Arthur Schwartz's Jewish Home Cooking: Yiddish Recipes Revisited

Ten Speed Press  2008


Open Arthur Schwartz’s Jewish Home Cooking, and you’re immediately transported to a kitchen steaming with deliciously familiar flavors with a side of authentic nostalgia. In ninety-plus recipes Schwartz, cookbook author, restaurant critic, talk show host, and all-purpose food maven, documents the dishes that second- generation American Jews grew up on. Turning the pages, a reader can almost conjure up schmaltz simmering on the stove.

Today these dishes, many of them once daily fare, are served largely on Jewish holidays. Hearty and rich, they recall a time when cholesterol and calories were not part of our everyday vocabulary, and abundance— with its accompanying loaf of corn bread—was a necessary ingredient of any meal. Like most of the landmark restaurants, appetizing stores, delicatessens, bakeries, and kosher butchers of mid-20th century New York, our taste for this solid old-fashioned food is fading away. In this homage to the Yiddish food of his Brooklyn boyhood, Schwartz laces the recipes with well-told stories, excellent background information on Ashkenazic food and cooking, personal memories, and a sprinkling of Borscht Belt jokes. Even if you never cook a single dish from this book, it serves up a feast of love and lore. Color photographs, glossary, index, resource list.

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