The Italian kosher cooking

The casherut (or kasherùt , in Hebrew: כַּשְׁרוּת ? , literally fitting) defines whether a food can
or cannot be eaten by Jewish people according to the religious dietary laws described in
the Torah. The food that meet the standards of the kosherut is kashèr, w hich means it is fit
for consumption.

The rules that define the kosherut are numerous, and include a very complex interaction
with food preparation, thus cooking kosher dishes and meals implies being familiar with all
the different cases. Very often an expert (Mashghiai) supervises the kashrut status of a
food establishment in order to guarantee the kosherut service to a customer.

Amongst the many rules that date back more than 3 thousand years, there is the one that
establishes that dairy and meat products must not be mixed together, neither cooked
together nor served together on the same table. This comes from a sentence repeated 3
times in the Torah which says: “You may not cook a young animal in the milk of its mother”.
From this it is therefore derived that no dairy products can be used together with any kind
of meat. Consequently, all the kitchen utensils, plates and cutlery, sinks and refrigerators,
must be separated and used exclusively either for meat or dairy products.

According to the laws of the Torah, kosher animals must be ruminants with cloven hooves.
Pork is forbidden as well as rabbit and hare. Any animal that is fit for eating must be
slaughtered in a precise way in order to remove all the blood possible, so very sharp
knives with no imperfections are used.

Fish is allowed as long as it has fins and scales. Molluscs and shellfish are forbidden.
The rules concerning meat are more detailed: it is forbidden to eat the animal’s blood,
certain types of fat parts that used to be devoted to sacrificial rituals, and never the sciatic
nerve, in memory of the biblical episode where the angel stroke the nerve in Jacob’s leg.
Nowadays, it is possible to find a large number of kosher products with the international
Rabbi association certification that guarantees its compliance with kosher rules, including
the production, the packaging and the storaging.

In the Scuola Cordon Bleu di Firenze kosher cooking courses are held in the kitchen,
previously “kosherized” by a Mashghiai with the permission of the Rabbi of Florence, of the
nearby Sinagogue, who certifies the kitchen’s pureness.

Why offer a kasher cooking course? The idea came from one of Cristina and Gabriella’s
friends, who asked the two directors of the School to have a kosher cooking course, based
on Tuscan traditional dishes, for his observant Jewish customers visiting our beautiful

Since then Cristina and Gabriella have developed their study on Italian and Tuscan
cooking, and they have trained their Aroma Italia teachers to teach following the kosherut

There is no Jewish cuisine as such but many Jewish cooking traditions of the Jewish
communities worldwide. Kasher cooking is not a group of dishes but the kosherut set of
rules and guidelines on how to prepare and eat food.

In Italy there are many Jewish communities and a lot of Jewish dishes have been adapted
to and influenced by Italian regional cooking. Many traditional dishes of Venice, Rome,
Livorno and Florence have also originated from the Jewish communities living there for
centuries and centuries. One of the recipes on top of the list: Jewish artichokes, the
emblem of typical Roman cooking.