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Mail order knishes???

When I was a kid, I had the best cheese, cherry, and potato knishes from some little mom and pop place on the boardwalk at Brighton Beach, in NYC. I can't for the life of me remember the name of the place. But I crave them.

I tried to satisfy the craving last year by ordering from Yonah Schmimmel (I've probably killed the name), and they were horrible. I got cheese, and cheese and cherry. The first had the cheese baked into the dough, and shaped into a pretzel. Very weird. And both suffered from a sickly sweetness that I couldn't get over. After paying about $70 (omg) for a dozen of these beasts, I threw most of them away.

I want a nice doughy outside, with a sweet but not sacharrin white cheese filling (or oniony potato filling). Where to turn?

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  1. Russ and Daughters in NYC and possibly Zabar's. Check websites.

      1. "If wishes were knishes, Yonah Schimmel would be a millionaire."

        -Anon

        That's a famous phrase in NYC. As you know, they will mail their famous knishes... I'd say try again, or give them a call and vent.

        1. I can't try them again. It's too expensive a mistake to make twice. It's not as though I am claiming they went bad en route, or that someone accidently spilled a vat of sugar into the filling. I think they tasted just as they were supposed to, and I didn't like em. The first two suggestions - I will check out.

          Btw, does anyone know the place on the boardwalk at Brighton Beach I am remembering?

          3 Replies
          1. re: sasha1

            I was recently in New York and went to Yona Shimmel. I ordered the Kasha Knish. The filling was tasteless and the shell was limp. I asked if they had gravy and was told only mustard and ketchup. I ate 2 bites, my wife ate 1 bite and we left. The owner asked if we wanted to take it with us and I said no. A real waste of time.

            1. re: sasha1

              Brighton Beach was a bit removed from my East Flatbush neighborhood, but I do remember buying a knish off the cart from the "knish man" on my way back to school after lunch. I'd sprinkle it liberally with salt from the shaker and I'd make it last until the schoolyard bell rang, because back in those days we dared not bring food into school with us.

              1. re: sasha1

                Absoslutely! It was Hirsch's and it was near Brighton 4th St. I grew up walking distance from there and my dad still lives in the area. They had the best kasha knishes I ever had. Much better than Mrs. Stahl's on the Avenue (Brighton Beach Avenue to outsiders).

                Hirsch's sat empty for years. Now all the Boardwalk restaurants are Russian. Change - embrace it or die.

                Tough to get a decent knish anymore and I cannot recommend Yonah Schimmel. Most delis now microwave their potato knishes. If I wanted a handful of lukewarm mushy mashed potatoes, that's what I'd order. If you don't griddle it, I don't want it.

              2. Were you thinking of Mrs. Stahl's Knishes? They've been in Brighton Beach for a long time (since 1935.) There are recipes on the web that claim to be clones of Mrs. Stahl's knish recipe, but I have no idea how accurate they are.

                1 Reply
                1. re: Nancy Berry

                  mrs stahls is dead and gone. it is i think a dunkin donuts today.

                2. I found another possibility. According to http://www.coneyisland.com/cgi-bin/ya...
                  there was also a knish place called Shatzkin's in Brighton Beach.

                  2 Replies
                  1. re: Nancy Berry

                    Shatzkin's was a very bad chain. I genuinely hope they're finally out of business.

                    1. re: Nancy Berry

                      doesnt exist any more to the best of my knowlege G!!

                    2. Cherry, Cheese ? I think you are talking about blintzes, not knishes.

                      Steve

                      P.S. You might wan't to ask for opinions in the Kosher forum.

                      P.P.S. Yonah Schmimmel are some of the best Knishes I've ever had.

                      3 Replies
                        1. re: shauben2007

                          I have been to that knish place and cherry cheese was available. It has been over 30 years but I do remember the knishes. My sister who was living in Brighton Beach at the time took me there when I came to visit. She went for cherry cheese I always liked potato.

                          1. re: shauben2007

                            when mrs stahls was in business, they sold dessert knishes with cheese/fruit filling.

                          2. Yonah Schimmel - http://www.knishery.com

                            Flavors:
                            Potato
                            Kasha
                            Red Cabbage
                            Spinach
                            Mushroom
                            Sweet Potato
                            Vegetable
                            Broccoli

                            http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Blintz
                            http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Knish

                            Hope this helps,
                            Steve

                              1. I grew up on Gabila knishes so don't know if this helps, but I like to get the plain ones, cut them in half and toast, then I put cheese inside to melt and make a sandwich. They're easy to mailorder, one place I know is foodsofnewyork.com (sorry my cut and paste isn't working for some reason) and they shouldn't cost more than $15 or 20 for a box of 30 (although I guess there's shipping involved). They're square so don't know if you're looking for a specific shape. My sister in San Diego has to have some every once in a while or she'll waste away!

                                2 Replies
                                1. re: coll

                                  Yikes! Sorry, but you are way off - tasteofnewyork.com sells 30 gabilla's knishes for $85! That's out of my league. I got all excited when you said $15 or $20 - where did you get that price? I'd really be interested if you could give another, cheaper source or did I miss something on the website - they said that $85 price was actually a $4 off discount too. OY!!!

                                  1. re: niki rothman

                                    I guess that's what they sell them for to the locals, sorry. I guess they figure they can get whatever they want from people that can't get them anywhere else! Hope that includes shipping at least, they probably overnight it. Gee, even the grocery stores around here sell them 3 for $1. I buy cases wholesale for my sister, and it's definitely under $20. But then again I have to fly out there to give them to her....

                                2. Yonah Shimmels are horrible! If you didn't like them once I say don't try them again. Also Mrs Stahls is out of business. I like Gabilla, and I've seen them in the frozen section of the supermarket, but they are not transcendent and I dont think they are what you are looking for since they are not doughy outside (more crusty). My rec: knish nosh http://www.knishnosh.com/ . Their knishes are delicious.

                                  1 Reply
                                  1. re: Produce Addict

                                    Unless I'm misreading their order page Knishnosh is $2.50 oer knish. That's too much. Also, I notice theyy are the rpound ones with the thin crust. Actually, I've got to admit I presfer the old school push cart style square knishes that must weigh a pound each. You usually squirt ballpark yellow mustard on them - Ummm....nice and geasy! Now, that brings back fond memories of a quick NYC sidewalk nosh! Does anybody know where to order those square brick style potato knishes with the heavy greasy thick crust?

                                  2. I believe shauben is right. I lived a block from Yonah Shimmel for 15 years, and they had no sweet knishes: only blintzes were made with cherry or other fruit filling, and are a different shape. THeir round knishes are baked, and other square knishes with the crispy coating are all deep fried. I always loved their knishes: a prefect snack on a cold day! And the lox and herring and smoked fish at Russ and Daughters down the street are to die for... Ahh, I miss the Lower East Side...

                                    1. Mrs. Stahls were the best and most famous Brooklyn knishes, and better than Yonah Schimmels.

                                      1. I don't think it's any cheaper but Carnegie will freeze-pack food and ship it, and I tried this with their knishes and they come back to life wonderfully after a few minutes in the oven.

                                        1. I grew up in Sunset Park and Sheepshead Bay, Brooklyn and now live in the Far NW suburbs of Chicago. While I can certainly get a decent version of a Knish from Max & Bennie's here, I long for the taste of a Shatzkin's Knish. I remember as a child in the sixties we used to buy them from a walking/hawking vendor on the beach @ Brighton Beach. They developed into a chain and began serving a variety of Knishes from stores in the King's Plaza Mall in Flatbush and there was one on Knapp St. in Sheepshead Baynear the Belt Parkway; there may have been other locations. I would love to hear from anyone who has any idea whether any Shatzkin's still survive OR any outfits selling a similar style knish.; perhaps even a decent recipe on-line.

                                          1 Reply
                                          1. re: deanmc430

                                            I, too, was a fan of Shatzkin's! Loved to buy a knish and a soda on the beach. I liked Mrs. Stahl's for second place, especially once Shatzkin's was gone. Yonah Schimmel's are OK, but just the potato, and Knish Nosh will also do. But I am here in knish-less Southern Oregon.

                                          2. I think knishes are the kind of comfort food that you need to grow up with, and only that specific knish - no other - will satisfy a craving.

                                            Shatzkin's sold knishes on the boardwalk, though they eventually opened stores. The other knish place was Mrs Stahls, but they were on Brighton Beach Av near Coney Island Av, under the el curve.

                                            Gabila's knishes were sold everywhere and seem to be widely available today. I've even seen them in a few Toronto supermarkets. I'd describe the Gabila's knish of my childhood as a large deep fried square of cardboard with a pound of potato inside. It was instant heartburn for 10 cents, but no need for dinner that day. Others posting here like them, which is my point. If Gabila's aren't the ones you miss, they'll likely make you gag.

                                            Judging from their website, knish nosh knishes haven't changed. I used to love these, though I haven't had one since the seventies. Again, though, it's all about what YOU are missing.

                                            I make wonderful potato knishes with lots of caramelized onion wrapped in a puff pastry shell. They don't resemble anything from my childhood, though, and I still crave the potato knishes from a little store on Church Av in East Flatbush (which closed some time in the sixties).

                                            I can't point you to a specific recipe, but if you're willing to make your own, go crazy at

                                            http://www.jewish-food.org/recipes/kn...

                                            1 Reply
                                            1. re: embee

                                              there was a post about a newark deli with supposedly good knishes but dont have the name handy.

                                            2. Supposedly the Knish Nosh in Queens is very good-I haven't tried them, but plan to. They do mail order, too.

                                              1. So what's the verdict? Where are the best mail order knishes? I grew up in NY but left when I was a teenager. I miss the knishes. I went back last week with my daughter for a few days and we had knishes at Ben's on 37th. They were perfect! Just how I remember them. Now I want to mail order some. Does anyone know who's knishes ben's sells?

                                                1. Ok, I live upstate ny now but work down in NYC. Yonah Schimmel - STINKS PERIOD.
                                                  My grandmother lived in brooklyn and there use to be a knish shop across the street. Cheese, Cherry Cheese, Potato & Onion, Kasha. They were the best. They were made in long logs and cut into slices. There are a few good recipies on line. They old time ones have a lot of oil in them and water. For some reason the oil in the crust makes it bake into a crisp crust.

                                                  12 tbsp oil
                                                  12 tbsp water
                                                  2 cups flour

                                                  Mix all together and form into round ball. Let rest for a few minutes.
                                                  Then roll into long rectangle. Fill with mashed potatoes and onions. This is for 10 LBs of potatoes and 6 to 7 onions. Makes about 80 slices. Make in 2 to 3 batches so they fit on cookie sheet. Bake at 350 and watch for the pastry to brown. About 45 minutes.

                                                  For the filling just make some mashed potato and put in some well cooked onions ( very brown ) and a good amount of salt and pepper. Roll out the dough and fill in a log and bake. You must cut them out of the oven before the crust get hard. The slices needs mto be at least 1" thick. You can also slice them and then cook them.

                                                  1 Reply
                                                  1. re: Jcohen552003

                                                    Thanks, I never thought to make them myself.

                                                  2. Maybe it was Jerry's Knishes. They were in Far Rockaway on the boardwalk in the 60''s and had wonderful fruit-filled knishes. Oh, how I wish I could get knishes like those again. They might have been in Bighton Beach too.

                                                    Why are the knishes available today so awful?

                                                    1. Was that Gerrys/Jerrys knishes? They were outstanding. Loved getting them still warm from the oven.

                                                      1. In Brighton Beach near 4th on the Boardwalk was Hirsch's Knishes- they were to die for! My aunt and uncle lived on Brighton 4th and I would especially spend the summers lying on the beach, enjoying the Tuesday night fireworks, eating knishes and pizza. I wish I could find out if this recipe or company ever continued - especially after the Russians took over. Around 10 years ago I went to Brighton and Coney Island - Brighton was nothing like I remembered. If anyone knows where I can get a good knish let me know.

                                                          1. try zabars. knish nosh in queens. keep in mind it is hard enough getting a decent knish in person in NYC.

                                                            11 Replies
                                                            1. re: MarkG

                                                              It cracks me up that people are adding to this list 8 years later. The knishes were a pregnancy craving and the kid is starting 3rd grade in a month.

                                                              But speaking of knishes, we're actually spending a couple of days in NYC soon, so where should we go for the best knish in person? I'm partial to potato, meat, and probably the sweet cheese. There is no way I am going to Yonah Schmimmel - huge disappointment from before...

                                                              1. re: sasha1

                                                                That I know of today..Gabilia's has the market pretty much cornered. Almost all restaurants and markets sell their products, which are pretty good. Their factory is in Copaige , Long Island, and they do not have a walk up factory store.
                                                                The next best for me is Knish Nosh in Rego Park/Forest Hills....Check both of their websites.

                                                                1. re: PHREDDY

                                                                  Proof being, when Gabila had a fire about a year ago, knishes disappeared from most of the planet for about six months. It was a major crisis.

                                                                  1. re: coll

                                                                    Yes...but they are now back in business...a little grease fire!

                                                                    1. re: PHREDDY

                                                                      I think it was actually the machine itself that caught fire, but all the same in the end.

                                                                      1. re: coll

                                                                        It really is a shame that they don't have a retail on premise store, where one could go and load up!

                                                                        1. re: PHREDDY

                                                                          There are a number of food wholesalers in the general area that you could swing by for a case (that's 30 of them!) Probably local regulations for retailing keeps them from bothering, they're not hurting for business!

                                                                          1. re: coll

                                                                            I have gotten them at Jetro, in the past..but square only..

                                                                            1. re: PHREDDY

                                                                              If Gabila makes round ones (I vaguely think they might make some other flavors), they are not the plain square potato that they are famed for. Square is where it's at!

                                                                2. re: sasha1

                                                                  just got back from NYC...had a great cherry cheese knish at Yonah Schimmel...the potato was a major disappointment!

                                                                  1. re: sasha1

                                                                    What you had ordered from yohanna's before was not their typical knish, those sweet cheese ones are more like a danish pastry.
                                                                    Their savory ones are fine, the mushroom is good warm with salt and brown mustard.

                                                                    Katz serves the Gabila's knish if you want to stay in manhattan

                                                                3. Mrs Stahl was the name, and it was on BBA nr beach 7

                                                                  1 Reply
                                                                  1. Well, I have been on this thread for a couple of years now and I have yet to have a knish delivered to my door in CA!

                                                                    6 Replies
                                                                    1. re: aviator

                                                                      Have you ordered any, or just waiting for the gods of knish to magically bless you? ;-)

                                                                      1. re: coll

                                                                        coll - with Faith, Providence will allow.

                                                                        do knishes really ship all that well?

                                                                        1. re: hill food

                                                                          They're usually stocked frozen so they can overnight them with an ice pack.

                                                                          1. re: coll

                                                                            hmm, I've tried frozen siu mai and har gow, frozen pelmeni, frozen ravioli and none ever really hold up well.

                                                                            think I'll hold on to my 'ideal memory' and wait for my next shot at fresh.

                                                                            1. re: hill food

                                                                              That's always the best choice...but most delis and run of the mill places etc buy Gabila frozen from their supplier, just so you know: No extra charge for thawing them out for you!

                                                                    2. Not sure of name but if your facing Russ Daughter there is a store to the right about a block. Great Knishes closed on sabbath

                                                                      1 Reply