Jewish cooking isn't exactly renowned for being light. Instead, it's known for being hearty, wholesome and, above all, delicious. These are the characteristics that cookbook author Kenden Alfond wanted to keep when she set out on her mission to pioneer plant-based Jewish cooking, and take the traditional dishes on a journey towards becoming lighter and healthier.
Alfond knows what she's talking about. She's a psychotherapist and 99 per cent vegan, with certificates in plant-based nutrition and a master's in counselling. She's lived and worked around the world, including stints for NGOs in India, Afghanistan and beyond – and she's left no stone unturned when it comes to exploring food culture across the globe.
Alfond has also seen first hand the importance of having a strong, nourishing food culture – one that looks out for both people and the planet. This ethos inspired her to set up her website (jewishfoodhero.com) and write The Jewish Food Hero Cookbook, both of which are designed to get us eating in a way that's more sustainable for both us and the environment.
The other important thing about Jewish cooking is that it's designed to be shared, which means it's perfect for groups and gatherings – and the festive time of year, when we (hopefully) can come together to celebrate. There's never been a more important time for family and community than now, and these recipes are designed to give all the goodness without the grease.
Here, we have Alfond's recipe for a zesty bean salsa with corn.
The Jewish Food Hero Coookbook, $16.59, amazon.ca
To learn more and for more plant-based Jewish recipes, visit jewishfoodhero.com