Thursday, April 5, 2018

Passover Almond Butter Banana Pancakes

Tried this new recipe for Passover.  Passover breakfast is always a challenge in our house since we normally eat cereal, and we have a few choices.  Passover means no ready to eat food in our house, and things need to be prepared.  Three out of four of us eat matza brie. . . . . no one likes the Passover pancakes (homemade or from a mix) and we all agreed the $7.99 box of Passover waffles was the worst waffle we ever ate.

2 ripe bananas
4 eggs
1/2 cup almond butter
1 t vanilla (KFP)
1 cup chocolate chips
maple syrup
vegetable/canola oil

Place the bananas, eggs, almond butter and vanilla into the food processor with the "s" blade and process until smooth.  Pour into bowl and add chocolate chips and stir.

Heat griddle over low to medium heat.  Heat oil.  Pour 1/4 cup of batter onto hot griddle and cook on one side for 2-3 minutes.  Flip and cook for an additional minute and move to cookie sheet.  (You can keep the prepared pancakes in a warm oven until batter is gone.)  Continue.

Serve with maple syrup and a berry salad on the side.

Thursday, March 29, 2018

Passover Meat Lasagna


1.5 lbs ground beef - not extra lean (if you want to make it vegetarian, use 1.5 pounds of mushrooms that you have pulverized in the food processor)
2 onions, chopped
3/4 c. pignoli nuts (you can substitute dates)
1/2 c raisins soaked in red wine
1-2 t ground cinnamon
1 t cloves
2 T Olive Oil
One box of matzah (4 sheets per layer)
2 eggs
1/2 c beef broth or red wine
salt and pepper

In a pan, heat oil over medium heat and add onions and a pinch of salt.  Let onions cook for 5-7 minutes.  Add nuts and raise the heat a bit.  Add ground beef and cook for 5 minutes.  Add raisins with the wine, cinnamon and cloves.  Let cook 5 more minutes and add salt and pepper, if needed.  Cook until beef is cooked.  Remove from heat and cover.  You want the mixture to have some liquid (if there isn't any add some beef broth or wine).

Preheat oven to 350F

Take a 9 x 5 pan and fill with water (this is to soak matzah).  Place 4 matzot to soak for a few minutes, but not too long.  You want it in one piece and not many.

Take another 9 x5 pan and add a teaspoon of oil and put in the oven for a minute (to heat but not burn).  Take out pan and put in two matzahs.  Add 1/2 of the meat mixture with some juice and cover with two matzahs.  Then add the rest of the meat and matzah.  You need to replace the matzahs in the water as you take out two to keep the process going.

Beat the eggs together.  Poke a few holes in the top layer of matzah.  Pour egg mixture over it.

Bake 30-40 minutes or until brown.  Let stand for 10 minutes then serve.

Sephardic Charoset

Growing up, the charoset on our Passover table was made of apples and nuts.   A few years ago, I learned about how each geographic area had their own charoset.  My mother in law introduced this to me before I married her son.

Sephardic Charoset

1 pound of dark raisins
8 oz. pitted dates
2 cups water

Place raisins and dates in a bowl and cover with water and let stand for one hour.
Chop fine in a food processor in small batches, and put in a heavy saucepan.
Simmer over a very low heat until all liquid is absorbed (about an hour)
Remove from heat and cool.
Place in Tupperware in the fridge.

After the seder is over, I typically serve it for breakfast or with lunch to spread on matzah.

Tuesday, March 20, 2018

Mario's Pasta - made two ways

I made this pasta this weekend.  I made 1/4 of the recipe without anchovies and 3/4 with the anchovies.  I think the anchovies add a deeper taste, however my vegetarian husband doesn't miss it.

St. John’s Eve Pasta

Yield: 4-6 servings

¾ cup sliced blanched almonds
½ cup extra virgin olive oil
2 cups fresh bread crumbs
4 salt-packed anchovies, filleted, rinsed, and chopped
Freshly ground black pepper
1 onion, finely chopped
1 clove garlic, finely chopped
2 cups tomato sauce
6  fresh basil leaves, chiffonade
1 pound pappardele pasta

Bring 6 quarts of water to a boil in a large pot, and add 2 tablespoons of salt.
Meanwhile, in a 10-inch sauté pan, gently toast the almonds in 1 tablespoon of the olive oil over medium heat until golden brown.
Using a slotted spoon, transfer the almonds to a plate. In the oil remaining in the pan, toast the bread crumbs, stirring, until golden brown and crisp. Combine the bread crumbs and almonds in a small bowl.
Add 2 tablespoons more olive to the pan and reduce the heat to medium-low. Stir in the anchovies and crush them into the oil with a fork. Add the anchovies and oil to the bread crumb mixture and season with lots of black pepper. Set aside.
Add the remaining 5 tablespoons olive oil to the pan, add the onion and garlic, and coo gently until softened but not browned.  Add the tomato sauce, being to a brisk simmer, and cook until the sauce has reduced by one-third. Add the basil, remove from the heat, and set aside.
Drop the pasta into the boiling water and cook until just al dente. Drain the past well, and toss into the pan with the sauce. Add half of the bread crumb mixture and toss to mix well.
Transfer the pasta to a warmed serving blow. Sprinkle the remaining bread crumb mixture over the top, and serve immediately.
Source: Molto Italiano by Mario Batali

Tuesday, February 13, 2018

Creative Hamentashen recipes

My nearly 12 year daughter really wants me to try these:

In the past she has requested these:

Rosewater and Almond:

Girl Scout inspired:

Other recipes:

Sunday, February 11, 2018

Poppyseed filling for Hamentashen

1 cup sugar
1/4 c water
1 3/4 c poppy seeds
juice and zest of one orange (approx. 1/3 c of liquid)
1 t vanilla
1 T dark rum
1/4 c chopped figs
1/4 c raisins
1/2 t cinnamon
1 egg white, lightly beaten
1 cup apricot jam
1/4 c butter or parve margarine

In saucepan over medium heat, dissolve sugar and bring to simmer.

Add poppy seeds to pan and cook for 2 minutes.

Add orange juice and zest, vanilla, rum, figs, raisins, cinnamon and egg white.  Simmer for 5 more minutes.

Add jam and butter.  Simmer for 2 additional minutes.  Remove from heat and chill until firm.

Yield 2 1/2 cups

Savory Hamentashen!

Just tried my first savory Hamenstashen.  Here is the recipe:


1/2 pound butter (or parve margarine)
1/2 pound cream cheese (or Tofutti cream cheese)
2 cups flour
1 T sugar
1 egg beaten with 1 T water to brush on pastry

Preheat oven to 400

Combine flour and sugar in food processor.  Cut butter and cream cheese into small chunks.

Add half the butter and half the cream cheese into the flour mixture.  Pulsing until coarsely mixed.  Add rest of butter and cream cheese.  Process until dough forms a ball.

Transfer mixture to bowl and sprinkle with flour so that ball isn't sticky.

Scoop out a tablespoon of dough and form into a small ball.  Sprinkle flour on board.  Roll out ball with rolling pin to form a 3 inch circle.  Repeat with the rest of the dough.

Place 1 teaspoon of filling into each center of each circle and pinch the sides to form triangles.

Use a pastry brush to coat tops with egg wash.

Bake for 15 minutes or until slightly golden.

Makes 40-45 Hamentashen


1 peeled eggplant, cut into small cubes
1/2 green pepper, cubed
1 large onion minced
10 oz. mushrooms, cut up finely
1/2 c olive oil
2 cloves of garlic, minced
1 cup tomato paste
2 T wine vinegar
1 1/2 t sugar
1/2 t oregano
1/2 t salt and pepper to taste
3/4 cup chopped olives stuffed with pimentos

Heat olive oil and sauté garlic until slightly brown.  Add eggplant, onions and peppers and cook for a minute.  Add all other ingredients except for olives.

Stir and heat for 20 minutes until all ingredients are soft and all liquid has evaporated.

Stir in olives

Allow mixture to cool.  Refrigerate overnight.