For Mother’s Day, professional chefs are sharing updated takes on favorite family recipes.
Credit: Qi Ai
There’s something so special about mom’s cooking (even if she’s not the best cook in the world); the mix of childhood nostalgia blending in with familiar scents and spices to create a dish that is so much more than the sum of its parts. But there’s something to be said about taking a familiar favorite and giving it your own twist, and chefs are the experts at tweaking recipes. Below, five chefs have shared the stories behind their favorite dishes made by their moms and how they’ve updated them.
Recipe by Lee Wallach, founder and chef of Home Appétit in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania
“Our lamb kofta meatballs are my jazzed up version of the ktzitzot (ground meat patties) that my mom used to make for us all the time as kids,” Wallach said. “She would use beef with lots of herbs and spices and then pan fry them in oil. They were absolutely delicious and we would eat them in handfuls.
“The original ktzitzot recipe she used came from my Israeli grandmother (savta), and she made them for my mom and her siblings. They love to tell stories about how the meatballs would come out of the hot oil and they would eat them right away and burn their hands… and of course, my brother and I did the same thing…