Highlights of Kosherfest 2012

Three Days of Feasting!

kosherfest2012crowdAs we’ve reported previously, we were honored and delighted to co–host the second annual pre-Kosherfest Social Media dinner at the sensational Manhattan restaurant, Abigaels on Broadway. We joined sixty-five other social media journalists, food editors and brands for this special evening of feasting and networking.

And then came two days of sampling classic and new kosher foods at the 24th annual Kosherfest, the world’s largest kosher food show.  What an opportunity to meet and greet old and new foodie friends – the movers and shakers of the kosher world.  Kosherfest was held at New Jersey’s Meadowlands Convention Center. This area of NJ was spared in Hurricane Sandy, so the show went on. What a show it was. The explosive growth of kosher was quite evident as we walked the show floor.

We present some of our favorite finds. In-depth coverage of these and other Kosherfest picks will be coming soon.

Jack’s Gourmet
Facon: Don’t you love the name of this new smoky and salty, sliced dry-cured beef? It has been formulated to taste and sizzle like the real thing, Yes, we will soon be “takin” our grill pan and “makin” Facon!  We will share our findings and our recipes soon. Stay tuned for updates!

Gelato Patrini
What a cool find, and the Kosherfest pick for best in show. Delicious dairy (Cholov Yisroel available too) and parve soy gelato, along with an upcoming kosher for Passover gelato line. Both the parve and dairy gelatos we tasted are both sweet and  creamy – and the flavors are amazing. (In our taste test, we couldn’t tell which was dairy and which was parve! Confession: We ate the chocolate peanut butter soy gelato – at 9:30 in the morning. Quite a breakfast. It was so nice to see our friend Kassi Cohen Lowenstein at this exhibit. Her family has recently purchased this more than 50-year-old company. By the way, they will mix and ship any flavor you can dream up!

ZerMatok Ltd.
Chocolate Candy Bouquets from Israel
. This is a spectacular and meaningful product, created by special people, and our choice for the most beautiful find at Kosherfest. ZerMatok sells handmade tissue and foil long stem flowers encasing chocolate and candy.  All of the flowers are hand made in Israel by blind and mentally challenged people. ZerMatok's chocolate and sweet bouquets (we particularly like the roses) are made from chocolate pralines and candies, wrapped using a special technique to resemble flowers, which are then woven into bouquets.

Tribes-A-Dozen Voilà Hallah Bread Mix
One of our top choices for best in show. Although purchasing ready–made challah is certainly an option, nothing matches the aroma and taste of a good loaf of homemade challah.  Leah Hadad has developed this product for the home cook who just doesn’t have time or expertise to bake a from–scratch challah each week, or just wants to try a variety of flavors including classic, spelt and whole wheat. This excellent product is pantry ready and waiting, a welcome product when time is a concern. And, it is delicious!

Barbara Shaw Gifts
Part of the Israel pavilion at Kosherfest  was another  firs–time exhibitor. Her creative accessories for the kitchen and home feature bright, colorful, upbeat designs with kosher and Jewish themes. According to Barbara,  “I draw from the ancient sources and apply them to designs that are fresh, bold and sassy”. We particularly liked her colorful aprons, Hebrew lettered rainbow bubbles wooden clock, and her clever trivets. Barbarashawgifts.com

Maple Nut Matzolah
We had to travel to New Jersey to cheer for the newest kosher product, which was born in our hometown, Atlanta, GA. Laura, and Wayne Silverman, and their daughter Amber Lawson, have introduced our find for the best new Passover product. This sweet delicious mix of matzoh granola, fruits and nuts was the official  Kosherfest competition winner in the Passover category. Matzolah is a labor of love, created from an old family recipe. Since they are partnering with Streits, this product is sure to be on the supermarket shelves this Passover.

How could we not mention this company – a true pioneer in  kosher food. We have spotlighted Manischewitz in the past (LINK to feature) but continue to be  amazed at the number of new  products introductions. For over 120 years, The Manischewitz® Company has inspired great family recipes and ideas.  Today, the Manischewitz® product line continues to innovate with new and improved products. KosherEye is particularly intrigued by the new Manischewitz red velvet macaroons. We are huge fans of the Manischewitz’ Guiltless Gourmet line – Check out these Parmesan Artichoke Tortilla Chips. And of course, we’d like to win the grand prize in the 7th annual Manischewitz Cook–Off including Maytag kitchen appliance and cash!

In addition to our thoughts, we hope that you enjoy this Huffington Post feature on Kosherfest; another take on the best of show!

November 26, 2012

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