The Jew And The Carrot

Welcome to the Ultimate Jewish Food Championship

By Renee Ghert-Zand

  • Print
  • Share Share

We all have our favorite Jewish foods, but are we willing to go head to head with other food lovers to defend them? A Bit off the Top, a Montreal-based incubator for Jewish ideas (it organizes LE MOOD), is challenging bagel biters, latke lovers and falafel fanciers to stand up for their favorite fare in the Ultimate Jewish Food Championship.

Quite simply, it’s a bracket-style championship pitting eight “Super Jewish foods” against each other in pairs until one of them emerges triumphant. To participate, you don’t even have to eat your favorite food. Just voting for it online is enough.

To sex up the competition a bit, A Bit off the Top has enlisted some young Jewish local culinary celebs to champion their favorite dishes. Among them are BBQ spot owner Shawn Dascal championing brisket, food festival creator Na’eem Adam touting smoked meat, food blogger Dustin Gilman pushing latkes, and radio hosts Neev and Alex Fredo cheering for couscous.

In a nod to Sephardic and Middle Eastern Jewish heritage, couscous and falafel are included. However, the overwhelming majority of contenders hail from Eastern Europe. “Of course, living in the American North East, our eight contenders are slightly biased towards traditionally Ashkenazi dishes, and for this we apologize, but here in Montreal, we are surrounded by them in famous delis, old-school bakeries and in our homes.”

So far in the preliminary rounds, matzah ball soup has beat out bagels, and falafel has squashed couscous. As of this moment, voting is coming to an end for the latkes vs. blintzes round, with latkes holding a steady lead. Brisket and smoked meat will face off shortly, with the winner moving on with matzah ball soup, falafel, and (presumably) latkes to the semi-finals.

This is one of the few cases where playing with your food is acceptable — so join in the fun by clicking away. And this being an online tournament, you don’t have to be in Montreal, or even Canada, to root for your favorite team…er, food.


Permalink | | Share | Email | Print | Filed under: ultimate Jewish food championship, super jewish foods

The Jewish Daily Forward welcomes reader comments in order to promote thoughtful discussion on issues of importance to the Jewish community. In the interest of maintaining a civil forum, The Jewish Daily Forwardrequires that all commenters be appropriately respectful toward our writers, other commenters and the subjects of the articles. Vigorous debate and reasoned critique are welcome; name-calling and personal invective are not. While we generally do not seek to edit or actively moderate comments, our spam filter prevents most links and certain key words from being posted and The Jewish Daily Forward reserves the right to remove comments for any reason.




Find us on Facebook!
  • You've heard of the #IceBucketChallenge, but Forward publisher Sam Norich has something better: a #SoupBucketChallenge (complete with matzo balls!) Jon Stewart, Sarah Silverman & David Remnick, you have 24 hours!
  • Did Hamas just take credit for kidnapping the three Israeli teens?
  • "We know what it means to be in the headlines. We know what it feels like when the world sits idly by and watches the news from the luxury of their living room couches. We know the pain of silence. We know the agony of inaction."
  • When YA romance becomes "Hasidsploitation":
  • "I am wrapping up the summer with a beach vacation with my non-Jewish in-laws. They’re good people and real leftists who try to live the values they preach. This was a quality I admired, until the latest war in Gaza. Now they are adamant that American Jews need to take more responsibility for the deaths in Gaza. They are educated people who understand the political complexity, but I don’t think they get the emotional complexity of being an American Jew who is capable of criticizing Israel but still feels a deep connection to it. How can I get this across to them?"
  • “'I made a new friend,' my son told his grandfather later that day. 'I don’t know her name, but she was very nice. We met on the bus.' Welcome to Israel."
  • A Jewish female sword swallower. It's as cool as it sounds (and looks)!
  • Why did David Menachem Gordon join the IDF? In his own words: "The Israel Defense Forces is an army that fights for her nation’s survival and the absence of its warriors equals destruction from numerous regional foes. America is not quite under the threat of total annihilation… Simply put, I felt I was needed more in Israel than in the United States."
  • Leonard Fein's most enduring legacy may be his rejection of dualism: the idea that Jews must choose between assertiveness and compassion, between tribalism and universalism. Steven M. Cohen remembers a great Jewish progressive:
  • BREAKING: Missing lone soldier David Menachem Gordon has been found dead in central Israel. The Ohio native was 21 years old.
  • “They think they can slap on an Amish hat and a long black robe, and they’ve created a Hasid." What do you think of Hollywood's portrayal of Hasidic Jews?
  • “I’ve been doing this since I was a teenager. I didn’t think I would have to do it when I was 90.” Hedy Epstein fled Nazi Germany in 1933 on a Kinderstransport.
  • "A few decades ago, it would have been easy to add Jews to that list of disempowered victims. I could throw in Leo Frank, the victim of mob justice; or otherwise privileged Jewish men denied entrance to elite universities. These days, however, we have to search a lot harder." Are you worried about what's going in on #Ferguson?
  • Will you accept the challenge?
  • In the six years since Dothan launched its relocation program, 8 families have made the jump — but will they stay? We went there to find out:
  • from-cache

Would you like to receive updates about new stories?




















We will not share your e-mail address or other personal information.

Already subscribed? Manage your subscription.