Chaia Frishman, KosherScoop author and owner of Fruit Platters and More in Cedarhurst, NY, says:
“I love to read. When given a choice of ten fun tasks, including spending time with friends, or learning a new language, reading wins. Hands down. I read the strangest things. The backs of cereal boxes. The signs in public bathrooms. If the written word is involved I am there.
So it didn’t surprise me too much how despite the myriad of things I had to do post-Sandy this week, the first thing on my to-do list was: Read the new Susie Fishbein cookbook.
With a library of cookbooks in my home, I surprise myself when I realize that I go to each one for only one or two recipes. There is no cookbook that I would say I constantly refer back to. Except for one. The famous Joy of Cooking. I guess now is a great time to tell you that I read cookbooks not for recipes. But for information. Nuances of cooking details that might help me better understand the scientific tool behind yeast rising. Or a detail about where a certain cooking style originated. Joy of Cooking has always met my needs.
Except in one area: Kosher Joyous Cooking. I mean how can I possibly read the meat section of that book with the saturation of information being about treif meats, or parts of the animal that we don’t eat? Then there is the fact that Joy of Cooking will not tell me where to get Cholov Yisroel heavy cream, or give me a perfectly good pareve substitute for condensed milk.
Here is the beauty of Susie’s newest addition, Kosher by Design-Cooking Coach. Susie Fishbein answers all my questions. The information is all there for you in simple layman’s terms. I won’t go into the structure of the book, you have to see it yourself to understand it, but I will tell you about the content. Every chapter begins with a cooking tutorial of the product type being cooked. For example, are you cooking fresh fish? Did you know the best way to remove the skin from salmon, or that a fish with cloudy eyes should make you suspect its freshness?
The section I loved the most is the meat preparation. I am the lady who goes to the butcher and asks a million questions about how to make roasts. If I am spending that much money on a dinner, I better not mess it up. But butchers are busy. And their customers (like me) have poor memories because when the questions are being answered, the customers are busy hoping their children don’t jump out of the shopping cart.
I now can sit down with a cup of coffee and read all about cuts of meat, cooking times, and tools to make the best roasts or steaks. And if I forget something, I just reread that section.
Now I did read the recipes themselves, lest you think I just read sections only. In fact I read the entire book from cover to cover. And I have this to say. They are very, very creative. As I type this, Thanksgiving is coming and you can bet I will be making Chestnut-Stuffed Turkey London Broil. (My friend can’t stop raving about it.) I also have my eye on Cajun Quinoa and Kale chips. Even the desserts are original. Sure there are the usual cakes (Peanut Butter Bundt with Glaze) or twists on oldies but goodies (Raspberry Lemon Bars) but who would have introduced me to Thai Sticky Rice and Mangoes. Hello??? Do I hear bells of amazement ringing? There is so much more to say about this cookbook. All good. Like the sections of tools for the kitchen, or ideas of how to plan your meals using leftovers of recipes. No matter what cooking conundrum you have, the solution lies in your very own cooking mentor. Ask Susie, she’s the kind of coach who has your back.”
Elizabeth Kurtz of gourmetkoshercooking.com wrote:
“Last Tuesday evening, GKC got to rub shoulders with the best of Kosher foodies at Pomegranate market in Brooklyn for the official press launch of Susie Fishbein’s latest book, Kosher by Design, Cooking Coach. It was a packed house with GKC friends, Sarah Lasry of Kosherstreet, Marlene Mamiye from The Jewish Hostess, the winner of journalist for a night, Chanie, for Lois and Roberta at Koshereye, Tamar from Joyofkosher as well as press representatives for all the Jewish papers.
Susie Fishbein put her experience of years of teaching to hundreds of audiences into her newest books. It’s filled with 120 new recipes and John Uher’s famous photos. Susie says, “Here are the best tips and techniques I’ve used and taught over the last ten years. And now, they’re yours!”
What’s special about this book? I like the “playbook” as Susie calls it. It’s an upfront section of the book that helps readers who serve leftover snobs, like my family and myself. Bottom line, my family does not like the same food served the same way, even on a different night. Susie addresses this issue in her book and gives you time and budget saving ideas for how to reuse the leftovers from recipes in the book with additional recipes that include the leftovers. I also like the inclusion of some new foods available to the kosher market like S’riachi sauce (GKC fav), Silan, a new date syrup and some delicious spice blends like Hawaij for soup.
Susie is comfortable and confident in front of audiences and enjoys talking about food about as much as GKC. GKC asked, “Have any favorite recipes from the new book?” “Yemenite Beef Soup”, Susie said, with a confident nod of agreement from her husband. She added that she loved writing this book and there are so many recipes that she enjoyed creating, testing and retesting to get them just right.
Whether you are a cooking novice or a seasoned gourmet, Cooking Coach has tons of great ideas to make everyone a more creative cook.”
Our Friend, Sharon Matten, of koshereveryday.com says:
“Susie Fishbein’s new cookbook Kosher By Design Cooking Coach, is a comprehensive guide to building a fantastic meal – leftovers included! When I saw Susie Fishbein at Kosherfest, I asked her what she most wanted people to know about her new book. She answered: “Kosher By Design Cooking Coach is more than just a cookbook, it’s 10 years of cooking. It’s better, creative, more efficient, and helps with leftovers.” She loves all her recipes, but when nudged a little gave the Yemenite Beef Soup and Roast Turkey with Maple Mustard Glaze as two recipes to look out for as two stars.
In The Cooking Coach a great meal is all about the tools and the planning. Susie is a great coach, and just like in any sport, in order to be a great player you need to work on the fundamentals. With her help, a good game plan and practice, you can be a star on your home court! For example, in The Cooking Coach you can learn about how to select and care for knives and other useful kitchen tools – again, success in the kitchen starts with the fundamentals.
There are detailed descriptions of each of the ingredients in all the sections and a ”Game Plan” that gives you the important skills to be successful and score big with the preparation of your dishes. For example in the salad section you learn the drills necessary to build a great salad. This includes the properties of the best salad ingredients and how to prepare them, how to clean and store lettuce, how to make and pair the best dressings, and finally how to toss and serve a “super bowl” of salad.
There are warm and hearty soups, beautiful appetizers, with plating and garnishing techniques that are as decorative as halftime cheerleaders! When the meal is over, the leftovers don’t just sit on the sidelines. Susie gives you a foolproof strategy to have your dishes go into overtime. The beginning of The Cooking Coach has a whole section on ideas for re-using leftovers that will be a big hit with your family.
And just when you think the last run has been scored, there are tons of dessert ideas for your after game celebration. Again, the “Game Plan” preps you with all the fundamentals you need for a great finale. Here Susie doesn’t “play around”. She gives you the science behind the ingredients like flour, butter, cream, sugar, chocolate and cocoa, just to name a few. All your efforts and time spent prepping for the “post-game show” will be worth it when you serve Susie’s Gooey Walnut Brownie Pie, Chocolate Peanut Butter Molten Cakes, or Raspberry Lemon Bars.
The Cooking Coach would be a great for any enthusiastic cook that is interested in brushing up on basic and more advanced skills, the newly wed, or your favorite guy (they love game plans!). With Susie Fishbein’s The Cooking Coach you are sure to have a successful (cooking) season – any time of the year!!”