Ruth Madoff, the Wife of Ponzi Scheme Artist Bernie Madoff, Was a Cookbook Editor [scandal]

We were shocked when we read that Ruth Madoff, wife of grade-A shitbucket Bernie Madoff, was a cookbook editor, but then we paused — why not? There's no real reason a love for gourmet food can't coexist with a penchant for securities fraud.

Along with co-authors Idee Schoenheim, who's done nothing else Google-worthy, and noted wine expert Karen MacNeil, Ruth Madoff gave the world Great Chefs of America Cook Kosher (available on Amazon), a 1996 collection of halacha-friendly recipes from then-big-ticket restaurants like LA's Campanile, Philly's Le Bec Fin, and San Francisco's now-closed China Moon Cafe, plus still-glowing star chefs like Daniel Boulud, Bobby Flay, Emeril Lagasse, David Burke, and Wolfgang Puck.

Despite the book's pedigree, it didn't make much of a splash — the publisher, Vital Media Enterprises, was a one-off Jewish-interest outfit without too much reach, and Great American Chefs doesn't show up online on any of the myriad roundups of beloved kosher cookbooks. All four of the user reviews of the book on Amazon were left within the last week, and most rely heavily on cookbook/"cooking the books" puns.

The Forward notes that in a press release for 'Great Chefs,' Ruth's co-author Idee Schoenheimer "explained how Ruth tested the so-called healthy dishes and disqualified those made with cream: 'Ruth was our conscience.'"

Lest you be concerned that Ruth profited on the backs of these chefs, take consolation in the fact that the book's sales were earmarked to benefit the Jewish National Fund. But, har har, there's no word on whether the funds actually paid out.

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