Levana’s Table

Kosher Cooking for Everyone
by Levana Kirschenbaum
Illustrated by: Ann Stratton

‘Tu vieilliras avant l’age [you will be old before your time],’ Levana Kirschenbaum’s Moroccan mother warned her when she chose to go into the catering business. This dire prediction hasn’t come true.

That the woman who has delighted New Yorkers for two decades with her bakery, upscale kosher restaurant, exquisite catering and gourmet cooking classes hasn’t slowed down is evidenced by her new cookbook, Levana’s Table. Though as beautiful as a coffee-table art book because of Ann Stratton’s opulent photos, it deserves to be kept on active duty in the kitchen because of its recipes.

Not only are its 150 recipes healthy and relatively easy to prepare, they are fascinating in scope. They reflect Kirschenbaum’s Moroccan upbringing and other culinary influencesFrench, Mediterranean, Asian and vegetarianas well as food for the holidays and entertaining. Subtitled Kosher Cooking for Everyone, this book demonstrates unequivocally that adhering to kosher laws in recipes doesn’t mean giving up good or interesting food.

Among her creations are such dishes as Spinach, Cranberry and Mango Salad with Curried Mango Dressing; Chicken Paella; Tea- and Ginger-Roasted Cornish Hens; Syrian Rice with Apricots and Almonds; a pareve onion soup that you’ll find hard to believe is meatless; and a non-dairy tiramisu made with Tofutti cream cheese. Even Kirschenbaum’s recipes for traditional dishes add unexpectedand welcometouches. Her kugel, for example, is made with applesauce to reduce the amount of oil needed, and her tzimmes, a dish traditionally served for Rosh Hashanah, is served as a loaf. Jewish Women Magazine, fall 2003(208 Pages)

Publisher: Stewart, Tabori & Chang, Inc., 2002

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