It was my destiny to be a food writer.
From the first moment, at age 5, when my Mom covered me with an apron so I could help her with the fried chicken, through the teenage years when I wasn't scared off by 3-page recipes in fancy cookbooks, and the years cooking for my family, taking cooking classes and teaching at the Ronnie Fein School of Creative Cooking in Stamford, Connecticut, I learned about ingredients and seasonings, cookware and cooking methods. A few years in law school and big job with two Wall Street firms taught me to be a more critical thinker and better writer. It all came together with my first job as a food columnist, many years ago, for a local Connecticut Weekly, The Stamford Shopper.
It was the perfect job for me. I could create delicious recipes, feed my family and get to spend family time too. The work came. I left that first gig and went on to write for the food sections of The Connecticut Post, Stamford Advocate, Greenwich Time, Newsday, The Jerusalem Post and so many others. I've written for Consumer's Digest Magazine, Connecticut Magazine, Jewish Woman Magazine and Cook's Illustrated.
These days you're more likely to read what I say about food – and get loads of recipes – online, right here, although I also write for The Jewish Week, Joy of Kosher, The Weiser Kitchen and Koshereye.
I've written several cookbooks too. Two are no longer in print (The Complete Idiot's Guide to Cooking Basics and The Complete Idiot's Guide to American Cooking). And I contributed to the anniversary edition of James Beard's The New Cook's Catalogue. With each, my goal was to help readers gain confidence in the kitchen, to enjoy cooking rather than fear it, to build skills, whether through cooking the recipes or buying the tools and utensils they needed in their own homes.
Hip Kosher, which was published in 2008, and my newest cookbook, The Modern Kosher Kitchen (2014) were more labors of love. They are, like this website, my efforts to bring the world of kosher cooking into 21st century America. Just as our kosher ancestors cooked the same foods as their neighbors in Eastern Europe or the Middle East or wherever they happened to live, and adapted it to the dietary laws, why shouldn't we, right here in America?
American food is a glorious blend of cultures, our cuisine is the most sophisticated in the world, and also the most respected. We are blessed with a bounty of food. We can buy almost any ingredient we wish to, including tens of thousands of kosher certified products.
Time to modernize the recipes, isn't it?
You'll also find my recipes are typically easy and fussy-free. I rarely offer one that has several steps and many parts -- so you can cook delicious food quickly, easily and confidently.