'I Could Nosh' author Jake Cohen shares 2 recipes from new cookbook

The "Jew-ish" cookbook author shared dishes from his second title.

September 14, 2023, 7:52 AM

Bestselling author Jake Cohen is back with a highly anticipated follow-up to his hit cookbook "Jew-ish".

Cohen's newest collection of recipes revamps some classic Jewish recipes for every day bites between meals.

PHOTO: The cover of Jake Cohen's new cookbook.
The cover of Jake Cohen's new cookbook.
Harvest/HarperCollins Publishers

He joined "Good Morning America" in tandem with the publication of "I Could Nosh" and ahead of the High Holiday, Rosh Hashanah equipped with two new recipes from his second title.

"Traditionally Rosh Hashanah is all about sweet things. We love edible symbolism. So apples, honey, round challah for the circle of the year," he explained. "Today we're making some recipes from my book that are really rooted in everyday nostalgia."

Check out his twist on the classic tomato and grilled cheese combo below that adds a delicious North African spice.

"I'm a big believer in just taking my recipes and running with them," Cohen said.

Harissa Tomato Bisque with Challah Grilled Cheese

PHOTO: Harissa tomato bisque with challah grilled cheese.
Harissa tomato bisque with challah grilled cheese.
Matt Taylor-Gross

Serves 4
Prep time: 25 minutes
Cook time: 55 minutes

"Ok, we're going to pop a famotidine and a Lactaid and just try to enjoy one of my favorite soup-sammy combos of all time. The challah grilled cheese was born long before this soup, as a super cozy way to use up leftover challah. The sweetness from the bread just pairs so well with the sharpness of the cheddar. It's no surprise I wanted to pair it with a bowl of creamy tomato soup for dipping," Cohen writes in the book alongside this recipe.

"To add an extra layer to this classic, I roast the tomatoes and aromatics with harissa paste -- a powerhouse North African spiced pepper paste -- for a whisper of smoky heat that permeates every bowl. Every brand of harissa is different, with varying levels of heat and spices, so start to play with which one fits your taste. More importantly, try to get ripe tomatoes! If your haul is a little less juicy, you may need to thin your soup out with a touch of water."

For the soup
3 pounds ripe plum tomatoes, quartered
1/4 cup harissa
1/4 cup minced fresh basil
2 tablespoons olive oil
1 tablespoon honey
4 garlic cloves, smashed and peeled
1 medium red onion, finely chopped
Kosher salt and freshly ground black pepper
1/2 cup heavy cream

For the grilled cheese
Eight 1/2-inch-thick slices challah
8 ounces sharp cheddar cheese, coarsely grated
4 tablespoons butter


1. Make the soup: Preheat the oven to 400 F.

2. On a sheet pan, toss together the tomatoes, harissa, basil, olive oil, honey, garlic, onion and 2 heavy pinches each of salt and pepper to combine. Roast for 40 minutes, until the tomatoes are softened and caramelized. Transfer to a high-speed blender along with the heavy cream and puree until smooth. Taste and adjust the seasoning with salt and pepper. Keep warm either in the blender with the lid on or by transferring it to a medium saucepan over low heat.

3. Make the grilled cheese: On a cutting board, lay out 4 of the challah slices. Divide the grated cheddar among them, then sandwich with the remaining 4 challah slices.

4. In a large nonstick skillet, melt 2 tablespoons of the butter over medium heat. Add 2 of the sandwiches and cook, pressing firmly with a spatula and flipping once, until golden brown and the cheese has melted, about 3 minutes per side. Transfer to the cutting board and repeat with the remaining 2 tablespoons of butter and sandwiches. Slice each grilled cheese in half diagonally.

5. Divide the soup among four bowls and serve each with a grilled cheese on the side.

Nanny's Apple Cake

PHOTO: Jake Cohen's new dessert recipe for his nanny's apple cake.
Jake Cohen's new dessert recipe for his nanny's apple cake.
Matt Taylor-Gross

Makes: One 9-inch cake
Prep time: 25 minutes, plus cooling time
Cook time: 45 minutes

"Meet the almighty half-cake, half-pie hybrid that started it all. It was the first family recipe I learned how to make. It was the first Jewish recipe I had my byline attached to. It was the first time I felt like I was truly representing myself in the food world. I shared a version of it in my last book, transformed into plum crumb bars, but I've spent so much of the last few years exploring old family recipes that I feel like the original deserves its moment.

"After fleeing Europe during the Holocaust, part of my family landed in Cuba, rebuilding their lives before having to leave it all again before the revolution. As my aunt Susi tells it, her mother (my great-grandmother, known in our family as Nanny) got this recipe from one of her friends in the vibrant Jewish community that popped up in Havana after the war. It's made of a cookie-like dough used as both a press-in crust and pinched crumble topping that sandwiches a heap of spiced apples. And for all the Jewish mothers obsessed with freezing everything, my mother loves to individually wrap leftover slices and keep them in the freezer to pull out whenever a craving hits!"

For the dough
2 cups (270 grams) all-purpose flour
1 cup (200 grams) granulated sugar
1 teaspoon baking powder
1 teaspoon ground cinnamon
1/2 teaspoon kosher salt
8 ounces (2 sticks) unsalted butter or vegan butter, cold and cubed
1 large egg, lightly beaten

For the filling
2 pounds Honeycrisp apples, peeled, cored and cut into 1-inch pieces
1/4 cup chopped walnuts
1/4 cup raisins
1/4 cup (34 grams) all-purpose flour
1/4 cup (53 grams) packed light brown sugar
2 tablespoons freshly squeezed lemon juice
2 teaspoons finely grated fresh ginger (optional)
1/2 teaspoon kosher salt


1. Preheat the oven to 350 F. Set an oven rack in the center of the oven.

2. Make the dough: In a food processor, add the flour, granulated sugar, baking powder, cinnamon, and salt and pulse to combine. Add the butter and pulse until it forms pea-sized crumbles. Add the egg and pulse until the dough just comes together.

3. Press two-thirds of the dough into a 9-inch pie dish across the bottom and up the sides.

4. Make the filling: In a medium bowl, toss together the apples, walnuts, raisins, flour, brown sugar, lemon juice, ginger (if using) and salt to combine.

5. Pour the filling over the pressed dough, then pinch off small pieces of the remaining one-third dough and scatter them over the top of the filling.

6. Place the pie dish on a sheet pan and bake on the center rack for 45 minutes, until golden brown and bubbling. Let cool completely before slicing and serving.

Reprinted with permission From "I COULD NOSH" by Jake Cohen. Copyright © 2023 by Jake Cohen. Reprinted by permission of Harvest, an imprint of HarperCollins Publishers.