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Cookbook preserves Jewish recipes

For families, it's a tribute to tradition

POSTED: September 16, 2012 12:30 a.m.
Autumn Vetter/

Janice Liederman, left, and Madeleine Polan make strudel at Liederman’s home Tuesday. The two recently helped assemble a cookbook of traditional Jewish recipes.

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A group of Forsyth County women is ringing in the Jewish new year with some old recipes.

Madeleine Polan and Janice Liederman were part of a 10-woman committee who created “From Generation to Generation,” a cookbook filled with more than 300 traditional Jewish family recipes passed down from their mothers and grandmothers.

“It’s nice to remember and to share and it’s something we can pass on to our daughters and granddaughters so they can also remember and share,” Polan said. “It’s just been a wonderful tribute.”

Liederman said the group worked hard to make sure the book was available before Rosh Hashanah, the Jewish new year which begins tonight.

Families will celebrate the year 5773 in the Jewish calendar, which dates back to the creation of Adam and Eve, not the standard U.S. calendar.

During the holiday, Jewish families eat apples dipped in honey to symbolize a good and sweet new year and celebrate with other traditional foods.

“That’s really why we kind of pushed it,” she said. “We said if we can get it out by July or August, we’ll have it to the people by Rosh Hashanah and they can buy them for Hanukah gifts too.”

Concerned that families are eating out more often, Polan said she wanted to preserve traditional recipes not just within her family but others in the Jewish faith.

She came up with the idea when she was president of the Metulla group within the Greater Atlanta Hadassah Chapter.

Proceeds from the book will benefit the Hadassah organization, a pro-Israel group that offers medical care and research at the Hadassah Medical Organization in Jerusalem and supports education, advocacy and Jewish continuity in Israel and America.

Among the cookbook’s some 300 recipes are everything from Grandma Rose’s cabbage soup to Grandma Gussie’s Hamentaschen.

Also included are traditional Jewish recipes for brisket, blintzes, mandel bread, rugelach and challah.

Some stick with tradition, while others offer a new twist, such as using ice cream instead of sour cream to make strudel sweeter.

There are also recipes for newer favorites, including Oreo mud pie, taco salad dip and turkey chili.

Old or new, everything is kosher, said Liederman, adding that took some tweaking.

“Pillsbury crescent rolls aren’t kosher, so I went through Ingles and found another brand that had the kosher seal,” Liederman said. “We’re going to forget these recipes, so we’ve got to pass them on,” she said.

“We were very discriminatory about what we were going to put in it and we had a very, very good committee working on it.”

Polan said her favorite recipe is for brisket “because my mother used to add brown sugar.”

“Brisket alone doesn’t have a lot of flavor, and so this really enhances it and gives it a very savory flavor,” she said. “Depending on what region your family came from in Europe determined what the spices were, what the taste was.

“There must be 10 different brisket recipes in the book and they’re all different because it’s depending on where your family came from and what they had available to them. That’s what makes this so interesting.”

 

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