Sydney recently held its first Jewish food festival for 700 enthusiastic visitors. An Australian Ashkenazi-Sephardi cook-off saw Ashkenazi Rebbetzin Esty Gutnick and her daughter Chanie Light claim victory over the Sephardi boys Shaul Ezekial and Joseph Bekhor with their cinnamon buns and chocolate babka with a brioche challah dough.
Hampstead Synagogue’s Cholent Fest returns on January 23. The steamy cook-off between determined Shabbat chefs will be judged by well-known names, including award-winning Italian chef Giancarlo Caldesi. Details at www.us.org.uk. This event is not suitable for vegetarians.
For vegetarians, the Jewish Vegetarian Society is organising an Indian cookery demonstration at London’s Finchley Synagogue on February 19 from 8pm-9.30pm. Joseph Moses will demonstrate four dishes: vegetable curry, sukhi bhaji, fragrant pilau rice and roti flatbread which the audience will then be able to sample. Details at: wwww.jvs.org.uk.
Another date for your diary is the first north of England Jewish Nosh Fest which will be held in Leeds next February. The two-day event, organised by Makor, will feature food stalls, cookery demonstrations, samplings, family activities, talks and community schemes. Check www.makor.co.uk for details.
Educator Maureen Kendler and cook Rachel Davies are teaming up to present a cookery demonstration with a difference: all recipes are from the first Anglo-Jewish cookbook, Lady Judith Montefiore’s, The Jewish Manual, first published in 1846. The demo — which includes a tasting — will be held at JW3 on February 18.
Kosher Roast has been confirmed for Limmud with a mouth-watering menu — “full-on roast beef, Yorkshire pudding, duck-fat roast potatoes, sautéed greens and maple glazed root vegetables followed by teacup lemon posset and lavender shortbread”. Yum.
Next month, voting opens in the Gefiltefest 2014 Food Awards, sponsored by the JC. Winners of the best bagel awards will take home the coveted Golden Aubergine award. Visit www.gefiltefest.org to vote.
Michael Leventhal is the founder of the Jewish food charity Gefiltefest, email@example.com Twitter: @gefiltefest