WHEN NOAH AND RAE BERNAMOFF OPENED MILE END, their tiny Brooklyn restaurant, they had a mission: to share the classic Jewish comfort food of their childhood.
Using their grandmothers’ recipes as a starting point, Noah and Rae updated traditional dishes and elevated them with fresh ingredients and from-scratch cooking techniques. The Mile End Cookbook celebrates the craft of new Jewish cooking with more than 100 soul-satisfying recipes and gorgeous photographs. Throughout, the Bernamoffs share warm memories of cooking with their families and the traditions and holidays that inspire recipes like blintzes with seasonal fruit compote; chicken salad whose secret ingredient is fresh gribenes; veal schnitzel kicked up with pickled green tomatoes and preserved lemons; tsimis that’s never mushy; and cinnamon buns made with challah dough. Noah and Rae also celebrate homemade delicatessen staples and share their recipes and methods for pickling, preserving, and smoking just about anything.
For every occasion, mood, and meal, these are recipes that any home cook can make, including:
SMOKED AND CURED MEAT AND FISH: brisket, salami, turkey, lamb bacon, lox, mackerel
PICKLES, GARNISHES, FILLINGS, AND CONDIMENTS: sour pickles, pickled fennel, horseradish cream, chicken conﬁt, sauerkraut, and soup mandel
SUMPTUOUS SWEETS AND BREADS: rugelach, jelly-ﬁlled doughnuts, ﬂourless chocolate cake, honey cake, cheesecake, challah, rye
ALL THE CLASSICS: the ultimate chicken soup, geﬁlte ﬁsh, corned beef sandwich, latkes, knishes
With tips and lore from Jewish and culinary mavens, such as Joan Nathan and Niki Russ Federman of Russ & Daughters, plus holiday menus, Jewish cooking has never been so inspiring.
4 ¼ cups sifted all-purpose flour, plus more as needed
1 teaspoon Diamond Crystal kosher salt, plus more to top the matzo (optional)
2 tablespoons canola oil
3/4 cup plus 1 tablespoon warm water
Preheat the oven to 500°F and place a pizza stone (ideally) or a 10-by-15-inch baking sheet on the bottom rack.
In a large bowl, mix together all the ingredients until they come together to form a dough. If the dough is sticky, add a bit more flour.
Divide the dough into 8 pieces. Flatten a piece slightly and pass it repeatedly through a pasta maker, reducing the thickness each time until you reach the minimum setting. (Or you can simply roll the dough as thinly as possible with a rolling pin.) Repeat with the remaining dough pieces.
Trim the flattened dough pieces so that they will fit snugly onto the pizza stone or baking sheet. Use a fork to prick holes in the surface of the dough. For salted matzo, brush or spray the dough surface lightly with water and sprinkle with salt.
Carefully slide the pieces of dough onto the pizza stone or baking sheet. Bake until the surface of the matzo is golden brown and bubbly, 30 seconds or so. Using tongs, carefully f lip the matzo pieces and continue to bake until the other side is browned and lightly blistered. (Keep careful, constant watch to keep the matzo from burning; the exact cooking time will vary from oven to oven, and will get a little longer with each subsequent batch.)
Makes about 8 large sheets
Excerpted from The Mile End Cookbook by Noah and Rae Bernamoff. Copyright © 2012 by Noah and Rae Bernamoff. Excerpted by permission of Clarkson Potter, a division of Random House LLC. All rights reserved. No part of this excerpt may be reproduced or reprinted without permission in writing from the publisher.
“With The Mile End Cookbook, Noah and Rae seamlessly reinvent the recipes of our ancestors in a style that’s at once thoroughly modern and truly authentic. These are the cravings of our people —past, present, and, thanks to Mile End, of future generations, too. Delicious, thoughtful, and utterly satisfying. L’Chaim!” –GAIL SIMMONS, AUTHOR OF TALKING WITH MY MOUTH FULL: MY LIFE AS A PROFESSIONAL EATER
“At long last my grandma’s Eastern European food gets the great chef treatment at Mile End. It’s the real deal, only—Grandma and Ma please forgive me—maybe better. Happily and deliciously hamische. No more calls home with desperate pleas for that seder-saving brisket secret (burn the onions!).”–PETER KAMINSKY, AUTHOR OF CULINARY INTELLIGENCE: THE ART OF EATING HEALTHY (AND REALLY WELL)