culture/multiculturalism · food · Los Angeles · music · New York


I’m moving to Florida. Right now.

Okay, I’m joking but I’m wondering if instead of visiting my family down in the Dominican Republic this year, I should make the trek out to North Miami Beach where I have uncovered a Latin kosher restaurant, Mami’s Kosher Restaurant, that serves Cuban food. Rice! Beans! Tostones! Jackpot!

My mouth is watering as I dream of visiting Mami’s Kosher restaurant.

And seriously, how come there is only ONE kosher Mexican food in New York? And absolutely none in Los Angeles. Not that Mexican food is anything like Dominican food. If someone else tries to push a quesadilla in my face to make me feel better, I will scream. And for the last time: “NO, I DO NOT KNOW HOW TO MAKE TACOS.” I do know how to buy them from the store. I didn’t even know what tacos were until I saw a Taco Belle in high school.
WHY ARE THERE A BILLION CHINESE KOSHER RESTAURANTS? HOW MANY CHINESE JEWS DO YOU KNOW? Sorry, I just needed to get that off my chest. This Jewish obsession with sushi has to stop…or at least pause while someone contemplates what would be a perfect addition to Washington Heights: a Dominican kosher restaurant!
In the meantime, a reader suggested I soothe my beastly Id by playing “Ta’am Latino: The Latin American Shabbat.” Who knew Lecha Dodi could go “ranchera”? Listen here. The CD is also available on Amazon

17 thoughts on “IN SEARCH OF RICE AND BEANS!

  1. There is a Kosher Mexican place in NY?!!!!!!!! You tell me that after I have moved to Oklahoma!!!!!! You, prima, do not play fair.


  2. *facepalms*

    I personally have never met a Chinese jew, however, I do hope that Japanese sushi is not being served at Chinese kosher restaurants in New York of all places. The thought makes me rather sad. I've never had any Dominican food, however, it does sound quite appetizing. On another note, I wished to say I rather enjoy reading your work. I am on the road to conversion(orthodox) myself with my husband and child.


  3. Well that's where my 8 year old comes in. He wanted to open a kosher Guatemalan restaurant. With a little parental ingenuity I'll convince him to make it a “Pan American” place offering your Dominican green goo, Guatemalan chicken with green tomatillos, and Chilean empanadas that taste like Ines, from Isabel Allende's latest novel, just made them. Now where do we open this place?


  4. Aliza,

    It is considerably easier to make Chinese food kosher than Mexican. Mexican food involves a great deal of treif and Tex Mex = tons of meat and dairy mixtures. I assume Mexican Jews are very inventive. Could you imagine kosher paella?

    It's not like I'll ever find a kosher soul food restaurant. I am constantly having to alter old soul food favorites for friends. This is a process. Give it time.


  5. Aliza–

    I can't agree more with your kosher chinese/sushi argument. It's absolutely absurd.

    Dominican kosher in Washington Heights makes SO much sense on so many levels, if enough people could buy into the idea.

    A kosher Nuevo Caridad or Malecon (or Tu Sonresa on 172 since I know the people there) would make so much sense, especially if it were, say, right on Broadway. I think there should be a poll or something in the Heights about this…


  6. I seriously think that Chinese food is actually the national food of Jews. Forget gefilte fish. Pass the mu shu chicken. 😛 It's where we go to eat on Christmas, after all!


  7. It seems that eating gobs of 'Chinese food' is an American thing. I say 'Chinese food' as I've very rarely seen a real Chinese restaurant, rather, I tend to see what white Americans are more comfortable eating as Chinese food. An old friend of mine, whom has long gone back to Shanghai now, told me the stuff in our restaurants is 'not so good'. I suspect she was being nice. I personally could go for a -real- kosher Irish Pub, but that probably will not happen either. 😀 I won't even get my hopes up for any place offering Native American food of any kind. 😀

    Or a real Japanese restaurant . . .

    Finding kosher miso that is good quality is a pain.


  8. Carlos & Gabby's is NOT Mexican food! I don't know what to call it except a horrible insult to Mexicans everywhere. And it's truly pathetic, because it's not that hard to make authentic, edible mexican food! (Yes, this subject frustrates me.)
    Kosher Caridad? I would consider moving back to Miami for that.


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