Preparing a kosher meal isn’t as difficult as it may sound. If you are hosting a kosher meal soon, below are some helpful tips you need to remember to cater to your guests and their special dietary restrictions.
How to Buy Kosher Ingredients
Packaged food that is certified kosher will have a hechsher or mark that shows that the product had gone through an extensive process for it to be approved as kosher. This logo varies according to religious group or region, but a U circled with an O that stands for Orthodox Union is the most common logo you should look for.
Don’t forget to ask your guests if they are buying specific hechshers and don’t hesitate to seek guidance at the supermarket. You also shouldn’t feel limited by just purchasing kosher products. There is now a wide selection of kosher products available at most major retailers, with a large percentage of standard grocery items already having a kosher certification.
Never Mix Meat and Milk
Mixing meat and milk, with meat including red meat and poultry but not fish, is definitely a big no-no as far as kosher cooking is concerned. While you might be planning to prepare several courses, these should always stay separate because these will mix in the digestive system.
You also need to choose to either cook with dairy or meat for the meal. If you will skip the dairy, you can replace butter with coconut oil or olive oil, nut milk or coconut cream for milk, and add lemon juice to nut milk or coconut cream for buttermilk.
You can also swap many vegan spreads and cheeses for the real thing while keeping up with the kosher laws. This is also applicable if you choose to forego meat. You can switch to fish or a vegan meat option to substitute it.
Replacing saturated fats such as butter, cheeses, and cream for heart-healthy fats like avocado oil, olive oil, and nut oils and mostly using less dairy in your diet are all great for kosher cooking.
Preparing Kosher Desserts
While dairy and meat can’t go together on the plate, these are not meant to combine in the digestive system, which means that ice cream following a kosher burger dinner is a big no-no. If you prefer dairy-free desserts, you can choose from a wide range of recipes. You can go for a vegan dish without eggs and dairy such as brownies, cookies, cupcakes, pie, or pudding.
Choosing a Kosher Recipe
You can find plenty of resources for kosher recipes that offer lots of inspiration for kosher cooking. Middle Eastern and Mediterranean cuisines also provide numerous kosher options and are mostly plant-based.
As far as kosher cooking is concerned, almost everything and anything is possible. Provided that the primary ingredient is not something completely non-kosher such as shellfish or pork, substitutions really offer an infinite selection of choices to prepare a kosher feast. Non-dairy products and plant-based meats also offer a range of possibilities, skipping the concern about mixing dairy and meat.
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