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Westminster Synagogue Symposium: An evening with Claudia Roden

Thursday, 18 April, 2024 10 Nisan 5784

7:00 PM - 10:00 PM

We invite you to join the next instalment of our Westminster Synagogue Symposium series, where we invite speakers from both within and outside our community to explore a variety of topics.

We are honoured to have welcomed many esteemed speakers in previous symposia, including Dame Margeret Hodge, James Harding and Lord John Mann. The trend continues with our April Symposium: An Evening with Claudia Roden. 

Claudia Roden single-handedly opened up the world of Sephardic and Mizrahi Jewish foods to chefs, food critics, and home cooks across the globe, providing a new portal into understanding and experiencing Jewish food and culture. We are delighted that she will join us, in conversation with member Amanda Rubin. Amanda is a documentary Producer and Director,  who has made films on Arts, History, Travel and Culture for multiple UK and US broadcasters and platforms.

We'll be starting at 7:00pm with the In Conversation and Q&As, and will of course then invite you downstairs to enjoy some delicious food together where we will also have copies of The Book of Jewish Food to purchase, which Claudia will also be signing. A celebration of roots, of generations past, of vanished worlds and identity, The Book of Jewish Food is a beautiful book for the reader and the cook.

'No-one will ever produce a richer, or more satisfying feast of the Jewish experience' Simon Schama

'The Book of Jewish Food has done more than simply compile a cookbook of Jewish recipes--she has produced a history of the Diaspora, told through its cuisine' Kyle Dean

'One can't imagine a better food book than this, ever: for the reader and the cook' Nigella Lawson, Vogue

If you wish to join us, please do register below by 6:00pm Wednesday 17th April

We may be able to stream the event for those that cannot join in person, and if you are interested in this option, or have any issues booking in, please get in touch. 


Photo Credit: Stuart Simpson

 Born to a Syrian-Jewish family in Cairo, Claudia Roden studied in London to become a painter before becoming engrossed by the stories and recipes of Britain’s expatriate Egyptian community. She began researching the first of dozens of award-winning books, interviewing relatives and collecting stories and recipes at Friday night dinners at her parents’ home in London. She began teaching Middle Eastern cooking from her home, hosting the BBC series Claudia Roden’s Mediterranean Cookery and becoming a prolific food journalist. Her cookbooks introduced new cooking styles and flavours to those unfamiliar with the food and culture of the Middle East and North Africa. Realizing the importance of giving context to the recipes, she included food and cultural history, geography, genealogy, poetry, jokes, and holiday rituals in her books.
Roden is the ultimate resource on the subject of Jewish food and Middle Eastern cooking. She is best known for two publications: A Book of Middle Eastern Food, a cookbook first published in 1968 that remains an important influence on top chefs around the world, and The Book of Jewish Food: An Odyssey from Samarkand and Vilna to the present day, a kind of bible of Jewish cooking that provides a detailed history of Jewish holidays and recipes from the diaspora.

Claudia received a CBE for “services to culinary culture” in 2021 and a Doctorate from the University of London in 2023 as well as earlier Honorary degrees from UCL and SOAS.


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Sun, 26 May 2024 18 Iyar 5784