Jewish Food for Everyone

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Jewish Food for Everyone

A worldwide culinary journey

From bagels to tzimmis, American cooking has been undeniably influenced by Jewish culture. And the reason why is readily apparent -- just glance through one of these amazing volumes, and you'll find a wide variety of flavors and textures. From sweet to savory, Jewish cooking is undeniably diverse and delicious!

The 100 Most Jewish Foods edited by Alana Newhouse
Lead editor (and publisher of the online magazine Tablet) Alana Newhouse compiled this collection of articles devoted to the topic of foods commonly associated with Jewish culture, including traditional offerings such as blintzes and charoset (a mixture of chopped fruit and nuts served during Passover). This somewhat whimsical look at foods commonly found in Jewish culture is frequently funny, surprisingly poignant and always illuminating. 

Hazana by Paola Gavin
The author offers a wide variety of meatless recipes from multiple cultures, ranging from Italy and the Mediterranean to central Asia (including Afghanistan and Azerbajan) to Russia and Eastern Europe. After trying some of these tempting dishes (many of which include eggs and dairy ingredients, others which are vegan), you're likely to question the importance of meat.

King Solomon's Table by Joan Nathan
A respected food writer, the James Beard award winning author melds recipes with stories and interviews of contributing chefs and cooks. International in scope, this impressive volume is fun to browse, even for those who suffer from kitchen allergy. You'll find recipes for traditional favorites, such as chicken soup (a Yemenite variation featuring dill, chives and cilantro) and brisket (in this instance, slow cooked with red wine, vinegar and mustard), and some less common offerings (chickpea pancakes with fennel, rosemary and onion) and Sri Lankan breakfast buns. This volume is a hearty salute to the (culinary) wisdom of Solomon.

The Healthy Jewish Kitchen by Paula Shoyer
This Washington area writer set out to create a book featuring recipes that were lower in fat, sugar and sodium content (and higher in whole grain content) than the traditionally prepared versions but offered equally delicious results. Sample recipes include fish tacos with cilantro lime rice and Cambodian spring rolls with lime chili and peanut dipping sauce. These tasty variations on their fattier, saltier, sweeter traditionally prepared counterparts might be just the thing the doctor ordered!

The New Jewish Table by Todd Gray
Chef and restaurateur Todd Gray (owner of Equinox) and his wife Ellen Kassoff Gray share the story of their interfaith marriage, along with a wide array of mouth watering recipes. You'll find great American twists on traditional foods, such as Yukon Gold and sweet potato latkes, and beet-cured salmon gravlax. In addition to these tasty recipes, this book also features entertaining commentary from some of the Gray's friends including chef José Andrés and violinist Itzhak Perlman.  

The Seasonal Jewish Kitchen by Amelia Saltsman
A vocal advocate of the farm to table movement, the author focuses on seasonality and sustainability. Divided into six sections (reflecting the lunar calendar), she includes recipes for both old favorites and contemporary dishes. Some are from her family, such as her Iraqi grandmother's kitchri, a lentil and rice stew flavored with garlic. Others (blood orange and olive oil polenta upside down cake) are decidedly more contemporary. Nearly as inviting as the recipes themselves, the accompanying stories and anecdotes make for entertaining (and informative) reading. Verdict: a great choice for people who love to cook, and those who love to read about food.