Thursday, December 17, 2009

Putting The Season's Bounty To Good Use


(Cross-Posted on Guess Who's Coming To Dinner)

At least insomnia is good for something.

I was unable to sleep last night so I began trolling the internet at 3 a.m. (the internet never sleeps....) for something new and different to make for the shalom zachor of a very good friend who just had her FIFTH (!!!) boy. I chanced upon this post over at Life In the Carpool Lane: CHOCOLATE DIPPED CLEMENTINES. What a deceptively simple, yet elegant idea! And to make matters even better, clementines which are abundant right now, also happen to be on sale this week for $4.99 a box.




Here is my adaptation of her recipe:

Ingredients:
clementines
semi-sweet chocolate chips
sweetened shredded coconut
  • Peel and section the clementines
  • Melt good quality chocolate over a double boiler and stir
  • Dip each clementine section halfway into the melted chocolate and then in a bowl of shredded coconut
  • Put the pieces on wax paper in the fridge to set
These taste as good as they look, and they look like something you might find in a gourmet shop.


Wednesday, December 16, 2009

Beaver Tails - a different kind of Chanuka donut....

I have a really great friend, Perla, who happens to also be Canadian. Whenever she has a party she makes sure that Beaver Tails are on the menu, and the first time I tried these donuts, it was love at first taste. Apparently they're really big in Montreal, where she's from. This is my version. Enjoy warm with a sprinkle of cinnamon sugar!




Ingredients

1/2 cup warm water
5 teaspoons dry yeast

1 cup warm milk
1 tablespoon + 1/3 cup white sugar
1 1/2 teaspoons salt
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
2 eggs
1/3 cup vegetable oil
5 cups flour
oil for frying


Topping

2 cups white sugar, or as needed
1 teaspoon ground cinnamon

Directions

1. In a large mixing bowl, stir together the yeast, warm water, and a pinch of sugar. Let stand until slightly foamy, about 5 minutes.
2. When the yeast is foamy (looks like beer), stir in remaining sugar, milk, vanilla, eggs, oil and salt.
3. Add flour gradually to make soft dough. Knead 5-8 minutes (by hand on a floured surface or with a dough hook), adding flour as needed to form a firm, smooth, elastic dough. Place dough in a greased bowl, and cover. Let rise until doubled, about 30 to 40 minutes.
3. Gently deflate the dough, and pinch off a golf ball-sized piece of dough. On a lightly floured surface, use a rolling pin to roll the ball out to an oval. Set aside to rest covered with a tea towel, and continue with remaining dough.
4. Heat about 4 inches of oil for frying in a deep-fryer to 375 degrees F (190 degrees C). If you do not have a deep fryer, a wok or Dutch oven will work. Test a tiny bit of dough and see if it sizzles and swells immediately. If it does, the oil temperature is where it should be.
5. Just before placing the beaver tails in the oil, stretch the ovals out into a tail shape, thinning and enlarging them as you do. Carefully place the tails in the hot oil one or two at a time. Fry, turning once, until the tails are a deep brown, about 1 to 2 minutes per side. Remove using tongs and drain on paper towels.
6. Place 2 cups of sugar in a large bowl, and stir in 1 teaspoon of cinnamon. Toss beaver tails in the sugar bowl while they are still hot. Shake off excess.

Saturday, December 05, 2009

Lebkuchen

(Cross posted on Guess Who's Coming To Dinner)

I've had readers ask for more recipes.
I've had other readers ask for more posts with German Jewish themes.
I've had different readers ask for more controversial posts (OK, you guys are out of luck this time...).
I thought I'd kill two birds with one stone with this recipe for lebkuchen, a traditional German spice cake with the consistency of a brownie.
Enjoy it this Chanukah courtesy of yours truly:

Lebkuchen

1 stick margarine
4 eggs
1 pound brown sugar
1 teaspoon cinnamon
1 teaspoon cloves
1 package vanilla sugar
1 1/2 cups flour
1 1/2 teaspoons baking powder
1 package ground walnuts -- (7 ounces)

Glaze:
1 1/2 cups confectioner's sugar
1 1/2 Tablespoons lemon juice
hot water -- if needed
Topping:
nonpareils

Mix together all ingredients. Pour into greased 9" x 13" pan.

Bake at 325° for 30 minutes or more until it looks like brownies.

Mix glaze ingredients and ice while hot! Sprinkle with nonpareils.






Thursday, December 03, 2009

Ever So Yummy Corn Bread

1 egg
1 cup milk
1 cup whole wheat flour
1 cup corn meal
1/4 cup white sugar
1/4 cup brown sugar
1/3 cup oil (I use canola)
1/2 tsp baking soda
1 tsp baking powder

Beat egg and milk together. Add flour, corn meal, both sugars, oil, baking soda and baking powder. Mix well. Pour into a greased pan (I usually use one of those circular pans). Bake at 375 for 20 minutes.

Tuesday, December 01, 2009

Honey Chicken

Honey Chicken

Ingredients:

1 chicken, about 3 1/2 pounds, cut into 8 pieces

3/4 cup honey

1/4 cup soy sauce

1/4 cup olive oil

1 tablespoon garlic powder

1 teaspoon black pepper

 

Directions:

  1. Preheat oven to 375 degrees F. Lightly grease a 9x13-inch pan with non-stick cooking spray.
  2. Rinse chicken, pat dry and place in prepared pan.
  3. In a small bowl, mix together honey, soy sauce, olive oil, garlic powder and pepper and pour over chicken.
  4. Bake, uncovered at 375 degrees for 1 hour until slightly browned.

Tuesday, November 24, 2009

Teriyaki Chicken & Peppers

Teriyaki Chicken and peppers

 

Ingredients:

3 pounds boneless chicken breast cutlets, sliced into strips
20 ounces teriyaki sauce (you can really use less, maybe 10 oz)
2 tablespoons honey
4 tablespoons olive oil, divided
1 whole red bell pepper, seeded, veins removed, slice into thin strips
1 whole green bell pepper, seeded, veins removed, slice into thin strips
2 tablespoons sesame seeds

 

Directions:

1.    Rinse cutlets and pat dry

2.    place chicken in a sealable plastic bag with teriyaki sauce and honey, shake to coat and set aside

3.    in a large skillet, heat 2 tablespoons olive oil over medium high heat and sauté peppers for 10 minutes, until tender

4.    while that's cooking, in another large skillet, heat remaining 2 tablespoons olive oil over medium-high heat and sauté chicken strips for 10 to 15 minutes until cooked thorough

5.    add balance of marinade (Whatever is left in sealable plastic bag) to peppers and heat thoroughly for about 5 minutes

6.    combine peppers and chicken and sprinkle with sesame seeds before serving

Friday, November 13, 2009

milkshake mishap


The only thing you're going to get out of this post is a recipe for disaster.

So I went shopping for groceries today - one of my fave things to do because it combines two of my greatest loves - shopping and food. (ok three - the place I go has the hottest bag boys)

Anyhow, love #4 - sales - were abundant in this pre-Thanksgiving season. And much to my delight, my preferred brand of frozen fruit (including strawberries, blueberries and mango) was included in the discount. I was very excited to make my purchase of three bags of frozen goodness, and even more excited to go home and whip up some soy smoothies (soy milk was also on sale!).

I think I was a little too excited to show my bubbie my kitchen proficiency, because while you and I may know that making smoothies is practically child's play, well at least that's what I thought before the mishap hap'd, my bubbie comes from the land of kugel and kasha where food is either white or brown or speckled with carrot. Pink or blue food in Eastern Europe is something you throw out.

So here is where it all when to sh$t.

I filled my blender with some newly-purchased fruit and soy milk. That's basically it. I think I put too much fruit. Not enough soy milk.

As soon as I hit the 'Frappé' button, I knew something was going terribly wrong. My blender started screeching. My mixture had separated. The bottom half was strawberry pink, the top half blueberry blue. The mango pieces had formed an icy barrier against the blender blades. The soy milk must have freaked out because it was slowly freezing over into a chunky mess. My blender had somehow turned into an ice cream-maker.

Out of the corner of my eye, I could see my bubbie's perplexed stare. Giving her my best reassuring plastic smile, I grabbed a long wooden spoon out of its drawer hoping to save the smoothie. I managed to hand-mix the whole thing to a nice deep purple in a tribute to life before electronic gadgets.

Unfortunately, they didn't have smoothies in those dark ages, and neither did my bubbie today. I poured some of the soft-ice-cream, slushy-like mix into a cup, handed my grandmother a spoon and said 'L'Chaim!'.

Thursday, November 12, 2009

Little Bites For Little Birthdays

Thank you to Material Maidel for inviting me to contribute to Kosher Cuisine. While I was happy to be included, I wasn’t sure what I could bring to the table here (ha ha ha! That’s so punny!) I’m not the world’s best cook, and I don’t really have any recipes in my repertoire that are so exceptional that they deserve to be shared here. One thing I do know, however, is how to feed hungry kids on a tight budget. Another thing I know (hey! I know two things!) is how to throw a fun birthday party for the young’uns that won’t burn a hole in your wallet (think arts & crafts, jewelry beading, painting, and “manicures & makeovers” for the girls; outdoor ball games for the boys, because you don’t really want so many rambunctious little boys inside your house at one time).
So I thought I’d share with you some menu ideas that will allow you to host a fun, inexpensive and easy to prepare birthday party that DOES NOT INCLUDE PIZZA (kids eat way too much pizza). The rule of thumb here is that most kids like food that is cut up, crunchy, easy to eat, and presented in a fun way- in colorful little bowls, or on a stick. Added bonus: you won’t need to provide any cutlery- this is finger food (except for the ice cream).
***For ages 3 and up only. Some of these foods present a choking hazard to children under 3.

Dairy menu:
­*Bowls of potato chips, pretzels, licorice bites, M&Ms, etc. for snacking.
*Miniature bagels filled with cream cheese, butter, strawberry or grape jelly, tuna salad, egg salad or grilled cheese.
*Cut up cucumbers, baby carrots, grape tomatoes, and red/yellow/orange baby bell peppers arranged attractively on a tray or on colorful toothpicks. Provide small bowls of creamy salad dressing for dipping.
*For dessert (and instead of an expensive birthday cake that no one will finish) prepare in advance little 4 oz. cups with one scoop of vanilla ice cream drizzled with a bit of chocolate syrup. Before serving, top each one with whipped cream and colored sprinkles. Put a lit candle in the birthday child’s cup and sing Happy Birthday.

Meat Menu:
*Bowls of potato chips, pretzels, licorice bites, popcorn, etc. for snacking.
* Alternate cocktail franks on toothpicks with crunchy pickle slices. Provide ketchup and mustard for dipping.
*Put out trays of french fries, mini corn on the cobb, and small potato burekas (just fill store bought puff pastry squares with mashed potatoes and bake at 425 degrees Farenheit for 15-20 minutes).
*You can add a tray of homemade chicken nuggets if you’d like.
*For dessert: put out little bowls of fruit: grapes (plucked off the vine), baby apples, cubes of seedless watermelon, and orange sections. Put each type of fruit in a separate bowl, so the kids can select the ones that they like.
Instead of birthday cake: brownie squares with colorful sprinkles. Put a lit candle in the birthday child’s brownie and sing Happy Birthday.

Wednesday, November 11, 2009

Cottage Cheese Cheesecake

Crossposted on me-ander
When our firstborn was almost a year old, my in-laws came to visit and meet their first grandchild.  They brought a gift, a blender, a Hamilton Beach one which lasted decades.  The blender came with a nice big cookbook, which I read from cover to cover.


I must admit that I cooked very few of those recipes.  The one I cooked the most was its cheesecake.  And this morning I got a facebook message from an old friend asking if I still make it and a request for the recipe.  So if she remembers it fondly from over thirty-five, yes 35, years ago, it's definitely worth blogging.



In those days we didn't have great varieties of food here in Israel.  We always had to substitute, so I used plain cookies/biscuits instead of the zweibacks, the book lists.  Honestly, to this day, I haven't the vaguest idea what zweibacks are.

It's a very easy cheesecake recipe using easy to find ingredients.  It's simple to make and make lower fat if desired.  I'm sure it'll taste fine with arificial sweetners, too.  You can add cut fruit and anything else, including chocolate.  Recipes are supposed to be "played with."  Please let me know how it comes out.

Here's the recipe, including commentary:
18 "zweiback"
2 Tablespoons sugar (could be deleted, makes the topping too sweet) 
1/3 cup melted butter (I must have used about 2 or 3 cubed inches)
1 cup milk
1 T lemon juice, which was awful, so I used vanilla extract
4 eggs
1/2 cup sugar (I used brown sugar)
2 T flour (I used whole wheat)
1/4 teaspoon salt (I never add salt to cakes, so you can leave it out)
lemon rind, optional and not recommended
16 ounces of cottage cheese
  1. blend the cookies into crumbs, making 1 1/2 cups
  2. mix crumbs with the 2 T's of sugar and the melted butter
  3. press just under half of it on the bottom of a 9x9x2 or 8" round baking pan
  4. put remaining ingredients in blender, in order listed, and blend until smooth
  5. pour into baking pan
  6. spread remaining crumb mixture, actually, I used to just make less crumbs and only use them on the bottom.  You can reduce the calories enormously by eliminating the topping, or top without bottom crumbs.
  7. bake until center is firm, temperature a drop less than for a regular cake.

Friday, October 23, 2009

Bring on the Broccoli Salad


Have you seen this salad recently? Quite possible - because it's become one of those dishes that graces almost EVERY Shabbos table in Brooklyn.  I found the original recipe in today's holy bible of Kosher cooking, Susie Fishbein's Kosher by Design. Here's my version.

Ingredients
1 head broccoli, stems discarded, florets chopped very small

1 cup light or fat-free mayonnaise
1/2 small red onion, finely diced
3 Tbsps. red wine vinegar
3 Tbsps. sugar
1 package kosher Ramen-type soup noodles (discard seasonings packet)
1/2 cup dried cranberries or raisins
1/4 cup sunflower seeds, shelled and unsalted
1/4 cup raw cashews, unsalted
1/4 cup slivered almonds
1/4 cup pine nuts

Instructions
Crumble soup noodles in a Ziploc bag with a rolling pan.

In a large mixing bowl, combine mayonnaise, onion, sugar and vinegar. Add broccoli and toss until evently coated.
Add noodles and remaining ingredients. Toss lightly.


This dish tastes great served right away or even the next day.

Thursday, September 24, 2009

Never Dull, KCC on its way...


The dust has barely settled on the latest Havel Havelim, and I must start planning the very next Kosher Cooking Carnival.  it's due in less than a week!  So, please get your posts in ASAP, thanks.

KCC isn't just a recipe collection.  It includes Halacha, Jewish Law, traditions, menus, funny stories, cookbook/restaurant reviews and... of course, recipes.  Being that we're in the main holiday and fasting season there's lots to blog about.

October's will be at Mimi's, and if you're interested in hosting subsequent months, please contact me, shilohmuse at gmail dot com

Thanks!

Wednesday, September 16, 2009

Butternut Squash Soup & Roasted Butternut Squash Seeds

I made this for dinner last night and it was delicious. Even my 8 month old son loved it! (Unless you're having a lot of people over for a meal, there will be plenty left over to freeze for a future meal). I actually found this recipe on the Food Network website, but I tweaked it a bit.

1 butternut squash, peeled
nutmeg (I tried it without a preferred it that way, but added it anyway to see if it enhanced the taste. My husband preferred it with the nutmeg though)
2 tablespoons of unsalted margarine
salt and pepper (Again, I liked it without, my husband preferred it with -- either way it's delicious though)
1 onion, chopped
6 cups of veggie stock

Cut squash into one inch chunks. In a large pot melt margarine. Add onion and cook until translucent. Add squash and stock. Bring to a simmer until squash is tender. Remove squash chunks with a slotted spoon and blend it. (Our blender is breaking so there were still plenty of chunks left in. I thought it was actually nice to have the varying textures.) Return blended squash to pot. Stir and season with nutmeg, salt and pepper (if you so please).

I looked up online to see if the seeds in the butternut squash were edible and it turns out they were. I cleaned off the seeds. Dried them as much as possible. Sprayed a cookie sheet with cooking spray. Layed out the seeds evenly and sprinkled with salt. (You can sprinkle it with pretty much anything you think might taste good -- cajun powder, garlic salt, cheese powder, etc). Put it in the oven on 350 for about 30 minutes. (I didn't really time it. Just waited until I could smell it.

Sunday, August 30, 2009

Pepper Steak

Pepper Steak

 

Ingredients:

2 pounds pepper steak strips
1 tablespoon cornstarch
2 tablespoons cold water
3 tablespoons honey
3 tablespoons olive oil, divided
1 tablespoon prepared crushed garlic
1/2 teaspoon ginger
1/4 cup soy sauce
1 whole green bell pepper, seeded, veins removed, thinly sliced
1 whole red bell pepper, seeded, veins removed, thinly sliced
2 large onions, thinly sliced
1 package Jasmine Rice, prepared according to package directions

Directions:

1.    Rinse pepper steak, pat dry and place in a large bowl

2.    In a small bowl, blend cornstarch with cold water until smooth. Pour over steak

3.    Add honey, 2 tablespoons olive oil, garlic, ginger and soy sauce. Stir to mix. Set aside

4.    Heat the remaining 1 tablespoon olive oil in a medium skillet over high heat. Add peppers and onions and sauté for 3 minutes.

5.    Reduce heat to medium, cook 10 to 15 minutes longer or until vegetables are softened.

6.    In a large skillet, over high heat, sauté steak and honey mixture for 3 minutes. Reduce heat to medium, cover, and cook 10 to 15 minutes longer or until beef is cooked through.

7.    In a large serving bowl, combine peppers and onions with steak and mix. Serve warm with Jasmine Rice if Desired.

Monday, August 10, 2009

Bissli Chicken

Bissli chicken

Ingredients:

Chicken Breast
Duck Sauce
2 bags BBQ flavored Bissli, crushed
2 bags onion ring flavored Bissli, crushed

Directions:

1.    mix the bissli flavors together in a bowl

2.    pour some duck sauce in another bowl

3.    dip chicken in duck sauce then cover with crushed bissli

4.    place in aluminum pan and bake at 350 for about 35 minutes or a bit longer until desired crunchiness is achieved. 

Enjoy, this taste really yummy!

It’s really easy to make, I use chicken cutlets and Super Snacks, instead of Bissli, because Bissli is hard to find in supermarkets.

Wednesday, July 22, 2009

Sparkling Minestrone Vegetable Soup

This is cross-posted on me-ander

According to Jewish Law and Lore there are two fast days in the summer, and I love to break my fast on vegetable soup.

Usually, I make a split pea soup, but I didn't have any peas on hand. Instead I found a package of mixed beans, which, as you can see, included:

kidney beans
lima beans
chickpeas


I checked them for bugs and stones and then left them to soak in hot, boiling water. After it cooled, I poured out the water and added more. I've read that beans are digested better if you change the water. Whether it's true or not, I don't know.

Since the beans began to get soft, it was time for stage two of the cooking. I added more boiling water to the beans and began cooking them for real, not just soaking.

In a larger pot, I put sliced onions, carrots and squash and sauteed them in vegetable oil.

Once the vegetables were partially cooked, I poured in the beans, plus the bean liquid and cooked everything together.

Since I'm trying to cut the carbs, I added some tomato paste for extra flavor. That gave me a low carbohydrate Minestrone style vegetable soup. I added whatever seasonings smelled right to me, like salt, pepper, garlic, parsley. These are all standards I keep in my pantry.


It's funny how the soup sparkles. I guess the flash played on the oil. It really tasted good, and my husband even complimented me on it.

The best thing is that it is very easy to make.


Friday, July 17, 2009

A Breakfast Better Shared...

(Cross-posted at Guess Who's Coming To Dinner....)




Some things are just better when they are shared with others. We know this to be true about Shabbos meals to be sure. The more company, the more lively the conversation, the better the zemiros harmonies, the warmer the atmosphere.

But I will tell you a little secret. I have a breakfast recipe that is better shared as well. Of course you can make it for one, but the more people you share it with, the more variety you are able to present in each individual dish.

I am talking about Birchermuesli.
It's been a while since I've posted a recipe, so I figured that rather than have you all traipse over to my house in your pajamas on Sunday morning, I'll give you the recipe here to share with your own families. It's really easy. All you have to do is remember to set it up the night before, since it "cooks" in the refrigerator overnight. (No heat + taking advantage of the bountiful July produce = the perfect summer recipe) I should mention that it makes a great brunch or lunch as well.

Birchermuesli

1/2 to 3/4 cups rolled oats per person
1/2 to 3/4 cups milk per person (equal parts ;) )
1 handful of raisins per person (craisins may be substituted Smiley Faces )
1 squirt of honey per person

Mix well and let set in refrigerator overnight where it transforms into sweet creamy perfection. In the morning add tons of cut up fruit. Now keep in mind that this is where you need the larger group of people because a whole peach and a whole plum and a few handfuls of assorted berries and a handful of grapes might be a lot for one person in a bowl of cereal for breakfast, but when divided more ways, your ability to increase the taste variety increases accordingly.

Have fun! Enjoy breakfast and let me know what you think!

Friday, July 10, 2009

They Asked For Chulent

Very rarely do I make chulent, that slow-cooking stew, a lot of people eat as part of, or the main part of, their Shabbat day meal.

My family doesn't like it, or they don't like what I used to make, so I don't cook it.

But yesterday my neighbor who arranges meals for those who need them asked me to make someone chulent. If that's what they want, that's what they'll get. Here's the new version:
  • A couple of handfuls of mixed dry beans (lima, kindney and chickpeas.) Presoak, rinse and soak again for quite a while to soften.
  • A package of turkey wings, better ratio of meat to bones than turkey drumsticks.
  • Potatoes
  • spices, peppercorns, ketchup and whatever

After the beans have gotten soft, cook them up with the turkey and water. Then add the potatoes and ketchup and more water. If my pot hadn't been so full, I would have added carrots and onions.

It smells good!

Friday, June 26, 2009

Make your own Cookbook!


Have you ever dreamed of compiling all of your mom's secrets recipes?
Need a good gift for a best friend's bridal shower?
Want to get published?

Tastebook.com is a great new website that lets you put together a very professional-looking cookbook for under $40. You can choose from hundreds of thousands of great recipes, or add your own.

The only downside is that you can't play with the layout that much. But it's not such a big deal when you get a gorgeous book in the mail!

Thursday, June 04, 2009

Best Tuna Beigel?


In honor of Tuna Beigels everywhere, I'm holding a contest for the BEST Tuna Beigel recipe!

Submit your recipes to materialmaidel@gmail.com !


Tuesday, June 02, 2009

Sesame Chicken & Chinese Rice

sesame chicken & Chinese Rice

Ingredients:

2 lb chicken cutlets cubed

batter:
1 Cup flour
1/2 tsp baking powder
2 tsp oil
1 tsp paprika
1 tsp salt
2 eggs
1/2 cup water

sauce (optional,)
( you’ll notice in the picture I included one without the sauce)
1 1/2 cups duck sauce
3/4 tbs soy sauce
3 tbls honey
2 tbl corn starch
1/2 cup water
topping 1/2 cup sesame seeds


Directions:

batter:
combine oil & spices. combine flour & baking powder, mix with rest of ingredients until smooth and thick
dip chicken into batter coat thoroughly
deep fry place onto paper towel to absorb oil so they stay crispy

sauce:
combine 1st 3 ingredients bring to a boil, add corn starch & water, simmer until is gravy like
place nuggets into sauce top with sesame seeds

 

Chinese Rice

cook basmati rice as per directions
while cooking fry an egg slice thin and half
while rice is still hot add egg and sliced scallions
add soy sauce to your taste
a few tbl should be enough

Monday, May 18, 2009

Avocado Strawberry Salad


This is an easy, breezy, yummy Shabbos salad that avocado fans will love!

Ingredients
2 large avocados
4 strawberries, sliced
1/2 red pepper
1/2 small purple onion
1 Tbsp. fresh parsley, finely diced
1 tsp. lemon juice
1 tsp. olive oil
1/2 tsp sugar
1/2 tsp salt
1/2 black pepper
1/2 tsp garlic powder

Instructions
Halve and pit avocados. Julienne avocado, red pepper and onion into thin strips and place in medium sized bowl.
Add remaining ingredients and stir until well combined.

Enjoy!

Friday, May 15, 2009

Strawberry Pecan Muffins

1 1/2 Cups flour
1/2 tspn baking soda
1 Cup sugar
1/2 Cup chopped pecans
1 tspn vanilla sugar
1 1/2 Cups strawberries, cut up
2 eggs, beaten
2/3 Cup (2/3) oil

Cream the oil, eggs, strawberries, and vanilla sugar. Mix dry ingredients in another bowl. Then mix them both together. Add Baking soda last.

Fill muffin cups about 2/3 full. Bake on 350 for 30-40 minutes.

Sunday, April 12, 2009

Nothing Like Matzah Brei!

What's your most reliable, filling Passover food staple?

For us it's the classic "Ashkenaz" Matzah Brei. I just made a nice big one for my husband to take to work. It's a day's worth of food for him. It's one dish we can't live without on Pesach. OK, this isn't diet food, and I doubt if I'll eat one this year. I'm not planning on traveling, so I can make my usual low carb goodies.



Matzah Brei is easy, simple to make and includes ingredients and equipment everyone (and if you don't have, they're worth buying) has at home:

  • matzah
  • eggs
  • water (milk optional)
  • margarine or oil for frying
  • something sweet to spread on it, honey or jam (optional)

The necessary equipment:

  • a large bowl
  • a spoon
  • covered frying pan (you can cover with a plate or foil)
  • spatula (or knife and spoon used in tandem)

Yes, that's it.

  • take a few matzot and break them up in a large bowl
  • add some water, half way unless you want milk, too, then the combination should be half way up the matzah
  • add eggs, at least one per matzah
  • mix
  • let sit for awhile, so the liquids can be absorbed by the matzot
  • heat oil/margarine in the frying pan
  • spoon the mixture onto the hot, greased pan
  • lower the heat and cover
  • when you can see that the top is cooked/solid/not eggy-runny, then turn over and cover
  • wait a minute and turn off the flame and let it sit for at least five minutes
  • That's it!

My Pesach Present

My son-in-law saw this for sale and knew he had to buy one. He and my daughter decided that it was just perfect for me. It's a well-made wooden cutting board, constructed like a "table." Underneath is a "bowl." It's for cutting salad.

The ironic thing is that a number of years ago, I also saw one of those and bought it... for my mother.

Tuesday, April 07, 2009


Non-Gebrokts Chocolate Cake


Ingredients:
10 ounces semisweet chocolate, coarsely chopped
2 ounces bittersweet chocolate, coarsely chopped
1 1/2 cups granulated sugar
2 teaspoons instant espresso powder
3/4 cup boiling water
3 sticks unsalted butter, softened
6 large eggs, at room temperature
1 Tablespoon vanilla extract

Directions:
Preheat oven to 350 degrees F. Butter the bottom and sides of a nine-inch springform pan. Line the bottom of the pan with a round of parchment paper and butter the paper.
Place both chocolates and the sugar in a food processor and process until finely ground. Pour the boiling water through the feed tube and process for 10-15 seconds until the chocolate is completely melted. Use a spatula to scrape down the sides of the work bowl. Add the butter and process until incorporated.
Add the eggs and vanilla and process until the mixture is smooth creamy, about eight seconds. Scrape the chocolate batter into the prepared pan and smooth the top with a rubber spatula.
Place the pan on a baking sheet and bake for 55-60 minutes, until the edges of the cake are puffy and the center is just set. Cool the cake in the pan set on a wire rack for 30 minutes. Cover and refrigerate for at least three hours or until ready to serve.

Monday, April 06, 2009

pesach recipes!

Do you have a GREAT Pesach recipe you want to share?
Post them here!

Sunday, April 05, 2009

Chicken Soup Tips

I've been making chicken soup for a few years now, and have a few tips to making a soup go from good to amazing. Now, everytime I come home I have to make a batch for my mother which she freezes for the next few weeks, until I come home again.

1. Cook it overnight. The bones from the chicken with disintegrate, and between that and the marrow, you will get a superb taste. It will require very little salt as it comes naturally from the marrow.

2. Use the white Vidalia onions. They are naturally sweeter and less pungent. Once again you will not have to add sugar or any other sweetener to the soup. (You may have to depending how sweet it end up being, and I suggest using honey)

3. I don't know why I do it, this is the mesorah I have from a friends mother who makes it better than I do, but cook the onion with the peel on.

3. Dill, parsley, salt, and pepper only. The beauty is in simplicity of taste. (on a side note, the same for spicing a chulent, only simple spices)

Friday, March 20, 2009

Kosher Cooking Carnival!

I'm so glad to be part of this month's Kosher Cooking Carnival! (and I've never been so hungry in my life after looking at all of your sites!)

So, here goes!

Shabbos

I know it's Friday, and maybe you've already done all your Shabbos cooking. But if you still need some ideas about what to serve, read What's for Shabbos by Shorty.

Need some good wine for Kiddush? Make your own! Make Easy and Quick Homemade Wine. How to Make Cheap Wine at Home? posted at Thoughtfully Vikram....

Dish up these yummy Fish Croquettes for Shabbat as a great gefilte fish alternative over at West Bank Mama.

You should definitely try making Eggplant Caponata. It's a great side dish posted by Ilana-Davita.

Did your chicken soup boil over today? Yisrael Medad presents Back to Basics: Chicken Soup so that you'll get it right next time.

Or maybe you're tired of having the same soup every week? At Blog d'Elisson, the Mistress of Sarcasm cooked up a delish Split Pea and Sweet Potato Soup.

And for dessert, your whole family will beg for second slices of Clementine cake by Bowl of Plenty.

If you love chulent, you will definitely love this recipe for Vegetarian kishke brought to you by Our Shiputzim: A Work In Progress.

When Shabbos is over, who actually wants to cook? Read Creative Cooking Using Leftovers: Chicken Casserole A Mother in Israel posted at A Mother in Israel.

Pesach

Pesach is just around the corner! Make your annual countdown to the cleandown a little less stressed - read the amazing Batya's Painless Pesach Preparations And No-Starch Meatloaf .

At Beneath the Wings, Ricki's Mom talks about the new Recipe Book she bought for Pesach. Looks like she wasn't too happy with her purchase... (makes me wonder which book she bought...)

Learn

More interested in the History Channel than the Food Network? Read History of Cooking Cooking History History of Cooking .

Learn about the Acai Berry - Common Questions Answered. Apparently it's got some great health benefits!

Healthy Cooking

Think you can't eat healthy? Yes You Can! Get tips for healthy eating at Healthy Kosher Eating With Chana.

You should also definitely read The Vegetarian Activist & The Vegetarian Chassid: A Conversation In The Vegetable Garden – Part I posted at A Simple Jew. (deep down, we'd all love to be vegetarians, wouldn't we?)

Cheap eats

With the economy looking as bleak as ever (ok, I am hopeful that it will turn soon, but in the meantime, I gotta budget!), you might want to head over to the Culinary School Guide, where you will find links to the Top 100 Blogs for the Frugal Gourmet.

Random thoughts

The king of random thoughts, Yisrael Medad, talks about various topics you might find interesting (I certainly do!).
In Pork, Jews and One Jew , someone asks about making pork roast for Jewish friends.

And in Does This Sound Kosher To You?, Mr. Medad discusses the kosher-ness of kosher salt. Apparently there's a new 'Christian salt' on the market right now... (it's alright, we Jews love competition)

Tuesday, March 17, 2009

I like Israeli Salad

For the past few weeks I have been experimenting with creating the perfect salad. What is a Friday night without a nice salad full of freshly chopped vegetables? and What is life without a little rabbit food?

The best type of salad is one that you have all the necessary ingredients for. What good is a fancy recipe if you don't have any of the things you will need? That is why I recommend making a salad with things you have and not things you will have to search a million stores just to find. However, there are a few things that are essential when making an Israeli salad: cucumbers and tomatoes. Once you have those two things, the rest is metaphorical icing on the cake.

This is the recipe that I used most recently for a nice tasting Israeli salad.

3 medium tomatoes
1 green pepper
1 red pepper
2 cucumbers (not those small ones, the nice size ones: you don't want it to be totally tomato)
1 medium onion

Peel the cucumbers. De-seed tomatoes and peppers. Chop the all the vegetables into small pieces. (For instructions on how to cut vegetables into small pieces watch this video.)Mix in a big salad bowl.

Once you have chopped all the vegetables it is now time to create a salad dressing. Personally I am a big fan of the Italian style dressing. But if you are one of those types that don't like much dressing, just add some lemon juice, salt, and black pepper.

Otherwise:

1/2 cup red wine vinegar
3 tablespoons lemon juice
2 teaspoons honey
2 teaspoons salt
freshly ground black pepper
1 teaspoon chopped garlic

Mix all the above ingredients together until your hand goes numb. Then pour in 1/2 cup olive oil and continue to mix with your other hand. Seal in some sort of sealable container and shake until frothy.

Pour as much dressing as you want over the salad.

Enjoy.

Serves: Depends on appetite of individual eating.

Saturday, March 07, 2009

The Kosher Cooking Carnival

First of all, here's the new logo for the Kosher Cooking Carnival. Graphics are by Pesky Settler. And here's the link to the latest one. The next one will be hosted by Kosher Cuisine's very own Material Maidel. Please send in any suitable posts you write or see via blog carnival. And if you'd like to host an edition, please let me know shilohmuse at yahoo dot com

Shavua Tov!

Thursday, February 12, 2009

Red Cabbage Salad

I love salads with red cabbage in them.  An added benefit is the fact that if you make them for Friday night, the leftovers can still be served Shabbos morning.
The dressing for this particular salad is a bit different from the standard.
Sorry, I don't have a picture but I like to dress it right before serving and I usually serve it on Shabbos ;)
Enjoy!

Salad:

2 Bags Red Cabbage
1/2 cup Pine Nuts
1/4 cup Sesame Seeds
2 cups Chinese Noodles

Dressing:

1 cup Oil
1/4 cup Vinegar
2 Cloves Garlic (I personally love garlic, but sometimes go easy on this amount...)
2 Tbsp. Peanut Butter
1/2 cup Sugar
Dash of Salt and Pepper

Tuesday, February 10, 2009

Candied Dates

I made this recipe back in January for a Middle Eastern-inspired potluck and then again for TuB'Shvat. They are very simple to make and I'm told that even non-date eaters like these dates.

The first batch consisted of organic Deglet Noor Dates and the second batch consisted of organic Golden Zahidi Dates and Deglet Noor Dates. I got both types on sale at the local grocery store after Christmas when they were discounting all the dried and candied fruits normally used for fruit cake. Each pound only cost me $1. Of course, you're welcome to use any dates that you prefer or are easily obtainable.

The candied almonds come about in the recipe as a way to use up leftover honey and they are quite delicious too.

Candied Dates
& Candied Almonds

1 pound whole dates
Whole almonds [the amount will vary]
1 cup honey
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
1/3 cup almond meal
gluten-free cooking spray

Line a cookie sheet with wax paper then lightly spray the wax paper with the cooking spray. Set aside. Using a paring knife make an incision on one of the long sides of the date. Gently open the date and remove the pit. If some of the inner skin comes out as well, that's fine. If all the inner skin is loose, remove it. If the inner skin has orange discoloration on it, discard the date because it won't taste right*. If the interior has a gritty substance suspended in a string-like formation, discard the date because something was living in it. Once the pit removed, insert a single whole almond and close up the date. Repeat until all the dates are done.

Place the honey in a small saucepan and bring to a boil over medium heat. The honey will boil up and create a foam. if there are particles on the foam, scrape them off the top and discard. Stir the honey frequently. Once to a boil, reduce heat and simmer for 5 minutes. Add in the vanilla extract then remove the honey from the heat. Place 3 to 4 of the dates into the honey mixture using a slotted spoon. Swirl the dates gently in the honey to coat all sides. Remove the dates one at a time with the slotted spoon, drain off excess honey into the saucepan then place the dates on the prepared cookie sheet. Repeat until all the dates have been coated in honey. There may be leftover honey and to use it up, I like to dip whole almonds into the honey - one at a time - then place them on the prepared cookie sheet to make candied almonds.

Place the cookie sheet in the refrigerator for at least 2 hours so the honey can set. The dates will still be extremely sticky to the touch. Once the refrigeration is complete, sprinkle half of the almond meal onto a serving tray or plate. Remove the dates from the cookie sheet gently as to not break them apart and place them on the serving tray. [For the candied almonds, I like to dip the almonds in finely shredded unsweetened coconut before placing them on the serving tray.] Once all the dates are on the serving tray, sprinkle the remaining almond meal over them. [The almond meal helps keep the dates from sticking to the tray, etc. along with adding additional texture and flavor.]

Serve or wrap the tray in plastic wrap to store. They are fine at room temperature for up to two days. After that, they will need to be refrigerated.

*When I was living overseas in the Middle East, I encountered several dates that had orange discoloration on the inner skin. I was told that the dates caught a cold during the growing process. When a date catches a cold, the way it grows and the flavor it should develop changes. How the flavor changes varies depending on the type of date but typically dates that catch colds are not eaten. I rarely see dates grown in the USA with this "condition" but it is quite common in dates that are grown in the Middle East.

All of the dates I used with this recipe [so far] were cold-free but several had things living in them at one point. Out of a whole pound [about 30 to 35 dates], I discarded 5 or 6 dates because of grit and strings.

Saturday, January 31, 2009

Baked Compote

Sorry, but I didn't take a picture while cooking it.

We were invited for Shabbat lunch to neighbors and asked to bring dessert. We brought two things, one some pastry bought in our local store and the other was "Baked Compote." What's "Baked Compote?" Honestly, I just invented it. Since I've been on my Start Fresh kosher weight loss diet, I've been making Baked Apples for dessert, but I didn't know how many people would be at the meal.

The great thing about the Baked Apples is that there is no sugar, but it's very sweet, because it's baked. No water is added. So I put on my "thinking cap" and invented:


Baked Compote
  • use an oven-proof covered pan
  • peel and slice two apples per portion, (just to be safe,) and place them in the pan
  • add the juice of a couple of juicy oranges, or some natural orange juice. It shouldn't be enough to cover the apples, unless you want a liquidy compote.
  • sprinkle cinnamon and any other spice you'd like
  • bake, covered, in a medium oven until boiling for at least fifteen minutes
  • let it cool in the oven or in a warm place, where it can continue cooking

Now, that I've gotten you hungry, it's time to remind you that we need your posts in the Kosher Cooking Carnival! Please send them here. And if you'd like to host an edition, please let me know at shilohmuse at yahoo dot com Thanks

Thursday, January 29, 2009

easy marble cake


I wasn't kidding in my last post. This is version #3 of Mrs. Sebbag's Gateau à l'Orange! And how Jewish is marble cake?

Ingredients

4 eggs
1 cup orange juice
1 cup oil
1 tsp. vanilla extract
2 cups sugar
3 cups flour
4 tsp. baking powder
1/2 tsp. baking soda
1 tsp. grated orange rind
2 Tbsp. cocoa powder + 2 Tbsp. sugar (or 3 Tbsp. chocolate milk powder)
chocolate syrup

Instructions


Combine eggs, orange juice, oil, vanilla and sugar in a large mixing bowl. Slowly add flour, baking powder, baking soda and orange rind. Mix until well combined. Pour most of cake batter into
a greased bundt or spring pan, leaving about a cup of batter in your bowl.

In your bowl, add cocoa powder
and sugar (or chocolate milk powder) to batter and stir well. Pour your chocolate batter over the other batter. Gently cut a knife through the cake to get a nice marble effect.

Bake at 350 degrees for approximately 30 minutes. (use the toothpick test!).

Drizzle with chocolate syrup and Enjoy!

the ultimate blueberry cake




I've been making variations of
Mrs. Sebbag's Gateau à l'Orange every Shabbos since she gave me the recipe! This past Shabbos I made this version, and it was AMAZING.

Ingredients

4 eggs
1 cup orange juice
1 cup oil
1 tsp. vanilla extract
2 cups sugar
3 cups flour
4 tsp. baking powder
1/2 tsp. baking soda
1 tsp. grated orange rind

Blueberries

1/2 cup blueberries
1 Tbsp. flour
1 Tbsp. corn starch
1 tsp. cinammon
1 tsp. brown sugar

Icing
1/4 cup icing sugar
1 tsp. orange juice
1 tsp. hot water



Instructions


Combine eggs, orange juice, oil, vanilla and sugar in a large mixing bowl. Slowly add flour, baking powder, baking soda and orange rind. Mix until well combined.

In a separate bowl, combine blueberries, flour, corn starch, cinammon and brown sugar until berries are well coated. Add blueberries to cake batter and stir gently until evenly distributed.

Bake at 350 degrees in a greased bundt or spring pan for approximately 30 minutes. (use the toothpick test!). Let cake cool completely.

In a small bowl, mix ingredients to make icing. Icing should be a syrupy consistency. Pour over cake or use a baking brush to give your cake a gorgeous sheen.

Let sit for a few minutes and serve!

Wednesday, January 28, 2009

Granola

I saw this recipe on a facebook group and decided to try it out. It was quite yummy.

2 c old fashioned oats 
1/2 c sliced almonds 
1/4 c light brown sugar 
1/4 tsp salt 
1/4 tsp ground cinnamon 
2 tbsp oil 
2 tbsp honey 
1/2 tsp vanilla extract 
3/4 c raisins 

Set your oven to 350F. Mix everything together in a bowl except the almonds and raisins.
Try to mix thoroughly and get most of the brown sugar clumps out. Line a cookie sheet with
parchment paper. Spread the mix on the cookie sheet. Bake for 20-30 minutes until just 
past golden brown, stirring every 5 or 10 minutes to prevent burning. Toast the almonds 
separately and let them cool down. Mix the almonds, raisins, and granola together. Cool 
the granola in dry open air on the same cookie sheet to crisp up. Store in an airtight 
container. 

Sprinkle on vanilla yogurt mixed with fresh strawberries.

Sunday, January 25, 2009

BEEF TONGUE (WITH RAISIN SAUCE)

The best time to cook is on an empty stomach. The best time to shop is on an empty stomach. The best time to read a blog about Kosher Cuisine is on an empty stomach. The reason for this wonderful advice is because the only way food can only really be appreciated is when the body is in the natural state to really enjoy it, and that is when the body is hungry.

That being said, this next recipe really makes my mouth water and wish that I still had room in my stomach for one more morsel. This next recipe is the hallmark of kosher food. A few hundred years after Noach ate the first steak, Avraham served the angels freshly cooked Tongue. I have no idea what recipe Avraham used to serve the Tongue to the angels; suffice it to say that this recipe was probably it. It seems like a recipe fit for heavenly beings and out of this world.

As a side note, Raisins may have a bug infestation problem. (The sun-drying process in the open fields attracts all types of insects which end up being attached to the raisins. This is an issue in all sun-dried raisins. KASHRUS magazine recommends not using any sun-dried raisins without thoroughly washing and visually examining them.)So if you want to be strictly kosher, you can leave out the raisin sauce, and replace it with good old mustard like Avraham did when he served the Angels.

Ingredients

1 fresh Kosher Beef Tongue
3 sm. onions
2 sm. carrots
4 stalks celery & leaves
6 sprigs parsley
8 peppercorns
Salt & pepper
1/2 c. almonds, blanched & split
2/3 c. seedless raisins
6 tbsp. cooking fat
3 tbsp. flour
1/4 c. crushed gingersnaps
1 lemon, cut into sm. Cubes


Directions

Place tongue in a large kettle with onions, carrots, celery and parsley.

Add water to cover.

Add peppercorns and salt.

Simmer gently until tender, 3 to 5 hours.

Drain.

Reserve liquid.

Melt fat and add flour and stir until blended.

Gradually stir in reserved raisin and almond liquid and enough tongue liquid to make 3 cups in all.

Add gingersnaps, almonds, raisins and lemon cubes.

Season with salt and paprika.

Pour over sliced tongue.

Serve hot.

Coconut Chicken

I found this recipe in Kosher By Design Entertains (sure hope this isn't plagiarism...) and made it for my husband this past shabbas. He loved it and it was surprisingly easy to make. Two things to note: 1. This recipe was intended to be an appetizer, but I made it a main dish. (Instead of cutting the chicken into strips I just left them whole.) 2. This recipe comes with two dipping sauces which I didn't make and am not going to bother posting them for just that reason.

6 boneless, skinless chicken breasts
salt
freshly ground black pepper
1/4 cup all-purpose flour
1/4 tsp garlic powder
1/4 tsp cayenne pepper (all I had in the house was crushed red pepper, so I used that)
2 eggs, lightly beaten
1/2 cup corn flake crumbs or panko
1 cup sweetened flaked coconut
honey

1. Preheat oven to 350F.
2. Season thee chicken with salt and pepper.
3. Place the flour in a shallow dish. Ass some salt and pepper to the flour. Add the garlic powder and cayenne. Toss too combine. Place the beaten egg into a second shallow dish. Mix the corn flake crumbs and coconut in a third dish.
4. Lightly coat chicken with flour, shaking off excess. Dip each piece into the egg, shaking off excess. Roll into coconut mixture, pressing the coconut into the chicken to evenly coat.
5. Place chicken on baking sheet. Lightly drizzle with honey. Here, the recipe calls for baking for only 20 minutes, turning strips halfway through, but I left it in the oven for about 40 minutes because it wasn't completely cooked after only 20 minutes.

Saturday, January 24, 2009

The Best Peanut-Butter Pasta

3/4 cup water with an instant soup cube (can substitute w/ a tspn. ful)
1/2 cup Smooth peanut butter
1/4 Soy sauce
1/2 tspn Crushed pepper flakes
1 clove Garlic crushed
4 tbsp Cider Vinegar
2 Tbsp Sugar
Add all the ingredients to pot, bring to medium high,
Don’t burn, once again be careful not to burn it.
I SAID DON'T BURN IT!
Ok, now so you don't burn it, mix while cooking.
Let cool in a tupperware, and refrigerate till ready to serve

Pour over a medium size batch of pasta,and mix in 2 table spoons of sesame seeds (optional)

Friday, January 23, 2009

Pie Cookies

Yesterday I found myself with quite a bit of leftover homemade cherry pie filling and a dessert, made with said filling, that is unable to go to the potluck gathering it was intended for. The issue was that the place didn't allow red foods [something to do with the carpeting] and the pie filling was exposed on the surface of the dessert. I suddenly found myself in need of making a new dessert that require minimal ingredients and time. Utilizing the rest of the pie filling was ideal.

So I made gluten-free cherry pie cookies. These cookies can also be low-carb depending on the pie filling being used.

I doubt anyone attending the potluck will mind the change in dessert offering as everyone, who has tried my gluten-free low-carb cookies, loves them. The cookies don't look like much but they are absolutely delicious.

If you find yourself free of pie filling, a jelly or jam of choice can be used.

I apologize for the quality of picture. It was taken with my phone as my digital camera has gone MIA recently.


Pie Cookies


2 1/2 cups almond meal
1 stick unsalted butter or margarine, softened
3/4 cup gluten-free rolled oats [or regular rolled oats if gluten-free is not an issue for you]
1/2 cup sliced almonds
3 tablespoons agave nectar or honey [optional, depending on the sweetness level of the pie filling]
2/3 cup pie filling
1 egg
1 teaspoon vanilla extract

Cream together the butter and almond meal. Add in the remaining ingredients. Beat on medium speed for 2 minutes. Scrape the sides and bottom of the bowl. Let the mixture sit for 10 minutes. Beat again on medium speed for 2 minutes. Scrape down the sides and the bowl. Line two cookie sheets with parchment paper. Take 1 tablespoon of dough per cookie and put them down on the parchment paper. Lightly press the rounds flat. Bake for 16 to 20 minutes until they start turning lightly golden in color. Let them cool on the cookie sheets for 10 minutes before moving them to a cooling rack. Makes about 3 dozen cookies.

To store: These cookies will stick together when stacked. I put a single layer down on a plate/serving tray. I rip the parchment paper that the cookies were baked on and divide it into halves or thirds. Put down one of the parchment paper pieces then another layer of cookies. Repeat until all the cookies are on the tray then wrap with plastic wrap/cling film. Keep refrigerated until served. They are best out of the refrigerator.