Kaufman’s Kitchen

Kaufman's Kitchen

Recipes That Changed How America Eats

A lovely and exciting cookbook, “The Immigrant Cookbook: Recipes that Make America Great,” with recipes collected and edited by Leyla Moushabeck, was released recently by Interlink Publishing.

Most of us have ancestors or relatives from many different ethnic groups who came to America looking for a haven; they were people seeking refuge from political or economic troubles, or they were simply in search of adventure and prosperity in a land where opportunity is promised to all. They came from all over the world and bought valuable gifts—not the least of which were recipes from their homelands that helped transform the way America eats.

This cookbook offers a culinary celebration of the many ethnic groups that have contributed to our vibrant food culture. It features mouthwatering recipes by renowned immigrant-American chefs from Africa, Asia, Latin America, the Caribbean, the Middle East and Europe.

Eighty top immigrant chefs, descendants of immigrants, and food writers have each contributed a recipe to this beautifully photographed cookbook. Included are recipes from José Andrés, Enrique Olvera, Dominique Ansel, Martin Yan, Laila el-Haddad and Ana Sortun.

Interlink is donating a minimum of $5 from the sale of each book to support the ACLU’s Immigrants’ Rights Project. To find out more, visit www.immigrantcookbook.net.

Chicken with Charmoula

From (c) Mourad Lahlou, origin Morocco

“Before the development of the poultry industry in Morocco in the 1970s, it was customary to go to the market and pick out a live chicken. The chickens were large and the meat really needed to be soaked and braised or it would be extremely tough. The breed of chicken, a beldi, is equivalent to some of the free-range artisan chickens sold in the US. And this is still what I prefer to use, pure poultry raised by hardworking farmers who take pride in their product. Though it is not as critical in a recipe like this, which marinates the meat in spices and herbs, I still encourage you to seek out the purest ingredients available to you,” wrote Mourad Lahou.

“Look for preserved lemons in specialty and Middle Eastern grocery stores. The chicken will need to marinate overnight or for at least 6 hours, and you will need 6 long skewers for this recipe (if you use wooden skewers, you will need to soak them for at least 20 minutes).”

4 boneless, skinless chicken breasts
(about 2 lb/1 kg in total)


2 tablespoons sweet paprika
2 teaspoons ground cumin
½ teaspoon ground ginger
2 tablespoons coarsely chopped thyme
1 tablespoon coarsely chopped flat-leaf parsley
2 teaspoons coarsely chopped cilantro
2 teaspoons finely chopped garlic cloves
1 cup extra virgin olive oil
freshly ground black pepper


¼ cup plus 2 teaspoons extra virgin olive oil
2 teaspoons freshly squeezed lime juice
1½ tablespoons finely chopped flat-leaf parsley
2½ tablespoons diced preserved lemon

Stir all of the charmoula ingredients together in a large bowl.

Trim the chicken breasts of any excess fat and remove the tenders. Cut the breasts and tenders into 1½-inch pieces. Add the chicken pieces to the charmoula, turning to coat them, and refrigerate overnight, or for at least 6 hours.

Soak 6 long wooden skewers in cold water to cover for at least 20 minutes (or plan on using metal ones).

Next, make the vinaigrette: In a bowl, whisk the olive oil, lime juice and parsley together. Stir in the preserved lemon and set aside.

Preheat a grill to medium-high heat, or heat a large cast-iron grill pan over medium-high heat on your stovetop.

Lift one-quarter of the chicken pieces from the marinade, letting any excess stay in the bowl. Skewer the pieces, leaving about ¼ inch between them, so the chicken will cook evenly. Repeat with the remaining chicken and skewers. Season lightly with salt and pepper.

Lay the skewers on the hot grill or grill pan and don’t move until well marked, 2 to 3 minutes. Rotate the skewers 90 degrees and grill to mark with a crosshatch pattern, about 1 minute more. Turn the skewers over and grill until the chicken is cooked through, about 2 minutes.

Carefully remove the chicken from the skewers to a bowl. Add just enough of the vinaigrette to lightly coat the meat, and serve with any remaining vinaigrette on the side.

Find more of Sheilah’s culinary treats at www.cookingwithsheilah.com.