The kosher cookbook market continues to flourish, and it can be difficult to know which cookbooks are the right match for each home cook. We all have our own strengths and weaknesses in the kitchen; some like to try varied international cuisines, while others prefer to stick with the more familiar; and, of course, some people are happy to spend time making complex recipes, but others are staunchly in the quick-and-easy-only camp.

From time to time I’ll be reviewing different cookbooks here, giving you a little glimpse inside each one, to help you decide which ones might be a good investment for you.

Have you heard about Kosher Taste, the new cookbook by Amy Stopnicki? The publishers have sent me a copy to review, as well as several recipes from the book that I’ve included below (click on the picture or the name of the dish to be taken to the recipe). We also have a second copy of the cookbook for one of you!

The Food

There are so many recipes in this book! I didn’t count, but it must be close to 300. And the overwhelming majority of them are on the healthier side. Lots of vibrant, fresh fruit and vegetables, a number of quinoa-based dishes and even some of the desserts have a healthier twist.

Oh, and it has an entire section devoted to mushrooms! Need I say more? There is a mushroom focaccia that looks incredible—I will definitely be giving it a go, and I’ve got the mushroom chicken recipe further down the page for ya’all to try yourselves.

If mushrooms don’t excite you, there is plenty more that will. Some of the dishes that jumped out at me: Balsamic Roast Chicken, Salmon Pad Thai, Roasted Tomato Soup, Soba Noodles with Bok Choy, Mixed Berry Cheesecake, and my very favorite—Cranberry Lemon Tart.

There were a couple of things that bothered me in the recipes—like a recipe for 1-inch round pieces of London broil, which doesn’t seem like something a home-cook could easily make. How would you cut it exactly? A cookie cutter isn’t strong enough to cut through a slab of raw meat and most kosher cooks probably keep their cookie cutters dairy/pareve anyway. And I’m pretty sure my butcher would laugh me down the block if I asked him for 1-inch round pieces of London broil!

But on the whole, the recipes look easy and do-able even for beginner cooks.

Baby Arugula and Sweet Potato Salad

Elephant Garlic Soup


This is where the book fell short, in my opinion. The styling and photography is nothing to write home about, so I certainly wouldn’t recommend it as a “coffee-table” book. But because the book is heavy, hardcover and has full-page pictures, it builds expectation that it does not fill. You expect a photo with every recipe, and a beautiful one at that. But only about one third of the recipes have pictures at all, and most of them are not that great. Then again, although they are basic, they do appear to accurately depict the dish (which, sometimes the more professionally styled and photographed ones do not). I think if the book were soft-cover and half the price, it would be a better match for what you’re actually getting.

I also think the cover was a poor choice, because it makes the cookbook looks dated even though it just came out a couple of months ago. Stacks are already considered old and stale in the culinary world, and there were definitely better pictures inside that would’ve made the cover look much more enticing.

Having said all that, there are the things I look for, and they may not bother you at all, which is also fine.

Other Features

The cookbook comes with an index of all the recipes which are kosher for Passover, which is definitely something useful. There is also a page of conversion tables in the back.

Who Will Enjoy this Cookbook?

Is this cookbook for you? I can’t answer that question for you, but I hope I’ve given you some insight, and we’ve also shared three recipes here, which you can try out for yourselves and then decide.

One of the recipes that really caught my eye was this very visually appealing mushroom chicken.

Mushroom Chicken

Yield: serves 6-8


The sauce for this chicken can be made and stored for later use. It can be kept in the refrigerator for up to a week, or frozen for up to three months. The chicken can be grilled, if you prefer.


  • 8 chicken breasts, sliced in half horizontally
  • 2 tablespoons canola oil
  • salt and pepper to season chicken


  • 2 tablespoons canola oil
  • 1 onion, sliced
  • 16 oz. mushrooms, cleaned and checked, sliced
  • ¼ cup soy sauce
  • ¼ cup white wine
  • 2 tablespoons flour
  • 1 cup cold water
  • salt and pepper to taste


  1. Preheat oven to 350°F.
  2. Coat chicken with oil, salt and pepper.
  3. Bake for 10 minutes on each side, or until chicken is cooked through.
  4. To prepare mushroom sauce, heat oil over medium-high heat in a large skillet.
  5. Sauté onions until translucent.
  6. Add mushrooms and sauté for another 5 minutes.
  7. Add soy sauce and wine, and let reduce for an additional 5 minutes.
  8. Mix in flour and cold water, adding slowly to mushroom mixture in stages.
  9. Mix continuously until sauce thickens. Pour over chicken.


Serve this for a weekday or Friday night dinner. Always add sauce directly before serving. It can also be served over your favorite steak or salmon.


So, is Kosher Taste a cookbook you’d love to own? We are giving away a free copy to one lucky reader. It could be you!

At this time our thoughts and prayers are with Israel. Wildfires, many of which are reported to have been set by arsonists, have injured more than 100 people and destroyed homes, synagogues, schools and businesses. Close to 80,000 have been forced to evacuate, some of whom now have no homes to return to, and thousands of firefighters are still battling the blazes, putting their lives at risk to protect their country.

What can we do? A mitzvah, a G‑dly deed, no matter how small, helps to ensure the continued safety of our brothers and sisters under attack. Please take a minute to think about what you can do: light Shabbat candles, give charity, pray, study Torah, put a mezuzah on your front door, say the shema prayer before going to sleep…or do any other mitzvah for the safety and wellbeing of our brothers and sisters in Israel. To enter the giveaway, share your commitment in the comment box below.

Note: Cookbook can be shipped only in the U.S. Entries must be made by 11:59 PM on Thursday, December 8, 2016. Winner will be chosen on Monday, December 11, 2016.