The Renegade Kosher FAQ

So, as we all prepare for Rosh Hashanah, thoughts go thro my head. We have the apple slices and honey ready, and the wife and I have finally found a temple that feels like a home. What’s better is that Rabbi Lipschultz shares my passion for food. Always a bonus!

Now, as for education, the Culinary Institute of America is willing to take me… You all know this is my dream school. BUT, they want me to get a year or two under my belt in the culinary world. I’m trying to get a job at one of S. Diego’s kosher markets, restaurants, or bakeries as I get some schooling done around here. My thought is to get my BAKER credentials at a local school, and work as a baker, and use that baking knowledge to put myself thro school at the CIA in becoming a chef. I want to do this because baking is something I WANT to be better at. I will always aspire to be a chef, but baking would help on that path. And besides, I can be able to make better challah!

So what is this article’s theme, so close to Rosh Hashanah? I thought I’d answer all the queries I get asked all the time. In this way, maybe I won’t get asked them all the time? So, yeah! Let’s look at The Renegade Kosher FAQ!

Why do you call yourself ‘Renegade Kosher’? Isn’t that disrespectful/a smack in the face to Jewish traditions?

This is the most asked question. According to Answers.com, a renegade is one who ‘One who rejects a religion, cause, allegiance, or group for another; a deserter’, or ‘An outlaw; a rebel’. In this definition, I choose to use the latter definition as a rebel. I respect standard Kosher cooking, but I feel it’s hit a plateau. The same dishes are cooked over and over, and no one experiments with many cooking styles.

As such, I am going places others choose not to. In this, I’m exploring severely uncharted territory some might feel threatened by. I still keep to the laws, but I also look to the world’s culinary styles and dishes to explore new ways to feed your family. As some are threatened by this, I would be seen as a Renegade to them. Thus the name: Renegade Kosher.

Why do you offer so many vegetarian options/egg substitutes? Aren’t eggs pareve?

I get this a lot. Basically, I’m writing a weekly cooking article that I have to make sure EVERY branch can use. While some see eggs as pareve, others don’t mix them with meat and/or dairy products. Also by offering vegetarian/vegan options to normal dishes, it can change what would have been a meat dish to a dish that can be served with a dairy meal. Also, it gives vegetarian Jews an option for cooking. And, let’s face it, we need more kosher vegetarian recipes! It’s similar to why I post articles that are gluten-free and kosher. It’s something that needs to be done!

I love your recipes! Will you ever publish a cook book?

Yes, I’m working on it.

How can I give you money?

Try the button on the sidebar. It looks like this:

Do you have an Amazon Wish List?

Yes.

What is up with you and brisket? Why do you hate brisket so much?

Hate is such a STRONG word! I prefer that Brisket makes me cry at how it’s murdered on most kitchen tables. It’s a great cut of beef that most refuse to cook right. As such, it turns into dry, tasteless, tough torture or eating. And NO MEAT should suffer that fate.

Are you a guy or a girl? You’re a wife, right? Are you single? Will you marry me?

I’m a proud male, and happily married to a woman who loves me for both my looks, my cooking, and myself. Yes, for the record, I am a GUY. Sorry!

You changed how you write your recipes to be like reading an article? Why?

One of my goals is to someday have a cooking show. Writing the articles like this helps me get the feel for that. Also, it stops people from copy/pasting my recipes for their own, or at least makes it a bit more difficult.

What is up with your sense of humor?

I used to do standup for a while, and my weird sense of humor still sticks with me as I delve deeper and deeper into cooking. After all, Jews do make the best Jewish jokes, so why shouldn’t I share the best medicine, Laughter? And besides, it helps keep the articles going!

Do you have a Man Crush on Matisyahu? Are you a Matisyahu fanboy?

I appreciate his music, and I respect that he’s so dedicated to his faith. And I’d love to cook him a shabbos meal someday. But am I a Matisyahu fanboy? Sadly, yes, but I’m going to Matisyahu Annonymous meetings to get over it.

Why do you want to be a Kosher chef? Don’t chefs have to cook lobster/pork/trayfe?

Well, that’s half the idea. I want to show that Kosher can be gourmet without having to resort to trayfe. After all, rumor has it that one of the more popular gourmet dishes, Foie gras, was perfected for modern times by a Jew. It -CAN- be done! All we need to do is be willing to experiment, and the world is our gourmet buffet!

What kind of Jew are you?

Conservative with Orthodox leanings in temple, and a Reform outlook on life at times.

What if I have more questions?

Ask them and I’ll answer them!

I hope this helps, and as more queries begin to be asked more frequently, I’ll answer them! Shalom and Good Cooking!

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September 18, 2006. FAQ, Personal.

5 Comments

  1. elf replied:

    I respect standard Kosher cooking, but I feel it’s hit a plateau. The same dishes are cooked over and over, and no one experiments with many cooking styles.

    I think you may be in the wrong community. I live in Cambridge, MA, and I’ve found the Jewish community here to be very open to new flavors and ingredients. I’ve also seen some pretty interesting recipes at the Kosher Blog. The recent increase in the number of hekhshered products available helps a lot.

    While some see eggs as pareve, others don’t mix them with meat and/or dairy products.

    Where did you hear about this? It’s news to me.

    And, let’s face it, we need more kosher vegetarian recipes!

    I’m not sure about that; most vegetarian recipes are inherently kosher. Keep posting those veggie options, though. I’m always happy to learn new recipes to prepare for vegetarian friends!

    It’s similar to why I post articles that are gluten-free and kosher.

    Keep doing that too!

    I prefer that Brisket makes me cry at how it’s murdered on most kitchen tables.

    That is just sad. It’s so easy to make a delicious, moist brisket — just stew it with plenty of sauce (but no water! that ruins the flavor). DH’s recipe is here.

    Yes, for the record, I am a GUY. Sorry!

    No need to apologize. Some of us like guys, especially guys who cook 🙂

    Conservative with Orthodox leanings in temple, and a Reform outlook on life at times.

    Welcome to the brave new world of post-denominationalism.

    Shanah Tovah!

  2. Renegade Kosher replied:

    Let’s see If I can adress some of these in true pirate day fashion:

    As for the eggs, I actually heard that from some Orthodox & some Hassidics. Basically groups who believe so strongly in their faith that they won’t risk it. Heck, I know some who won’t even mix fish and dairy, just in case! It all just boilsdown to erring on the side of caution is good! ^^

    As for kosher vegitarian recipes, I like postying the meat-altermative versions of recipes because it’s a nice mixup for them, as well! ^^ Besides, I always get thanked when I post a vegitarian version of a popular meat dish, so it must be something people want.

    And yes, I know it’s easy to make a good brisket. I anticipate and LOVE making good brisket! Now, the query here is do people USUALLY make a good brisket? Sadly, no…

    L’shanah tovah to you, as well!

  3. elf replied:

    Heck, I know some who won’t even mix fish and dairy, just in case!

    Lubavichers follow this ruling. I think it’s based on a statement in the Shulchan Aruch that most other groups acknowledge to be an error. (It should have said “fish and meat,” not “fish and dairy.”)

  4. cultivate peace replied:

    Congrats on finding a new spiritual home and focus for the next couple of years!

    Go you guys!

  5. Rimon Winery replied:

    Rimon Winery, a new Israeli winery and producer of the world’s finest pure pomegranate, certified kosher wines, has released a new limited production dessert wine in the US market – perfect for Jewish holiday celebrations. The winery also makes a certified kosher pomegranate dry wine and port-style wine, which it plans to release in the US by the end of 2007.

    “Rimon Winery has perfected the art of making pomegranate wine,” said Yoav Gilat, Managing Partner of Cannonball Wine & Spirits, exclusive US representative for Rimon Winery. “Its gold medal-winning wines have been very well received around the world. We are very pleased to finally be able to share them with American wine enthusiasts – especially with Rosh Hashanah coming up.”

    Rimon Winery’s new dessert wine was the first certified Kosher, pure pomegranate wine produced by the winery and is now the first to be introduced to US wine drinkers. “Rimon’s pomegranate dessert wine is the ideal wine to help usher in a sweet new year,” said Gilat. “On Rosh Hashanah, pomegranates are eaten as a symbolic gesture in the hopes that our merits will increase like the seeds of a pomegranate.”

    Unlike other pomegranate alcoholic beverage products on the market, Rimon wines are not flavored alcohol. They are actual wines made by virtually the same processes as grape-based wines. The pomegranates are harvested at optimum ripeness and crushed for their juice, which is then fermented at low temperatures in stainless steel tanks to preserve the fruit’s natural and healthful qualities. After fermentation, the wines are aged in French oak barrels.

    What sets Rimon Winery apart from its competitors is the unique flavors of its wines derived from a new variety of pomegranate developed by father and son Gaby and Avi Nachmias, owners of Rimon Winery. The Nachmias family, a third generation farming family in Israel’s Upper Galilee, has cultivated a “super fruit” that is sweeter, deeper in color, and richer in vitamins and antioxidants than other pomegranate varieties. They are the only pomegranates in the world that have enough natural sugars to produce wine on their own – without any additives.

    “These are extremely high quality wines with exceptional clarity, rich color, and exotic aromas and flavors,” said Gilat. “Made from pure pomegranates, they also represent a high level of blessing and are a symbol of abundance and fertility. All of these qualities make Rimon’s new pomegranate dessert wine ideal for Rosh Hashanah and for other Jewish holidays.”

    For more information and to order Rimon wines, visit http://www.rimonwines.com. Rimon Winery is located in the Upper Galilee region of Israel. It sits on a basalt plateau nearly 3,000 feet above sea level, nestled in the heart of a thriving pomegranate orchard. The winery’s owners and winemakers are father and son Gaby and Avi Nachmias, who specialize in cultivating premium pomegranate fruit and producing pure pomegranate wine of the highest quality. All Rimon Winery wines are made using traditional winemaking techniques to produce world-class kosher wines made from 100 percent pure pomegranate that retain the succulent flavors and healthful properties of the pomegranate fruit even after it has been fermented into wine. All Rimon Winery wines are produced at Rimon Winery’s state-of-the-art winemaking facility, which includes special pomegranate separation and pressing equipment, stainless steel fermentation tanks, and a barrel room where the wines are aged in classic French oak barrels. Rimon Winery wines include: Rimon Winery Dessert Wine 500ml (SRP $38), dry wine 750ml (SRP $42), and a port-style wine 750ml (SRP $44).

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