I dedicated my book to my grandmother Eda, whom I resemble, and my mom, Luba, who inspired me to come to America. Gramma always cooked from what was available at home, creating her own recipes, and amazed everyone around her. I helped her in the kitchen and developed a love for the culinary arts.
In my house, Gramma was in charge of the family meals, with a style of cooking born in equal parts from scarcity and creativity, much as earlier generations of Russian Jews cooked. This was not a culture in which you planned meals and bought the ingredients you needed. Rather, shopping was daily, and because one could never be sure of what would be available, meals were devised from what one could grow or buy. Every day, Gramma sent me to buy groceries and I stood in separate lines for meat, milk and vegetables. Sometimes I would find staples at the farmers’ market. Gramma then created her own recipes, making do with what was available that day.
In America there are many opportunities to achieve one’s aspirations and for that reason I chose to accomplish mine through this cookbook. It is my hope that this book will help families to grow closer by bringing parents, children, family and friends into the kitchen together.
My Gramma’s Forgottten Recipes — A Russian Jewish Holiday Cookbook
by Irina Tseger
These kitchen-tested recipes highlight cooking traditions from the six holidays that are most commonly observed by Jews in the 21st century. For America and Russia these are: Rosh Hashanah, Yom Kippur, Succot, Chanukah, Passover and Shabbat. Photographs are used liberally to illustrate the various phases of complicated dishes.