The Second Avenue Deli Cookbook
Recipes and Memories from Abe Lebewohl's Legendary Kitchen
Publication Date: October 5, 1999
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The Second Avenue Deli has been an internationally renowned Gotham landmark for nearly half a century. Over the years, its founder, Abe Lebewohl, provided the best Jewish fare in town, transforming his tiny ten-seat Village eatery into a New York institution.
The Second Avenue Deli Cookbook contains more than 160 of Abe Lebewohl's recipes, including all of the Deli's peerless renditions of traditional Jewish dishes: chicken soup with matzo balls, chopped liver, gefilte fish, kasha varnishkes, mushroom barley soup, noodle kugel, potato latkes, blintzes, and many more. These versatile dishes are perfect for any occasion--from holiday dinners to Sunday brunches with friends and family.
The late Abe Lebewohl was a great restaurateur in the showman tradition and a well-known and much-loved New York personality. His famous Deli attracted hundreds of celebrity patrons, many of whom have graciously contributed to this cookbook not only personal reminiscences but also recipes, running the gamut from Morley Safer's family brisket to Paul Reiser's formula for the perfect egg cream. A wonderful blend of New York and Jewish history and mouthwatering recipes, The Second Avenue Deli Cookbook provides a delicious taste of nostalgia.
Born with a soupspoon in her mouth, Sharon Lebewohl grew up in the deli business, working at the Second Ave-nue Deli and learning her father's secret recipes firsthand. Since her father's death in 1996, Sharon has worked with his brother, Jack, to oversee the Deli's daily operations and to ensure that her father's spirit is kept alive there. She is deeply rooted in the Jewish community and is active in many Jewish women's groups. Sharon is also the mother of three teenagers.
Rena Bulkin began her career in Paris, writing about European hotels and restaurants for The New York Times International Edition. Returning to her native Manhattan after several years abroad, she worked first at The New Yorker and then at New York magazine. She has written fifteen Arthur Frommer travel guides, as well as numerous magazine articles on travel, food, and other subjects. A close friend of the late Abe Lebewohl's, she has a long history with the Second Avenue Deli, where she has worked on many public-relations campaigns.
"Restaurant cookbooks may make your mouth water, but rarely do they stir your soul, or put a smile on your face. The Second Avenue Deli Cookbook is an exception. Like the fabled eating establishment whose recipes it contains, it manages to do all three.The Second Avenue Deli experience is always about more than just eating. Until now, you had to be in New York to have that experience. But with the publication of this grand book of recipes and stories, the lusty flavor--and the irrepressible spirit--of Abe Lebewohl's landmark restaurant become transportable. And what a lucky thing that is, for they are a treasure."
--Cara De Silva, author of In Memory's Kitchen
"'You'll eat. We'll talk later,' Abe Lebewohl said to me once, when I sat down amid the aromas of his Deli to interview him. I ate--holishkes; borscht the way Abe made it, with chunks of beef; and chicken livers. We talked, ate rugalach, and we were finished. I thought. As I was walking out Abe yelled after me, 'Don't forget, just because you write for a fancy-schmancy magazine, that cholent is Lower East Side cassoulet.' I didn't forget, Abe. Kisses."
--Fred Ferretti, contributing editor, Gourmet
"The Second Avenue Deli Cookbook is a wonderful collection of recipes and anecdotes that truly captures the essence of a wonderful restaurant and special man. Enjoy!"
--Drew Nieporent, president of Myriad Restaurant Group, owner of Nobu, Tribeca Grill, Heartbeat, Layla
"It would be hard to find anything as wholly delicious as the Second Avenue Deli, but this savory book comes close. Not only is it full of tempting, eminently doable recipes, but it recalls the warm spirit of the Deli itself, and of dear, generous Abe Lebewohl, who would consider this collection a fitting eulogy."
--Mimi Sheraton, noted food journalist and former food critic for The New York Times
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