Author: Deborah R. Prinz
Publisher: Jewish Lights Publishing
The next time you pick up a piece of chocolate, consider that you are partaking in an aspect of Jewish history. Explore the surprising Jewish connections to chocolate in this historical and gastronomic adventure through cultures, countries, centuries and religions. Rabbi Deborah Prinz draws from her world travels on the trail of chocolate to enchant chocolate lovers of all backgrounds as she unwraps tales of Jews in the early chocolate trade to how Jewish values infuse chocolate today. She shows the intersections of Jews, pre-Columbians, Catholics and Protestants along the chocolate trail and the lasting rituals involving chocolate that the world¿s faith traditions still share. Tasty tidbits include: ¿ Chocolate making in seventeenth-century Amsterdam, home to the largest and wealthiest Jewish community of its time, was known as a special Jewish industry. ¿ Bayonne chocolate makers today advertise that Jews brought chocolate making to France. ¿ Chocolate Hanukkah gelt may have developed from St. Nicholas customs. ¿ Jews pioneered chocolate in North America as successful and well-known American colonial Jewish merchants such as Abraham Lopez and Nathan Simson traded cacao and manufactured chocolate. ¿ A born-again Christian businessman in the Midwest marketed his caramel chocolate bar as a ¿Noshy,¿ after the Yiddish word for ¿snack.¿ ¿ Jewish values of caring for the needy, pursuing economic justice, protecting the environment and promoting sustainability feed into the organic and fair trade chocolate businesses of today.