Joan Kekst (nee Granner), a noted kosher cooking expert and author, passed away peacefully on Oct. 24, 2019. She was 86.
She returned to school when her children were older and received a degree in home economics. She attended La Varenne in Paris and studied the science and chemistry of food with an emphasis on Kashrut. Joan conducted hundreds of classes and lectures on all aspects of a Jewish kitchen. She was editor of the weekly food column in The Cleveland Jewish News for nearly 40 years. Passover Cookery, believed to be the first health kosher Passover cookbook was published in 2000.
Joan was a past president of the Women’s division of the Jewish National Fund and served on numerous boards and committees of organizations including Park Synagogue and the Jewish Community Federation. Joan traveled to Israel more than 20 times to attend family events, visit and volunteer. She is predeceased by her husband of 53 years, Keeva Joseph Kekst. She is survived by five children: Larry (Nancy) Kekst, Audrey Kekst, Amy (Bert Brown) Kekst, Nancy Judith (Martin Zucker) Kekst and Bradley Kekst; grandchildren Brenna Kekst Brown, Bryan Kekst Brown, Harrison (Kelsey) Zucker, Beak Zucker, Alana Zucker, Pamela Kekst, Carolyn Ross, Allison Ross; and great grandson Keeva W. Zucker; sisters Elin (Mark) Robbins Geman, Annie Robbins (deceased) and brother Joel (Pat) Robbins; along with numerous nieces, nephews, cousins and friends.
Services were held Oct. 27, 2019, at the Berkowitz-Kumin-Bookatz Memorial Chapel in Cleveland Heights, Ohio. Contributions are suggested to either Park Synagogue or the Jewish Community Federation of Cleveland.