Roots and Boots

Ep. 140: Jewish food historian Michael Twitty, ‘Soccer Style’ author Simon Doonan, and Molly Yeh on her new Food Network show, ‘Girl Meets Farm’

June 21, 2018

This week on Unorthodox, we’re all about food and futbol.

First, fan favorite Molly Yeh calls in to tell us about her new Food Network show, Girl Meets Farm, which premieres June 24. (Here she is telling Food Network about her “favorite podcast of all time” and making us blush.)

Our Jewish guest is writer and food historian Michael Twitty, whose book The Cooking Gene: A Journey Through African American Culinary History in the Old South, won two James Beard Awards this year. He describes being told that a book by a black, Jewish, gay man would never succeed (and how it felt to prove those people wrong!), explains how most of the foods we eat today originated in Africa, and tells us why Jewish food is far more than just gefilte fish

Our Gentile of the Week is Simon Doonan, creative ambassador-at-large for Barneys New York, whose latest book, Soccer Style: The Magic and Madness, is out in time for World Cup madness. He returns to the show to dish on life with his Jewish husband Jonathan Adler, tell us what to look out for in this summer’s World Cup, and explain why, despite being British, he calls it soccer, not football.

Our next live show is July 18 at the JCC Manhattan, and it’s an episode devoted to the question, “Is it OK to say ‘JAP’”? Jill Kargman of Odd Mom Out joins us to screen a short film we made about the persistence of the Jewish American Princess stereotype. We’ll follow with a lively discussion with guests including Judith Rosenbaum of the Jewish Women’s Archive and Bat Sheva Marcus of the Jewish Orthodox Feminist Alliance, audience questions, and much more. Get your tickets here.

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This episode is sponsored by Harry’s. Get a free trial shave set when you sign up at

Unorthodox is a smart, fresh, fun weekly take on Jewish news and culture hosted by Mark Oppenheimer, Stephanie Butnick, and Liel Leibovitz. You can listen to individual episodes here or subscribe on iTunes.

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