Mansoura Pastries
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The ultimate treat is Mansoura's. This pastry shop was opened in 1961 by Isaac Mansoursa, who had been a famous caterer in Cairo, greeting customers personally, exuding Egyptian hospitality. As a child, I would go there with my dad, who loved it with a passion. He and Mansoura would chat in Arabic, inquire about each other's health, and only then get down to business, selecting the pastries we would take home in a little white box tied up with a red string.

Mansoura died a couple of months ago, and it was with some trepidation that I entered his store. The counter was being manned by his young grandson. At the back, I could see his son and daughter-in-law, busy readying platters of pastries. Mansoura's tradition is continuing, Josiane assures me. Yet she also says they will be "expanding," that distinctly American practice the elder Mansoura had shunned. I have already detected some disturbing compromises with modernity... it is now possible to buy frozen delicacies and heat them in the comfort of home.

Made in NYC Kosher
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