Pronunciation: [CHAW-lent; CHUH-lent]
Of Central European origin, cholent is a traditional Jewish food served on the Sabbath. It varies greatly from family to family, but generally consists of some kind of meat (such as brisket, short ribs or chuck), lima or navy beans, potatoes, barley, onions, garlic and other seasonings. The ingredients are combined in one pot and simmered on stovetop or baked at a very low heat for many hours. Since cooking is forbidden on the Sabbath, many Jewish families prepare and combine the ingredients and place the cholent in a low oven at sundown on Friday, to be ready the following day, which is the Sabbath.
From The Food Lover's Companion, Fourth edition by Sharon Tyler Herbst and Ron Herbst. Copyright © 2007, 2001, 1995, 1990 by Barron's Educational Series, Inc.