As so often happens in my world these days, I met Kenden Alfond through the internet. Kenden is the founder of Jewish Food Hero, a website dedicated to nourishing the minds, bodies, and spirits of Jewish women around the globe. She offers vegan recipes which give a modern twist to traditional Jewish meals, as well as resources to support greater health within the Jewish community.
Obviously she is my twin sister, separated at birth.
Kenden’s journey began in 2012 while Googling recipes for a family Purim meal. All the recipes she found seemed dated and stodgy, unhealthy and old-fashioned, and were not reflective of her or her daughter’s more health conscious generation. She wondered if poor health and weight gain were the “price to pay” for engagement in Jewish life. (Listening to most of my clients struggle with healthy eating on Shabbat and holidays, I often sadly wonder the same).
Kenden decided to create menus for every Jewish holiday that better reflected her family’s healthy values. The Jewish Food Hero Cookbook is the result of her creativity and dedication.
I was given a copy to review and wow! First of all, this is a very beautiful ebook. The photographs by Matkonation are drool-worthy and inspiring. The recipes are creative and fresh. Every major Jewish holiday has it’s own menu and each comes with background and an intended mood and theme. The Jewish Food Hero Cookbook will inspire the Jewish home cook, as well as emboldening us to step out of our culture’s current unhealthy, heavy, and over-the-top indulgent holiday meal paradigm, and into one that has everyone leaving the table with a smile on their face and a spring in their step.
Kenden writes, “Cooking healthy holiday meals can be a form of creative expression, self-care, and love. I see a different food future for the Jewish people. I’m so glad you’re here and part of this vision.”
In addition to the recipe, Kenden has generously offered to give one copy of her cookbook away to one of my readers. To be eligible for the give-away just comment below, or on this post on FB, or send me an email to Emily@TriumphWellness.com with your return email so I can contact you. The winner will be chosen by Tuesday, April 12, 2016. Contest is international – this is an ebook delivered via the internet.
To order a copy of the cookbook for yourself, a steal at only $9.99, go to the Jewish Food Hero website HERE. This book would also make a lovely holiday gift.
Enjoy the sample recipe!
- 3 pounds red skinned potatoes, peeled and cut into large chunks
- 1 cup almond milk
- Pepper to taste
- 1 teaspoon sea salt
- 2 cups diced onion (from about 2 medium onions)
- 3 cups sliced mushrooms (from about 1/2 pound whole mushrooms)
- 3 cups vegetable broth (not low sodium)
- 1 teaspoon fresh sage, minced
- 2 tablespoons fresh thyme, minced
- 2 cups, peeled and sliced carrots (from about 2 carrots)
- 2 cups cauliflower florets (from about 1 small head)
- 3 tablespoons potato starch
- 1 teaspoon sea salt
- Pepper to taste
- Steamed carrots, yellow summer squash, and zucchini (cut into rounds) **If you eat kitniyot during Passover, you can also use peas and thin string beans here.
- Preheat the oven to 350 F
- Place the prepared potatoes in an extra large soup pot, and cover with at least 1 inch of cold water. Boil, uncovered, for 20 minutes, or until the potatoes are fork-tender.
- Set aside to cool.
- Meanwhile, sauté the onion and mushrooms in 1/4 cup vegetable broth or water for 10 minutes, adding more broth if needed.
- Add the sage, thyme, and carrots, and sauté for another 5 minutes
- Add the cauliflower and cook for 5 more minutes
- Add the vegetable broth to the vegetables in the skillet, reserving 1/4 cup to mix with potato starch
- In a small bowl, combine the potato starch with the 1/4 cup reserved vegetable broth. Mix well.
- Add the potato starch mixture, sea salt, and pepper to the vegetables
- Stir until thickened. Set aside.
- Drain the cooked potatoes and mash them, adding the almond milk, pepper, and sea salt.
- Pour the cooked vegetables into a lightly oiled 9 x 13-inch glass casserole dish
- Top with the mashed potatoes and smooth the surface with a spoon
- Bake for 30 minutes
- While the casserole is cooking, chop the vegetables for the garnish, paying attention to maintaining a uniform and delicate shape
- Steam the vegetables for the garnish just enough so they retain their beautiful color and a bit of crunch.
- Arrange the warm vegetables on top of the casserole in a design that inspires you
- Keep warm in the oven until ready to serve.
- Serve family style on the table.
Recipe reprinted with permission of Jewish Food Hero. Copyright©2016 Jewish Food Hero
All photos in this post are by Matkonation.