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6 Unexpected Asparagus Recipes

 

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Is it really finally Spring?


 

A Special Israeli Menu for Yom Haatzmaut

 

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Every year my synagogue has a big program to celebrate Yom Haatzamut.  The night the holiday begins all the men get together and enjoy a free BBQ.  I am sure it is not only for men, but in my circle the wives stay home with the kids and the men gorge themselves on steak.  Don’t worry we girls have plenty of nights out.  Anyways, the next day the families all come together after school for bounce houses, face painting and mediocre food.  I know I admit to being a food snob, but I would rather make my own.  Despite the busy day I like to have something special to celebrate Israel, be it Israeli flavors and/or blue and white desserts and/or something grilled to celebrate like they do in Israel.  Here is what I have in store this year.

shawarma carrots roasted


 

Get In Your Greens On Earth Day

 

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Earth Day is tomorrow, April 22nd, and it’s the perfect day to appreciate the amazing food that comes from the earth. This year is the 45th anniversary of the first Earth Day and the theme is “it’s our turn to lead”. Take tomorrow to think about how you can lead the food revolution and add in more greens and less processed foods into your diet. Whether its crunchy kale and green beans or green tea leaves and mint, you can taste so many different flavors when you eat food that comes directly from the ground. On this Earth Day, I thought it would be fun to give you a days worth of green dishes. Whether it’s breakfast, lunch, dinner or a snack, you can go green all day.

Breakfast:


 

Israel is 67 – Time To Celebrate!

 

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I always know how old the modern state of Israel is since it was born in 1948, the same year as my dear daddy, making them both 67 this year (he should be healthy and happy until 120!).  Called Yom HaAtzmaut in Hebrew, Israeli Independence Day, marks the establishment of the modern state of Israel. It is observed on or near the 5th day of the Hebrew calendar month of Iyar, which falls out this year on April 23, 2015.

This will be our 3rd Yom HaAtzmaut since we made Aliyah to Israel in August 2012 and we have the custom of celebrating it with the Chashmonain Gellers (my brother- and sister-in-law and their kids) not to be confused with the Ramat Beit Shemesh Gellers (that’s us!).  Like most Israelis we spend the afternoon having  a good ‘ol fashioned BBQ in some fabulous sprawling Israeli park.  Our first year we went to Tel Aviv, our 2nd year Jerusalem, this year we are still in planning mode.


 

Triple Layer Blueberry Mousse Cake

 

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Triple Layer Blueberry Mousse Cake Posted 04/17/2015 by Tova Feigelstock
This cake is a must for Yom Ha'aztmaut with its blue and white layers representing the blue and white of the flag of Israel. Although there are several steps, don't let that scare you because the final product is both beautiful and delicious.

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Cooking With Joy: Loaded Burger With Special Sauce

 

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Who doesn’t love a good burger? Our family does! The way I prep burgers at home is by making a patty of ground beef, seasoning it on either side with some BBQ sauce and grill seasoning and searing it in a sauté pan. (We live in an apartment, so grilling isn’t always an option). When we go out I love experimenting with new flavors on my burgers. I have had spicy caesar burgers, burgers with fried eggs and crispy pastrami and some really great chili burgers, just to name a few.


 

67 Israeli Food Recipes You Need To Try

 

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Yom Haatzamut is just around the corner and Israeli is turning 67!!!  Let’s celebrate with some Israeli food.  It might intimidate you to try making your own Israeli food, but it is easier than you think and JoyofKosher has got your back.

Prepare a breakfast so delicious it will transport you to a hotel in Jerusalem eating in the sun. Go all out with a three course feast, or take it easy with a simple on-the-go Israeli salad in pita. Whether it’s making homemade tahini or hummus or tackling Israeli meatballs simmered in tahini, choose from these sixty seven Israeli recipes to create an authentic and fun Yom Haatzamut and celebrate Israel.


 

Post Passover Chametzfest Desserts

 

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I hear people groan about Passover food, particularly when it comes to desserts. But honestly, back in the day all we had was some aunt’s dry-as-dust sponge cake and two kinds of canned macaroons. In recent years there’s been much more, thanks to those wonderful cooks who created flourless chocolate tortes and mousse-filled Vacherins and so many other choices grandma never could have contemplated. Even the canned macaroons are better now and with many more flavors.

Still, when you can’t use regular flour or yeast, baking powder or cornstarch, our favorite desserts don’t taste the same as they do during the rest of the year. After a week of even the best of Passover sweets, most of us are ready to get back to normal eating. A post-Passover dessert chametzfest as it were.


 

How To Make a Shlissel Key Shaped Challah

 

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Shlissel Challah, or Key Challah is customarily made the Shabbos after passover. It is said to be a Segula for livelihood and Parnasa (income). A key is placed into the Challah dough while being braided and some even shape their Challah like a key. Here is a step by step tutorial on how to shape your challah dough into a key using our favorite Challah Recipe (Jamie’s Geller’s famous dough).

Now, how to shape the key, check out our step by step instructions (using play dough for illustration purposes, but it is also fun to play with):


 

Cookbook Spotlight: Spiritual Kneading *Giveaway*

 

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Spiritual Kneading Through The Jewish Months is Dahlia Abraham-Klein’s newest cookbook. In it, she features an evocative collection of challah recipes, Jewish spiritual insights, and Torah study as it relates to each Jewish month. The separation of Challah, in addition to baking challah, is a a woman’s mitzvah (commandment) and Rosh Chodesh, the first of each Jewish month, is traditionally a women’s holiday. In Spiritual Kneading, Dahlia focuses on women’s spiritual growth via the tradition of challah baking while meditating upon the Jewish theme of the month.

The book covers all twelve months of the Jewish year, with specific Torah text for each month. The book also features  a specific challah that relates to the Torah theme for that month, such as a Spiral Challah with Apple and Silan for Tishrei, a  Rainbow Shaped Challah for Cheshvan, a Cheese Loaf  for Kislev and a Star of David Challah for Tevet. Dahlia believes that kneading is an action meditation and so she also includes a meditation guided through the kneading of the challah dough.


 

Shabbat Recipe: Shemini

 

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In this week’s parsha, Shemini, Aaron’s sons, Nadav and Avihu offer a sacrifice to God, but bring “alien fire.” “Fire came forth from the Lord and consumed them: thus they died at the instance of the Lord” (Rabbi Matthew Berkowitz, Jewish Theological Seminary). After their deaths, Aaron was instructed by Moses, “you must distinguish between the sacred and the profane, and between the impure and pure; and you must teach the Israelites all the laws which the Lord has imparted to them through Moses” (Rabbi Matthew Berkowitz. Jewish Theological Seminary).

Commentary about the episode, notes, “Aaron is the gentle man of peace who never reprocess but only tries to bring people to God through love and kindness.’” (Reuven Hammer in The Classic Midrash, p. 189).  Being a disciple of Aaron is a daily challenge for each of us. Through our humble behaviors and speech, we can live in relationship with God as his vessels spreading the light of Torah to the darkest corners of the world.  Rabbi Brad Artson notes, “Our minds cannot master God, but the quest is essential nonetheless. . . . But to seek God, to yearn for holiness and to strive for righteousness, these orient our lives as a magnet positions the needle of a compass, providing us purpose, direction, and hope” (Rabbi Bradley Shavit ArtsonZiegler School of Rabbinic Studies).


 

Cooking With Joy: Garlic Honey Brisket

 

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Most people I work with are used to me talking about “The Blog” and what I have cooking up that week. One of the cool things about me doing this project is people asking me for recipes and cooking advice. It is a nice feeling for sure, but the nicer feeling is them giving me feedback saying that I was helpful. My go to recipe to offer people when they ask what’s good in the book is this Honey Garlic Brisket. I have told many people at work that this is a no fail recipe and everyone who has made it agrees. I am going to say that it is probably my favorite recipe in the cookbook so far!


 

Simple Salmon In 10 Minutes Or Less

 

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The biggest mistake you can make when it comes to preparing salmon, or any fish for that matter, is overcooking. I learned (from a famed Long Island fish monger) when doing research for my first book that if your house starts to smell fishy that means you’ve gone too far. But when you don’t know the proper techniques or how to test for doneness with a degree of certainty, it’s almost impossible not to fall prey to the mistake that will leave you with the dried out, rubbery, tasteless fish (that cost you a pretty penny!).

So follow these flawless and fail proof Simple Salmon techniques for perfection on a plate. When you have the know-how you can then “Dress Up” your Simple Salmon dishes with glazes, sauces and flavorful poaching liquids. Although my grandfather (the gourmet chef I always talk about) taught me that if cooked right, salt (sometimes pepper) and lemon are all most fish need. After testing, tasting and mastering these techniques, I tend to agree.


 

Matzo Brei – A Passover Brunch Delight

 

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There are so many matzo brei recipes out there that choosing one can be overwhelming. Whether you make a basic traditional recipe, such as the one found here, or something more extravagant, with matzo brei you can rarely go wrong. My favorite is Jamie’s new Banana and Peach Matzo Brie Bake (see the video and recipe link below), but with any version you make you have to be sure not to over-soak the matzo or else your matzo brei will come out soggy. Don’t hesitate to try one or all of the recipes below as they are each different and have a unique take on matzo brei. EnJOY!

Matzo Brei Mac 'N Cheese


 

Passover Dairy Lunch Mains

 

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Whether you’ve had the pleasure of experiencing a Passover hotel dairy lunch buffet or just heard about what it’s like in (great!) detail, you know that those chefs put out a spread like nobody’s business. I have been to quite a few in my day whether for work or as a guest and can tell you the recipes are so impressive, so creative and so delicious that everyone walks around exclaiming (to themselves, to each other or to anyone within earshot) “I can’t believe this is Passover food!”