Jewish paleo food sounds like an impossible oxymoron but this new cookbook proves that you can stay grain-free and still nosh on all your old favorites – even bagels! The New Yiddish Kitchen is a joint effort of Simone Miller, chef and owner of Zenbelly Catering and author of The Zenbelly Cookbook, and Jennifer Robins, founder of the blog Predominantly Paleo and author of Down South Paleo, that came about when they started searching for grain-free Jewish recipes for the holidays and came up empty. Originally a wildly popular ebook, this expanded print book has over 100 recipes ranging from appetizers to naturally sweetened treats and everything in between. The official release date is March 8, but you can preorder your copy now on Amazon…
I have so enjoyed reading and cooking from my preview copy, that I asked Simone and Jennifer for two favors and I’m happy to say they obliged…
- To share my favorite recipe (so far anyway… I still have dozens more bookmarked to try!) with all of you.
- Give you a chance to win a copy of the book for yourself!
The recipe and the directions for entering are at the end of the post, but first I want to tell you all about this book!
What makes The New Yiddish Kitchen so great?
Bagels, bagels, bagels, bagels!
Yes, I meant to say that four times, because Simone and Jennifer have created four different paleo-friendly bagel recipes for this book, including one version that is also free of nightshades, eggs, and nuts as well as grains and dairy! The breads and crackers section also includes recipes for matzo, pita bread, challah, bialys, and even a marble “rye” bread. Those building blocks are then employed in the chapter on “not-so-traditional deli fare” to make challah french toast, matzo brei, and more. You’ll also find a recipe for curing your own pastrami and fermenting kosher pickles – especially nice for people who live in parts of the country without a proper kosher deli around the corner.
While savory and sweet baked goods are the star of this book (the jelly donuts are totally worth the effort and you’d never guess they are grain-free and naturally sweetened), don’t ignore the sections in the middle either. The first recipe I made was the pan-roasted chicken with figs and olives and practically licked my plate. I haven’t made them yet, but the lemon-coriander grilled lamb chops sound incredible and I know you’ll agree that Bubbe’s brisket is the perfect comfort food, even if you don’t have a bubbe of your own. Side dishes are also well represented, including both traditional potato latkes and carrot parsnip latkes.
The recipes are easy to follow and prep and cook time are provided for all at the top (that is a feature I always look for in a cookbook because it is so important to know how long you are going to have to wait to put that delicious food in your mouth!). I also appreciate that the authors get right to the point and include just one short page on ingredients and what it means to eat paleo, that also touches on how kosher dietary laws intersect. Finally, a lovely touch is the inclusion of photos of Jennifer’s and Simone’s own bubbes and “Bubbe’s cooking tips” for each recipe. My personal favorite is this “tip” for the salmon gefilte fish recipe: “What, it’s too much work for you? In my day, the recipe started with ‘catch a fish,’ so quit your kvetching!”
What about my healing diet?
Every recipe in The New Yiddish Kitchen is gluten free, grain free, and dairy free and adheres to the standard paleo template of avoiding processed foods, legumes, and refined sugars. There are also many recipes that are naturally free of other allergens, but you have to read the ingredient list as they are not specially labelled. Many of the baked goods use almond flour, though there are some really tasty ones that do not and would be acceptable for people who are following the paleo autoimmune protocol (AIP), including the previously mentioned allergen friendly bagels, one version of matzo, and the pita bread. If you have been able to reintroduce eggs, you will also be able to enjoy the apple kugel, creamsicle macaroons, and jelly donuts, and if you can also eat chocolate you will love the chocolate donuts and the flourless chocolate cake. Additionally there are many naturally AIP-friendly dishes in the main course and side dish sections, including the brisket recipe that I am sharing in this post.
The bottom line
Jewish or not, if you are looking for paleo-friendly replacements for some of your favorite classic dishes like matzo balls, bagels, brisket, latkes, and much more, you will love this cookbook! Someone who has additional food sensitivities or is just starting out on AIP will have to skip a lot of the recipes, but there are still many dishes you can enjoy as written and others that require just a minor omission or substitution.
Bubbe’s brisket recipe
- 1 tablespoon (15 mil) avocado oil
- 1 teaspoon salt
- Freshly ground black pepper (Note from Jaime: Omit for AIP)
- 1 brisket, grass-fed if possible (around 4 pounds [1.8 kg])
- 1 large onion, sliced thin
- 6 large carrots, chopped
- 5 cloves garlic, minced
- 32 ounces (945 ml) beef broth
- Heat a large stockpot over medium-high heat and add the avocado oil.
- Rub the salt and pepper (if using) into the brisket and place in the pot. Cook for about 7 minutes on each side.
- Add the onions, carrots, garlic, and broth to the pot. Bring to a low simmer and cover. Cook for 4 hours or until tender. Remove the brisket and allow to rest for 10 minutes.
- Slice and serve with the cooked veggies.
Win your own copy!
The giveaway is over… Congratulations to Samantha M.!
One lucky reader will receive their very own copy of The New Yiddish Kitchen. All you have to do is write a comment on this post telling me which recipe from the book you are most excited to make in your own kitchen. You can choose one of the ones I mentioned (in bold) or go to Amazon and use the “view inside” feature to see the table of contents. Then, verify your entry using the Rafflecopter widget below and you’ll also unlock additional optional entries. Open to US residents only.