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Jewish Holiday Cooking: A Food Lover's Treasury of Classics and Improvisations Hardcover – February 11, 2008

4.7 out of 5 stars 20 customer reviews

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My Halal Kitchen: Global Recipes, Cooking Tips, and Lifestyle Inspiration by Yvonne Maffei
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Explore this bestselling cookbook filled with more than 100 diverse, popular, international recipes made with halal foods or halal substitutes along with tips on how to source them. Learn more
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Editorial Reviews

From Publishers Weekly

Cohen (The Gefilte Variations) celebrates both the variety and spirit of Jewish holidays and the variety of Jewish cooking in this appealing book. Each major holiday throughout the year, from Rosh Hashanah in the fall to Shavuot in early summer, has its own section of recipes, as does the weekly Sabbath; strictly observant Jews as well as those who are not entirely familiar with the religious significance of all the events will appreciate Cohen's detailed comments on their history and meaning at the beginning of each section. Those with less experience in planning big feasts will also be grateful for the variety of menu suggestions that accompany each holiday: Passover seders, a Hanukkah latke party with superb traditional and nontraditional latkes, a vegetarian dinner for Sukkot. Cohen draws on Jewish cuisine from every tradition: Leek Croquettes from Rhodes, stuffed chicken soup from Iran and a pineapple-coconut milk kugel from Bombay are just a few of the pleasantly exotic yet authentic offerings; she also puts new twists on old standards, as with Moroccan-flavored brisket and deconstructed kasha varnishkes that feature portobello mushrooms and eggplant in lieu of quantities of fat. Each recipe is helpfully coded to indicate whether it is meat, dairy or pareve, though she often provides variations to accommodate all needs in this book that's enjoyable to read and inspiring to cook from. (Mar.)
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Review

Part cookbook, part memoir and part how-to, "Jewish Holiday Cooking" could be the one go-to guide for all the Jewish holidays. Jayne Cohen gives the "why" behind their traditions and foods. Her Passover chapter is particularly detailed, tracing the development of the seder over the centuries, defining what "kosher for Passover" means, and giving ideas for planning the seder menu—including a vegetarian seder. Recipes for Passover include braised brisket with 36 garlic cloves and a chicken soup with fennel matzo balls, asparagus and shiitake mushrooms. Cohen is a graceful, informative writer who easily shares her enthusiasm for Jewish holiday cooking with readers. But there's a note of urgency as well. "Jewish cooking is above all bubbe (grandmother) cuisine, and through the meals that we share with our children, it is also our link to the future," she writes. "But unless you continue to update the recipes and create new food traditions, grandmother cuisine will die out when the grandmothers die, when no younger generations are eager to learn to prepare these foods." Sobering words, but this book offers delicious ways to honor traditions old and new.-- Bill Daley, Chicago Tribune

Cohen (The Gefilte Variations) celebrates both the variety and spirit of Jewish holidays and the variety of Jewish cooking in this appealing book. Each major holiday throughout the year, from Rosh Hashanah in the fall to Shavuot in early summer, has its own section of recipes, as does the weekly Sabbath; strictly observant Jews as well as those who are not entirely familiar with the religious significance of all the events will appreciate Cohen's detailed comments on their history and meaning at the beginning of each section. Those with less experience in planning big feasts will also be grateful for the variety of menu suggestions that accompany each holiday: Passover seders, a Hanukkah latke party with superb traditional and nontraditional latkes, a vegetarian dinner for Sukkot. Cohen draws on Jewish cuisine from every tradition: Leek Croquettes from Rhodes, stuffed chicken soup from Iran and a pineapple-coconut milk kugel from Bombay are just a few of the pleasantly exotic yet authentic offerings; she also puts new twists on old standards, as with Moroccan-flavored brisket and "deconstructed" kasha varnishkes that feature portobello mushrooms and eggplant in lieu of quantities of fat. Each recipe is helpfully coded to indicate whether it is meat, dairy or pareve, though she often provides variations to accommodate all needs in this book that's enjoyable to read and inspiring to cook from. (Mar.) (Publishers Weekly, December 17, 2007)

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Product Details

  • Hardcover: 592 pages
  • Publisher: Houghton Mifflin Harcourt; 1 edition (January 25, 2008)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 047176387X
  • ISBN-13: 978-0471763871
  • Product Dimensions: 8.3 x 1.7 x 9.4 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 3.2 pounds (View shipping rates and policies)
  • Average Customer Review: 4.7 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (20 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #416,645 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Customer Reviews

Top Customer Reviews

By D. Schoeberlein on March 3, 2008
Format: Hardcover
This is the first practical, clear and truly inviting Jewish cookbook I've found. I strongly recommend it for anyone who enjoys Jewish cooking and welcomes the encouragement to merge tradition with current tastes.
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Format: Hardcover
This is an amazing general cookbook and not just a good Jewish Cookbook. Beautiful layout, wonderful recipes (and yes I've tasted the end results), and very fun stories. A must have for any chef regardless of your religion! So stop reading this review and buy this book, you won't regret it.

Go NoW!
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Format: Hardcover
"Jewish Holiday Cooking" proves a good cookbook can be more than just recipes. Aside from clear, delicious sounding instructions on both traditional and unusual dishes, this book is a great read. I especially like the historical details and family anecdotes, which put the food in cultural context. This one will get a lot of use in my kitchen.
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Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
Refreshing new twist on the old family recipes! A beautiful book and easy to follow.
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Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
The description of the book said it had illustrations, it did, but none of the food! If you have never prepared a dish before it really helps to know what it looks like, however it did have all the recipes I was looking for
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Format: Hardcover
I especiall y like the improvisation part. Here, In Gainesville, FL there is no kosher restaurant and kosher food is not easy to find. One ca never get a fresh kosher chicken here, only frozen.
The bok could use a few e-mail addresses where one can get kosher foods shipped wit h their price and estimated amount of potage for shipping. Thanks.
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Format: Kindle Edition Verified Purchase
I have a couple thousand cookbooks, all read if not necessarily much used, and this is one of my favorites for both, reading and cooking. It's near-Julia C. class for variety and good recipe construction. There are so many Jewish holidays that this would be a fine book to give or get at any time. I like having the recipes from Ms Cohen's other cookbooks to hand in this book, as many of the others are now out of print or available only as Kindle editions. I love Kindle, but I just can't get comfortable using an expensive e-book device in the kitchen!

The recipes are harvested from everywhere and there are dishes for every part of every kind of meal, festive or workaday. Many are deliciously exotic, a good introduction to Near Eastern and Mediterranean flavors. I've had another printing of this book since 2008 and rereading for this review, was struck by how easy it now is to find any ingredient used in the book -- if Trader Joe doesn't have it, a local supermarket will. Dates, pistachios, pomegranages, feta cheese, plain yoghurt -- it's even easy to find good apples now. Surprisingly, Ms Cohen uses many quintessentially American ingredients: maple syrup, pecans, cranberries, sweet potatoes, native Americans all and mostly used by Americans: a new twist to "International."

It's such a pleasure to have a cookbook written by a real cook. The attention paid to the exact ingredients that will work in the various dishes, and possible substitutes for them, is a real plus and Ms Cohen has obviously made and remade every recipe in the book -- I've never gone wrong with her advice yet.
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Format: Hardcover
The book is worth the price just for the warm lentil hummus made with pomegranate molasses. I also am extremely fond of some of the tongue in cheek introductions to some of the recipes...such as the red lentil soup which she claims made Jacob the first celebrity Jewish chef - after inducing his Biblical brother Esau to try some.

I have a lot more recipes to try...but the ones I have done are among my favorites. And...you don't have to be Jewish to love these foods!
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