For years, Michael Solomonov and his business partner Steven Cook have been pleasing the palates of foodies in Philadelphia. With six combined James Beard awards under their belts, this duo knows a thing or two about crafting modern Israeli cuisine. For their second cookbook Israeli Soul: Easy, Essential, Delicious, they’ve compiled iconic, soulful dishes that are simple and easy to cook at home.
Solomonov, an Israeli-born, Pittsburg-raised chef, known for his landmark Philadelphia restaurant Zahav, traveled all over Israel, collecting recipes for the latest publication and adapted them for cooking at home. These dishes, which have been passed down from generation to generation, are more than just sustenance. According to Solomonov, the recipes “tell the story of two millennia of Jews wandering the globe, embracing local cultures and cuisines and incorporating them into their own.”
The 364-page cookbook covers a variety of food, from handheld eats like falafel and pita, to drinks and cold treats. Colorful, detailed images capture the beauty of this flavorful cuisine. Solomonov’s recipes are fun, easy-to-follow and full of culture, making Israeli Soul a welcome addition to any kitchen.
Editor’s note: With a beer in hand, Draught Lines staffers went into the kitchen and whipped up a few recipes. We recommend pairing the Goldie Falafel with a citrusy, floral, American pale ale, like Stone Ripper or Lagunitas 12th of Never to boost the complex flavors of herbs and crisp veggies. For a heartier meal, serve the Lamb Shank Siniya alongside a Belgian dubbel, like Chimay Première, to complement the caramelized sugars and warm spices in the dish.