Just in time for the Jewish New Year, Susie Fishbein, author of the international best-selling cookbook series “Kosher By Design,” will teach a week’s worth of kosher-based cooking classes beginning on Sept. 8 at The Kitchen at Bed Bath & Beyond, a new interactive cooking and activity learning space in East Hanover.
We asked the Livingston resident about Jewish cooking and some of her favorite memories.
Q. What got you interested in kosher cooking, and what do you love about it?
A. While I grew up kosher, I did not cook much as a kid. My interest grew as I became an adult, out of a passion and a need. As someone who keeps Shabbat [Sabbath], I was constantly cooking and entertaining — think Thanksgiving dinner every single weekend — and I loved discovering new ingredients to work with.
Q. What fond memories do you have about cooking/food?
A. My fondest memories have been of my “Kosher by Design” career. I treasure the memories of long days of photoshoots as I watched, with my team, each book take shape and come alive.
I have travelled the world teaching cooking, been an invited guest to cook at Disney World, on cruise ships, at resorts, been an invited guest to the Obama White House, so many amazing opportunities, all while meeting people that love and appreciate what I do.
People are so kind and generous with their enthusiasm and praise. I have not had a bad at work day in my entire career. That’s a wonderful blessing.
Q. What would you like people to know about kosher cooking?
A. That it covers everything! There is nothing limiting in the menus we have for the week. The only thing a non-kosher person may notice is that there is no mixing of meat and milk and we avoid certain items like pork and shellfish.
Almost any other ingredient can be found kosher right in your standard supermarket. They may also notice that our meat and chicken (which is being provided by Aron’s Supermarket in West Orange) is of the highest quality. Many regular chefs prefer working with kosher chicken and meat. The quality is outstanding and the chicken is salted in the koshering process, which gives the same effects as brining.
Q. What are some of the recipes/techniques you'll be teaching at The Kitchen?
A. We have selected five full delicious and healthy menus that cover so many of the topics I love to teach. I run culinary tours to Israel and Italy and there is a menu that represents each of these countries. They include dishes like freekah pilaf and Yemenite beef soup from Israel and malenzane scarponcino from Italy.
There is a heart-healthy lunch menu where you can learn how to make seed crackers and the best veggie burger out there. A Shabbat specialty class is being offered that we are hoping grandparents or parents will bring their kids to. It shows off modern twists like Instant Pot chicken soup and hot pretzel challah, among other dishes.
One of the more requested shows has been Modern Jewish Holiday Recipes, where the pumpkin braised short ribs steal the show.
If you go:
Register at https://thekitchen.bedbathandbeyond.com/ or call 973-434-2700.
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