Imam Bayeldi but Let’s Hope You Don’t

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Did you know that summer leeks are traditional on Sephardic tables on Rosh Hashanah?  I did not. Here’s how it goes:

The Aramaic word for leeks is “karti”, which is very similar to the Hebrew, “yikartu”, meaning to “cut off”. We pray that our enemies will be “cut off”, allowing for safety and security of the Jewish people and all of our friends.

Long, layered stalks of Leeks are neatly lined up in your local markets now along with the long-awaited abundance of perfectly ripe tomatoes and gorgeous eggplants.

This is how we connect seasonal ingredients to holiday dishes. Yup, it goes beyond apples and pomegranates, for sure.

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Keeping it Chill (ed) for this Holiday

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Rosh Hashanah, the Jewish New Year,  is coming SUPER early this year. So early, that it would be wise to keep a good part of your menu cool since the weather will likely be steamy hot. I’m focused on chilled sides, even if I my family insists on my  traditional, braised  brisket as the main.

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Chilled Soups Highlight Summer Produce

photo: Marcia Selden Catering

photo: Marcia Selden Catering

Marcia Selden Catering

If the thought of summer entertaining makes you sweat as you envision standing over a hot stove, consider trying one of these unique, delicious, chilled soups.  Continue reading

Crisp, Cool and Impressive

Well Traveled Fork veggie wraps (1)

While I was in Bend, Oregon a few weeks ago, Chef Bette Fraser of the Well Traveled Fork cooked up a couple of magnificent meals for us and our house guests. We had more than a few stipulations including gluten and dairy free, kosher, and vegetarian.  No problem!  We started with this impressive summer appetizer one night and I knew I had to share this recipe. Continue reading

A Meditative Meal

By Hannah Kaminsky

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Not so far from the maddening crowds of Manhattan midtown, there sits an oasis of tranquility, hidden in plain sight. Prompted to remove your shoes before entering the dining room itself, this simple gesture simultaneously suggests that all other extraneous distractions be left at the door before proceeding. Adhering as closely to tradition as an entirely vegan Korean restaurant can, the experience of dining at Hangawi is almost as noteworthy as the food itself.

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A Fresh Spin on Summer Salads

multi colored beets

As the season heats up and farmers’ markets everywhere suddenly have heaping piles of crisp, rainbow hued salad ingredients to offer, I needed a little jump start to get me thinking about new combinations and uses for all those spicy greens and plump beans. So when I ran across an article about Haven’s Kitchen in the NY TIMES a few weeks back, I promptly registered for a class there,  called  ”All Sorts of Salad”. Continue reading

Kajitsu Reborn and Revisited

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Contributed by Hannah Kaminsky

There’s something different about Kajitsu, and it’s not just the seasonal menu, refreshed every month to highlight fresh produce at its peak. The entire restaurant itself has picked up and moved uptown to a new space in Midtown, large enough to accommodate two separate dining rooms containing two very different food philosophies. Continue reading

Naturally Delicious at the Lime

Malibu Salad with Grilled Salmon

By Camillo Ferrari

The vibe at the Lime restaurant in Norwalk, CT is a throwback to the late 70′s. Square sheets of glass protect faded, striped umber and orange tablecloths and customers’ business cards are wedged between cloth and glass. A smattering of haphazardly framed photos of early 1980′s T.V. icons hang next to kitchen tools and framed notices of events from another era.

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Gobo Inspires with Vegetarian Goodness

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I appreciate the calm each time I tuck into Gobo, a vegetarian retreat with convenient locations in the West Village and  UES, NYC. The mostly blond and spacious interior is simply appointed with undressed wooden tables and comfortable cushioned seating. Plenty of space between tables encourages good conversation and lingering.  There is a Zen simplicity that is intentional here and it carries through to the deceptively simple, Asian inspired dishes on the menu. Continue reading