Jewish Cookbooks from Around the World | The Jewish Week | Food & Wine

Jewish Cookbooks from Around the World

Jewish Cookbooks from Around the World

A Small Show Gathers Jewish Tastes, Old and New  

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The importance of food in Jewish culture is the thrust of a new mini-exhibit at the Center for Jewish History. Showing how local tastes have found their way onto the tables of Jewish communities around the world, Nourishing Tradition: Jewish Cookbooks & the Stories They Tell presents a small selection of cookbooks from the collections of the five organizations that call the Center home, the Yeshiva University Museum, YIVO Institute for Jewish Research, American Jewish Historical Society, American Sephardi Federation, and the Leo Baeck Institute, and is currently on display in the Center's David Berg Rare Book Room through September 9. 

One can see a copy of Esther Levy's Jewish Cookery Book, on Principles of Economy: Adapted for Jewish Housekeepers which was originally published in 1871, the first Jewish cookbook to hit American shelves. A Displaced Persons camp card, meal plan ticket, badge, and poem from Elsa Oestricher, a cook who survived Theresienstadt are shown together. 

The cookbooks might teach a curious reader how to cook with Crisco vegetable shortening, what the Syrian community in Deal, New Jersey, likes to eat for dinner, or what foods the Ashkenazi community of Peru favors. 

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