Passover interpretation of hotel menus
ISRAELI HOTEL chefs have been travelling the world, collecting inspiration and setting a challenge for colleagues in Europe, Asia and South America. The Israeli chefs invited their peers (some of them Michelin-starred for their non-kosher cuisine) to create kosher versions of their finest dishes. The results were impressive and several of the dishes will be translated by the Israeli hotel chefs for their Passover (and rest-of-year) menus.
“For me, cooking at Passover can be very challenging but it also poses a great opportunity for gourmet food creations,” says Niki Razvozov, executive chef at the Ritz-Carlton Herzliya.
“Due to the kosher-for-Passover limitations, we are able to use only vegetables and proteins and cannot use any beans or carbohydrates.
“Even salad dressings and sauces are limited, as most sauces are made using beans — corn or soy. To achieve rich tastes, we use fresh vegetables and we extract more flavours from these vegetables.”
The Ritz-Carlton hosts many repeat visitors. “From my experience, our returning guests during Passover like traditional dishes, the kind that are familiar from home. However they prefer stronger tastes and a more elaborate presentation.
“This year, we will continue to blend the traditional tastes of the Ashkenazi and Sephardi kitchens. For example, we will serve both gefilte fish and chraimeh (fish in a spicy sauce), so each family staying with us for the holiday, regardless of origin, can find their authentic tastes and spices at our Seder table.”
In Jerusalem, the David Citadel Hotel also caters for a wide range of Englishspeaking guests.
Avi Turgeman, the hotel’s executive chef, has his own culinary vision for Pesach.
“Avi’s culinary team features experts in different types of cuisines, such as Jewish eastern European and Mediterranean,” says a spokesperson.
“All of them specialise in combining the modern and traditional cuisines in a unique fashion that makes the beloved gefilte fish, kreplach and Jerusalem’s traditional kugel into an exciting new experience.”
The Dan Hotel chain also plays host to thousands of English-speaking guests during Pesach, with the Dan Eilat, Dan Accadia (Herzliya), Dan Panorama (Tel Aviv) and the King David in Jerusalem being the most popular.
Even if you do not have the time or budget to board a flight to Israel for the holiday, you can enjoy making one of the dishes guests will be eating there during Passover.
Below, the Ritz-Carlton’s Razvozov, and David Bitton, executive chef at the King David, provide JC readers with an exclusive taste of Passover, in the form of their own festive recipes.