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Secrets from the best kosher restaurants worldwide

'Secret Restaurant Recipes' cookbook
'Secret Restaurant Recipes' cookbook

The authors of Everyday Secret Restaurant Recipes, Leah Schapira and Victoria Dwek are well-known in the world of food.

Schapira is author of Fresh & Easy Kosher Cooking and creator of Cookkosher.com, an online kosher recipes exchange. Dwek is managing editor of the kosher food magazine Whisk.

Together these food writers have co-authored Secret Restaurant Recipes and a series of “Made Easy” cookbooks (Passover, Starters & Sides, Kids Cooking and Dairy).

The 103 recipes in their latest book come from restaurants in California, Connecticut, Florida, Illinois, Louisiana, Maryland, New Jersey, New York, Pennsylvania, Minnesota, Texas, Australia, Austria, Brazil, Canada, China, England, Israel, Panama, Thailand and Uruguay.

For each recipe, there is information on the restaurant, a large introduction and photo or photos, ingredients, instructions, tidbits or hints for the home cook and sometimes comments from the chef.

This is a great gift for someone who likes to try new recipes.

Artichokes, Roman style

From Tevere 84, Upper East Side, New York

o 6 medium or 2 lb. baby artichokes
o juice of 1 lemon
o 1/4 cup extra virgin olive oil
o additional oil for frying
o 12 minced garlic cloves
o sea salt

Cut off the top of each artichoke just above the middle. Remove some of the outer leaves and the interior immature and hair-like leaves.

Using a peeler, peel the stems of each artichoke. In a bowl, toss artichokes with lemon juice.

Heat olive oil in a large sauté pan over medium heat. Add garlic. Add artichokes and sprinkle with sea salt. Cook, side by side, stem side up, until artichokes are tender, turning several times for overall browning, 15-20 minutes. Using a wooden spoon, press each artichoke firmly to the bottom of the pan so that the leaves flatten out.

Cook for 10 minutes. (Optionally, for very soft and hot artichokes, you can also transfer to oven and bake at 400 for an additional 10 minutes.)

Before serving, heat additional oil in a sauté pan. Flatten artichokes to the flower shape and fry for 2-4 minutes before serving.

Israeli breakfast

From Café Tamara, Jerusalem

Standard Israeli breakfast WIKI COMMONS PHOTO
Standard Israeli breakfast WIKI COMMONS PHOTO

o 2 finely diced Persian cucumbers
o 2 finely diced tomatoes
o 1/2 finely diced red onion
o handful chopped parsley
o 2 tbsp. good quality olive oil
o 1 1/2 tbsp. lemon juice
o salt to taste
o pepper to taste
o olive oil for frying
o 4 beaten eggs
o 1 tbsp. preserved lemon/lemon spread
o 1 tbsp. harissa (hot chili pepper paste)
o 1 cup fresh yogurt
o 2 tbsp. techinah

In a bowl, combine cucumbers, tomatoes, onion, parsley, olive oil and lemon juice. Season with salt and pepper.

Heat olive oil in a skillet over medium heat. Add eggs, preserved lemon, harissa, salt and pepper. Scramble eggs until cooked.

Place salad onto a plate. Top with eggs, yogurt and techinah. Garnish with parsley. Serve immediately.

Sybil Kaplan is a journalist, author, compiler/editor of nine kosher cookbooks, and a food writer who lives in Jerusalem, where she leads weekly walking tours of the Jewish food market, Machane Yehuda, in English.