New Jersey Kosher Restaurant Owner to Compete in ‘Chopped’ Cooking Competition
Chef Shalom Yehudiel, owner of the kosher restaurant The Humble Toast in Teaneck, New Jersey, will compete in an upcoming episode of the “Chopped” cooking competition on the Food Network.
Yehudiel is the first “Chopped” contestant for whom the show had a rabbi come and check the work station and food provided to make sure it was all conducive to cooking a kosher meal, NorthJersey.com reported.
“I’m really proud,” said Yehudiel, who was born in Israel and raised in Bergen County, New Jersey. “When they approached me, I called my rabbi to consult. I run a kosher restaurant, so I just don’t want to say yes if I can’t cook kosher.”
In the cooking competition, four chefs are given a mystery basket containing miscellaneous ingredients that they must cook with in the allotted time. There are three rounds ‐‐ appetizer, entree and dessert ‐‐ and at the end of each round one contestant is eliminated, or “chopped,” by the judges.
The last chef standing wins $10,000.
While the contestants received the same ingredients, Yehudiel’s were all kosher. He said that although kosher-observant chefs had competed on “Chopped” before, they were not able to taste their food before serving it to the judges, since the dishes were not prepared in adherence with kosher practices.
Yehudiel filmed the “Chopped” episode on June 20, 2019. He told NorthJersey.com that his involvement with “Chopped” began when he received an email inviting him to come to Manhattan for an entry interview. He did and waited months to hear back from the show. A team from “Chopped” eventually came to The Humble Toast to film some footage for the show.
The episode will air on Sept. 22 at 9 p.m. ET and feature celebrity chef and frequent “Chopped” judge Amanda Freitag competing against the contestants.
The Humble Toast ‐‐ a modern deli and burger bistro ‐‐ opened in 2018. According to its website, Yehudiel had worked for restaurant concepts around the US, and used his experiences to open The Humble Toast, which cures and smokes its own corned beef and pastrami.