Jamie Geller. The face behind Joy of Kosher. I remember the first time I ever heard her name. It was long before she made that big move to Israel and it was my mother who introduced me to her cookbooks. You see, my mother is a kindergarten teacher and has been for many years. She's one of the best too! If I lived any closer to her, my son would be in her class. Of the many children taught by her were two of Jamie's own children. At the end of the year parents all over the world gift their kids teachers with thoughtful items to show their gratitude. It just so happens that the years my mom taught her girls each coincided with a new cookbook release. And what she gave my mom in closing were....you guessed it, her brand new cookbooks. That's when I first heard of Jamie. And I've been inspired since. You should have seen my moms face when I showed her this latest release, she absolutely loved it!
Here's what I think:
How it Looks: The outer appearance is bright and cheerful. In size it's a bit heavy and large which you will already know I'm not crazy about in a cookbook. That dish on the cover speaks on it's own of the mouthwatering recipes inside. This will certainly prove exciting to any reader who comes across it on amazon or in a book store.
What's Inside: With over 200 recipes to follow from weeknights to Shabbos and Yom Tov, no wonder this book is so massive. The font is a little smaller then my proffered cookbook layout but at the same time there is alot of very informative particulars squeezed onto each page. Beautifully plated and photographed, are the dishes to correspond on each page opposite a recipe. Pictures are what a make a cookbook in my mind because being a very visual person, I can't always picture what a dish may look like once finished just from a title and recipe. In that aspect this cookbook is a treasure trove.
Extras: I love when authors offer wine options and fun variation ideas so on finding that within this cookbook I was excited! She's also included gorgeous pictures of each of her family members and a journal like introduction at the start of each section (salads, soups, meats etc.) which was fun but not necessarily something I'd expect in a cookbook. For my mom it was a way of catching up with her family and seeing how much her girls had grown so I think that is definitely going to be something of predilection once again.
What I love: 1) The quality of her photos is simply AMAZING. I for one know that preparing those shoots cannot be easy and I have a far way to go with picture taking. It is also a great source of inspiration to me as a plating enthusiast. 2) The fact that there is an additional section along with every single recipe offering an easier way to throw it together or exciting methods to jazz it up for entertaining guests perhaps. 3) There are alot of unique ingredients sprinkled throughout the book and as discovering new flavors is a food bloggers paradise, that is my favorite element.
What I don't love: 1) I personally don't love the whole journal approach throughout this cookbook. But that is definitely my own opinion. My own mother instantly proved to me that there will be other outlooks on that. 2) There is a lack of fish and pasta/dairy recipes in comparison to chicken, soup and meats. That is what I search for first upon opening a cookbook so it was a slight disappointment.
Some of the recipes I most look forward to preparing:
I've already used her recipe for Garlic Honey Brisket multiple times since it arrived at my home. It was a big hit! If there is one recipe to try immediately after purchasing, that is what I recommend to every one of you. Otherwise I can't choose just one dish so I'l just say I want to cook my way through this entire book in the next months. That Tart Green Apple Pie Ala Mode is certainly a desert my father will appreciate. It's on the top of my list to make for him.
If you don't know the first thing about Jamie Geller and her Joy of Kosher empire, go and have a look at her website here. Her beautiful smile and sincere love for food is invigorating! I have yet to meet her in person but I feel like I already know her through my growing collection of her books and my frequent visits to her site. You'll love her too!
I love the general appearance of this book. As far as the actual recipes go, there is something in here to suit house wives, working women with the need for quick meal ideas and even those chefs that enjoy experimenting with their foods. It's a bit over sized and journal-like in some ways but the recipes are fantastic and so I can look past that easily. If I had to choose a favorite amongst the books she's had published in the past it'd definitely be Quick & Kosher: Meals in minutes since it's easy to read and great for busy moms like me.
*This item was sent to me for my consideration, all opinions stated here are solely my own.
Hoping this cookbook review will be useful to you if you were unsure of any of the details!
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