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Kosher Sushi and All the Week’s Dish

What’s Yiddish for “California Roll”?

Sushi’s become a staple for the kosher crowd, says The New York Times. More than 100 kosher sushi spots operate in Brooklyn alone — and most have opened in the last decade.

Why? It’s parve. It’s convenient. And “you have your protein, carbohydrates and vegetables all in one,” says one fan. “It used to be that what defined a Jewish community was a synagogue and a kosher butcher. Then it was a kosher pizza shop. Now it’s a kosher sushi shop,” the Orthodox Union’s Moshe Elefant tells the Times.

Babka Ice Cream

New from the people who brought you matzo ice cream: Babka ice cream, which sounds a lot more promising.

Ample Hills Creamery is using baked goods from Brooklyn purveyor Mekelburg’s to create flavors like Babka Days Are Here Again, a vanilla base with chunks of the cinnamon babka, and I Love It When You Call Me Big Babka, a milk chocolate base with pieces of chocolate babka. Ample Hills plans to use the babka ice creams as a base for insane-sounding banana splits this summer, says Gothamist.

Glatt Kosher in Singapore

Singapore’s got a Glatt kosher restaurant. But it’s almost a secret unless you’re part of the city-state’s tiny, tight-knit Jewish community.

Even locals don’t know about Awafi, located on the sixth floor of an office building.

Chicken schnitzel and fish & chips are the most popular dishes, manager Eric Lye tells The Middle Ground blog, along with Chinese dishes such as black pepper beef with rice.

The restaurant’s run by Singapore’s Jewish Welfare Board, a kind of JCC-meets-Federation.

Belarusian Comes to Bay Area

Chef David Nayfeld Image by Facebook

San Francisco Chef David Nayfeld, the son of immigrants from Belarus, will host a pop-up dinner series themed after meals he remembers from his Eastern European household.

“I’ve been tied into the Russian-Jewish community here in San Francisco and in the Bay Area and my mom has always been a pillar of that community,” said Nayfeld, who named the dinner series “Mama Galina,” after his mother. The concept reflects his take on “what it would be like to eat dinner at my house in 1980, had I been cooking.”

Expect family-style renderings of Belarusian staples like potato salads and stuffed cabbage, as well as chopped liver and matzo balls, says MissionLocal.

A San Francisco twist: The dinners will take place in the Mission District space that housed a century-old tamale joint until December. Tickets are $75.

Israelis in Westville

Westville owner Jay Strauss has hired Israeli employees at every level at each of his four locations. Image by Courtesy of Westville

The secret sauce at Westville, a hip New York City restaurant chainlet:


At his four Westville locations, owner Jay Strauss has brought Israeli employees at every level, from bartenders to servers to partners.

Strauss tells Haaretz he doesn’t agree “with the claim that Israelis don’t know how to provide service.” Strauss says he bumps into Westville alums every time he’s in Israel.

Cameron Diaz, Louis C.K., Leonardo DiCaprio and Jonah Hill are all Westville regulars, Haaretz says.

Rappy’s Deli in Boca

Burt Rapoport’s late father, Ray, owned the legendary NYC dairy restaurant Rapoport’s. Now, Burt’s bringing that spirit to Boca Raton.

Rappy’s Deli will open this fall as “a modern interpretation of a Jewish deli,” with classic dishes and “some updated favorites,” according to Boca Life. Rappy was Ray Rapoport’s nickname.

Burt Rapoport’s other restaurants include local faves Deck 84, Burt & Max’s and Henry’s.

Senator Diner’s Secret Spot

A new space within Senator’s now serves a separate menu that includes latkes and shakshuka. Image by Flickr

Toronto’s oldest restaurant has got some new tricks. Bobby Sniderman, who owns The Senator Diner, is opening a clubby upstairs room with a separate menu from his perpetually packed eatery. Preferring to keep it on the down-low for now, Sniderman hasn’t even named the room, simply dubbing it “the lounge.”

Latkes and shakshuka will share the menu with classics like croque-monsieur and quiche, plus fresh twists such as a vegetable-and-grain salad.

When it comes to latkes, Sniderman’s in the keep-it-simple camp. His recipe: “Just potatoes, onion, eggs, flour and oil,” he said.

Sniderman’s family has a long and storied Toronto history as founders of Sam The Record Man, a beloved and now-defunct Canadian music chain.

Michael Kaminer is a contributing editor at the Forward.

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