cover image The Rosh Hashanah Recipe (Ruby Celebrates! #1)

The Rosh Hashanah Recipe (Ruby Celebrates! #1)

Laura Gehl, illus. by Olga and Aleksey Ivanov. Albert Whitman, $17.99 (32p) ISBN 978-0-8075-7171-2

Buoyed by gentle humor, this first slice-of-life installment of the Ruby Celebrates! series opens with the eponymous protagonist and her cousins picking far too many apples to solely dip in honey or to bake a single apple cake. In the Ivanovs’ straightforward, animation-style art, the kids, portrayed with varied skin tones, present a solution: they enlist two adults as sous chefs, create their own recipes, present themselves as “Chef Appleman,” “Chef Applestein,” and “Chef Appleberg”—hosts of “Cooking with the Cousins”—and whip up apple pancakes, pizza, and lasagna. After Rosh Hashanah services (“They pray, sing, and listen to the shofar,” Gehl writes) and a festive meal, the prospect of more apple-eating is too much: they gift a pretty basketful to a grateful neighbor and let family dog Boaz finish off the rest. Recipes and a holiday overview conclude. Ages 4–8. (Sept.)