Kosher KApers Volume 06

Kosher KApers #6

Tuesday February 8, 2011

Well, it’s back-to-school for all the Jewish kids and no excuses for mums and dads … time to dust off that sand from our glorious coastal beaches and get back to work.

In this edition, we are shining our proverbial kosher spotlight on Lewis’ Continental Kitchen. You see, this is the week where the crew at Lewis’ have their party hats on – this week is the 40th birthday of the opening of their well-known Curlewis Street shop (the family had also been involved in kosher catering for many years prior). This summer has seen the fourth generation come on board and all are celebrating this milestone. Judith Lewis recalls fondly that on their opening day, this was "such a new and innovative gastronomic sensation for the local community, it literally shut down surrounding streets - police were called to control the crowds and they even had to switch off traffic lights!"

Lewis’ is a valued fixture in Sydney’s kashrut landscape – from the utterly delicious honey cake perfected by Judith’s late husband, Malcolm; to the airline and hospital cuisine, started in 1991 and 1992 respectively; to venue and hotel meals and a welcoming café on site. In this health conscious epoch, you should know that Lewis’ food has no preservatives and is always fresh. This includes Premium, Business or First Class kosher airline meals when travelling Qantas. The other meals are prepared fresh under HAACP control and then frozen for ongoing use (each meal has use-by date indicated). If you have a dietary restriction, Lewis’ will cater sodium-free, sugar-free, gluten-free… whatever-free Smiley.

In addition to providing the community with tasty kosher fare, did you know that Lewis’ make their own sauces. In response to customer needs, they are in the process of converting all sauces to gluten-free as a standard. that is easy to navigate and order online. Mazel tov to the Lewis’ Team - till 120!Smiley

Judith understands that the kosher palate has changed over the last four decades, "today we have access to a phenomenal range of ingredients and a huge variety of foods. I remember the first time we were able to use a non-dairy creamer – now that was an amazing leap for kosher cuisine!" Lewis’ have also revolutionised keeping kosher at conferences. Once upon a time in Sydney, it was truly awkward for someone who kept kosher to attend a conference and be the only person at the event not eating the set menu. Not anymore. Lewis’ proudly make kosher meals that ‘menu-match’ - made and delivered on the same day.

Consider popping in or taking the kids or grandkids down to Lewis’ café – the burgers are all made-to-order and the meat in the burgers contains no fillers. There is an impressive range – sourdough rolls, lamb, prime beef, hot dogs, chicken breast fillet, salmon fillet, and don’t forget many salad options. Last year, Lewis’ launched a fantastic website (

And now, let’s dive into kosher product news: you asked us about the kashrut status of the vegetarian brand ‘Quorn’. This is a well-established market leader in the UK and was introduced to the Australian market in 2010. The London Beth Din has approved Quorn’s meat-free, soy-free mince (see image below) and we are thrilled to let you know that as of today it is now included in our Kosher Directory. Quorn Mince is made with mycoprotein, an ingredient which is low in fat and high in dietary fibre, try it as a substitute to beef mince for your spaghetti bolognese – see what all the fuss in the UK is about! It is available in the vegetarian product section of the frozen food aisles in both Coles and Woolworths supermarkets. At this stage, no other Quorn products have been approved.

Many Shabbat meals feature summer salads with tasty dressings. Well, there is a new flavour by Thisit. Kosher consumers can now enjoy zesty Lemon & Herb All Natural salad dressing; just remember the bottle features our KA hechsher.

Proteco is a Queensland-based company that specialises in unrefined cold-pressed oils and natural nut spreads. Our kosher product guide includes a selection of eight high quality kosher, mehadrin oils that are cholesterol-free: apricot kernel, avocado, flaxseed, macadamia, olive, peanut and safflower. As of this week, we are pleased to advise that we have now certified Proteco’s Pressed Purity crunchy peanut butter and smooth peanut butter (see images below), available in health food and organic stores and found in IGA supermarkets in New South Wales and Queensland.

"We are so proud of our products which are natural and appeal to people conscious of health and well-being. Made with Australian-grown Kingaroy peanuts there is no salt, sugar or added fat and we are delighted for Aussie kosher consumers to sample our 375gm jars of natural peanut butter," said Josh Gadischke, Proteco director.

There is a new kosher cereal – it is Coles Bran Start and requires ‘942062’ above the barcode – this is a supplier code that indicates the origin of the manufacturing plant that we have checked. Are you a sweet tooth? (Let’s be honest, who isn’t?) Feel like a biscuit with your cuppa? Try Suncoast Gold Macadamia Shortbread (must have logo-dairy), found in Franklins and Coles supermarkets, and health food stores.

You have told us how much you love the large selection available at The Nut Shop, located in Waterloo. We are so happy to inform you of four new kosher products just added to the already impressive and varied list: Caramel Block and Pecan Caramel Fudge (both dairy) and Savoury Herb Macadamia and Dried Mixed Peel (both pareve).

You queried whether Gelatissimo shops around town featuring Italian gelato were kosher. We have investigated and can tell you they are not kosher, as gelatine is an ingredient used in their products and therefore can’t be endorsed.

Finally, we wanted to give you one more inside scoop! Did you know that the waffle and wafer cones sold at Movenpick, Ben & Jerry’s and Baskin- Robbins are all kosher? They are all sourced from the Scandinavian Cone Company based in Northern New South Wales which has a KA hechsher. So scoot on down to Movenpick on Bondi Beach (ice cream certified by the Swiss Kashrut Board, the KA monitors the store), Ben & Jerry’s at Manly or Broadway , or any of the 13 Baskin-Robbins stores in Sydney alone! Of course, double check the kashrut status of the flavours you choose and then crunch away…You wanna hear something fun? Ben & Jerry’s have just launched a free iphone application that allows you to locate a Scoop Shop anywhere in the world.

We are listening to your questions and look forward to answering more on your behalf. Don’t be shy, ask and we shall investigate!

The KA Team

Images from Lewis, Proteco & Quorn