This week I am back at the BBQ with some great grilled salads. Of course, I’m also making grilled mustard chicken with polenta and grilled Tandoori Chicken and pouring Herzog Russian river chardonnay and some grilled steaks with red wine sauce (and drinking Barkan Vintners Choice Cabernetbut these side dishes take the basic meat meal to new heights. Make sure to include some terrific wines with these meals. With the salads I’m serving Baron Herzog Chenin Blanc. See the wine blog, for some other wine pairings from my recent cooking demos.
I live in NY and we had the WORST winter ever. Everything is blooming so late, and the farm stands are not open yet, but this quinoa salad was delicious with regular old produce from the local market. I imagine it would be even better with farm fresh veggies, but I’m happy I loved it with what I have! Don’t tell the author but I’m hoping the Fresh Berry Homemade Ice Cream is good with Costco berries on Shavuos too
1 ¼ teaspoons cumin
1 ¼ teaspoons coriander
½ teaspoon cinnamon
4 tablespoons olive oil
1 ½ cups red quinoa
1 (15.5 ounce can) black beans, drained and rinsed
1 medium zucchini, cut into small dice
1 cup halved grape tomatoes
1 cup fresh or frozen corn kernels, microwaved for a few seconds
1 red pepper, cut into small dice
1/3 cup sliced scallions
¼ cup chopped fresh cilantro
¼ cup fresh orange juice
1 tablespoon plus 2 teaspoons fresh lime juice
2 teaspoons minced fresh garlic
2 teaspoons honey
¼ teaspoon Asian chili-garlic sauce or paste
½ cup toasted pine nuts
Combine 1 teaspoon salt, cumin, coriander and cinnamon in a small bowl.
In a 3-quart saucepan, heat 1 tablespoon olive oil over medium low heat. Add salt spice mixture, stir well, and cook for 30 seconds. Add quinoa, stir and add 2 cups water. Bring to a boil, reduce to a low simmer, cover and cook until quinoa has absorbed all the water, about 20 minutes. Stir, uncover and cool thoroughly.
In a mixing bowl, combine black beans, zucchini, tomatoes, corn, peppers, scallions, cilantro, orange juice, remaining 3 tablespoons olive oil, lime juice, garlic, honey, chili-garlic sauce, and ½ teaspoon salt. Stir. Add cooled quinoa and mix well. The flavors will blend as it sits. Garnish with pine nuts. Can be made a day ahead of time.
Serves 12 – 14
This is a great chocolate cake with a super special icing. I love it and am using it on carrot cake and on all flavors of cupcakes. It’s similar to a cooked meringue icing but has an extra creaminess from the marshmallows. You can use this chocolate cake recipe or any other one. Just make sure you make the icing!
2-1/4 cups sugar
4 ounces (4 squares) unsweetened chocolate
1-1/2 teaspoons vanilla extract
Nonstick cooking spray, for greasing cake pans
3 cups cake flour, sifted
4-1/2 teaspoons baking powder
3/4 teaspoon salt
1 cup (2 sticks) margarine, room temperature
4 large eggs, room temperature
3/4 cup non-dairy milk (pareve)
Marshmallow icing, recipe follows
In a small saucepan, combine 1 cup water, 1/2 cup of the sugar, the chocolate and the vanilla. Heat over medium heat, stirring constantly, until melted. Set aside to cool.
Preheat the oven to 350 degrees F. Prepare three 9-inch round cake pans: spray the bottom and sides of each pan with cooking spray; line the pans with parchment paper; then spray again with cooking spray.
Sift together the flour, baking powder and salt. In a stand mixer, cream the margarine and the remaining 1 3/4 cups sugar until smooth. Add the eggs, one at a time, beating after each addition. Add the cooled chocolate mixture and beat until smooth. Add the sifted flour mixture alternately with the milk, starting with a third of the flour, then adding half the milk, and ending with the flour. Stir only enough after each addition to blend the ingredients. Pour the batter evenly into the cake pans and bake for 35 minutes, or until done. (a tester should come out with moist crumbs).. Cool the cakes in the pans for 10 minutes, then turn them out onto racks. Remove the paper and allow to cool completely before frosting. Spread the Icing between the layers and all over the top and sides of the cake. I do this cake in three layers but you can do it in 2 layers too.
3 large egg whites, room temperature
3 cups sugar
3 tablespoons white corn syrup
3/4 teaspoon white vinegar
1/3 cup mini marshmallows (about 30) – you must use the mini, the big ones do not melt well enough
1-1/2 teaspoons vanilla extract
Pour the egg whites and salt into a stand mixer fitted with a whip attachment. Beat the egg whites until smooth but not stiff; they should not form stiff peaks.
In a large saucepan, mix the sugar, 3/4 cup water, corn syrup and vinegar. Stir until the sugar dissolves, then heat the mixture until it reaches the hard ball stage (265 degrees F on a candy thermometer), about 12 minutes. When done, the syrup will spin a long thread when poured off the edge of a spoon. Remove the syrup from the heat and stir in the mini marshmallows. The mixture will be foamy. With the mixer running at high speed, stream the syrup into the egg whites. Beat well, and then beat in the vanilla.
This week I had the great opportunity to present a cooking demo to the women’s organization at Mesitva Ateres Yaakov in the 5 Towns. Thank you for having me and it was a lot of fun for all. At the event, I spoke to a lot of women one on one and each person has their own set of unique food dilemmas in their homes from picky eaters – we all have them, weeknight boredom with dinner, struggling with healthy eating, to more shabbos recipes. I cannot tackle each of these topics in one week but certainly hope that each week I can present a recipe or two that deals with these issues. Many women asked me for some side dish ideas suggestions. So here goes. I love this tomato tarte tatin. It is beautiful in presentation and very delicious yet simple. Ive also been making Couscous with Pinenuts. Its light and delicious and a nice alternative to rice. Check out all the side dish choices and try something new!
50 vine-ripened cherry tomatoes
2 tablespoons vegetable oil
Large pinch of kosher salt
Freshly ground black pepper
1 tablespoon honey
1 tablespoon fresh basil, chopped
¼ cup bread crumbs
All-purpose flour, for dusting
1 pound store-bought puff pastry
1 egg, lightly beaten
Small bunch of fresh basil or mint leaves
Preheat the oven to 400 degrees F. Heat oil in an oven-proof skillet. Add tomatoes, salt, pepper, and honey. Arrange together as tightly as possible. Sprinkle the tomatoes with the bread crumbs – this will soak up some of the juice which come out of the tomatoes during cooking. Then add the fresh basil.
On a well-floured counter, roll out a circle of puff pastry the same size as the top of the skillet. Place the puff pastry over the tomatoes, tucking it around them so the tomatoes are snugly tucked in. Brush the pastry with the lightly beaten egg on the top only.
Bake in the oven for 20 to 30 minutes, or until the puff pastry is well puffed and golden brown. Remove from the oven and let sit for a few minutes, then tip away the excess liquid (if any) and put a large plate upside down on top of the skillet. Using oven gloves, press the plate down hard and then quickly flip the whole thing so the skillet is upside down and the plate is on the bottom. I do this over the sink because there is usually some leakage! Remove the skillet. Add the fresh basil leaves.
I’ve been to a lot of salad bars in my time and am always watching what people are choosing in their salads. And not surprising, everyone is different when it comes to salad ingredients. We all have different tastes and it is very clear when it comes to salad. But interestingly, most people order the same dressing. I’ve noticed this but I also asked at many salad bars and my suspicion was confirmed. Creamy balsamic vinegar dressing is the most popular choice. It’s also bottled and sold by a lot of places, for a lot of money by the way. So I can’t believe it’s taken me this many years to post, but here it is, a great (really great), homemade version of what you get at the salad bar. I think it’s a dressing that you should keep on hand all the time. It’s a great dip, chicken marinade, or baked potato topper. I like to serve it on a good vegetable chopped salad, a nicoise salad with tuna and hard-boiled eggs, or even a Jewish Cobb Salad, with smoked turkey, eggs, and Fake Bacon. I know you will be grateful to have this one in your repertoire.
(Makes 1 2/3 cups of dressing)
4 cloves garlic, grated
3 tablespoons mayonnaise
2 tablespoons lemon juice
1 tablespoon Dijon mustard
1 tablespoon sugar
1 teaspoon garlic powder
2 teaspoons kosher salt
¾ teaspoon ground black pepper
1/2 cup balsamic vinegar
3/4 cup extra virgin olive oil
For the Creamy Balsamic Dressing:
Whisk together garlic, mayonnaise, lemon juice, Dijon mustard, sugar, garlic powder, salt and pepper until well combined. Add the balsamic vinegar and whisk well. Slowly add in the olive oil (while whisking) to emulsify. Store in a container in the refrigerator until ready to use. This works best if you mix with an immersion blender.
Here is a great and easy steak recipe (you can really use the marinade on any cut). Use the grilling guide to help with cooking time and temperature. The vodka is the secret ingredient that tenderizes the meat.
1 cup vegetable juice
1/2 cup vodka
1 teaspoon sea salt
1 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
1 teaspoon hot sauce
1 tablespoon lemon juice
1 tablespoon Worcestershire sauce (non-fish type)
3 coves garlic, crushed
1 teaspoon onion powder
1 teaspoon celery seed
1 tablespoon prepared white horseradish
4 tablespoons olive oil
1-pound flank steak or other thin cut steak
Thoroughly mix all the ingredients except for the flank steak in a 1-gallon zip lock bag. Add the flank steak. Marinate in the refrigerator for at least 8 hours and up to overnight.
Preheat the grill to high or heat a skillet over high heat. Remove the flank steak from the marinade and wipe the excess liquid off with paper towels. Grill or pan sear both sides, then lower heat to medium and cook to medium rare, about 5 minutes each side, check the grilling guide.
Let the steak rest, covered, for 5 to 10 minutes. Slice and serve.
Last week I went crazy testing pound cake recipes. I think great pound cake is a wonderful recipe to have in your collection because its a perfect snack when guests arrive, lovely to serve in the morning with coffee, great to grill this time of year, and is amazing with sweetened berries, mangos or peaches. And since these fruits are at their peak right now and a dessert laden with sweetened berries and topped with whipped cream is screaming to be served, I had to find the perfect recipe. I tried five recipes, each with a unique spin, one with almond paste, one with lots of swirls of jelly, one with blueberries, one classic and I can’t remember the other one… and after all the testing, I am sharing my new favorite, super moist and crazy delicious Almond Pound Cake (if you don’t like almond, leave out the extract and make a Classic Pound Cake with the same recipe).
Makes 3 loaf cakes, Serves 30
I tested 5 different pound cake recipes to come up with this version that is so moist and flavorful. I’ll keep one in my freezer all the time now. If you do not like almond flavoring, just add another ½ teaspoon vanilla extract and omit the almond extract.
4 cups cake flour
1 ¾ teaspoon baking powder
¾ teaspoon regular salt
4 sticks (2 cups) unsalted butter or margarine, room temperature
3 cups superfine sugar
¾ cup whole milk or non-dairy creamer
2 teaspoons almond extract
½ teaspoon vanilla extract
Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Line 3 loaf pans with parchment paper and lightly grease with cooking spray.
In a medium bowl, whisk together flour, baking powder and salt.
In a mixer, beat butter until light and fluffy and then add the sugar on low speed until smooth, about 3 minutes. Increase the speed to medium and add eggs, 1 at a time, beating until blended and scraping the bowl throughout the process.
In a small bowl, mix the milk, almond extract, and vanilla together. Reduce the speed of the mixer to low and alternately add the flour mixture wand the milk mixture to the creamed butter mixture, beginning and ending with the flour mixture. Mix until blended; do not over mix.
Divide the batter equally among the prepared pans and bake until a tester is clean, about 30 minutes. Let cool about 10 minutes. Take out of pans and cool completely.
Use this pound cake recipe plain, or serve it with lightly sweetened berries and whipped cream. Or use it in a trifle.
I am so glad to be back at the grill this week. It’s easy, tasty, and for me, the smoky smell just makes me feel summertime happy. My mom shared this recipe for a great grilling marinade. She’s been making it for years and found the original on America’s Test Kitchen, which is amazing resource for recipes. As their name states, they “test” and test recipes until they find the perfect combination of ingredients in whatever they are making.
I like to use it on tender, somewhat thin cuts of meat, like a Del Monico steak (this is what kosher butcher’s call sirloin), or a flank steak. America’s Test Kitchen recommends tri-tip which is the triangle piece of the sirloin but you won’t find it in a kosher butcher because its very difficult to cut around the sciatic nerve to get to this tender cut of meat. Ask your butcher for a tender cut if you don’t see a Del Monico or flank steak and he can recommend something that works well on the grill. This marinade is terrific and comes together in minutes. Thanks mom!
My Mom’s Steak Grilling Marinade
3 pounds Del Monico steak or flank steak
1/3 cup olive oil
1/3 cup soy sauce
1 tablespoon brown sugar
1 tablespoon tomato paste
1 – 2 teaspoon dried rosemary
1 – 2 teaspoon dried thyme
3 cloves garlic, crushed
Marinate for a minimum of 3 hours or up to overnight.
Heat your grill or grill pan over medium-high heat. Let the grill reach an internal temperature of about 450 degrees (use your thermostat on the grill to check the temperature). Turn down the burners to medium. Place the steaks on the grill. Close the grill. Do not disturb for 5 – 6 minutes. Turn steaks over and grill until desired doneness, about 5 – 6 minutes more for rare (or 145 degrees internal temperature), 7 – 10 minutes for medium (150 to 155 degrees), and a few more for well-done meat but seriously, why bother spending money on steak for well-done meat, just make a burger. Just my two cents J
1/3 cup extra-virgin olive oil, plus more for brushing
3 red or yellow bell peppers (about 1 1/4 pounds), thinly sliced
1 small sweet onion, thinly sliced
3 garlic cloves, thinly sliced
Scant 1/2 cup golden raisins
2 tablespoons drained capers
¼ cup chopped kalamata olives
1 tablespoon sugar
1/4 cup white wine vinegar mixed with 3/4 cup of water
Freshly ground pepper
8 small lamb chops (5 to 6 ounces each)
Preheat the oven to 375°. In a large, deep skillet, heat the 1/3 cup of olive oil until shimmering. Add the peppers, onion and garlic and cook, stirring, until softened and lightly browned, about 10 minutes. Stir in the raisins, capers, olives and sugar. Add the vinegar mixture and simmer over low heat until the peppers are very tender and the liquid is slightly reduced, about 5 minutes. Season with salt and pepper and keep warm.
Heat a cast-iron grill pan until very hot. Brush the lamb chops with olive oil and season with salt and pepper. Grill the chops over high heat until they are lightly charred, about 1 minute per side. Transfer the grill pan to the oven and roast the chops for 3 minutes for medium meat. Serve the lamb chops with the caponata.
Recipe from DASH, Inspired Kosher Recipes for the Seasoned Palate
Contributed by Avi Pifko, grilling expert and aficionado.
prep time: 20 minutes
cook time: 5 minutes plus topping cooking time
1 ear of corn
½ pound salmon fillet
2 tablespoons plus ½ teaspoon extra-virgin olive oil
Salt and freshly ground black pepper, to taste1 bunch asparagus, trimmed and cleaned
Purchased regular or whole wheat pizza dough, thawed
¼ cup purchased hummus
One (8-ounce) jar roasted red peppers, cut into strips
Corn: Place corn in a small pot with water to cover. Bring to a boil and cook, covered, for 15 minutes. Drain and set aside. When cool, hold corn vertically and slice down, removing kernels.
Salmon: Preheat oven to 400 degreesG. Place salmon on a piece of foil and drizzle with ½ teaspoon olive oil. Season with salt and pepper and roast in oven until cooked through, approximately 16 minutes. When cool, flake salmon into large pieces.
Asparagus: In a medium pot, bring salted water to a boil. Place asparagus in water for 3 minutes or until they turn bright green. Remove and place in a bowl filled with ice water. Drain and set aside.
Pizza: Preheat grill to medium-high heat. Roll pizza dough to 1/8-Ginch thickness and drizzle with 1 tablespoon oil. Quickly and firmly flip dough onto grill, oiled side down, making sure to lay dough flat on grill. Baste top of dough with remaining 1 tablespoon oil and grill for 1-2 minutes or until bubbles begin to form on top and dough does not stick when lifted. Flip dough, close grill lid and grill for another 1-2 minutes, checking for doneness after 1 minute.
Toppings: Remove pizza dough from grill and spread with hummus. Top with red peppers, corn, asparagus and salmon. Return pizza to grill on low heat for 1-2 minutes (or to preheated 300 degree Goven for 5 minutes). Remove pizza from grill or oven, slice and serve.
SIMPLIFY: Substitute frozen corn for fresh. Defrost and slice kernels off of cob.
COOK’S TIP: Try different vegetables as toppings. String beans add a nice crunch and can substitute the asparagus when not in season.
Recipe from DASH, Inspired Kosher Recipes for the Seasoned Palate
Contributed by Avi Pifko, grilling expert and aficionado
Coffee lends a beautiful deep flavor that brings out the boldness of the steak and perks up your meal!
prep time: 5 minutes
cook time: 8-10 minutes
4 tablespoons ground bold espresso beans
1¼ tablespoons freshly ground black pepper
1 tablespoon lemon pepper
½ teaspoon Cajun seasoning or cayenne pepper
1 tablespoon ground cumin
Olive oil, for brushing on steak
2 shell strip steaks, 1-inch thick (may also be called kosher NY strip steaks)
Prep: In a small bowl, mix dry ingredients until blended. Lightly brush steaks with olive oil and season steak liberally with dry rub.
Grill: Preheat grill to high and place steaks on the grill. Grill approximately 4 minutes per side, turning only once, for medium-rare; grill 6 minutes per side for medium doneness. Remove steaks from the grill and let rest for 5 minutes before serving.
DO AHEAD: Dry rub can be prepared ahead and stored in a tightly closed container up to 2 months.
Cook’s Note: This recipe works beautifully on a boneless fillet steak and a rib eye steak.
This week from the authors of DASH, Inspired Kosher Recipes for the Seasoned Palate (a publication by Torah Academy for Girls in Far Rockaway) shares two great recipes. Get the book at www.getyourdash.com for a special promotional price of $22 with a free BBQ menu. Or submit to win one in our giveaway section. The book has everything from traditional to bbq, to great dishes for all palates. Try these just to wet your appetite!
Coffee Cajun Rubbed NY Strip Steak
Foccacia with Roasted Salmon and Summer Vegetables
Serves 4 – 6
This is a great appetizer salad. Horseradish is perfect with steak and the honey mellows it out a bit. This is a GKC remake of a recipe from Keens Steakhouse in NYC.
I love grilled meat salads, especially in the summer time. They are not a heavy appetizer and showcase all sorts of great grilled items. This salad incorporates a favorite flavor combination; steak and horseradish. I like to gill the meat but I keep it simple by just using olive oil and salt and pepper on the steak. The dressing has some zesty white horseradish in it. The honey mellows the spice and the tofutti sour cream gives it creaminess. The result is a great grilled salad with bold flavor and lots of great color. All can be prepared ahead of time, so that makes it a winner for me too! It also works great with any leftover grilled steak that you have in your refrigerator. This is a perfect Shabbos day first course or a star at any summer BBQ!
1/2 cup tofutti sour cream
3 tablespoons prepared white horseradish
1 tablespoon chopped fresh chives or scallions
1 ½ teaspoons honey
1 teaspoon red wine vinegar
Kosher salt, freshly ground pepper
2 tablespoons olive oil, divided
1 1-pound flank, skirt steak, or other thin grilling steak
Kosher salt, freshly ground pepper
12 ounces fingerling potatoes, thinly sliced
1/2 English hothouse cucumber, thinly sliced
6 radishes, cut into thin wedges
2 cups greens (such as arugula or torn Bibb lettuce leaves)
For the dressing:
Whisk tofutti sour cream, horseradish, chives, honey, and vinegar in a small bowl; season with salt and pepper.
For the Steak Salad:
Heat 1 tablespoon oil in a large skillet or grill pan, over medium-high heat. Season steak with salt and pepper. Cook over medium-high heat until cooked to desired doneness, 5-8 minutes per side for medium-rare, about 4 minutes per side for flank steak, or 3 minutes per side for skirt steak. Transfer meat to a plate and let rest for 10 minutes.
While steak rests, wipe out skillet and heat remaining 1 tablespoon oil over medium-high heat. Add potatoes, season with salt, and cook, tossing occasionally, until tender, 8-10 minutes.
On a large platter, scatter the salad greens. Top with potatoes, cucumber, and radishes. Slice steak and place on top. Drizzle with horseradish dressing.
I saw this recipe in one of Giada’s cookbooks and thought it looked amazing and that the flavors would be vibrant and well-blended. It was great and I loved that I made it the day before and served it room temperature for Shabbos lunch.
1/2 cup sliced almonds, toasted
4 cups chicken stock
1/2 teaspoon kosher salt
2 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil
2 cups white or brown basmati rice, rinsed
3/4 cup chopped fresh flat-leaf parsley
1 medium orange, zested
1 lemon, zested
1 cup thinly sliced green onions
1/2 cup extra-virgin olive oil
1/4 cup fresh orange juice
3 tablespoons fresh lemon juice (about 1 lemon)
2 tablespoons soy sauce
1 tablespoon honey
1-1/2 teaspoons ground cumin
Kosher salt and freshly ground black pepper
For the Rice Salad:
In a medium saucepan, bring the chicken stock, salt and oil to a boil over medium-high heat Stir in the rice. Cover the saucepan, reduce the heat, and simmer until all the liquid has been absorbed and the rice is tender, about 18-40 minutes (depending on the type of rice you are using). Remove the pan from the heat and let sit for 5 minutes. Using a fork, fluff the rice and place in a large serving bowl. Add the parsley, orange zest, half of the lemon zest, green onions, and 1/4 cup of the almonds. Toss well.
For the Vinaigrette:
In a blender, combine the olive oil, orange juice, lemon juice, soy sauce, honey, and cumin. Blend until smooth. Season with salt and pepper, to taste.
Pour the vinaigrette over the rice mixture and stir well. Season with salt and pepper, to taste. Garnish with the remaining lemon zest and almonds.
2 lamb shanks
2 pounds cubed veal
Freshly ground pepper
1/4 cup extra-virgin olive oil
1 Spanish onion, chopped
1 medium carrot, sliced 1/4 inch thick
1 celery rib, sliced 1/4 inch thick
2 tablespoons chopped thyme or 2 teaspoons dried thyme
2 cups dry white wine
2 cups jarred tomato sauce or marinara sauce
2 cups chicken stock
1 tablespoon olive oil
1 cup panko
1 cup lightly packed parsley, minced
½ teaspoon crushed red pepper (or to taste, it adds spice)
1 tablespoon finely grated lemon zest
Preheat the oven to 375°. Season the lamb and veal with salt and pepper. In a large dutch oven, heat the oil until shimmering. Add the lamb and veal and cook over moderately high heat, turning, until browned all over, 12 minutes. Transfer meat to a plate.
Spoon off all but 2 tablespoons of the fat from the dish. Add the onion, carrot, celery and thyme and cook over moderate heat, stirring, until softened. Add the wine and bring to a boil, scraping up any browned bits. Simmer until the wine is reduced by half, 4 minutes. Add the tomato sauce and chicken stock and bring to a boil. Return the meat to the pot, cover and simmer for 1 hour and half hours, until the meat is very tender. Let stand covered for 10 minutes.
For the bread crumb gremolata: In a small pan over medium heat, heat olive oil. Add panko and mix until toasted, about 2 minutes. Add the parsley, red pepper, and lemon zest. Add kosher salt to taste.
Transfer the veal stew to a platter. Season the sauce with salt and pepper and spoon it over the veal. Sprinkle some gremolata over the veal.
Hamentaschen with 2 Fillings from Kosher Revolution
Classic Hamentaschen with Apricot, Poppy Seed, Chocolate and Other Fillings
Hamentaschen with Apple Pie or Cappucino Filling