The 100 Most Jewish Foods Cookbook Review

The 100 Most Jewish Foods Cookbook Review

Title: The 100 Most Jewish Foods: A Highly Debatable List
Author: Alana Newhouse
Published: March 19, 2019, Artisan
No. of Pages: 256
Cover Price: $24.39 Hardcover, $8.61 Kindle

The 100 Most Jewish Foods: A Highly Debatable List is a fascinating journey into Jewish food and culture. The author makes it clear as to what the book contains: “What’s here,… are the foods that contain the deepest Jewish significance—the ones that, through the history of our people (however you date it), have been most profoundly inspired by the rhythms of the Jewish calendar and the contingencies of the Jewish experience. That many of them are also delicious is obvious, and Darwinian: It’s how they’ve survived as long as they have.” For those who are non-Jewish, this cookbook contains loads of information on eating kosher, and the reasoning behind many Jewish foods.

Each chapter has vignettes or essays from prominent Jews, that bring Jewish food to life. Most of the chapters also give recipes for those very Jewish foods, and since there is a picture of every dish, readers will want to make almost everything. Some of the dishes will appeal to only those who have been brought up eating them, but there are dozens that will appeal to everyone. The book includes famous traditional Jewish dishes such as Latkes, Kugel, and Cheese Blintzes (a very delicious version), but also for interesting recipes that many non-Jews have never heard of, such as Kichel (hard cookies shaped into a bow tie and enjoyed mostly by adults), Kiddush Cookies (homemade cookies that used to be served after services but aren’t anymore because of cost), and Labda ( easy and incredibly delicious potato pancakes from the Republic of Georgia). There is an excellent recipe for Matzo Brie, as well as a delicious version of Shakshuka, which has recently been the darling of spicy egg dishes everywhere.

Whether you are Jewish or not, this cookbook includes dozens of recipes that everyone will want to make. The stories will make it fun to curl up and read, and since the recipes are written in an easy-to-follow format, it will be fun for everyone to make some of these dishes. The recipes turn out well, even for less experienced cooks.

Highly recommended, this is a fun book to add to any cookbook collection.

Special thanks to NetGalley for supplying a review copy of this book.

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