Quick Thai Pumpkin Soup

By Levana Kirschenbaum, http://www.levanacooks.com/

Serves 6

10 cups (2-1/2 quarts) water
1 (15 ounce) can coconut milk
1/4 cup toasted sesame oil
1 tablespoon cinnamon
1 tablespoon ground ginger
2-3 tablespoons curry powder
1/3 cup brown sugar or sucanat or honey
Salt and pepper to taste
2 cans pumpkin puree (28 ounces each)
1/2 cup peanut butter
4 scallions, sliced very thin
4 sprigs cilantro, tough ends removed, minced

Bring first 8 ingredients in a large stockpot and bring the mixture to a boil. Reduce the heat to medium and whisk in the pumpkin and peanut butter, and cook 5 more minutes. Turn off the flame, and stir in the scallions and cilantro. Adjust the texture and



You can’t pick up a food magazine (and I love to pick up food magazines!) these days without seeing Thanksgiving recipes. Everywhere you look there are turkeys and stuffing and cranberry sauce. There are sweet potatoes and brussel sprouts and pumpkin pie. And that famous green bean casserole – which I hereby promise never to post on our site! Even though my family doesn’t actually celebrate Thanksgiving, I am not immune to the seduction of those dishes. So the Friday night following Thanksgiving, we have turkey with all the fixings. And we can’t wait. We pull out our cookbooks and search online for some updated offerings to incorporate into our repertoire. Some web surfers waste valuable time frantically searching for recipes for kosher turkey or kosher stuffing. We spare you the effort. We have already adapted your dream recipes for the kosher cook. (And we’ll adapt more – just send them to us!) Here are just some of our favorites. But stay tuned through the month. And don’t despair – you don’t have to choose from among so many fabulous recipes. Since we believe in thanking the Almighty for our blessings every single day, there is no reason to limit our turkey consumption to just once a year!

Turkey Basted with Coffee Liqueur

Cranberry, Apple and Pecan Salad
Pareve Pumpkin Cheesecake

Great Glass Bowl

I was poking around online when I found these great glass bowls. Although promoted as serving dishes for desserts or other treats, I think they would be great for guacamole and salsa and other dips as well. I particularly like the water green and the clear but they are also available in cobalt blue, black, sweet pink, purple, yellow and green. You can mix and match. You definitely don’t want to buy just one. They will enhance any Shabbos table and would also be beautiful fulfilling their original intent on a dessert table at a vort or Kiddush. To purchase please go to http://www.finnishgifts.com/glass-maribowls.html. Send us a picture of your table with these beautiful bowls filled with enticing delicacies!

Crispy Cinnamon Chicken

2 chickens, cut in 1/8th’s
1-1/2 cups cornflake crumbs
3 tablespoons brown sugar
1 tablespoon cinnamon
1 cup soy milk mixed with 1 teaspoon vinegar

Preheat oven to 400 degrees. Place cornflakes crumbs, brown sugar and cinnamon in large, sturdy Ziploc bag (the freezer ones work nicely). Shake to combine. Pour soy milk-vinegar mixture into a bowl. Dip each chicken piece into soy milk; then add to bag. Every 3 pieces or so, close bag and shake to coat chicken with crumbs. Place in pan and bake for about 1 hour.

Sesame Crusted Salmon


¾ cup bread crumbs
½ cup sesame seeds
2 teaspoons paprika
1 teaspoon salt
½ teaspoon pepper
2/3 cup sesame oil
2 tablespoons oil
2 pounds boneless, skinless salmon fillets (about 1-inch thick)

Mix together the bread crumbs, sesame seeds, spices and ¼ cup sesame oil. Heat the other oil in a large skillet over a medium-high heat. Rub about 1 teaspoon of sesame oil on top of each fillet. Press fillets into bread crumb mixture to coal well. Place the breaded salmon, crumb side down, in the skillet and sear for about 5 to 7 minutes. Turn over and do the same on the other side.

Cranberry, Apple and Pecan Salad

Instead of cranberry sauce, try this refreshing salad.

1 cup candied pecan pieces
4 apples, sliced
½ cup dried cranberries
1 bunch spinach or butter lettuce

½ cup tofutti sour cream
½ cup mayonnaise
2 tablespoons honey
1 teaspoon balsamic vinegar

Whisk together dressing ingredients. Toss with apples and cranberries. Place on top of spinach or lettuce – either in a large bowl or plated for individual servings. Sprinkle with nuts and serve.

Pareve Pumpkin Cheesecake


This is a nice change from the typical pumpkin pie.

2 cups graham cracker crumbs (it’s even better if you can use ginger snap crumbs)
5 tablespoons margarine, melted

2 (8-ounce) packages tofutti cream cheese, softened
1 cup tofutti soup cream
1-¼ cups sugar
3 tablespoons brown sugar
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
One (15-ounce) can pumpkin purée
2 teaspoons pumpkin pie spice
½ teaspoon cinnamon
4 eggs, beaten

Preheat oven to 350° F. To make the crust, mix the ingredients and pat into a 9-inch spring form pan, forming the crust along the bottom and slightly up the sides. Set aside in refrigerator. To make the filling, in a mixer, beat the tofutti cream cheese, tofutti sour cream, sugar, brown sugar and vanilla until smooth. Add the pumpkin purée and the spices and blend. Add the eggs one at a time and blend again until mixed. Pour into the pan over the crust. Bake for 40 to 45 minutes, until the center is almost set.
Turn the oven off and leave the cheesecake in the oven for an additional 30 minutes.
Remove from the oven and cool. Refrigerate for several hours, until the cheesecake is completely cooled. To serve, run a knife or metal spatula around the sides of the pan to loosen the cake, and remove the pan.

Ginger Cocoa Biscotti


Two of my favorite flavors in one cookie!
2-1/2 cups flour
1 cup sugar
2 tablespoons cocoa
½ teaspoon baking soda
¼ teaspoon cinnamon
¼ teaspoon cloves
2 eggs
¼ cup soy milk or nondairy creamer
2 tablespoons minced fresh ginger
1 cup chopped toasted almonds
Optional: 2 ounces semisweet chocolate, melted

Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Stir together flour, sugar, cocoa, baking soda, cinnamon and cloves. Whisk together eggs, soy milk and ginger and add to flour mixture. Stir until well combined. Stir in almonds. Divide dough in half and form loaves. Place on greased cookie sheet. Bake for 25 minutes. Remove from oven and reduce heat to 300 degrees. Slice loaves into ½-inch slices and return to oven. Bake an additional 5 to 10 minutes. Transfer to wire racks to cool. If desired, drizzle with melted chocolate.

Roasted Peppers and Anchovies


This actually isn’t much of a recipe but it tastes so good I couldn’t leave it out.

Jarred or canned roasted red peppers, drained
Canned whole anchovies, drained

Lay out flat the number of red peppers you want to use. Top each one with a whole anchovy laid flat. Let sit at room temperature for 30 minutes to allow flavors to blend.

Chutney Chicken Salad

For salad:
1 small onion, diced
4 teaspoons lime juice
2 teaspoons curry
¼ teaspoon granulated garlic
4 skinless, boneless chicken breast halves
6 cups mixed salad greens, torn
1 cucumber, chopped
1 carrot, cut into strips
1 red pepper, cut into thin strips
½ jicama, cut into thin strips

For dressing:
¼ cup rice vinegar
3 tablespoons chutney
1 tablespoon Dijon mustard
2 teaspoons sugar
½ teaspoon minced garlic
Dash pepper
2 tablespoons olive oil

Process onion, lime juice, curry and garlic until a paste is formed. Rub on each side of chicken breasts, cover and chill for ½ hour. Grill or broil chicken on a lightly greased rack for 12 to 15 minutes, turning halfway. Cool and cut into pieces. Toss together the greens, cucumber, carrot, pepper and jicama. Whisk together the rice vinegar, chutney, mustard, sugar, garlic and pepper (or use a hand blender). Whisk in olive oil to emulsify. Toss with salad and serve.

Sesame Spinach

credit: simplyrecipes.com


2 (10 ounce) packages fresh spinach
3 to 4 tablespoons sesame oil
½ teaspoon crushed red pepper flakes
2 teaspoons minced garlic
1 tablespoon sesame seeds
Dash salt

In a large frying pan over a medium heat, sauté the red pepper flakes in the sesame oil. Add the garlic and sesame seeds and continue sautéing until browned – 3 to 4 minutes. Add the spinach and stir frequently to blend the flavors and keep it from burning. When just wilted, remove from heat and sprinkle with salt. Drain and chill. Serve cold or at room temperature.

Hermits Again

credit: maryjanesfarm.com

I have my favorite hermit recipe but I am always open to trying more.

¾ cup margarine
¾ cup brown sugar
1 teaspoon cinnamon
½ teaspoon baking soda
¼ teaspoon cloves
¼ teaspoon nutmeg
¼ cup brewed coffee, cooled
1 egg
1 teaspoon vanilla
1-1/2 cups flour
1 cup raisins
1 cup chopped pecans

Preheat oven to 375 degrees. Cream together margarine and brown sugar. Add
cinnamon, baking soda, cloves and nutmeg and continue beating. Beat in coffee, egg and
vanilla. On low speed, add flour, raisins and nuts. Drop by rounded tablespoons onto
ungreased cookie sheets. Bake for 8 to 10 minutes. Remove to wire racks to cool.


This week was Kosherfest! The largest kosher food show in America where thousands of people come to see what is going on in the kosher food world and of course GKC was there, meeting with dozens of kosher vendors, some old friends and some new and exciting ones – more on that later. There were cookbook authors, new products for the kosher consumer, and eating, lots and lots of eating - This week KosherFest, next week the gym!

First stop was visiting some of our favorite cookbook authors. And that means no better place to start than the amazing Susie Fishbein. Susie’s cookbooks have become a staple in most kosher kitchens, and why not, they’re so beautiful and imaginative. It’s remarkable what Susie has contributed to the elegant kosher kitchen. GKC found Susie demonstrating easy delicious desserts that she created for Kolatin (A company GKC told its readers about in past blogs!). Susie thanked me and told me how great the GKC readers have responded to her new book (check out all your great comments and enthusiasm in the GKC comments section) and why not? It’s a great and really fun cookbook!

Next, GKC good friend Jamie Geller was there in her classic Jamie high energy tons of fun way… Jaime is going to be joining us soon, for a personal Q & A about her new book, Meals in Minutes (submit your questions to Jamie here). I have to say it is so great to watch Jamie light the kosher world, on fire and to bring the joys of kosher cooking to so many women who might not otherwise be cooking with a smile. I have known Jaime for years and remember her as a powerhouse professional and guest at my Shabbos table, and now watching and enjoying her energy in the kosher world is just wonderful. After spending time with Jamie, GKC got a few minutes in with Estee Kafra from the new Kosher Inspired, the new kosher food magazine published by Mishpacha magazine. I saw the first one and it's full of great articles, recipes, photos, and entertaining ideas – check it out, lots of fun.

GKC shared lots of fun web ideas with Lois and Roberta from koshereye.com and let me tell you, those ladies give new meaning to southern hospitality and charm! I want to go to Atlanta for Shabbos just so I can spend more time with them. Afterwards while I could still stand, GKC met with our good friend Jodi Samuels from metroimma.com Jodi is spending her time doing what she does best, helping Jews stay in touch with each other!

Throughout the day, GKC received the best VIP treatment (meaning extra snacks and samples!) from all of our great partners from Royal Wines, Osem, Streits, Mehadrin, Zelda’s, and more. We loved meeting with the mashgiach from the White House, Rabbi Segal, who was so kind to give GKC great recipes from the White House kitchen!

Now, lets talk food. What was good you ask? Here are a few of our favs.

* Matzel Toff. We mentioned this one last Pesach and it made the show this year. Really scrumptious chocolate covered matzah with caramel and sea salt. It’s hard to image that matzah is really in this product. I’d eat it year round!
* Jack’s Gourmet Sausage. Don’t fall down. My friends know that I am no sausage eater but WOW! I was impressed. Incredibly flavorful without that overly salty, hyper-smoked taste. These are rich, smooth, and upscale. I would definitely have a fleish eggs, onions and sausage breakfast if these were included.
* Zelda’s caramel popcorn. I just love it. Covered in sweet caramel, crispy and crunchy. The extra snack bags didn’t make it home, I snacked on it all the way.
* Belgian Crepes. How fun is that idea? Prepared soft, thin crepes, in a vacuumed packed bag, ready to eat. I love the idea of instant crepes Suzette, or a crepe with strawberries in it for breakfast, or Nutella for dessert.
* Dr. Praeger’s buffalo nuggets. This is no kiddy chicken nugget and it certainly does not taste pareve. Healthy, quick and full of flavor. Try them.
* Tishbi Fig Cabernet Preserve. I loved it before I even tasted it. How cool is that name and the packaging is so wine snob… black, elegant, refined. And the taste, yum, sophisticated, slightly sweet with wine overtones. Perfect with Brie and crackers, or a scone.
* Lily Bloom’s Kitchen Gourmet Macaroons. These are no ordinary macaroon. New to the show and new on the market, I loved the white chocolate raspberry and the chocolate. Super rich but small so they leave you wanting more. Boxed like fine chocolates they make great gifts except your guests will finish them before you arrive for the meal.

Stay tuned for more from Kosherfest over the next few months. We can’t wait to bring you information about all.

The Best Kosher Wines Come From … part (2)

We continue our competition between Israeli and Californian wines. Next were three Cabernet Sauvignon rounds, each including wines of comparable price matched alongside one another. The first round included the Herzog Reserve Alexander Valley and the Barkan Altitude 624. Comments for the first wine, which we later learned was the Herzog, included descriptions such as; “lots of fruit – nice wine” by Jay, “sweet fruit – quite pleasant” by the Israeli expert and “fruit forward – almost sweet” by the NY expert. The second wine (the Barkan) received words of praise such as “raspberry and cherry – lots of stuff going on” (Jay), “rich nose, good length – nice wine” (Israel wine expert) while I noted its “baked fruit – soft palate”. No clear favorite in this round as both were well received.

We took a step up the price platform and tried the Herzog Reserve Chalk Hill against the Bazelet HaGolan Reserve Cabernet. The first, which turned out to be the Chalk Hill had a “developed nose and soft tannins” (Israeli expert), was “soft & flavorful – great wine” according to Jay and was “velvety soft with great tannins” (NY expert). I found it to be “lush” with “great structure” and a “long finish”. Three of us preferred this wine while the Israeli expert preferred the Bazelet which he felt had a “good concentrated nose” and “good length”. NY expert called the Bazelet “Yum” with “blackberry, violet and great aging potential”, Jay commented that it had a “nice nose” and I remarked that I enjoyed the “dark fruit and chocolate” aromas.

Our last round featured Israel’s Yatir “Forest” against California’s Covenant – each highly rated award winning wines. The first wine, (which later was revealed to be) the Covenant, was a “rich fruit, delicious, WOW” wine according to Jay, and a “dark, rich, complex” wine according to Israel expert. The NY based wine expert said the Covenant had “big fruit (flavors) that coat the mouth”. The second wine, the Yatir Forest, had “rich tannins – excellent” exclaimed Jay, was “soft & juicy” according to Israeli wine expert and “great on the palate” according to NY expert. Once again this round featured a split panel, with two panelists favoring the Covenant and the other two favoring the Yatir.

Overall the winner was not Israel or California, but rather the kosher wine consumer. The last 10-20 years have seen continued improvement by kosher wineries, big and small, each improving the quality of their offerings to such a level that all kosher consumers can now proudly serve wine at the various price points and feel confident and secure that they are serving world class products.

Gary Landsman, AKA the “Wine Tasting Guy”, makes, sells, writes about and of course tastes wine. Presently doing PR/Marketing work for Royal Wines, you can contact Gary with any wine related questions at gary@winetastingguy.com

MIU Nonstick Baking Liners

GKC has promoted Silpat mats many times so it’s no secret that we love silicone baking liners. This week I found a great deal on a great product so I must share it with you. MIU baking liners are exactly like Silpat and are perfect for every home baker. I use these non-stick liners in place of parchment paper for all my baking including cookies, challah, caramel, and even under roasted vegetables. The amazing part is that they are so reasonably priced. This week Costco in New York has them for $19.99 for three pieces. Costco.com has two pieces for $22.97, which is still half the price of Silpat. For GKC readers who find them outside of NY, please let us know so we can tell our readers where you got a great deal.

Onion Rings Chicken on a Stick

I actually can’t believe I tried this recipe as it calls for the packaged chips version of onion rings. I don’t think I have ever bought them before but they actually give terrific crunch and flavor to this recipe. And believe it or not, they are much lower in calories and fat than if they were fried. These are 196 calories and 3.5 grams of fat for two skewers. My kids were really excited that I was willing to try it and enjoyed the chicken with high hopes that I would let them have the left over onion rings as a snack.

Serves 5 kids

4 boneless, skinless, chicken cutlets cut into strips
1 ounce (about 15) Onion Flavored Rings from the package (alternatively, you could use canned fried onions)
½ ounce (about 7 chips) sour cream and onion potato chips (pareve)
1 teaspoon onion powder
2 dashes garlic powder, or to taste
2 dashes salt, or to taste
1/8 teaspoon black pepper
1 egg or 1/8 cup egg substitute
Chicken skewers (if wooden, soak for 30 minutes in water)

Preheat oven to 375 degrees.

Carefully slide each chicken strip lengthwise onto a skewer. Set aside.

In a large sealable plastic bag, combine the onion rings, potato chips, and all the seasonings. If you like, add extra seasonings to taste. Seal the bag and crush contents until reduced to a coarse breadcrumb-like consistency. Transfer to a plate and set aside.

Prepare a large baking sheet by spraying it with non-stick cooking spray. Whisk egg into a small bowl. Take a chicken skewer and dunk it in the egg, evenly coating the chicken. Gently shake off the excess liquid and then lay chicken skewer in the seasoned crumbs. Rotate the skewer pressing it into the crumbs to evenly coat the entire piece. Place the chicken on the baking sheet and repeat with the rest of the chicken skewers.

Bake in the oven for 18 to 20 minutes, carefully flipping skewers about halfway through cooking, until chicken is cooked through and coating is crispy. Cool for a few minutes. Eat plain or with duck sauce for dipping.

Roasted Eggplant Soup

Adapted from The Smitten Kitch

Serves 8

6 medium tomatoes, halved

2 large eggplant (about 3 pounds), halved lengthwise
2 onions, halved

10 large garlic cloves, peeled

4 tablespoons olive oil

2 tablespoon chopped fresh thyme or 2 teaspoons dried

8 cups chicken stock or vegetable broth

¼-1/2 cup pareve cream or soy milk (you can add more to taste, or skip this entirely)

1 teaspoon cumin
1 teaspoon coriander
½ teaspoon crushed red pepper (or less if you do not like any spice)
Garnish: tofutti sour cream and scallions

Preheat oven to 400°F. Arrange tomatoes, eggplant, onion and garlic on a large baking sheet. Brush or drizzle vegetables with oil then roast them for 20 minutes, pausing only to remove the garlic cloves and returning the pans to the oven for another 25 minutes, until the remaining vegetables are tender and brown in spots. Remove from oven and scoop eggplant from skin into a heavy, large saucepan or soup pot. Add the rest of the vegetables, the thyme, the cumin, coriander, crushed red pepper, and the chicken or vegetable stock and bring to a boil, then reduce to a simmer. Cook until onion is very tender, about 45 minutes to 1 hour. Cool slightly.

Working in batches, purée soup in blender until it is as smooth as you’d like it to be. (Or, if you have an immersion blender, you can do this in the pot.) Back in the pot, add the pareve cream and bring the soup back to a simmer. Season with salt and pepper. Garnish with some pareve tofutti sour cream.

Fish Tacos with Red Cabbage Slaw

From my friend Lee Kushnir

Tomatillo-Avocado Relish:
2 large tomatillos, husked and rinsed and diced (I used a large, regular tomato)
1 ripe Hass avocado, halved, pitted and diced
1 or 2 jalapenos finely diced (optional)
2 limes, juiced (I used lime juice)
Extra-virgin olive oil
1/4 cup freshly chopped cilantro leaves

Red Cabbage Slaw:
1/4 cup lemon juice
1/4 cup orange juice
2 tablespoons Dijon mustard
2 tablespoons clover honey
1/4 cup freshly chopped basil leaves
Salt and freshly ground black pepper
1/2 cup canola oil
2 cups finely shredded napa cabbage (I used bagged, it was fine)
2 cups finely shredded red cabbage (I used bagged, it was fine)

3 (8-ounce) red snapper or mahi mahi fillets (I used 10oz. tilapia…it was delicious)
Canola oil
Salt and freshly ground black pepper
1/4 cup reserved dressing, from the slaw
8 (6-inch) flour or corn tortillas
Cilantro leaves


For the relish:
Combine the tomatillo, avocado, jalapeno and lime juice in a medium bowl. Drizzle with a little olive oil, add cilantro and season with salt and pepper, to taste. Let sit at room temperature for 15 minutes before serving.

For the slaw:
Put the lemon juice, orange juice, mustard, honey, basil and salt and pepper, to taste, in a blender and blend until smooth. With the motor running, add the oil until emulsified. Reserve 1/4 cup of the dressing for the fish.
Combine the cabbage in a large bowl; add half of the dressing and toss to coat. Add more dressing and salt and pepper, if needed.

For the fish:
Preheat the grill to high or grill pan over high heat. (I used my regular fry-pan to sauté)
Brush both sides of the fish with oil and season with salt and pepper, to taste. (I added some lime juice, as well). Grill until golden brown and slightly charred on both sides and just cooked through, about 4 minutes per side. Remove to a plate and drizzle the fish with the reserved dressing. Let cool slightly, then using a fork, flake into large pieces.
Grill the tortillas until slightly charred and just warmed through, about 5 seconds per side. Transfer the tortillas on a flat surface and fill the center of each with some of the fish, red slaw, and relish...fold and eat.

Roasted Chicken with Smoky Orange Sauce


Serves 8 servings

Cooking spray
8 (5-ounce) skinless chicken breast halves (with bone)
Salt and ground black pepper
1 cup orange marmalade
1 tablespoon reduced-sodium soy sauce
1 teaspoon liquid smoke (or 1 teaspoon smoked paprika)
1 teaspoon chili powder

Preheat oven to 400 degrees F. Coat a large roasting pan with cooking spray.
Season chicken all over with salt and black pepper. Arrange chicken in prepared pan and set aside.
In a small bowl, combine orange marmalade, soy sauce, chili powder and liquid smoke. Mix until blended. Pour mixture over chicken.
Roast 35 minutes, until chicken is cooked through.

The Best Vegetable Soup

The best vegetable soup ever

By Mark Bittman, New York Times columnist and author of "The Food Matters Cookbook"

Serves 10

3/4 cup olive oil, more or less
2 onions, peeled and chopped
2 carrots, peeled and chopped
2 celery stalks, peeled and chopped
Salt and freshly ground black pepper
1 bunch parsley, washed and chopped, thick stems discarded
2 or 3 cabbage leaves, chopped
1 bunch chard, preferably white, washed and chopped
1/4 cup tomato paste
3 to 4 cups cooked white beans, like cannellini, with their liquid if possible

Put about a third of the olive oil in the bottom of a deep pot and turn the heat to medium.

Add half the onion, carrot and celery and cook, stirring occasionally, until they soften, which takes about 10 minutes.

Add about half of the remaining oil and repeat the process, seasoning with salt and pepper as you go.

Add the remaining oil with the parsley, cabbage and chard and cook, stirring occasionally, until everything is softened but not browned.

Add the tomato paste and stir.

Mash the beans so that they're about half mashed and half more-or-less whole. Add this mixture to the pot, along with any bean cooking liquid and enough water to make the whole mixture stewy but not watery.

Continue cooking, tasting and adjusting the seasoning as necessary, until all the vegetables are very tender and the soup is hot. Serve hot or warm.

Smashed Potatoes with Pareve Sour Cream and Chives

Serves 8 servings, serving size 3/4 cup

2 1/2 pounds Yukon gold potatoes (4 medium) unpeeled, cut into 1-inch pieces
1/2 cup low-sodium chicken broth, warmed
1/2 cup tofutti sour cream
3 tablespoons chopped fresh chives
2 tablespoons balsamic vinegar
Kosher Salt
Freshly ground black pepper


Place potatoes in a steamer basket fitted over a large pot of boiling water. Cover and steam for about 15 minutes, or until potatoes are tender.

Transfer potatoes to a large bowl. Add the broth, and coarsely mash the potatoes. Stir in the tofutti sour cream, balsamic vinegar and chives. Season generously with salt and pepper, to taste, and serve.