New York, July 30, 2019Jew­ish Book Coun­cil is pleased to announce the cre­ation of the Jane and Stu­art Weitz­man Fam­i­ly Award for Food Writ­ing and Cook­books, a new award to hon­or books that illu­mi­nate Jew­ish life, iden­ti­ty, and cul­ture through a culi­nary lens. Sub­mis­sions will be open not only to cook­books, but also to mem­oirs and his­to­ry that focus on Jew­ish food.

In cre­at­ing this prize, Jew­ish Book Coun­cil pres­i­dent Jane Weitz­man explained: This new award is meant to show­case the diver­si­ty of the Jew­ish food world, and, in doing so, the diver­si­ty of Jew­ish life. From mod­ern Israeli cui­sine, which is find­ing its way into cities across the world; to per­son­al sto­ries around Jew­ish food, fam­i­ly, and cul­ture; to the his­to­ry of Jew­ish cui­sine from around the globe, the culi­nary world is an impor­tant way for peo­ple to con­nect with Jew­ish life and identity.”

The judg­ing pan­el for this award includes some of the most cel­e­brat­ed chefs and food writ­ers with­in the Jew­ish world:

  • Dar­ra Gold­stein, an award-win­ning cook­book author, world-renowned food schol­ar, and found­ing edi­tor of Gas­tro­nom­i­ca: The Jour­nal of Food and Cul­ture, named the 2012 Pub­li­ca­tion of the Year by the James Beard Foundation

  • Amelia Salts­man, an award-win­ning author of The Sea­son­al Jew­ish Kitchen and The San­ta Mon­i­ca Farm­ers’ Mar­ket Cook­book, who writes about food and cul­ture through a sea­son­al lens.

  • Naa­ma She­fi, founder of the Jew­ish Food Society

  • Michael Twit­ty, author of The Cook­ing Gene and win­ner of the 2018 James Beard Foun­da­tion Book Award for Book of the Year and Best Food Writing

  • Mol­ly Yeh, Amer­i­can chef, blog­ger, and cook­book author, emmy-nom­i­nat­ed and James Beard Award-nom­i­nat­ed TV star, and host of Food Net­work’s Girl Meets Farm

  • Jef­frey Yoskowitz, chef entre­pre­neur, food and cul­ture writer, co-founder of The Gefilte­ria, and co-author of The Gefilte Man­i­festo: New Recipes for Old World Jew­ish Foods

Now in its six­ty-ninth year, the Nation­al Jew­ish Book Awards cel­e­brate Jew­ish lit­er­ary achieve­ment in a wide range of gen­res and form, hon­or­ing writ­ers in twen­ty dif­fer­ent cat­e­gories each year.

The Nation­al Jew­ish Book Awards is a pro­gram of the Jew­ish Book Coun­cil, a non­prof­it ded­i­cat­ed to the enrich­ment of Jew­ish life and edu­ca­tion through lit­er­a­ture. Pro­mot­ing the read­ing, writ­ing, and pub­li­ca­tion of books of Jew­ish inter­est, Jew­ish Book Coun­cil is the flag­ship of Jew­ish Book Month, the Nation­al Jew­ish Book Club, and the JBC Net­work of JCCs, Fed­er­a­tions, syn­a­gogues, among oth­er insti­tu­tions that host authors for con­ver­sa­tions in com­mu­ni­ties across Amer­i­ca about issues around Jew­ish life, iden­ti­ty, and culture.

Sub­mis­sions for the 2019 Nation­al Jew­ish Book Awards are now open! To sub­mit your book click here, or con­tact Jew­ish Book Coun­cil at njba@​jewishbooks.​org or (212) 2012920.

Evie Saphire-Bern­stein is the pro­gram direc­tor of Jew­ish Book Coun­cil. She grad­u­at­ed from the Uni­ver­si­ty of Illi­nois at Chica­go with a B.A. in Eng­lish and a minor in Jew­ish Stud­ies. Before join­ing the Jew­ish Book Coun­cil team in 2015, she spent a year and a half work­ing with­in the Con­ser­v­a­tive Move­ment as the Net­work Liai­son for the Schechter Day School Net­work. She is a recent trans­plant to New York City, after liv­ing in Chica­go for most of her life. In her spare time, Evie is a writer and blogger.