About Busy In Brooklyn


Hi, I’m Chanie and I’m a food writer and photographer with a passion for food, family and tradition. I grew up in Crown Heights, Brooklyn, where I was raised on traditional Jewish foods like gefilte fish, stuffed cabbage and matza ball soup. When my family grew and I started entertaining, I began to put my own spin on old-time favorites to give them a modern, gourmet vibe. Today, I live just a few blocks away from my childhood home where I continue to revisit family favorites and reinvent traditional holiday dishes. In my free time (who has free time anymore?!), I love to travel, listen to soulful Jewish music and surf Etsy for some good vintage finds!


After years of working in the web design field, I quit my job to be a full-time stay at home mom. I have lots of creative energy, so the transition wasn’t easy. When friends and family suggested that I write a cookbook, I decided to do just that – in the form of a blog. I have a degree in web design and I’ve done some freelance writing as well as photo editing, so having my own place to share all the things I’m passionate about just made sense. When I started BIB in 2011, it was a part-time hobby, but it’s grown by leaps and bounds, thanks to my amazing fans and readers! Now, I work full time as a recipe developer, cooking instructor, brand ambassador, cookbook author, food photographer and blogger. I’m thinking about changing the blog name to Busier than Ever in Brooklyn!


I observe a kosher diet so all the recipes on BIB follow kosher dietary laws and standards. I do not eat pork, shellfish, or bugs of any kind. I check all my fruits & veggies to ensure that they are insect-free (brocolli is a killer!). I also don’t mix milk (dairy) and meat, so you won’t find any (real) cheeseburgers here! I do, however, use beef and lamb bacon, mix coconut milk into my chicken curry, and make a mean portobello cheeseburger.


As an observant Jew, I am lucky enough to celebrate holidays throughout the year. You’ll find lots of holiday-related recipes and crafts on the blog. Here is a brief roundup of Jewish holidays:

Rosh Hashana: The Jewish New Year (September)
Celebrated with symbolic foods such as apple dipped in honey, the head of a fish, pomegranate seeds, carrots, beets, dates and several others.
Yom Kippur: Day of Attonement (October)
Yom Kippur is a fast day, but 2 festive meals are eaten before the fast. Dumplings are a customary addition the meal.
Sukkot: The Festival of Huts (October)
During the holiday of Succot all meals are eaten outside in a Succah (a temporary hut). Many festive meals are prepared during the holiday.
Chanukah: The Festival of Lights (December)
During Chanukah, we light the menorah and eat foods that have been fried, like latkes and donuts, to commemorate the miracle of the oil. It is also customary to eat dairy foods.
Tu B’Shvat: New Year for the Trees (February)
Celebrated by eating the Seven Species that are native to the land of Israel, including, wheat, barley, grapes, figs, pomegranates, olives and dates.
Purim: The Holiday of Joy (March)
On Purim, we celebrate the victory of the Jews over the wicked Haman in the days of Queen Esther of Persia. We dress-up in fun costumes, eat hamantaschen, and make l’chaim on cocktails and drinks.
Passover: The Holiday of Freedom (April)
On Passover, we celebrate the freedom of the Jews from slavery in Egypt. We don’t eat any chametz (leavened grain). Matza is a staple during the 8-day festival.
Lag Ba’omer: The Birth of Jewish Mysticism (April)
Celebrated with bonfires and BBQ’s, bows & arrows and Jewish Unity parades.
Shavuot: The Festival of Roses (June)
Shavuot commemorates the giving the Torah on Mount Sinai. Dairy foods are traditionally eaten and we decorate our homes and synagogues with flowers.


All photography and content of BusyInBrooklyn.com is copyright Chanie Apfelbaum. You are not permitted to reproduce my recipes or blog posts without my written permission.  If you wish to link to my recipe from your site or use my photo in a collage, please contact me for permission.


You can contact or follow Busy in Brooklyn via:

EMAIL: busyinbrooklyn@gmail.com
twitter: https://twitter.com/#!/busyinbrooklyn
facebook: http://www.facebook.com/BusyinBrooklyn
pinterest: http://pinterest.com/busyinbrooklyn/
instagram: http://instagram.com/busyinbrooklyn.com
Youtube: videos and appearances

72 thoughts on “About Busy In Brooklyn

  1. Hi,
    I am loving your blog. All of my interests are covered. I am too a SAHM who loves to cook and throw parties (not to mention, a avid knitter and very familiar with Etsy) I have used a few of your recipes with rave reviews. If you could put on your blog some tips for using photoshop to the fullest, I would really appreciate it. The one area I am behind in is developing and displaying all my photos.
    Thanks and looking forward to your next post.

    1. Thanks so much Sara Chana. I learned Photoshop back in 2000 when I went to school to learn web design. Honestly, I’m a little behind myself! They seem to come out with a new version of Photoshop so often! There are a lot of things I like to do to manipulate photos, but I might be doing them the old fashioned way. I’ll definitely try and put together a post with some ideas in the near future.

  2. Hi Chanie! I’m absolutely loving it! Youre a woman of many talents and its amazing that you go ahead and share your tips and ideas. Its a beautiful blog and a really fun experience to explore it! I hope to actually get my act together to try some things sometime, but it was fun to visit even for the atmosphere of BIB (if you could say that about a blog…:)Keep it coming! -Busy in Melbourne

  3. I stumbled onto your blog from another site and I am so glad I did. It is a wonderful blog and I look forward to your future post.

  4. I love your blog and discovered it when Elka Pinson put up a post for voting for your favorite kosher cooking blog. I appreciate all the pictures with the recipes as it makes it easy to follow. Keep up the good work!!

  5. Your recipes and ideas are great.
    Would you mind telling me where you got those adorable matching aprons for you and your daughter? thanks

    1. Thanks Esta! I actually bought them in a market in Australia, but I’m sure if you search the web (try Etsy) you can find something similar.

    1. Thanks Doreen! You can definitely freeze them, but as with all puff pastry, it’s best to freeze them raw (rolled with the chocolate) rather than baked. If you freeze them baked, make sure they are tightly wrapped. When you take them out of the freezer, thaw with the wrapper and bake for a few minutes to crisp up.

  6. Hi Chanie! I was looking for sites for my daughter and came across this. Wish I had known about it before. Hatzlocho rabbo! Wishing you an easy, meaningful, kosher’n freilichen Pesach! Love, Leah

    1. Thanks Leah, I’m glad you found it! Best wishes for a kosher ‘n freilichen Pesach to you and yours as well!

  7. Hi Chanie,

    WOW! Your website is amazing! I was just introduced to it and there is so much to see and admire, and so much to learn. You are so talented and you have awesome ideas.

    Have a Kosher and freilichen Pesach.

  8. Erev Shabbos, 5:00 PM – Thanks for the Challah Kugel recipe. Just a short note to say I’ll be back – I also crochet and cook!

  9. Hey Chanie, I can’t believe that I only just discovered your blog! I’m a working mom but in my spare time I love to cook. Can’t wait to try out some of your yummy recipes…keep you posted

  10. Hi Chanie,
    Just sending a shout out from your MIL & SIL, both of whom I met this past Shabbos at a Spiritual Retreat in Orlando! We were talking about food (what else!) and your blog came up. They were very excited that I was familiar with your blog and I was excited to meet the family of a celebrity!! :) Keep up the amazing work! Beautiful blog, photos, crafts & yummy recipes!! Sh’koyach!!

  11. I had the most amazing mushroom soup at Basil Pizza & wine bar. It was creamy and had such depth of flavor without using any cream. Bon appetite has this section where they find restaurant recipes and was hoping that maybe you could try this? Would Love to make this delicious soup at home. Love your blog!

  12. Chani
    What a pleasure to meet you! And so proud of you for completing the Miami Half Marathon for Friendship Circle!!!

    Your bog is amazing!!!! I’m hocked and telling everyone about it. So impressive!

    I’m not sure I would define you as a SAHM. Rather as a creative artist who works from home. And thereby is actively involved with her children. You do it all!

    Hope to see you next year at the Marathon!

  13. I just stumbled upon your website. Love it! You are such an inspiration. This encourages me to eat and cook gluten free. I am a vegetarian, though at times eat dairy, eggs and fish. I am anxious to try your recipes. Thanks!

  14. Hi evenly discovered your blog and I love it. Delicious and simple recipes always with a little something special.
    Thank you!
    Would u plz email me the honey cake bourbon balls recipe as well please? Meirafink@aol.com
    Thank you;)
    G’mar Chasima Tova.

  15. Hi chance how aré im letty From México i meet you in aspen you remember…?
    I want to tell you That my mothet And me love your blog And your recipes

    1. Hi Letty, yes of course I remember! I wish I remembered all the delicious recipes you told me how to make, I completely forgot! Thank you so much for writing!

  16. Our Jewish friends who keep Kosher invited us for Thanksgiving this year – they asked us to bring dairy-free mashed potatoes. So I found your pareve recipe, although since we are not Kosher, they will not be so in the strictest sense. (They are either conservative or reform Jews.) As a design engineer and as a musician, I am a highly creative and problem solving individual. My question: How can we create dairy free mashed potatoes and keep them dairy free? Note: Soy milk I see in supermarkets has the cicle “U” symbol next to a D which I know means dairy, so any recipes with soy milk were out.

    PS: I live in southern California.

    Thank you very much!

      1. I know this is old, but if I have it on hand I will use tofutti sour supreme in my mashed potatoes. Keeps them super creamy

  17. Hi Chani – I saw you at a Chabad presentation you did in Briarcliff. Even though I don’t cook – I got a lot of really good tips from you. I love your website and your commentaries.

    My question to you is – can I use wheat germ in the place of bread crumbs or planko? Can I also use maple syrup in the place of honey?

    Thanks much.

  18. I saw your presentation at the Loaves of Love at the Chabad of MidSuffolk. Loved your creative ideas. I need a passover vegetarian main meal recipe. We serve the usual turkey and brisket but this year one of the guests is vegetarian. Thanking you in advance.

      1. Usually not. I was thinking of making something with the zucchini linguini…what do you suggest?

  19. saw you last night at R Kaplans shul in Balt…cannot tell you how much I enjoyed!!!! Thanks so much and hatzlacha rabba to you….I hated when it was over!!!!!

  20. Chanie,
    Your blog looks great. I am also a Jewish mother, and with each baby I end up working less and less. On my recent maternity leave, I started an Israeli food blog. If you posts blogging tips on your site, that would be awesome!
    Thanks, Miriam

  21. I just found this website… don’t know how.
    You had a suggested list of meals for the week. Can you send it to me? Can’t find it again.

  22. Hi there,
    I don’t own Millenial Kosher (yet) but someone posted the recipe for the babka straws on Facebook. I know you don’t allow that…so now I’m in a bit of quandary…. I wanted to get your permission if it would be OK to use the recipe without owning the book.
    Rosh hashana just passed so just trying to be careful;)

  23. Hi, would you be able to do a cookery class over skype for a group of ladies in London? If so how much would you charge for your time?

  24. Hi Chanie,
    I love your blog! My grandson will have his Bar Mitzva in the Spring and I would love to bake some dry cakes(no frosting)and cookies for the lunch buffet. What is the best way to defrost these baked goods without them getting sweaty or too dense and moist? Any advice and /or even suggestions as to what freezes well would be very much appreciated.

  25. Hi Chanie!

    I tried the kani cups recipe and substituted with flaked seasoned salmon, as I dislike kani. They were amazing and a real showstopper! Thanks for sharing such a delicious recipe.

    Another Chanie in the suburbs!

  26. I borrowed the Millennial Kosher from my daughter and have made quite a few things from it and everyone loved them. Today I made the lazy mechshie meatballs exactly as you wrote. I rolled them tight and put them in gently but they fell apart. They are very tasty and I will serve anyway. wondering if you had any suggestions. thanks

  27. Hi Chanie, I am seeking recipes for easy easy kosher keto. Like really really easy. I have searched the internet but everything seems to combine butter, cream, or cheese, with meat which of course is not an option. I have your MK cookbook which is amazing, and am a fan of your work, if you could kindly point me in the right direction I’d appreciate it. I’m a social worker in a very busy ER on the West Coast and have been working 14hr + days, there isn’t even time to heat up food and if I can’t eat it with one hand while I type with the other it doesn’t happen. Can you point me in the right direction? Your spaghetti squash shakshuka for example would be perfect for days I’m home but not for work. Any thoughts or suggestions you might have in terms of your recipes would be most appreciated. Thanks so much and thank you for sharing your creativity, it is a light during these challenging times for sure.

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