Anthea Gerrie

From Russia with love of kneidlach and gefilte fish

By Anthea Gerrie, January 13, 2012

He may be about to launch sophisticated Italian and pan-Asian cuisine in London, but it is not a vision of the perfect tiramisu or teriyaki which is misting up Arkady Novikov's eyes when we meet at his Mayfair restaurant.

"Kneidlach," he says, "is what gives me goose bumps. Stuffed chicken neck, matzo brei and other things my grandmother made me. Like gefilte fish - now, I make my own."

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Interview: Theodore Zeldin

By Anthea Gerrie, December 16, 2011

Theodore Zeldin believes conversation has the power to change the world. Not a chance remark, and certainly not small talk, but the kind of meaningful exchange of ideas we tend deliberately to avoid in social situations.

Now the celebrated philosopher and historian is travelling the world holding talk-fests where people begin to discuss a topic with a complete stranger,

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Sushi? It's the new hummus

By Anthea Gerrie, November 28, 2011

What is it about Israelis and sushi? The Middle East and Japan are many miles apart, and you would think the Israeli appetite for hearty, spicy fare with plenty of dairy would be at odds with a cuisine composed of dainty portions of fish, rice and seaweed.

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Reversing autumn

By Anthea Gerrie, October 17, 2011

There is nothing that shouts spring like the first British asparagus. We leap on it in April, steaming, simmering or slathering it with vinaigrette and hollandaise, and mourning the fact it will all be over by June.

But now M&S have found a way to create a second British crop to make fresh asparagus an autumn treat as well.

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She fights Parkinson's with poetry

By Anthea Gerrie, September 28, 2011

Many young women suffering from an incurable disease, leaving them debilitated and in excruciating pain, would allow their lives to be blighted with bitterness. But not Elaine Benton, who was diagnosed at five-years-old with Gaucher's disease, a genetic condition which disproportionately affects Ashkenazi Jews.

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Aspire to samphire

By Anthea Gerrie, September 2, 2011

Once it was a treat fishmongers threw in free with the Dover sole, before it vanished from the slabs and re-emerged barely a decade ago as a pick-your-own crop for foodies scouring shorelines and riverbanks. Then, professional foragers started feeding it into restaurants and suddenly samphire became a fixture on the trendiest menus.

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He's Hitchcock's man - and no mistake

By Anthea Gerrie, August 25, 2011

This is a confusing time to be a talented young musician called Daniel Cohen.

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Revealed: the wartime school that saved lives

By Anthea Gerrie, August 11, 2011

When Eric Bourne's family fled Germany the year Hitler came to power, the nine-year-old never imagined he was about to embark on the happiest years of his life.

"I just remember an interview with this very large lady in a suburb of Berlin, and by October 1933 I was at school in Kent with 60 other Jewish children from Germany."

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I woke up and smelt the coffee

By Anthea Gerrie, July 7, 2011

Is Howard Schultz a madman or a genius? A "poor boy from Brooklyn", he spent 13 years building up Starbucks from a handful of branches to a global empire before deciding to step back. And after he had borrowed millions to buy it.

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A family reunited after 90 years

By Anthea Gerrie, June 3, 2011

She had no Jewish upbringing, yet the sound of klezmer tore at her heart. It would take most of a lifetime for Kristina Taylor to discover why.

"An invisible rope would tighten around my chest; I had such an emotional response to the music," she recalls. "Now I know it's because a part of me belongs to that old Jewish culture and tradition."

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How fast food is poisoning our children

By Anthea Gerrie, June 2, 2011

A slow food movement for babies may sound like a middle-class affectation. However, anyone who watched the recent BBC Three programme, Fast Food Baby, will realise we urgently need a formal feeding programme to get the next generation back on track.

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Interview: Esther Freud

By Anthea Gerrie, March 31, 2011

She was not brought up with religion, but when suddenly asked if she was Jewish at the age of 12, Esther Freud instinctively said: "Yes".

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When it's healthy to get in a pickle

By Anthea Gerrie, March 25, 2011

What do film stars Gwyneth Paltrow, Alicia Silverstone and Sarah Jessica Parker have in common with their ancestors in the shtetl?

Answer: the macrobiotic diet, which became trendy in the '60s but has plenty in common with Ashkenazi food.

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OCD really is the Jewish disease

By Anthea Gerrie, February 28, 2011

Jews, according to the stereotype, tend to be control freaks. We all crack jokes about our neurotic dads and balabooster mothers having Obsessive Compulsive Disorder.

But OCD is far from a joke, with an estimated 740,000 sufferers in Britain. And although not borne out by hard data, the clinical view is that Jews are more likely than the general population to be affected.

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The Arch

By Anthea Gerrie, February 7, 2011

In the same handsome crescent that houses the Western Marble Arch Synagogue, a gorgeous boutique hotel has arisen.

Part of the Pride of Britain consortium, it opened less than a year ago with 82 rooms built within a run of seven listed Georgian buildings and a pair of mews houses. Original features have been retained, but a contemporary vibe prevails in the public areas.

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Give yourself a fresh start

By Anthea Gerrie, January 27, 2011

What constitutes a healthy breakfast? It is a topic which bears close inspection during National Breakfast Week, with experts falling into two distinct camps. About the only thing they agree on is that having any breakfast at all is a Very Good Thing.

The eggs, cheese and yoghurt fraternity points out that protein makes you feel full for longer and stabilises blood sugar. Yet 97 per cent of British households keep a box of cereal in the house and two thirds of us raid it at least once a week. Cereal is cheap, quick, and qualifies for many as comfort food.

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Camden's cool for Katz

By Anthea Gerrie, January 7, 2011

For bringing Israel's favourite egg dish, shak- shuka, to north London, we have not just chef Josh Katz to thank but his parents.

When Josh told his mother and father that instead of planning to follow them into the professions, his passion lay with food, their response was not to wring their hands but to treat him to a Cordon Bleu course.

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Business Travel: Upwardly mobile

By Anthea Gerrie, December 13, 2010

Is business class travel a non-essential luxury, which should be ditched to save money in these credit-crunched time? Successful entrepreneurs, for whom every minute counts, will tell you the upcharge is justified in terms of working time saved and minimising the impact of travel stress on body and soul.

The advantages start even before you make your journey, with faster check-ins for business passengers and lounges with work-stations at main line stations as well as airports.

However, rail passengers are unlikely to get the superb facilities available at the best airport lounges.

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Want to lose weight? Eat like a caveman

By Anthea Gerrie, December 3, 2010

Those watching their weight and contemplating the impact of the party season should consider one sobering fact - cavemen did not eat starchy deep fried snacks. Humans were never designed to digest the foods which have propelled the western world into an obesity crisis.

Oil? Our hunter-gatherer ancestors did not have the technology to make it, and they did not hang around long enough to grow the crops that produce oil, or indeed those which make bread or pasta.

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The Marylebone

By Anthea Gerrie, November 19, 2010

With its considerable style and comfort and W1 location, it's a mystery why the Marylebone Hotel remains a well-kept secret. Perhaps because, disguised by a grim '60s facade on one of the anonymous, shop-less streets which run behind the Oxford Street department stores, it is unrecognisable from the street as a four-star hostelry.

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