"Jewish Cookbook" Author, Mildred Grosberg Bellin, 1908-2008
Mildred Grosberg Bellin, author of mid-century Jewish cookbook classics "Modern Jewish Meals" and "The Jewish Cookbook" (and my grandmother), died on February 15, 2008, age 99-1/2.
As reported in her obituary, her father Joe Grosberg was a grocery store pioneer (founder of the predecessor company to today's Price Chopper chain). A Phi Beta Kappa graduate of Smith College, she took up cooking as a serious pursuit after getting married, and she ended up writing popular Kosher cookbooks for the next 30 years: "Modern Kosher Meals," "Modern Jewish Meals," and in particular the encyclopedic "The Jewish Cookbook" which in its 1958 edition had "Over 3000 Kosher Recipes for the Jewish Home," including not just traditional Ashkenazi recipes but also recipes from other parts of the Jewish world and "American" recipes adapted where necessary to Kosher requirements. Plus articles for Gourmet and a syndicated column.
She retired from food writing in the 1960s and after my grandfather died, she lived for many years with her family in Tulsa. Her obituary (from the February 20 Tulsa World) is here:
Another interesting article, which discusses the role of food writers (including Mildred Bellin) in the development of American-Jewish culture is here:
I am SO sad to hear this! The red-moireed cover of "The Jewish Cookbook" was something I grew up with! As a child, I'd never seen moiree before, and was always mesmerized with it. And SO many receipes in such a normal-sized book! It was amazing!
It's so sad that Ms. Bellin has died. ( How wonderful it would have been, had she been able to go on TV, with a show called "The Hundred-Year Old Cook". With Ms. Bellin's spunk and knowledgeable mind, she would have broken ALL kinds of stereotypes, about seniorr citizens AND kosher cooking!
My deep condolences to her family....and everyone else who treaures, "The Jewish Cookbook"! )_ :