15 Matzo-Free Lunch or Dinner Passover Recipes

 

March 4th 2015

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It’s not even Purim yet (ok, fine tonight!) and today is a fast day, but I’m sure we’re all starting to think about Pesach (Passover).  Enjoy the baking of hamantashen and the carelessness with which you let the flour crumbs fall, because the cleaning season (or at least the “Oh, yes, definitely starting to clean for Pesach today season) is about to begin.  Many people clean early and don’t eat matzo from Purim until Passover, so to help you plan your next three weeks here are 15 matzo-free meals that work for both lunch and dinner to get you in the mindset for pesach.

 

 

Eat healthy while still enjoying a range of flavors and textures by incorporating many different vegetables into salads this Pesach.  There’s this crunchy Raw Cauliflower Tabbouleh or refreshing Spring Asparagus and Pickled Red Onion Salad.

Try something new with warm salads, or serve them as side dishes, with the Idaho® Potato Napoleon with Grilled Vegetables or the Imam Bayeldi (Braised Eggplant, Leeks and Tomatoes).

 

Main dishes that can be served warm or cold, or that can be transformed into deliciously unrecognizable leftovers are a flexible luxury when planning and during a  holiday that logs a lot of kitchen time.  These slow cooked recipes,  Braised Pot Roast with Baby Carrots and Crispy Shallots, Lamb Stew with Apricots, Pear, and Mint and Garlic Lemon Chicken make for elegant easy dinners and can be easily repurposed for lunch the next day.

Try something lighter with the Parsley Crusted Salmon over Spanish Eggplant or Lettuce Wrapped John Dory.

 

The obvious ban on flour and many packaged products lends itself well to a lighter desserts.  While no one is rushing to call sugar healthy, having a few Dipped Strawberries or a small scoop of Rose Granita or Lemon or Lime Frozen Yogurt is a refreshing, and a relatively guilt-less alternative.

Walnut, Ginger and Cranberry Stuffed Apples

If you’re looking for a warm dessert try the Apple Compote or Walnut, Ginger and Cranberry Stuffed Apples that can be made in a slow cooker if you have one for Passover.

For a little bit of chocolate try Almond Lace Cookies with amaretto!

 

Check out more Passover recipes here!


 

Free Passover Seder Recipe Ebook

 

March 4th 2015

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Cookbook Spotlight: The New Passover Menu ...

 

March 3rd 2015

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The New Passover Menu is the newest cookbook written by Paula Shoyer. In this innovative new cookbook, Paula does an excellent, and I must say delicious,  job of  creating new recipes that work in the confines of the Passover dietary rules. Paula has found a way to include recipes for every type of cook. She combines the nostalgic Passover favorites with new inventive creations, such as Banana Charoset, Peruvian Roast Chicken with Salsa Verde, Moroccan Spiced Short Ribs, and Sweet Potato Tzimmis.  Paula also includes many dessert recipe, which are her specialty, including several that are gluten-free. To help with your planning, she includes eight seder menus as well as suggestions for other meals. The menus are great to use as is or you can be creative and mix and match.

Here are three sneak-peak recipes that can be found in cookbook:

Lamb Stew

This Lamb Stew with Apricots, Pear, and Mint  was inspired by a recipe that Paula received from Moti Yitzhaky of Moti’s Market and Grill in Rockville, Maryland. Moti’s flavorful recipes are inspired by his Moroccan ancestry and beyond, and Paula skillfully includes that flavor in this hearty stew brightened up for spring with fresh pear and mint.

Seder Plate Salad

This Seder Plate Salad is Paula’s version of a French Niçoise salad, but instead of tuna Paula uses lamb. She also includes two of the ritual components of the Seder plate and table, kosher sweet wine and maror (the bitter herb, in this case, white horseradish).  This salad also makes a nice lunch or light dinner during chol hamoed, the nonholiday days of Passover.

Linzer Tart

This Linzer Tart may be the reason you buy a rolling pin for Passover. In a pinch, a wine bottle works very well. You can make this dessert with any flavor jam you like. Paula even sometimes spreads a red jam on half the crust and apricot jam on the other half. The Tart has a gluten-free crust that requires 3 cups of three different kinds of ground nuts, but if you do not have enough of one type, you can substitute another.

***Giveaway***  Win a copy of The New Passover Menu Cookbook by commenting below and then getting more chances with rafflecopter.

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Watch Parsley Crusted Salmon Over Spanish Eggplant

 

March 3rd 2015

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My cousin’s wedding in Tel Aviv featured the BEST simcha food I have ever enjoyed. It was simple, no fuss, pure deliciousness. The main course featured a choice between 1) melt-in-your-mouth short ribs, over pillowy sweet potato mash, topped with a caramelized onion quarter 2) pargiot stuffed with cinnamon infused ground beef, over a bed of dried fruit and pine nut couscous, finished with tahini and cilantro oil and 3) parsley crusted salmon filets, with tomato chickpea sauce. Most everyone sampled all three options. The evening was a display of simple ingredients cooked simply to perfection. I have since come home and recreated 2 of the 3 dishes the first of which I am sharing with you here today.

Get the full recipe for Parsley Crusted Salmon with Spanish Eggplant

The secrets to purrrfect Parsley Crusted Salmon are as follows:

Super Duper Fresh Fish: makes all the difference in the world.

Lots of Fresh Lemon Juice: are you sensing a pattern here? Fresh, fresh, fresh! When using a few ingredients it’s essential you work with fresh because all are on full display and anything sub par will have no where to hide.

LOTS More Fresh Parsley Leaves: When you think you’ve added enough, add just a little more for good measure.

S + P + EVOO: Liberally season with KOSHER salt and freshly cracked black pepper plus a generous drizzle of good quality olive oil.

No Fuss Side: Bake your salmon on a bed of Sabra Spanish Eggplant. This delicious mix of all-natural ingredients – including eggplant, tomatoes, onions, and garlic simmered in tangy tomato sauce – makes turning this dish into a meal, a cinch.

Let me know how you like this recipe and the new video style!

XOXO
enJOY!


 

Asian Vegetables with Quinoa

 

March 3rd 2015

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You can get this one-pot recipe right here. This is simply a brillant dish, simply brilliant. Instead of getting out two pans and a few bowls this recipe uses one pan. You heard me right. One pan. Did I forget to mention that this is a stir-fry recipe, and it starts with all raw food, including the quinoa?!?!

Let’s get into it! Slicing and prepping veggies – no biggie here. The veggies for the most part were in my fridge. I only had a snag on grabbing the eggplant. Being slightly :) out of season all of the ones at my local grocery store were not up to par – at all. So I followed the suggestion of others who commented on the recipe. and picked up some zucchini. A simple item swap an I was on my way to one-pot bliss.
All went very well in the cooking dept. no strange vaporized vinegar filling the house this time. Each item got its turn in the pan and they were cooking great. And then came the moment of truth. Would the quinoa cook or would their be dry little pearls stuck to parts of the pan. Thankfully they didn’t, no dry, unappetizing quinoa. It was all beautifully cooked and ready to go! I’m thinking that this may be the way to go in a few other veggie/seasoning combos. Maybe leave out the Asian flavors and go for an Italian one next time or Mediterranean…hmmmm. Well the wheels are churning and I’m thinking some more great food is ahead!


I do need to give a thanks here to the person who told me to ignore the label on the bag of quinoa. You know the one that tells you it’s “pre-washed & ready to cook!” Don’t believe it, trust me I learned that the hard way (imagine a few batches of quinoa being gagged down since it’s “healthy” and who wants to waste money?!?!) If you want to avoid the metal/soap taste that unwashed quinoa can have then rinse, and rinse again, and don’t forget to rinse. :)

All the best!


 

Kosher Pasture Raised Slow Cooked Chicken ...

 

March 2nd 2015

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Have you ever tried cooking your chicken low and slow? It is a common method of cooking the best brisket, but not as well known for chicken.  There are a few ways to do this, our recipe takes advantage of garlic and lemon and some chicken broth to really bring out all the flavor.  Our chicken cooked for a few minutes at 400 degrees, but then the oven temp is reduced to 250 and the chicken cooks for another 1 hour and 45 minutes until it reaches the perfect golden color you see in the picture.   The meat is moist and delicious and the skin comes out perfectly crispy.

We were very excited to use Grow & Behold’s, Sara’s Spring Chicken when making this recipe as their products have the reputation to be of the highest quality. In addition to being Glatt Kosher, Grow & Behold’s birds are pasture raised. As soon as the birds are large enough to be moved outside, they spend their entire lives on grass. They live in spacious, movable pens that are moved each day allowing them to access a growing salad bar of natural food. The birds are also fed a special blend of non-GMO food. This chicken tastes fresh and pure. When making this recipe, we highly recommend you order your chicken from Grow & Behold.

Get our full recipe for Slow Cooked Garlic Lemon Chicken  and then check out our Giveaway for your chance to WIN!!!

***Giveaway*** Win with Grow and Behold!!! Every week for the next three weeks we will be sharing a new Grow and Behold recipe with you, perfect for Passover, and every week we will be announcing a new winner for one of three amazing prizes!!

First WINNER is Melissa Lawler, keep entering for more chances.
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garlic lemon chicken

This post and giveaway is sponsored by Grow & Behold. 


 

Cocktail Inspired Mishloach Manot

 

March 2nd 2015

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Sending Mishloach Manot to friends and family is an obligation on Purim, but coming up with new ideas for your Mishloach Manot each year can be difficult. We all want to be creative and ‘wow’ our friends and family, but there are so many great ideas out there and narrowing it down to just one can be hard.  On Purim, there is an obligation to drink alcohol and cocktail inspired Mishloach Manot is a creative way to connect the obligation of drinking alcohol with Mishloach Manot. These three Purim inspired cocktails can easily be turned into Mishloach Manot using the packing instructions below and adding the cocktail ingredients.

Shushan Bullet

 A Mexican “Sombrero” can be used as container for the Shushan Bullet ingredients. You can use straws as filler and include 6 color-coordinated paper napkins and 6 assorted clear or multi-colored 2-oz plastic shot glasses.

Milk and Cookies Cocktail

Put the ingredients for the (Not-Your-Kids’) Milk and Cookies cocktails into large brown paper lunch sack with bright tissue to use as filler. You can add a can opener, disposable swizzle sticks (short size), 6 bright paper napkins, 6 assorted clear or multi-colored 2-oz. plastic shot glasses.

Sweet n Sour Ice Tea

For the Sweet ‘N’ Sour Iced Tea Shooters use a large Chinese-style paper or plastic take-out box packed with styrofoam “peanuts” or “noodles” to as a filler. Add 3 sets of chopsticks to use as stirrers, 6 color-coordinated paper napkins to match take-out container, and 6 assorted clear or multi-colored 2-oz. plastic shot glasses to match.

 

Joy of Kosher Late Winter MagazineAs seen in the Joy of Kosher with Jamie Geller Magazine

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RSVP #WinnDixieKosher Passover Twitter Party

 

March 1st 2015

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You’re invited to join our #WinnDixieKosher Twitter chat!

Hosted by @JoyofKosher and sponsored by @WinnDixie.

Now that Purim is over, it is time to start thinking about planning your seder! Whether you are holding the seder yourself or you are taking part at someone else’s home, we have tons of ideas for how best to plan, including deciding on your delicious menu.

If you live near a Winn-Dixie you should stop in to check out their Passover products. If that’s not an option you should definitely take part in this Twitter Party and you will have a chance to WIN great gift baskets from Winn-Dixie!  The gift baskets will include 1 signed joy of kosher cookbook and kosher for passover products.

When

Monday March 9th at 8:30pm EST

Who

@JoyofKosher @JoyofKosherMag @TamarGenger @JamieGeller

@WinnDixie

Moderator @MommyBlogExpert

How to participate
Use hashtag #WinnDixieKosher
Use Tweetchat or Twubs for easy chatting.

Anyone can participate, but you must be following @JoyofKosher and @WinnDixie and RSVP here below to win prizes!

RSVP

Let us know you are coming to the party in the comments below to be entered to win 1 of 6 gift baskets including 1 signed joy of kosher cookbook and kosher for passover products. Make sure to include your twitter handle.


 

The Secret Pantry Ingredient That Makes Every...

 

February 27th 2015

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There are quite a few secret pantry ingredients we all like to keep around, one all time favorite is Gold’s Duck Sauce.  It comes in a few flavors including hot and spicy and sweet and sour so you can tweak each recipe as desired.  The duck sauce provides a flavorful coating for any protein source, meat, chicken, fish and even hot dogs.  The texture of the sauce helps keep the food moist and tender and every recipe is quick and easy and absolutely delicious.

weet and sour salmon

Sweet and Sour Salmon

Sliced, assorted vegetables placed under the fish before cooking are an added bonus to this flavorful easy weeknight dinner that is just nice enough to serve company.

Duck Sauce Chicken joyofkosher

Duck Sauce Chicken

This famous chicken recipe wins awards even next to fancy poultry dishes that take hours to make.

Duck Mango Barbecue Sauce Brisket

All you have to do is slow-cook the meat in the oven two days before, remove any fat and save the pan juices for other recipes. Then heat the brisket on the grill and keep slathering on sauce until the meat is hot, glazed and crispy. It tastes terrific from the oven too (425 degrees).

 Sweet & Sour Pineapple Schnitzel

This sweet and sour pineapple schnitzel tastes like a cross between classic Chinese sesame chicken and sweet & sour chicken. Frying the schnitzel in tempura batter not only saves you from making batches of nuggets, but you’ll save on calories as well!

accordion hot dogs

Sweet and Sour Accordion Dogs

You can make this recipe with hot dogs, sausages or salami.  It only takes 5 minutes prep time and there only 3 ingredients for this amazing delicious and fun appetizer or snack, great for kids and big parties.

Vegan Thai Lettuce Cups

These Thai flavored tofu lettuce wraps use duck sauce to give a bonus of sweet tangy flavor.

Sweet and Tangy Meatballs

Makes a wonderful meal served over fluffy rice and some steamed green vegetables on the side!

Don’t miss this fun video for Kishke Stuffed Chicken, just click play above.

 

This article is sponsored by Gold’s, we have almost 100 recipes featuring Gold’s products, get them here.


 

Kosher Wine For Purim

 

February 27th 2015

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The Jewish holiday of Purim begins this year on Wednesday evening at sundown on March 4, 2015, and continues through Thursday night, March 5th.  The customs of Purim include “feasting and merrymaking,” in addition to “sending gifts to one another and presents to the poor”.  At Joy of Kosher the weeks leading up to Purim and through Passover include a lot of wine tasting.  It’s a tough job, but someone has to do it!

We recently visited the 9th Annual Kosher Food & Wine Experience, held this year at the Metropolitan Pavilion in Chelsea, a fashionable neighborhood in New York City.  Over 300 wines and spirits were available for sampling, and many new wines were introduced the marketplace for the first time.

The evening event, open to the public, attracted a large crowd of wine and food enthusiasts sampling from top kosher caterers and restaurants offering gourmet specialty foods including BBQ, sushi and Asian/fusion fare, as well as creative desserts, coffees and teas.

I wanted to highlight five favorite wines from the Event at a range of prices to suit your Purim budget.  All of the wines below would be a wonderful accompaniment to your Purim Seudah.  Enjoy!

2012 Amuka Shiraz (Israel); $17.  A dry red wine made of 100% Shiraz.  It has a deep, purple color, an aroma of very ripe, red fruit, with a hint of berries and toasted oak wood, a velvety taste with an enjoyable finish.

2012 Soreka Cabernet Sauvignon Special Reserve (Israel); $29.  A dry red Cab with a full bodied flavor, fruity bouquet, and deep mulberry color. The grapes are harvested by hand from the rocky terroir of the Shomron Valley and aged in French and American Oak.  Wonderful wine!

2010 Tabor Limited Edition Cabernet (Israel);  $40.  Made exclusively from a single vineyard grown at an altitude of 700 meters on Mount Malkia in the Upper Galilee, this dense and delectable Cab is bold and fruity, almost chewy.  Aged for 18 months in new French oak barrels.

2010 Carmel Mediterranean (Israel); $55.  This is a blend of five grape varieties grown in Israel (Carignan 37%, Shiraz 26%, Petit Verdot 20%, Petite Sirah 15%, Viognier 2%). The wine was aged in small French oak barrels for 15 months. It was unfined and only coarsely filtered.

2012 Alexander Cleopatra Chardonnay (Israel); $60.  Aged for 18 months in oak, Alexander Cleopatra Chardonnay carries a sophisticated and potent composition of fragrant pineapple marked by luscious notes of apple and pear. This fruit flavor of this crisp Chardonnay is complemented by hints of vanilla and marzipan. Maintains a promising aging potential with a beautifully long finish.

Photos provided by Royal Wine Corporation from the Kosher Food and Wine Experiences 2015


 

Celebrate Purim With A Vegetarian Seudah

 

February 26th 2015

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When you’re away from home, eating kosher can be difficult. You might be able to find a suitable restaurant nearby, but maybe not. For many of the people I know, it’s easier to eat vegetarian meals in those circumstances, so there’s never an issue about kosher meat or mixing meat and dairy.

That’s precisely what Queen Esther chose to do when she lived at King Ahasuerus’s palace — at least according to most historians. And so it has become tradition to celebrate Purim with a vegetarian seudah.

In our family – loaded with both vegetarians and meat-eaters who enjoy the occasional vegetarian dinner, and also my daughter, who is allergic to fish, a Purim Vegetarian Seudah works out perfectly.

Here are some of our favorites for the feast:

vegetable-soup

Start with Pasta Fagiole: a hot and hearty soup, thick with vegetables, beans and pasta. We usually top it with lots of grated Parmesan cheese.

Fritatta

For our main course we like Mushroom and Feta Frittata, which I can make ahead and re-warm or serve at room temperature. Sometimes I add peas or chopped tomatoes to the recipe. If I don’t have feta cheese, I switch to goat cheese. The recipe is very forgiving.

roasted-tomatoes-with-blue-cheese

I usually serve at least two other vegetables, maybe Roasted Tomatoes and Blue Cheese because I can also make this one ahead and it is so pretty to boot!

lemon-roasted-asparagus

Because Purim is usually around the time that asparagus is in season and we can get the very best ones at the store, I will make some sort of roasted asparagus recipe, like Lemon-Roasted Asparagus. I do realize that for some, asparagus can never be kosher, but we include it. I wash the spears carefully.

Hummus-with-Pine-Nuts-and-Zaatar

I will probably also have some hummus on hand. I always have hummus on hand! Maybe this recipe: Hummus with Pine Nuts and Zatar.

Butterscotch Pudding

Dessert? Of course! Maybe Butterscotch Pudding, my grand daughter Lila’s favorite. But no occasion in our family would be complete without my “famous” Grand Finale cookies, a recipe in my first book, Hip Kosher. Since that book was published, I’ve changed the recipe to accommodate my youngest grand daughter, Carina, age 2, who can’t eat nuts.

Finale Cookies

Here’s the Oatier, Nutless Grand Finale Cookie recipe.


 

A Unique Israeli Menu For Purim

 

February 25th 2015

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These recipes let you imagine you are walking in the streets of Israel, tasting the flavors, smelling the aromas and enjoying the colors of one of the most interesting and provocative places on earth — Israel.

The dishes resemble the character of the country and the people with sweet and spicy flavors.

Zaatar Crusted Gefilte Fish with Wasabi Aioli

This dish combines the old Jewish dish with Mediterranean flavors. Serve it with some Mediterranean dips and win the heart of your guests.

 

Jerusalem Mix Spice Blend 

This spice mix was created by me to be able to taste Jerusalem even if I am not there. It puts together flavors of the Jerusalem market and each time you use you will think you are there now.  You can use this spice mix with many meat and chicken dished so make a big amount and keep in the freezer.

 

 

Kataifi Nests with Mauritanian Ground Lamb

This dish is an elegant way to wow your guests. You can serve it as an entree or appetizer and bring Israel to your guest’s plate.

 

Fatush Salad – Shuk to Table Movement. (Chopped Fresh Market Vegetables with Pita Croutons)

Forget Israeli or Arab salad, this is the real thing! A mixture of vegetables, herbs and crunchy pita bites, once you try it, it will accompany your table every Shabbat.

 

A Cake of a Thousand Kisses (Basbousa – Semolina Cake) 

This is a traditional Arab cake that became very popular in Israel. The name basbousa means in Arabic a thousand kisses

 

Blushed Arak cocktail (Cocktail of arak and red grapefruit) 

This is the traditional drink of the streets of Israel. It combines the anise flavor with sweet and citrus hints.

These dishes can be served at your Purim Seuda and the Jerusalem Spice Mix can be given as part of your Mishloach Manot/party favor.

If you want to see more and taste where these recipes came from join me in my inaugural FOODSTEPS CULINARY JOURNEY, July 7-16, 2015.

With this unique experience, you can connect with the heart and soul of Israel’s vibrant culture with your palate learning the way on a culinary and culturally rich journey.

For more info visit http://www.yoursoulkitchen.com/#!itinerary/c1hvy, or contact:  [email protected], or call: 347-490-7214


 

Themed Purim Seudah Menu Ideas *Giveaway*

 

February 25th 2015

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Adar is the month of increasing in simcha, happiness, and Purim, the main event of the month, brings that happiness to an all time high.  The Purim Seudah, holiday meal, is a highlight for many because the mitzvah to eat and drink in abundance brings the holiday induced happiness to new highs.  Whether you’re having a large or small crowd, the menus below have plenty of options to suit all crowds.

 

 

 

Vegetarian Seudah:  The other day there was an article on the Joy of Kosher homepage titled “Queen Esther Could Have Been Plant-Based, Right?” which got me thinking about vegetarian seudah ideas.  This menu captures the elegance of the holiday without resorting to meat as the wow-factor. Break bread with the cute Hamantashen Challah followed by delicious salads such as the Winter Quinoa Salad, Portobello Carpaccio with Chimichurri, and Colorful Tahini.  If this Northeast weather continues this trend, you’ll likely want to serve this warming Creamy Carrot Bisque followed by the main of Pressure-Coooker Wild Mushroom Risotto.  Treat yourself to a dessert of 4 different Homemade Truffles.

 

 

Persian Inspired Feast:  The good news is, if you have any leftovers you can repurpose them for shabbos.  The bad news is you will likely spend the Thursday and Friday eating these delicious leftovers only to find yourself prepping for another day of feasting.  Zaatar and Olive Challah is a festive change from the usual.  Follow it with Roasted Eggplant Carpaccio and Exotic Tomato Salad and Raw Cauliflower Tabbouleh.  You won’t have room for soup, so looking to the main enjoy Lamb Meatballs with Pomegranate Glaze atop a bed of Almond and Date Couscous.  Along side serve the Salt and Pepper Noodle Kugel and Spicy Chorizo Potato Bourekas.  For dessert try the Spicy Espresso Truffles and the Techina Date hamantaschen with Silan Glaze.

 

 

Family Friendly Formal:  This menu could please just about anyone but it still is refined with modern takes on classic dishes.  Start with the famous Jamie Geller Challah Recipe followed by Salmon en Croute and the Fresh Fig, Carrot, Fennel and Kale Salad.  For the next course, enjoy the Creamy Roasted Garlic and Potato Soup.  For the main try the Brisket in a Pot with Garlicalongside the Potato Cake with Sweet Shallot Jam and Thyme, Sautéed Sugar Snap Peas and Brussels Sprouts with Beef Bacon. For dessert treat yourself to a warm slice of Pear Cake with a heaping scoop of pareve ice cream on top.

 

 

 

***Giveaway*** This article is sponsored by Winn-Dixie, your neighborhood grocery store with all your kosher needs.  Now is your chance to WIN. a Rafflecopter giveaway


 

Cookbook Spotlight: Iranian Cuisine

 

February 25th 2015

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Iranian Cuisine is a unique and beautiful cookbook with recipes written in both English and Persian. Author Vida Leveim was born in Teheran and Persian culture and cuisine is close to her heart. The recipes are very authentic with ingredients like rosewater, cardamom and saffron in many of the dishes. It is a great cookbook to use to experiment with a new culinary tradition especially during Purim-time when you can impress your guests with a delicious Persian Seudah!

 

Hake_Cutlets

Hake, like cod, is a white mild tasting yet versatile fish that goes well with many styles of cooking. Vida’a Hake Cutlets are deliciously crispy and the lemon juice marinade is perfect for the fish.  Adding pickled garlic as a garnish is a great addition to the flavor as well.

Quince_Broth

Although incredibly sour when eaten raw, quince is delectable stewed in this Quince Broth. You have the choice of using beef or lamb and both pair well with the quince. Although some of the ingredients might be hard to find, if you are able to find them this recipe is definitely worth a try.

Saffron_Dessert

Saffron is an important ingredient in Persian cooking. The first language to record the use of saffron in cooking is Old Persian, and the references go back thousands of years. Vida includes just the right amount of saffron to her Saffron Dessert, which gives the dessert a lovely yellow color.

Halva

Halva is a sweet dessert that is served in many places in the world, including the Middle East, parts of Asia, Africa, and Europe. The two main types of  halva are flour-based and nut-butter based. Vida’s Halva is flour-based and contains many traditional Persian ingredients like date syrup, rosewater, cardamom, and saffron.

To purchase Iranian Cuisine click here.


 

VIDEO How To: Hamantaschen

 

February 24th 2015

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As the JOK Taster I’ve been cooking up a lot of yummy’ness lately – but this project, well it’s one that I think you’re really gonna enjoy. We’ve made a really fun and quick video to boost your hamantaschen inspiration. If you’ve been having a hard time getting into the baking mood take a minute and watch the video, really it’ll only take you a minute, ok 90 seconds to be exact :) but truly, its worth it. And if you’re already uber excited about spending some quality time in the kitchen for Purim this video will at least bring a smile to your face.

The actual hamantaschen that I made in this video is a compilation of a couple of recipes (how could I, the JOK Taster choose only one?) The dough that I used in the video was one of Tamar’s wonderful recipes. I tried the recipe both with the optional lemon juice and without it. Both versions are great, and I was really amazed at how much crispier they turned out with the lemon juice – almost like a totally different cookie. So now you have a reason to make a double batch … ;)

I love how versatile hamantaschen are, you can fill them with just about anything. One of the recipes that I found when I was “researching” for this video (I mean come on, how can I really call it research? I got to pour over recipes, for hamantaschen and call it work?!?!?!) called for Junior Mints. I was sold on that idea right away. Chocolate & mint. Sold! However, the grocery store was sold out. They didn’t have the first package of them anywhere. So I looked for the next best alternative, something that was at least shaped similarly to the Junior Mint. Thus the Milk Dud made its entrance. And was it a WOW hamantaschen!!! I am SO glad I couldn’t find the Junior Mints that first time I ran to the grocery store for supplies. Because now I have two GREAT ideas and both of them include chocolate with some of its best parings!

We can’t leave out the faithful standby, the jelly filled hamantaschen. The filling that’s so quick and easy anyone can do it and bake hamantaschen that look like they are filled with jewels. If you still want some more ideas for fillings, something exotic maybe or one that you remember your bubbe making here is a list of six more filling ideas!

 

Chag Sameach!