My Blog List

Follow by Email

Tuesday, August 27, 2013

Desserts for a Sweet Year

The summer is coming to an end, autumn is coming, and Rosh Hashanah is a week away.
Since everyone seems to make the same main courses of brisket and chicken, I've been concentrating on interesting sides and desserts.  So, in the interest of sweetness for the New Year, here come desserts.

Honey Cookies (P)

Sweet cookies for a sweet New Year, a treat for Rosh Hashanah

Makes approximately 4 dozen cookies

1 cup honey
1 cup unsalted parve margarine (2 sticks), at room temperature
1 teaspoon cinnamon
2 1/2 cups flour
1 tablespoon baking powder
1/4 teaspoon salt
1 cup chopped walnuts, optional

Preheat oven to 350 degrees.
Line a baking sheet with parchment paper.
Whisk the flour, baking powder, cinnamon and salt together in a medium bowl.
In a large bowl, cream the butter and honey until light and fluffy.  Stir in the flour mixture until just blended.
Drop the dough by heaping teaspoons placing cookies 2 inches apart.  Press with the back of a floured teaspoon to flatten slightly.
Bake until golden brown, about 12 to 15 minutes.  Let cool for 5 minutes on baking sheet then place the cookies on a wire rack to cool completely. 
Store in an air tight container for up to 2 weeks.

(Page 143, "Kosher Salt and Exotic Spices," by Sharyn Rosler)

Honey Ginger Cookies (P)

Honey and ginger for a Rosh Hashanah treat.

Makes at least 3 dozen cookies

2 cups flour
1 teaspoon baking soda
1/3 cup chopped crystallized ginger
1/4 teaspoon salt
1/2 cup vegetable shortening
1/2 cup well packed light brown sugar
1 large egg
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
1/2 cup honey

Preheat oven to 350 degrees.  Line a baking sheet with parchment paper

Place the four, baking soda, ginger and salt in a medium bowl and whisk together well.
Place the shortening and light brown sugar in a large bowl and beat with an electric mixer at medium-high speed until light and fluffy.  Add the egg, vanilla and honey and beat until well combined.  Reduce speed to low and add the flour mixture, beating until just combined.
Drop by heaping teaspoonfuls onto the prepared baking sheet.  Bake about 10 to 12 minutes or until golden brown.  Cool on wire racks for 5 minutes and then transfer the cookies to the wire racks to cool completely.
Will keep for two weeks in an airtight container.

(Page 144, "Kosher Salt and Exotic Spice," by Sharyn Rosler)

Apple Nut Cake (P)

The perfect dessert for Shabbat.  Enjoy!

Makes 12 servings

2 cups flour
2 teaspoons baking soda
2 teaspoons cinnamon
1/4 teaspoon grated nutmeg
1 teaspoon salt
2 large apples, peeled, cored and cut into ¼” to ½” dice, either Granny Smiths or Jonathon Apples
1 1/2 cups sugar
1 1/4 cups oil
2 large eggs, beaten
2 teaspoons vanilla
1 cup chopped pecans

Preheat oven to 350 degrees.  Oil a 9” x 2” cake pan and line with parchment paper.

Place the dry ingredients in a medium bowl and whisk well to combine.  
In a large bowl, mix the apples and the sugar together.  Stir in the oil and mix to combine well.  Add the eggs, vanilla and nuts and mix until well combined.  Add the flour and stir until just moistened.
Pour the batter into the prepared pan.  Bake until the cake pulls away from the sides of the pan and a toothpick inserted in the center comes out clean, about 40 to 45 minutes.
Cool in pan for 10 minutes.  Then invert onto a wire rack, turn over and cool completely.
Place cake on a serving platter and sprinkle with powdered sugar.

(Page 129, "Kosher Salt and Exotic Spices," by Sharyn Rosler)

Wishing all of you a Happy, Healthy, Loving, and Prosperous NewYear.
L'Shana Tova!

Monday, August 19, 2013

A Sweet Kugel for Rosh Hashanah

Sweet foods for a sweet year. Traditionally, we eat sweet foods on Rosh Hashanah. 
This kugel is a sweet treat that can be eaten as a side dish, a dessert, or a snack. It is delicious hot out of the oven, or prepared ahead of time and eaten cold or at room temperature.  Best of all, it is parve.
This kugel is full of summer fruit, a gift from my kitchen to yours for a sweet year. enjoy its peachy goodness. 

Parve Peach Noodle Kugel

1 -- 12 ounce package egg noodles, cooked according to package directions
4 large eggs
1/4 cup light brown sugar, packed
1/2 cup chopped pecans
Zest of 1 lemon
1/2 cup dried cherries
1/4 cup melted, unsalted parve margarine
1 teaspoon cinnamon
3 to 4 peaches, pitted and diced
2 tablespoons sugar mixed with 1/4 teaspoon cinnamon
2 tablespoons unsalted parve margarine, cut into cubes

Preheat oven to 350 degrees. 
Lightly oil a 9 X 11 Pyrex baking pan

In a large bowl, beat the eggs with the salt. Add the noodles and toss gently until well mixed. 
In a medium bowl, mix together the sugar, pecans, zest, cherries, melted margarine, 1 teaspoon of cinnamon, and the peaches. 

Place a layer of the noodle mixture in the bottom of the prepared pan. Lightly sprinkler a layer of the peach mixture over the top. Then another layer of noodles, another layer of the peach mixture, repeating until the noodles are used up.   Dot the top with the cubed margarine and sprinkle with the cinnamon and sugar mixture. 

Place in the oven and bake until the top is golden brown, about 30 to 40 minutes. 


Monday, August 12, 2013

Rosh Hashanah is coming

Okay people, don't panic!  I know it's only a little over 3 weeks to Rosh Hashanah!

Don't worry!  I've got you covered.  

I realize many of you prepare the same main courses every year.  Brisket and/or chicken, but what about side dishes?  I know, tzimmes is a regular guest at your Rosh Hashanah table, but what if we change that up!  You might be surprised at the results you receive from your family and friends.  They'll probably gobble up the new sides.

Have you ever made a tagine?  It's a Moroccan dish named after the pot it's cooked in.  However, you don't need to run out and buy any special equipment.  You can prepare it in an ordinary saute pan.

Here's my recipe for a sweet potato tagine that's great for carnivores and vegetarians alike.

Sweet Potato Tagine (P)

A tagine is a Moroccan stew.  This is a flavorful dish that is sweet enough to serve on Rosh Hashanah or any time of the year.
Makes 6 servings

3 tablespoons olive oil
1 – 10 ounce package frozen pearl onions, thawed and drained
2 pounds sweet potatoes, peeled and cut into 1 inch cubes
3 carrots cut into 1/2 inch rounds
1/2 cup pitted prunes
1/2 cup dried apricots
1 teaspoon ground cinnamon
1/2 teaspoon ground ginger
1/2 teaspoon freshly grated nutmeg
2 tablespoons honey
1 1/2 cups vegetable stock
2 tablespoons chopped fresh cilantro leaves
2 tablespoons chopped fresh mint leaves
1/2 teaspoon salt, or to taste
1/2 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper, or to taste

Heat the oil on medium high heat in the base of the tagine, if your tagine has a metal base, or a large saute or fry pan.  Add the onions and saute about 5 minutes, until tender.  Remove half and reserve for later.
Put the sweet potatoes and carrots in the base of the tagine and saute until lightly browned.  Add the prunes, apricots, cinnamon, ginger and nutmeg and cook for 1 minute.  Add the honey and vegetable stock, season with salt and pepper, bring to a boil.  Reduce heat to simmer, cover and simmer for 1 hour, until carrots and sweet potatoes are very tender.  
Stir in the reserved onions, cover and cook an additional 15 to 20 minutes.  Fold in the cilantro and mint, taste and adjust seasonings.  Serve warm.
Goes well with brisket, roast chicken or lamb.

This is the first installment of Rosh Hashanah entries.  Check back every few days for something new for Rosh Hashanah and for Yom Kippur.


Thursday, August 1, 2013

Challah Musings

This time of year, with the holidays sneaking up on us, my thoughts go to freshly baked,honey laden, yeasty, delicious challah. Interestingly enough, I have no pictures of challahs I have baked.
Today, coincidentally, I ran into a couple of friends who do a challah bake for the local chapter of Jewish Women International.  It was the day of their annual challah bake and rising time coincided with lunch.
I have been musing on the different types of challah s I have eaten and those I have heard rumors about. There are the normal challah s, plain, with sesame seeds, with poppy seeds, and with raisins. Then there are the challahs that a bit different. Israeli challahs which are sweeter than American challahs. Chocolate chip challahs and chocolate cherry challahs, remind me to blog that recipe for you before Rosh Hashanah.
Then there are the challahs that I've heard of that are totally off the beaten path.  One that really took me by surprise was a challah made with a Milky Way Bar baked in the center.  Oh, anyone for a peanut butter and jelly challah?  I suppose the variations are endless.
As for forming a challah, how many strands would you like?  I've seen everything from a simple three strand braid to an elaborate twenty-four strand braid.  Round challahs, square challahs, rectangular challahs,  pull apart challahs and free form challahs.
A plethora of form and flavor.
One thing that is constant is their presence on Shabbat and on the holidays.
Enjoy your challahs.