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Sivan-Events, Cheesecake, and more!

A group of people sitting on top of the word "sivan" taking selfies and chatting, while a giant cheesecake floats over their heads
Door Tori Egherman

Jewish? Jew-adjacent? On the Jewish spectrum? Oy Vey has events and discussions for you! Join us for Shabbat, Havdalah, The Jewish Manifesto, and the Deviant Yeshiva. Come to one or come to all. You are welcome. Big plus: We’ve got a cheesecake recipe you’ll want to try.

Your Jewish Horoscope

The Sefer Yetzira has this to tell us about Sivan, the month we are in now:

Gd made the letter Zayin (ז) king over motion/ And Gd bound a crown to it/ And Gd combined one with another/ And with them / Gd formed Gemini in the Universe/ Sivan in the Year/ And the left foot in the Soul/ male and female.

Shavuot is All About Consent!

Honestly, this is a holiday that I, the person behind the keyboard (Tori), did not grow up with. I only learned about it recently from those of you who celebrate with dairy products like cheesecake. [Why? Someone tell me!] This is why there is a recipe for cheesecake at the very end of the newsletter.

So here is what I learned. Have you heard the story of how Gd lifted a mountain above the heads of the children of Israel in order to get us to accept the Torah? At that moment, we were like angels with no will of our own. After all, who can deny the miracle of a mountain floating above one’s head? To do so would be ridiculous. Not unlike standing on railroad tracks in front of a fast-moving train.

According to some commentators, including the famous Rashi,  It is precisely for this reason that we as Jews are asked to consent to the Torah each year. Rashi writes: “Our acceptance was coerced [and therefore null]”. So, that’s what Shavuot is for: to continually give and renew consent.


Coming in Sivan and beyond…Events are grouped by type for your convenience.

Shabbat and Havdalah

Mixed (No) Faith Shabbat

Friday, 23 June, 2023

Havdalah Meditation
To Be Announced
We are still unsure about whether or not there will be a Havdalah Meditation in June.


Online: The Deviant Yeshiva Reads Hélène Cixous 
Date: Sunday, 28 May, 2023
Time: 14:00-15:30

Teddy bears hugging each other

Face-to-Face: The Jewish Manifesto: Jewish Joy and Comfort
Date: Monday, 29 May 2023
Time: 19:00 – 20:45

Face-to-Face: The Deviant Yeshiva (reading Gillian Rose)
Date: Sunday, 4 June, 2023
Time: 14:00 – 15:30

Online: The Jewish Manifesto: What’s It Like Being Jewish in a Non-Jewish World?
Date: Sunday, 11 June 2023
Time: 14:00 – 15:30

Face-to-Face: The Jewish Manifesto: What’s It Like Being Jewish in a Non-Jewish World?
Date: Monday, 26 June 2023
Time: 19:00 – 21:00


URGENT! Merav Krone is looking for Secular-Jewish (25-38 y/o) participants!!!

For my graduation thesis at the Reinwardt Academy (cultural heritage) I am doing research in response to the exhibition ‘Me, Jewish?!’. This study focuses on the experiences of people who identify as secular Jewish who are between the ages of 25 and 38. By entering into a conversation together, I want to ask respondents through an interview (approx. 40 minutes) to reflect on the subjects that are discussed in the exhibition. This conversation is about your personal experience. Prior knowledge of Judaism is not needed. This research will provide more insight into the diversity of secular Jewish experiences in the Jewish museum. The visit will last approximately one hour and the discussion will be for about 40 minutes. Free admission is provided and participation is anonymous.

Yonathan Listik and friends are hosting a night of studying!

Thursday the 25th of May is Shavuot night. It’s a tradition to spend the night studying. This ritual is called Tiqqun which is also the name of a French critical magazine.
To celebrate this, we will be reading Walter Benjamin’s “Towards a Critique of Violence” together and talking about it. No preparation necessary 🙂
Date: 25th of May
Time: 20:00 onwards
Location: Bar Bario in Amsterdam

Tamar van der Wouden (JVM) is promoting two upcoming events in Utrecht and Rotterdam!

Jewish Storytelling
Date: 22-06-2023
Time: 20:00 uur
Place: Utrecht
An incredible evening full of Jewish storytelling and music! Featuring Raphael Rodan, Yael van der Wouden, Sara Rosa Espi, Tali Gross, and hosted by the magnificent Rod Ben Zeev! Tickets can be bought here. 

Creative workshop + historical tour of Rotterdam
Date: 25-06-2023
Time: 13:00 uur
Place: Rotterdam
Join us for a great day in Rotterdam! We will start with a creative workshop on Jewish identity, followed by a (Jewish!) historical tour through the centre of Rotterdam. Of course we will also end the day with a good old “borrel”. Check here for more information! (Programme is in Dutch)

Check Out Our Discussion on Anti-Semitism 

Who gets to define Jewishness? What is philo-semitism? How can we have better solidarity with other minority groups? Oy Vey hosted an excellent discussion at Pakhuis de Zwijger and you can check it out online:

Samen Tegen Racisme #12: Antisemitisme uitgepakt!(in English)

Some Photos from our Pesach Seder

Check out the photos that friend of Oy Vey Kamran Ashtary took at our Seder.

Link to Google Drive

This is the Cheesecake Tori’s Mom Makes

It comes directly from the Philadelphia cream cheese package. It may not be the most beautiful cake in the world, but it’s delicious. You might want to try adding lemon zest or ginger for a bit of extra deliciousness.


  • 1-1/2 cups graham cracker crumbs – around 355 ml – and since the UK left the EU graham crackers are nearly impossible to find here. So any crisp cookie will do: speculaas, those delicious crispy butter cookies you sometimes get with your coffee, even waffle cones (for ice cream). You just have to reduce them to crumbs in a blender.
  • 3 Tbsp. sugar (44 ml)
  • 1/3 cup butter or margarine, melted (78 ml)
  • 4 pkg. (8 oz. each) PHILADELPHIA Cream Cheese, softened 
  • 1 cup sugar (200 grams)
  • 1 tsp. vanilla (5ml)
  • 4 eggs (4)


  1. Heat oven to 150°C.
  2. Combine graham crumbs, sugar and butter; press onto bottom of 9-inch springform pan. (springvormpan)
  3. Beat cream cheese, sugar and vanilla with mixer until blended. Add eggs, 1 at a time, mixing on low speed after each just until blended. Pour over crust.
  4. Bake 55 min. or until center is almost set. Run knife around rim of pan to loosen cake; cool before removing rim. Refrigerate cheesecake 4 hours.
  5. Invite Tori over to taste the results.
Actual cheesecake from this very recipe, baked by Oy Vey member Mari.