Feast­ing: A New Take on Jew­ish Cooking

Aman­da Ruben
  • Review
By – May 28, 2018

Feast­ing is for those who real­ly love food. The book, filled with the sense of abun­dance that the word feast” implies, is designed to bring fam­i­ly and friends togeth­er around good, nur­tur­ing food. Aman­da Ruben gen­er­ous­ly shares her gift for using food to cre­ate an atmos­phere of cel­e­bra­tion and connection.

The book’s recipes are orga­nized by starters, sal­ads, mains, sides and desserts, but Ruben also pro­vides some menu ideas. She high­lights recipes like her Decon­struct­ed Baba Ganoush for Rosh Hashanah and her sig­na­ture Miss Ruben’s Pas­tra­mi for Yom Kip­pur. The sound of her pas­tra­mi served sliced and still warm” sounds incred­i­bly appe­tiz­ing with just the right touch of tra­di­tion. Ruben does stray from the typ­i­cal” Jew­ish dish. Recipes like Sticky Beef Rib Fried Rice, Osso Buc­co, and Fried Bread­ed Cau­li­flower push the bound­aries of the tra­di­tion­al Fri­day night din­ner menu.

Some of the recipes in the book are more sim­ple — dish­es that an avid cook might con­ceive of on their own, such as the Gua­camole with Char­grilled Corn Sal­sa, or Roast­ed Dutch Car­rots with Hon­ey and Cumin. In the spir­it of serv­ing many, the recipes are all very flex­i­ble. Ruben her­self rec­om­mends mak­ing the recipes with what­ev­er you have on hand, aspara­gus for beans, feta for goat’s cheese, sweet pota­to for pumpkin”.

This cook­book is per­fect for real fam­i­ly cook­ing — the kind that takes place quick­ly at the end of a long day, or over a slow and mean­der­ing week­end. Read­ers can use it to fit their needs, all the while feel­ing con­fi­dent that each recipe is going to deliv­er some­thing the fam­i­ly will be talk­ing about until the next meal.

Alexan­dra Shab­tai is a Los Ange­les native work­ing in Jew­ish phil­an­thropy. When she is not work­ing or trav­el­ing, she spends her free time cook­ing in her favorite room of the house, the kitchen, or tend­ing to her gar­den of veg­eta­bles, fruit trees and flowers.

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