Archive


Just in time for Mother’s Day and the holiday of Shavuot, I’m thrilled to be hosting a giveaway (see the end of this post for details) of a signed copy of Joan Nathan’s newest book, King Solomon’s Table: A Culinary Exploration of Jewish Cooking From Around the World. This 382-page cookbook features more than 170 […]


It’s always a good idea to have a few tricks up your sleeve for navigating the cooking and eating during Passover. Here are a few: Keep ‘em warm. If you are hosting a big holiday dinner (and this goes for those holding Easter dinners as well), you might enjoy these ideas for keeping multiple dishes warm that The […]


Calzones, like other turnovers, are comfort food that can be eaten on the run. But I’ve always found them to be too delicious not to sit and savor. And although they are often considered folded-over pizzas, they do pizza one better in giving you more of the tender crust, browned all the way around, that […]


Normally, you won’t find me making or sipping a smoothie. Or a green kale juice thing. I like to chew my food, and I don’t subscribe to the need for detoxes or cleanses. BUT, after a season of too much—sweets, rich and bountiful meals, chocolate, whipped cream, politics, tweet-storms, everything—a sparkling glass of green goodness suddenly […]


After the potato latkes, then what? Here are some recipes honoring the oil and/or dairy traditions that have caught my eye for savoring Hanukkah this year. At the bottom are also links to a few personal recipes that I like to revisit for the holiday. Marquesitas by Pati Jinich—Pati calls these hard wafer rolls, but I see them as […]


Still looking for some gift ideas for Hanukkah (or Christmas), especially for the people in your life who love food and entertaining? Here are a few: Seed + Mill’s Gourmet Halva, available from Fig Tree & Vine (which also stocks a beautiful variety of sophisticated and often hand-made Judaica gifts). This lovingly crafted sesame confection comes […]


Like a doughnut, but better. These fritters are less fussy to make, wonderfully chewy and flavorful—and they have a Jewish-Italian connection that I love. Plus, most fittingly for this year of holiday overlaps, in Italy, similar versions are enjoyed for both Hanukkah and Christmas celebrations. In a new piece for Jewish Food Experience (read it with my recipe—which […]


UPDATE: We have a drawing winner—congratulations to Toshia Frank of Alvin, Texas! Thank you to everyone who participated here, on Facebook, and on Instagram—I loved reading the comments. I think chocolate babka was a popular favorite in the Jewish dessert category though apple desserts and rugelach were also mentioned often. Wishing everyone a sweetly delicious season! […]


Pumpkin and squash were historically favored by Italy’s Jews. You could find these fall fruits in soups, risottos, pastas, stews, fritters, and yes, even cake. I found recipes for Jewish-Italian pumpkin cakes, but decided to develop an updated version. We served samples of this during my talk in September about the culinary history of Italy’s Jews. When I started working […]


Even though I have some favorite recipes for Rosh Hashanah (hard to tear myself away from the brisket with cranberries and mushrooms from Meatballs and Matzah Balls served with mashed potatoes and roasted vegetables), the coming of the new year often finds me looking through books, blogs, and Web sites and considering adding some new dishes […]


At my recent talk about the rich culinary history of Italy’s Jews, I discussed how Sicilian Jews had adopted the combination of raisins and pine nuts (often with spinach) from Arab conquerors. This beloved pairing stuck and became a common dish among Italy’s Jewish communities. We offered samples of this dish at the event, and I […]


On the Jewish culinary calendar, it’s time for cheese—all thanks to the holiday of Shavuot (starting Saturday night), celebrated with dairy foods. That inspires me to look longingly at cheesecake recipes of all sorts and think that it’s been too long since I’ve made my Nutella Mousse Cheesecake. But I also love cheese that isn’t […]


Jews and Romans historically and spectacularly had their conflicts. But later, Jews also had centuries of fairly peaceful existence in Italy—even adopting and contributing to Italian cuisine. The holiday of Lag Ba’omer prompts my reflection on all that and a brand new Jewish-Italian recipe for a beautiful and savory pasta frittata with Italian broccoli rabe […]


Passover breakfasts. Ah, almost as daunting as Passover desserts, especially for those who enjoy cereal or toast for the morning meal. Weekday breakfasts are not something I usually want to spend much time on, and I also aim to have those first bites of the workday be relatively nutritious and good for me (that generally excludes […]


There’s not much that’s truly simple about Passover cooking. I think that’s why a granita seemed like such an appealing addition to my playbook. This Sicilian frozen sweet is not only easy but also fresh and refreshing plus it requires just a few ingredients, looks beautiful, and is a versatile nondairy and pareve dish. It can […]