“The Hot Bread Kitchen Cookbook” shares the delicious baked recipes of Hot Bread Kitchen goods that I can’t live without, including Moroccan m’smen, Middle Eastern lavash, Mexican tortillas, Jewish onion bialys and challah. The book also tells the story of how founder Jessamyn Waldman Rodriguez started Hot Bread Kitchen, a non-profit women’s world baking enterprise that produces organic ethnic breads that reflect the diversity of the immigrant women in New York, and also gives these women the opportunity to learn job skills and grow their business acumen. Since 2007, when Hot Bread Kitchen launched in Jessamyn’s kitchen, the bakery has become a success, and has grown to include a home at La Marqueta. About four years ago, Jessamyn also launched HBK Incubates, an incubator kitchen program to help small food start-ups. Everything about HBK, from its mission to its products, bares the heart and soul of Jessamyn and her team of bakers, who are helping to make this world a better place, producing delicious baked goods along the way. You’ll find great satisfaction in each recipe in this book, which is ultimately about sharing, baking and community. I found great joy in making the stuffed m’smens, and realized that it would be even more fun to do with family and friends.
Reprinted from The Hot Bread Kitchen Cookbook. Copyright© 2015 by Jessamyn Waldman Rodriguez. Photos copyright© by Jennifer May and Evan Sung. Published by Clarkson Potter, an imprint of Penguin Random House, LLC.
I first tasted m’smen traveling in Morocco. I bought a piece of the tender, buttery, flaky bread drizzled with honey from a street vendor. It was an exquisite culinary experience. So years later, in 2009, when the Arab American Family Support Center referred three strong candidates from Morocco to our training program, my first question was, “Do you know how to make m’smen?” One of the three, Bouchra, taught us how to make the bread and, much to her surprise, it quickly became one of our best sellers. M’smen, also called rghaif or melloui, is often served with Fresh Mint Tea (page 33), but we hear from our customers that they use it for all sorts of things, including making tuna sandwiches. You can mix and divide the dough up to 8 hours before shaping, allowing ample time for the gluten to relax.