Sushi Deluxe? How about Sushi de-lox! Treat yourself with some great home-made Kosher Sushi by Mark Etinger

The history of Jewish home cooking is as long as Mel Brook's History of the World. Still, warm feeling arise in me every time I think about Friday mornings with my Polish grandma. Together, we used to cook her famous chicken soup. Until this very day, I see my self as a young boy, standing beside her in the kitchen. The secret recipe of tap water and frozen chicken was circling around the family for generations.

I remember one day, I was reaching out for a stinky old potato out of the bag and throwing it into the garbage. My grandmother, a Holocaust survivor who never threw food away, slapped me on the hand, took the potato out of the trash and dunked it straight into her famous soup. That's Jewish cooking for you. But the Jewish kitchen has evolved since. In our days, keeping kosher is even considered a healthy trend among many people.

Keeping kosher doesn't only mean gefilte fish - it also means Sushi. The people of Israel couldn't wait for the bread when they were escaping Egypt - think of how much time they would've saved if they prepared sushi - you don't even have to cook the fish! Passover could have been a lot more interesting if we were fleeing Japan instead.

If we take out sea food, we'll be surprised to discover that the Japanese kitchen is pretty kosher like. The Japanese never mix meat and dairy products in their cuisine. So kosher sushi is all about ingredients. Find yourselves a good kosher nori (sea weed paper) and you'll also need some soy sauce and wasabi. If you go for a vegetarian sushi, you're pretty much covered. You can come up with wonderful, colorful sushi, using only vegetables. Cucumbers, avocados, sweet potatoes - just roll'em'up and you got yourself a healthy Japanese meal. The sky is the limit and any combination can work out.

When making kosher sushi you should remember that eels, shrimps, octopus, squids, scallops, crabs or sea urchin are not so kosher. We'll just have to let them swim in the ocean or do whatever their do best, and concentrate on fish that are blessed with fins and scales. If we decide to put fish in the dish, let's go for a mix of two worlds.

Let's make a traditional Japanese sushi deluxe into a modern Jewish sushi de-lox. All you need to do is roll up a nice smoked salmon, spread some cream cheese, and you can even add in chives for color and get yourself a real Japanese-Jewish fusion dish.

But I always say "why bother?" Why work so hard at home when you can get a good piece of sushi, if not even better, when you eat outside. Try spoiling yourself with a real kosher sushi meal. If you live around New York you should defiantly try Sushi K Bar. From Brooklyn Sushi to New York Sushi and even Kosher Sushi, Sushi K Bar knows it all. Get your sushi fix right here and don't forget to visit us online at and get yourself a roll with the freshest quality Sushi in town.

About the Author

Sushi K Bar was founded in 2006 with a single location and one dream: to create the finest sushi and bring it to as many lovers of fine food as possible. Today, with expanded menu and 5 locations in the New York area - we're proud serve the best Kosher Sushi out there.

The Kosher Baking Story by Daniel Wiesz

Baking has always been a big thing for humans, bread is considered to be the most elementary of foods, eating bread to break ones hunger is the most basic way of survival. The making of bread is very different from culture to culture, and as men started to migrate and met other like him in different parts of the world the cooking and baking changed forever, because of this mixture of tastes and flavors we enjoy many diverse kitchens and ways of cooking today.

The Jewish people have traveled long, it is in the dramatic and tragic story of this people that they have been moved from their country and forced to travel around the world, but surprisingly the Jewish way of cooking has not changed much, probably due to the segregate nature of the Jewish nation.

The Challa is a kind of bread that is traditionally eaten on the eve of Friday, this kind of bread is associated with the traditional Shabbat food and the Shabbat cooking, to further explain this you will need to know that religious Jewish people do not cook on Shabbat, they can not light a fire or do any kind of work, so all the food for the traditional family dinner at the evening of Friday has to be prepared in advance.

The preparation of the Challa is no different, many traditions dictate different strategies for the preparation of the Challa, some start the mixture of the flour and the ingredients early on Friday morning and others prefer to prepare the whole thing on Thursday lunch, following the old saying that the Challa is at its prime once it has aged for two whole days.

For all that can be said about the way different people cook is that it is always different, and one will not adopt the other ones way simply because it is not his way, everyone sticks to his own personal way, and in fact all this does not have a big effect on the real basics of the challa making, it is just little changes that create the diversity in food from one place to the other.

The whole procedure of making Kosher food is very complicated, it gets more and more complicated as the level of the Kosher is increasing, kosher baking is the same and has to follow the same rules, some of the kosher rules are very physical and do not allow to mix one ingredient with the other, and some are much more spiritual and social like making sure that some of the flour has been deducted for the poor and needy.

Kosher baking is not difficult and in fact, once you give it a go you will not feel that there is any difference than any other way of baking, except if you are usually using livestock fat or things like this you will probably not notice anything that is special about the baking, except if the baker like to sing some Hasidic songs while he is working.

Try some Jewish cooking, it will certainly make a change in your dinner, and if you are making a Challa, try and serve it to your family on the evening of Friday, after all it is meant to be enjoyed with the whole family around the table and in the spirit of love and peace.

About the Author

Daniel Wiesz is a kosher baker, a professional in baking and bakery consulting, Daniel has recently started to publish his Kosher Bread recipes and his unique baking stories and philosophy.

How to Render Animal Fat by Rev. Nicole Lasher

Rendering fat is as easy as frying bacon. The difference is that it's done either by boiling or low heat, so as to prevent burning.

The Boiling Method

The boiling method is best for subcutaneous (under the skin) fats of larger animals such as cows, sheep, and pigs. It's also good for when you have a large amount that you want to render all at once to freeze. It is more efficient at extracting the fat without burning it at all.

Simply chop the fat into relatively small (approximately 2 square cm.) pieces, and put it in a slow cooker. Turn it on low heat and leave it uncovered. When it is fully melted, there will just be the fibrous solids and/or skin floating in a pool of grease. Strain the grease through a clean metal strainer, and then through a cheesecloth.

You can also melt the fat on the stove top. If you do, use a large pot, and add just enough water to cover the fat. Bring it all to a boil, and then turn the heat down to low. It may take a few hours to a full day, depending on the weather, but by the time it's done, the water will have evaporated.

To store it, you can keep it in the refrigerator, or freeze it in ice trays. Just make sure to label it so you don't get it confused with your soup stock.

The Frying Method

If you're like me, and don't eat fried food very often, you may not want to render much at a time. I personally prefer to buy fat or poultry skin, chop it up into pieces, and put it into single recipe servings in the freezer. I use the cheap plastic bags to keep them separate. If you don't like to use plastic bags, you can use wax paper or parchment.

When you need some fat for a recipe, you take one of the bags out of the freezer, and let it thaw for about 15 minutes to half an hour. You need it to be just soft enough to break the pieces apart.

Put them in a pan, and turn the heat up to medium until you hear it starting to sizzle. Then turn the heat down to low. Eventually, you will have some very nicely browned cracklings sizzling gently in the grease. At that point, take out the solid bits, and the grease is ready to use.

Making Schmaltz

Schmaltz is a German and Yiddish word that basically means (rendered) fat. Outside of Germany it is usually the term used for chicken fat that has been rendered with onions for flavoring. It's an old standard of Jewish cooking. The cracklings and onions that are left are called "gribenes", and are often eaten with bread or in ptitim, a popular baked pasta from Israel. My favorite way to have them is on a big salad. They are better than bacon bits.

In kosher specialty stores, you can sometimes find schmaltz and gribenes ready made, but there's no taste like home.

To make schmaltz, cut the chicken, turkey, or goose skin as well as you can, into small pieces. I use very sharp kitchen scissors for this. Chop some onions and have them ready. If you like, you can also use other herbs, but I'd keep it simple. You can make a hot chile schmaltz though.

Begin rendering the fat from the chicken skins, and when it is sizzling very well, add the onions. The reason I don't add the onions at the beginning is because I like the chicken skin to give up its water before I add more to it with the onions.

When the chicken skin and the onions are browned, just strain off the grease through a cheese cloth. The grease will usually keep on the counter in cool weather for a week, but I prefer to refrigerate it.

I hope these tips bring more joy to your cooking. It will certainly make you healthier to cook natural.

Learn more about this and other soul food techniques and recipes at

About the Author

Rev. Nicole Lasher is a cooking enthusiast and artistic caterer who promotes a healthier lifestyle through natural, nourishing foods. Visit her cooking site Free Recipe Club for more tasty recipes.

Sign Up for our Free Newsletter

Enter email address here