David Beckham is a man of many talents. Case and point: Not only is the 46-year-old Brit one of the most celebrated soccer players of all time (and is extremely handsome), he also loves to cook. So much so, he recently joined chef Ruth Rogers, owner of London’s renowned River Café, on her podcast “River Café Table 4” to discuss his love of good food, what he ate as a professional athlete, what he cooks for his family and more.
For Jewish food lovers everywhere, the most exciting part of the podcast came when Rogers asked Beckham about the kind of meals he ate growing up. With his answer of the typical English fare of jellied eels and pie mash, David also shared, “My granddad was Jewish. So every Saturday when we’d turn up, my gran would have this most amazing chicken noodle soup with the matzah meal dumplings. So that’s what I was brought up on.”
That’s right. British football superstar David Beckham grew up spending Shabbat with his Jewish family and eating homemade matzah ball soup.
While he unfortunately didn’t drop the recipe (David, if you’re reading this, we need to know: were the matzah balls fluffy or dense??) this podcast is just the latest example of David Beckham being very open about his Jewish heritage.
Despite growing up in a secular household, Beckham identifies as “Half-Jewish” due to his Jewish maternal grandfather Joseph West, whom he often cites as his inspiration for becoming a footballer. Additionally, he wrote in his autobiography “I’ve probably had more contact with Judaism than with any other religion…I used to wear the traditional Jewish skullcaps when I was younger, and I also went along to some Jewish weddings with my grandfather.”
Before this, however, David hadn’t spoken about his connection to Jewish food. With this new information, one has to wonder whether regularly eating Jewish penicillin as a child helped David Beckham develop into a strong and skilled athlete capable of winning multiple titles and championships.
At the very least, we at The Nosher certainly think so.