CLASSIC ITALIAN JEWISH COOKING: Traditional Recipes and Menus

Edda Servi Machlin, Author . Ecco $29.95 (432p) ISBN 978-0-06-075802-8

The 2,000-year history of the Jews in Italy has produced a wealth of delicious creations that conform to the Jewish dietary laws of Kashruth, make use of the freshest seasonal ingredients and call for the utmost care and fuss in preparing them. Machlin offers recipes and menus for every holiday and occasion, not only from her native Tuscan Jewish village of Pitigliano, but from her mother's Roman-Jewish tradition, as well as those painstakingly collected from Jewish friends in Venice, Bologna and throughout Italy. Many of the dishes are uniquely Italian Jewish and cannot be found in Italian cookbooks. As the majority of Italian Jews are of Sephardic origin, their dishes also differ from the familiar Ashkenazic food of Central and Eastern Europe and will provide a host of new ideas for Jewish cooks. Instead of Hamantashen (traditional triangular hat-shaped pastries filled with jam or poppy seeds) for Purim, they can try Orecchi di Aman or Haman's Ears (fried pastry curls) or Muggine in Bianco (Jellied Striped Bass) instead of gefilte fish. In certain cases, Sephardic kosher laws vary from the Ashkenazic and Machlin clearly states and explains those variations. Antipasti, soups and pastas, meat, vegetables and salads, breads and desserts are all covered in one volume compiled from Machlin's three highly acclaimed but hard-to-find earlier books so that American cooks can share the rich history and legacy of Pitigliano, Italy's "Little Jerusalem." (Apr.)

Reviewed on: 03/14/2005
Release date: 04/01/2005
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Paperback - 368 pages - 978-0-06-075803-5
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