Friday, August 31, 2012

Lady Rebbetzin Montefiore's gefilte fish recipe

Yes, I jest. However, here is Lady Judith Montefiore's recipe for something that seems fairly similar to gefilte fish, in her 1846 cook book, The Jewish manual; or, Practical information in Jewish and modern cookery, with a collection of recipes relating to the toilette. Although it was published anonymously, "Edited by a Lady," as per the title page, it is known that this lady was our Lady in question.

She also offers this advice, in the introduction:
The difference between good and bad cookery is particularly discernible in the preparation of forcemeats. A common cook is satistified if she chops or minces the ingredients and moistens them with an egg scarcely beaten, but this is a very crude and imperfect method; they should be pounded together in a mortar until not a lump or fibre is perceptible. Further directions will be given in the proper place, but this is a rule which must be strictly attended to by those who wish to attain any excellence in this branch of their art.


  1. Hmm milichigeh gefilte fish; I guess she had a different recipe for Friday night.

  2. Very interesting that she put in butter. Hungarian Jewish cooking omits butter completely from fish dishes to keep it parve.

  3. fascinating, who even knew the concept of a book with recipes to be shared was in business back then, especially for the kosher market.

  4. Pragmatician:

    this was the first in english. and it wasn't just "to share recipes." she had a didactic goal in mind.



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