Okay, it was a wonderful Yom Tov. And it’s not over yet!! But before you really immerse yourself in cooking for the last nights, let’s consider our chol hamoed options. You want time to be with your family. You want to go on trips. Let’s be honest here; you want to get out of the kitchen! But everyone still needs to eat. So you need easy options or the "make it in the morning and ignore it all day" kind. Here are some suggestions to make your chol hamoed special, enjoyable and as effortless as possible (other than take out!)
This is a hearty meal to return to after a long day at an amusement park…
1 (4-pound) corned beef, rinsed off
1 onion, sliced
4 stalks celery, chopped
4 carrots, peeled and cut in 1/3’s
1 bay leaf
1 head cabbage, chopped (large pieces is fine)
1 (12-ounce) bottle of beer
4 cups chicken broth or enough to cover
2 tablespoons ketchup
2 tablespoons brown sugar
1 tablespoon mustard
½ teaspoon pepper
Place all ingredients in crock pot in the morning. Stir. Cook on high heat for about 6 hours or low heat for 8 to 12 (depends on when you start it and when you plan to return). Serve alongside white rice or a crusty bread. Another alternative is to add 4 peeled and chopped potatoes to stew and serve those alongside the meat and cabbage.
This takes 15 to 20 minutes to prepare. You can have everything ready to go and just cook it right before serving.
1-1/2 cups coconut milk
½ cup creamy peanut butter
½ teaspoon ginger
¼ teaspoon pepper
2 pounds boneless, skinless chicken breast, cut into strips
2 tablespoons peanut oil
4 scallions, chopped
½ cup roasted peanuts, chopped (optional)
In a small bowl, whisk together coconut milk, peanut butter, ginger and pepper; set aside or store in the refrigerator if saving for later. In a large wok, heat the oil over medium heat. Sauté chicken until no longer pink – about 10 minutes. Add scallions and sauté briefly. Stir in sauce and bring to a boil. Remove from heat. Sprinkle on peanuts, if using, and serve. Also good with rice – white, jasmine or basmati. Try this ginger-cilantro rice if you are feeling motivated.
If everyone still wants dessert (and you don’t have any leftover), try these delicious cookies, made from a mix.
1 Devil’s Food cake mix
¾ cup crunchy peanut butter
2 tablespoons nondairy creamer
1 cup peanut butter chips
Preheat oven to 375 degrees. Lightly grease cookie sheets. On low to medium speed, combine cake mix, peanut butter, eggs and nondairy creamer until no lumps of cake mix remain. On low speed, add peanut butter chips. Drop by rounded tablespoonfuls onto cookie sheets. Bake for 8 to 10 minutes. Cool for 2 minutes on cookie sheets before removing to wire racks to finish cooling.
If you want to try another type of easy cookie, here is our all-time favorite: Chocolate Chip Coconut Cookies – also from a mix!
Succos is my favorite cooking holiday. For some reason, I feel the Succah is a perfect place to serve more ethnic menus and have a lot of fun with new foods. This year I tinkered with some old favorites and came up with some newer more gourmet versions for GKC readers. I think you will love the results and they will become your new "go-to" versions.
What are you making? Tell us. Have a comment? Or a question? We love to hear from our readers.
Good Yom Tov
Elizabeth and Emuna
Serves 6, can be doubled
I am very excited about this recipe because it is an updated version of a classic the Jewish dish, stuffed cabbage. This version is a little spicier because it has some Italian sausage in it and it is served in savory broth instead of a tomato based sauce. It looks gorgeous and tastes fabulous. Give it a shot.
1 pound ground veal
1/2 pound sweet Italian sausage, (available by Jack’s Gourmet and other supermarket kosher brands)
1-1/2 cups fresh white bread crumbs
4 medium shallots, minced
2 garlic cloves, minced
2 large eggs, lightly beaten
1/4 cup chopped parsley
Kosher salt and freshly ground pepper
1/2 teaspoon freshly grated nutmeg
One 1 1/2-pound head of Savoy cabbage, cored
2 tablespoons unsalted margarine
1 large onion, finely diced
1 medium carrot, thinly sliced
1/2 cup dry white wine
2 cups chicken stock
In a bowl, combine the veal, sausage, bread crumbs, shallots, garlic, eggs, 2 tablespoons of the parsley, 1 1/2 teaspoons of salt, 1/2 teaspoon of pepper and the nutmeg.
In a saucepan of boiling water, submerge the cabbage, cored side up. Simmer until the leaves are softened, about 1 minute. Using tongs, transfer the 16 largest intact leaves to paper towels and pat dry. Cut out the ribs; reserve the other leaves for another use.
Line a small bowl or coffee cup or muffin tray with a 8-by-10-inch piece of plastic wrap. Overlap 2 cabbage leaves in the bowl. Spoon 1/2 cup of the stuffing in the center of the leaves and fold the leaves over to enclose the stuffing. Cover with the overhanging plastic wrap and twist to form a compact, round cake. Unwrap the cake. Repeat with the remaining cabbage leaves and stuffing. This makes perfect, round cabbage packages.
Preheat the oven to 350°. In an casserole dish or other large and wide oven-safe pan, melt the margarine. Add the onion and carrot and cook over moderately low heat until softened, about 10 minutes. Add the wine and bring to a boil. Add the stock and season with salt and pepper. Add the cabbage cakes, seam sides down. Cover and bake in the oven for about 35 minutes, until the filling is cooked through. Transfer the cakes to shallow bowls and ladle in the broth. Sprinkle with the remaining 2 tablespoons of parsley and serve.
Serves 8 as a first course
Admittedly, I have only made sweetbreads once before reworking this very old recipe I found from the NY Times. Sweetbreads are a delicacy that to me, pairs well with this wild mushroom broth.
¼ teaspoon ground clove
¼ teaspoon kosher salt
¼ teaspoon ground pepper
¼ teaspoon vegetable oil
1/8 pound shitake mushrooms, stemmed and thinly sliced
1-teaspoon soy sauce
2 cups wild mushroom broth (see recipe below)
1-tablespoon thyme leaves
¼ cup minced scallions
¼ cup minced tomato
Preheat the oven to 350.
Combine the flour, clove, salt and pepper and dredge the sweetbreads in the mixture. Warm a pan over high heat, coat with vegetable oil and quickly sear the sweetbreads.
Place each sweetbread ice in a small ovenproof soup bowl and w top with sliced mushrooms. Add the soy sauce to the mushroom broth and divide evenly amongst the bowls. Sprinkle with thyme, scallions, and minced tomato. Cover and bake for 15 minutes. Serve immediately.
Wild Mushroom Broth
1 ounce dried porcini or other wild mushroom
2 pounds white mushrooms, wiped clean
½ pound fresh shitake mushrooms, wiped clean
1 sprig fresh thyme
½ teaspoon black peppercorns
3 quarts cold water
Combine all the ingredients in a large pot over medium-low heat and simmer for 2 hours. Strain and discard the mushrooms.
As we head into Fall and approach Sukkot, it's a great time to try some new delicious hearty soups that can easily satisfy your crew on a cool holiday night. Try this fantastic option brought to us by Culinary Arts @ The JCC in Manhattan's chef KIM PISTONE in her class GOURMET SOUP SUPPERS:
1 package dry porcini or assorted mushrooms
1-½ cups uncooked pearled barley
3 carrots, 1/2 inch diced
1 cup celery root, 1/2 inch diced
1 clove garlic, chopped
3 leeks, sliced in half moons
6 shallots, diced
6 plum tomatoes, seeded and diced
3 pounds assorted wild mushrooms (shitake,cremini, enoki, oyster, chanterelle or maitake), sliced
1 cup sherry or white wine
1 quart vegetable stock
1/4 cup olive oil
4 sprigs thyme
1/2 bunch parsley , chopped
1 tablespoon kosher salt
1 teaspoon pepper
Put mushrooms in a pot of cold water, about 2 quarts, bring to a boil, turn off, let stand. Strain broth, chop dry mushrooms, reserve and set aside.
Sauté leeks and shallots, when they begin to color add celery root, carrots and garlic, continue to sautee about 5 more min, add sherry, chopped dry mushrooms, tomatoes, broth, stock and barley. Simmer about 35 minutes or until barley is tender.
Sautée mushrooms in batches, until golden brown, season with salt and pepper. Set aside. When barley is cooked add mushrooms, thyme and parsley to soup.
The JCC in Manhattan's Culinary Arts program offers hundreds of classes throughout the year in their strictly kosher state-of-the-art kitchen. For more delicious recipes and to learn useful kitchen techniques and other great new recipes that you can easily replicate yourself at home, check out their list of Fall/Winter classes - like the upcoming The Tuscan Table, where you'll learn to make trattoria-style fare like homemade butternut squash and ricoota ravioli - at www.jccmanhattan.org/culinaryarts.
Serves 8 – 10
4 large firm pears, like Barlett, peeled, halved, cored and cut across into ¼ inch slices
2 sticks unsalted margarine, softened
2-½ cups sugar
4 large eggs
1-½ teaspoons vanilla extract
4 cups flour
1-teaspoon kosher salt
3 teaspoons baking powder
6 ounces bittersweet chocolate, coarsely chopped
1 cup pareve whipping cream
2 tablespoons brandy (or other liqueur, optional)
Preheat the oven to 400. Grease a 10-inch tube pan.
Spread the sliced pears on a baking sheet and roast until tender, about 10 minutes. Transfer the pears to a food processor and puree until smooth. Set aside. Reduce the oven temperature to 350.
Cream together the margarine and sugar with an electric mixer until light and fluffy. Add the eggs, one at a time, mixing until very light. Batter may appear curdled at this point. Mix in the vanilla and pear puree. Sift together the flour, salt, and baking powder. Mix the dry ingredients into the batter just until combined. Pour the batter into the prepared pan and bake until the top springs back when touched in the center, about 1 hour. Place on a rack to cool. Turn the cake out of the pan re-invert onto a cake plate.
Put the chocolate in a double boiler over barely simmering water. Stir occasionally until melted. Whisk in the pareve cream and brandy. Slice the cake and serve with warm chocolate sauce drizzled on top. Sauce can be made ahead of time and re-warmed before using.
There’s not a lot to say about food during the aseres yemei tshuva – at least there shouldn’t be! Our focus should be on loftier goals. But as Yom Kippur approaches, we do need to spend some time preparing the right kind of meal to eat both before and after the fast. There are different approaches. The before fast meal must have bread and meat as it is actually a celebratory occasion. The break fast can be either although we find that after a long, demanding fast, a nice rich meat soup is the perfect meal. And for dessert, watermelon is the best solution – refreshing but not too sweet (sugar makes you thirsty before a fast and may overwhelm you after –this advice comes from big fans of sweets!) Whatever your approach, GKC wishes you an easy and meaningful fast and a happy, healthy and productive new year. Here’s what we’re eating before and after.
4 chicken breasts
4 chicken thighs
10 cups chicken broth
2 onions, chopped
3 stalks celery, chopped
1 turnip, chopped
4 carrots, chopped
2/3 cup barley
¾ teaspoon pepper
1 (15-ounce) can corn kernels
1 (28-ounce) can tomatoes, undrained
Place chicken, stock, onions, celery and turnip in a large pot and bring to a boil. Reduce heat and simmer, covered for about 1 hour. Remove chicken from pot and set aside. Add carrots, barley and pepper and simmer an additional 30 minutes. In the meantime, remove skin and fat from chicken and cut into small pieces. Stir in corn, tomatoes and chicken and simmer, uncovered, for about 20minutes.
2 rounded teaspoons yeast
2 tablespoons sugar
½ cup warm water
1 cup beer, room temperature
1 tablespoon oil
2 teaspoons salt
1 teaspoon caraway seeds
1 cup rye flour
3 – 4 cups bread flour
1 egg, beaten (optional)
Proof yeast and sugar in warm water in a large mixing bowl. Let stand until foamy – 5 to 1 0 minutes. Whisk in beer, oil, salt and caraway seeds. Stir in rye flour; then start adding bread flour, one cup at a time until a stiff dough forms. Knead until smooth and elastic. Grease bowl and roll dough in it to coat. Cover with damp cloth and let rise until doubled – about 1 hour. Punch down dough and shape into loaf (an oblong shape like a bakery rye works well here). Place on greased baking sheet and cover again. Let rise for 45 minutes. Preheat oven to 375 degrees. Slash top of loaf with knife in a few spots. Brush top with a beaten egg, if desired. Bake for 35 to 45 minutes – until crust is golden and bottom sounds hollow. Cool on wire rack.
2 teaspoons oil
2 carrots, peeled and chopped
1 onion, chopped
1 teaspoon minced fresh garlic
¼ teaspoon rosemary
¼ teaspoon pepper
4 cups chicken broth
1 pound smoked turkey, chopped
1 cup wild rice, uncooked
1/3 cup flour
3 cups nondairy creamer
2 tablespoons red wine or cooking sherry
In a large stock pot, sauté carrots, onion and garlic in oil over medium-high heat until soft – about 10 minutes. Stir in rosemary and pepper. Add broth, turkey and rice. Bring to a boil; reduce heat and simmer, covered, for about 1-1/2 hours. In a small bowl, whisk together flour and nondairy creamer until smooth. Gradually add to pot, stirring constantly. Stir in wine. Reheat gently over low to medium heat.
It’s really time to start cooking and preparing for Rosh Hashanah. A three day Yom Tov makes it even more essential to have a plan in place and groceries in the house. This year I feel that I am starting so late, but none the less its time to menu plan, cook, and freeze a few things for later in the week. I thought I would share some menus that I may be making, that include old and new recipes and restaurant recipes too. Please let us know what you are making, share the recipes, and comment on the recipes you try.
Spiced Pumpkin Soup
Chicken in Rosemary Apricot Sauce
Mashed Potatotes with Horseradish
Sautéed Green Beans
Pareve Pomegranate Cheesecake
Sweet Corn Chowder
Beef Tagine with Butternut Squash
Chicken with Shallots and Morels
Rainbow Chopped Salad
Apple Cake with Caramelized Glaze
Arugula Salad with Oranges and Fennel
Salmon Sashimi with Soy and Hot Sesame Oil
Caramelized-Onion Pizza with Mushrooms
Asparagus with Whipped Dijon
Chocolate Raspberry Cakes
Spinach and Apple Salad
Winter Squash with Caramelized Onions
Apple Cranberry Strudel
Spiced Apple and Carrot Soup
Rosh Hashanah Chicken with Cinnamon and Apples
Roasted Dates with Pastrami, Almonds and Spices
Wine Braised Beets
Chocolate Pudding Cake
Have a great Yom Tov and a Good Year!
Warm Wishes and Delicious Dishes,
Elizabeth and Emuna
Almost as ubiquitous as honey cake is the Jewish apple cake. It is hard to imagine a Rosh Hashanah table without one luscious apple cake nestled among the other delicious desserts. Since we dip apples in honey for a sweet new year, we feel compelled to discover variations on the theme – and of course sample every possible apple-filled treat! I personally love the traditional apple cake (you know the one I mean with the crunch on top, the kind the some people bake in a sheet pan and call a kugel in order to justify eating it on Shabbos!), especially when presented in a tube pan with a golden ring of apples around the top. Yum!!! But everyone has there own preferences. So here is my favorite recipe (thank you Debby Segura!) as well as a few other possibilities. Send us yours – we’d love to post it!
½ cup (1 stick) margarine, room temperature
1 cup sugar
½ teaspoon vanilla
1 cup unsweetened applesauce
2 cups flour
1 teaspoon baking soda
1 teaspoon cinnamon
½ teaspoon allspice
½ teaspoon nutmeg
½ teaspoon cloves
¼ cup nondairy creamer mixed with ¼ teaspoon vinegar
Preheat oven to 375 degrees. Grease an 8-inch square baking pan. In a stand mixer, cream margarine and sugar until light and fluffy. Add the eggs, one at a time, beating after each addition. Add the vanilla and applesauce and beat until smooth.
Stir together flour, baking soda and spices and pour ½ this mixture into batter. Add the nondairy creamer and then remaining dry ingredients. Stir until completely incorporated but do not over mix. Pour into prepared pan and bake for 25 to 30 minutes. Let cool for 15 minutes in pan before removing to wire rack to finish cooling. Dust with powdered sugar before serving, if desired.
2 cups flour
2 cups apples, peeled and thinly sliced
1-3/4 cups brown sugar
¾ cup (1-1/2 sticks) margarine, softened
2 teaspoons cinnamon
1 teaspoon baking powder
1 teaspoon baking soda
1-1/2 teaspoons vanilla
¼ cup margarine
¼ cup brown sugar
2 tablespoons nondairy creamer
1 cup powdered sugar
1 teaspoon vanilla
Preheat oven to 325 degrees. Grease a 12-cup Bundt pan. In a large stand mixer, on medium speed, mix together all batter ingredients. Pour into prepared pan and bake for 50 to 55 minutes. Cool in pan for 10 minutes before removing to wire rack to finish cooling. Drizzle with Caramel Glaze. To make glaze, stir together margarine, brown sugar and nondairy creamer in a small saucepan over medium heat. Bring to a boil; remove from heat and stir in powdered sugar and vanilla. Mix until smooth. If too thick to drizzle, add a little more nondairy creamer.
4 Granny Smith apples
1 tablespoon lemon juice
2 tablespoons margarine
1 cup brown sugar
1 cup sugar
1 cup pareve whip
1 teaspoon vanilla
2 cups flour
2 teaspoons baking powder
Preheat oven to 325 degrees. Peel apples and slice thinly. Toss with lemon juice. Place margarine in a 9-inch round baking dish. Place in oven until melted; then remove. Sprinkle brown sugar over margarine. Place apple slices in circular shape around pan, slightly overlapping, until whole pan is covered.
Beat together egg and sugar until well mixed. Stir together pareve whip and vanilla. Stir together flour and baking powder. Add to egg mixture alternately with whip, beginning and ending with the dry ingredients. Pour over apples. Bake for about 30 to 35 minutes. Cool for 10 minutes, then turn over onto rack to finish cooling.
This is the apple cake you expect but so much better – probably as good as it gets – from my good friend and expert chef, Debby Segura.
6 medium sized apples, Mackintosh or Braeburn if possible
1/3 cup honey or ½ cup sugar
1 tablespoon ground cinnamon
2 teaspoons lemon juice
3 cups all-purpose flour
2 cups sugar
1 cup vegetable oil
4 large eggs
1/3 cup orange juice
3 teaspoons baking powder
1 tablespoon vanilla extract
1 teaspoon salt
Place the oven rack in the lower third of the oven and preheat the oven to 350 degrees. Grease a ten inch angel food cake pan. Set it aside.
Apple Mixture: Peel, core and slice 4 of the apples into 1/4" thick slices. Core, but do not peel, the last 2 apples, and slice into 1/4" slices. In a medium sized mixing bowl, toss all the apples with the honey or sugar, cinnamon and lemon juice very gently, until coated. Reserve the slices which are not peeled in a separate bowl.
Cake: In the large bowl of an electric mixer combine the flour, sugar, oil, eggs, orange juice, baking powder, vanilla and salt. Increase the speed to medium-high and mix until well-blended, about 2 minutes. Pour 1/3 of the batter into the prepared pan, and smooth the batter. Arrange ½ of the peeled apple slices over the batter (being very careful not to let the apple slices directly touch any par of the pan, as it with stick to the pan and be problematic when the cake is cooked). Cover this apple layer with ½ of the remaining batter, and smooth the batter. Arrange the rest of the peeled apples over the batter. Pour the remaining batter over this second apple layer, and smooth this final layer of batter. Arrange the unpeeled apple slices over this batter, creating a fan of slightly overlapping slices that go all around the center of the tube pan. If there is any cinnamon juice left over from the apple mixture, drizzle it over the apple fan. Place the cake pan on a square of heavy aluminum foil (fold up the edges of the foil to form a tiny pan, thus preventing any juice that may leak out of the pan from dirtying your oven), and place it in the oven to bake for 75 to 85 minutes, or until a toothpick tester inserted into the center of the cake comes out clean.
Remove the cake from the oven and place it on a rack to cool for 10 minutes. Gently release the cake from the sides of the pan with a small thin knife, if it appears to stick, and then remove the sides of the pan. Allow the cake to cool, with the center piece still in place, until room temperature before gently releasing and then removing the center piece. Place the cake on a cake stand. Immediately before serving, sift powdered sugar over the cake. Place some tiny apples or crab apples at the base of the cake for a garnish.
Sausages are all the rage. And with good reason. There are so many possibilities, enough variety to satisfy every palate. One of the newer entries into the field is Jack’s Gourmet, operating out of Brooklyn, New York. Founded by a professional chef and a dentist (don’t ask!), Jack’s offers a Boerewors sausage, German Bratwurst, Hot Italian, Mexican Style Chorizo and Sweet Italian. Fresh and delicious, with no artificial ingredients, fillers, by-products or MSG, each bite delights the senses. GKC impressed all friends this summer with the Boerewors sausage and the sweet Italian sausage grilled to perfection and tasted off the BBQ. They have become staples in our fridge. Until now, it was hard to find kosher sausage with intense flavor and texture and real sausage taste. Jack's Gourmet has succeeded in is. Try them on their own, sautéed with peppers and onions, or dressed in a bun. Or try them in these easy soup recipes Jack's Gourmet shared with us:
2 (32-ounce) boxes Imagine Corn Soup
1 red pepper, chopped
1 (15-ounce) can corn kernels, drained
½ onion, chopped
4 Boerewors, sliced
Pour all ingredients into a pot and bring to a boil. Reduce heat and simmer for 10 minutes until flavors combine. If you are a corn soup fan, you should also try this version.
2 (32-ounce) boxes Imagine Tomato or Tomato-Basil soup
2 cups cooked white rice
4 sweet Italian sausages, sliced
Pour all ingredients into medium stock pot. Bring to a boil; reduce heat and simmer for 10 minutes. Serve with a green salad.
2 (32-ounce) boxes Mushroom Soup
1 (14-1/2 ounce) can mushroom pieces
4 Hot Italian Sausages, sliced
Place all ingredients in medium stock pot. Bring to a boil; reduce heat and simmer for 10 minutes. Serve with a crusty bread.
Online and just about everywhere, it seems that people are focused on “going green”. From farm fresh produce stands and farm-to-table popular restaurants to alternative energy and water conservation plants, “going green” has certainly captured our attention. Products that carry a “green label” are innovative, progressive, and conscience-oriented. But whoever would believe that kosher, specifically kosher chicken would fall into that category?
Yes, its true, kosher chicken has gone green. Well not any kosher chicken, that’s for sure, but Empire Kosher , known for its tasty and kosher chicken, has developed an admired reputation for being socially and environmentally conscious as well as truly natural in every step of the production process.
GKC had to find our more. We got in touch with their CEO, Greg Rosenbaum, to find out what does green and kosher really mean. Greg told us that, “Green kosher is eating healthy, safely and strictly kosher, buying responsibly, promoting worker and animal welfare, protecting the environment and supporting small family farmers and their communities.” I wondered, does the kosher community care about this? I mean, do they really understand? They should! This is revolutionary for the kosher market! Empire Kosher is committing to limiting the number of chickens a farmer can raise at any given time, raising poultry in a humane way that is healthy for both consumers and animals, respecting and replenishing the environment in ways that will ensure its continued viability for many generations to come, providing safe working conditions and a fair wage to employees as well as generous compensations to their network of small family farmers.
GKC is impressed, this puts Empire Kosher ahead of its competition and draws an implicit contrast with other food companies in the news.
Customers and GKC readers repeatedly praise Empire’s exceptional taste, texture and quality of product. Clearly we have good taste, as they year after year, win taste tests by prestigious publications like the NY Times, Gourmet Magazine, Food and Wine, and many more.
Empire CEO emphasized that in addition to being “green kosher”; they offer a wide variety of all-natural, organic, free-range, anti-biotic free, vegetarian-fed poultry. All with no growth hormone added (to better understand these terms go to the Turkey blog from Thanksgiving).
The news about Empire Kosher comes at a great time. Rosh Hashanah is a busy cooking period for the kosher consumer and all of us are eager to purchase products that have the greatest flavor and are mindful of the gifts of this planet. Thank you Empire for being a leader in the industry and for respecting our world.
A little more from Empire…they shared a few holiday recipes that are great for the holidays. I tried them they are super easy and exceptionally tasty!
Summer is winding down. You are either in the middle of your last hurrah – an end of August family vacation – or caught up in the whirlwind of shopping for school supplies and clothing. Either way, the end of summer is in the air. And we’re all trying to hold on just a little longer. Here are some recipes that will keep you thinking of summer the whole year through.
And now just sit back and enjoy the remaining days of summer. School and the High Holidays are just around the corner. Stay tuned for our High Holiday cook book, coming September 4th!