (left) with her daughter, Rebecca Shenkman, and grandchildren Danielle and Jacob, at the Chai Center’s Friday morning challah sale. “This is a gathering place,” said Tova Rapoport, taking a momentary break from waiting on the non-stop line of customers on a sunny Friday morning. “People meet people here they haven’t seen for years.”

After buying her challahs, summer resident Gail Roman stands on the nearby sidewalk chatting with her daughter, Rebecca Shenkman, while her grandchildren Danielle and Jacob sit in their strollers soaking up the sunshine.

Roman said she sometimes buys her challahs at the Margate Farmers Market outside of Steve & Cookies, at 9700 Amherst Avenue, where Chabad also sells them on Thursdays from 8:30 a.m. to noon (or until they run out). “That’s where I tasted the challahs for the first time and became passionate about them,” she said. “The children love them too.”

Behind the challah table, the Chai Center’s heavy gothic door stands propped open as families trickle into the building for Chabad’s Challah Baking Workshop, which is offered every Friday during the summer at 11 a.m. The popular workshop can have more than 40 people at the height of the summer season, said Tova, who leads the group.

Ideal for young children and their parents or grandparents, the workshop draws people without children as well—anyone who wants to learn to make a challah, said Tova. The workshop costs $15 for each person making a challah to take home, with no charge for additional helpers and onlookers such as parents and grandparents. To sign up, call Tova at (609) 992- 4900.

Chabad at the Shore will host a challah-baking workshop on a grand scale Aug 3, when it holds its 2nd Annual Mega Challah Bake. The event, offered at Chabad locations throughout the country, is expected to draw 200 women. 

Return to top