Lamb Chops and Roasted Salsa

2 garlic cloves, chopped
3 tablespoons chopped mint leaves
Finely shredded lemon zest from 1½ lemons
¼ cup olive oil
2 teaspoons kosher salt, divided
2 teaspoons black pepper, divided
8 lamb chops
1 ripe tomato
1 small, halved red onion
1 red bell pepper, seeded and quartered
1 green bell pepper, seeded and quartered
¼ cup olive oil
¼ cup chopped flat-leaf parsley
2 tablespoons fresh lemon juice

Prepare a charcoal or gas grill for high heat (450° to 500°; you can hold your hand 5 inches above cooking grate only 2 to 4 seconds) or prepare a grill pan. In a large resealable plastic bag, combine garlic cloves, mint leaves, lemon zest, olive oil, 1 teaspoon kosher salt and 1 teaspoon black pepper. Add 8 lamb chops and mix to coat.

Grill tomato, onion, red and green bell peppers, turning twice until soft and blackened, 6 minutes. Grill chops (keep marinade on meat), turning once; 5 minutes total for medium-rare.

Chop vegetables, mix with olive oil and flat-leaf parsley, fresh lemon juice, and 1 teaspoon kosher salt and 1 teaspoon black pepper. Spoon over lamb.

Sugar Snap Peas with Sweet Onion Vinaigrette

1 pound sugar snap peas
1¼ cups (about 5 ounces) chopped sweet onions, preferably Vidalia
3 tablespoons honey
1 tablespoon each fresh lemon juice
1 tablespoon Dijon mustard
¾ teaspoon salt
½ cup extra-virgin olive oil
2 teaspoons poppy seeds
1/3 cup toasted pine nuts

In a large pot of boiling, salted water, cook sugar snap snow peas until crisp-tender, about 2 minutes. Drain and rinse under cold water and pat dry.

Using a food processor, pulse chopped sweet onion with honey. Add fresh lemon juice and Dijon mustard and salt, then process until smooth.

With the machine on, slowly add extra- virgin olive oil until combined. Transfer to a large bowl and stir in poppy seeds. Add the sugar snap snow peas and pine nuts and toss. Serve chilled or at room temperature.

This also makes a great salad dressing.

Fingerling Potato Salad with Sherry-Mustard Vinaigrette

1 tablespoon Dijon mustard
1 tablespoon Sherry wine vinegar
¼ cup canola oil
1 teaspoon chopped fresh Italian parsley
½ teaspoon chopped fresh tarragon
Fine sea salt
Freshly ground black pepper

2 cups coarse sea salt
2 pounds fingerling potatoes (such as Ruby Crescent or Russian Banana)
¼ cup Baco’s or imitation Bacon (crisped in oven for 10 minutes at 350 degrees)
2 small shallots, thinly sliced
2 hard-boiled eggs, peeled, chopped
2 green onions, thinly sliced

For Vinaigrette:
Combine mustard and vinegar in small bowl. Whisk in oil, then herbs. Season with sea salt and pepper.

For Potatoes:
Preheat oven to 400°F. Spread sea salt in even layer on rimmed baking sheet; arrange potatoes over salt, spacing slightly apart. Cover sheet with foil and bake until potatoes are tender, about 1 hour. Remove from oven, uncover, and cool to lukewarm.

Peel potatoes; cut in half-length wise. Place warm potatoes in medium bowl. Add Baco’s, shallots, eggs, onions, and vinaigrette. Toss well and serve.

Milky Way Tarts

¾ cup plus 2 tablespoons all purpose flour
2 tablespoons plus 2 teaspoons unsweetened cocoa powder
½ cup (1 stick) unsalted margarine, room temperature
½ cup plus 2 tablespoons powdered sugar
1 large egg yolk

3½ ounces high-quality chocolate, chopped
2 cups pareve whipping cream, divided
¼ cup (½ stick) unsalted margarine
½ cup plus 2 tablespoons sugar
3 tablespoons water
Unsweetened cocoa powder (for dusting)

For crust:
Whisk flour and cocoa in medium bowl. Beat margarine and powdered sugar in another medium bowl until well blended. Beat in yolk. Add flour mixture in 2 additions, beating just until blended. Gather dough into ball; flatten into disk. Wrap in plastic and refrigerate 2 hours.

Divide dough into 6 equal pieces. Press each onto bottom and up sides of 4½ inch diameter tartlet pans with removable bottom or use one large tart pan with removable bottom. Refrigerate crusts 1 hour or freeze 30 minutes.

Preheat oven to 375°F. Bake cold crust until set and dry-looking, about 12 minutes, pressing with back of spoon if bubbles form. Cool crusts in pans.

For Filling:
Place chocolate in medium bowl. Bring 1½ cups pareve cream to simmer in small saucepan. Pour pareve hot cream over chocolate; let stand 1 minute, then whisk until melted and smooth. Cover with plastic wrap and refrigerate until cold, at least 4 hours overnight.

Combine remaining ½ cup pareve cream and margarine in small saucepan and stir over medium heat until margarine melts; remove from heat. Combine sugar and 3 tablespoons water in heavy small saucepan. Stir over medium-low hear until sugar dissolves. Increase heat and boil without stirring until color is deep amber, occasionally brushing down sides of pan with wet pastry brush and swirling pan, about 8 minutes. Immediately add hot cream-margarine mixture (mixture will bubble vigorously). Remove from heat and stir until any caramel bits dissolve. Transfer caramel to small bowl and chill until slightly firm (semi-soft), stirring often, about 40 minutes.

Spoon caramel into center of baked crusts (about 2 generous tablespoons for each crust). Set aside.
Using electric mixer, beat chilled chocolate-pareve cream mixture until peaks form; spoon atop caramel in crusts, dividing equally (about 1/2 cup for each crust) and spreading evenly. Chill at least 2 hours. DO AHEAD: Can be made 8 hours ahead. Cover and keep refrigerated.
Remove tartlets from pans. Top with some extra whipped cream and lightly sift cocoa powder over tartlets and serve.

Tapenade (Olive Paste)

1 cup pitted olives (can be black or green depending on your preference or you can make one of each)
3 anchovies, rinsed and drained (if you really have an aversion to anchovies, you can replace with 1 teaspoon salt but the taste won’t be as good)
2 tablespoons capers
1 teaspoon minced garlic
1 tablespoon lemon juice
2 teaspoons Dijon mustard
Dash pepper
¼ cup olive oil

Using hand-held immersion blender, purée all ingredients except olive oil. Slowly add oil until mixture thickens. Store in refrigerator.

Fiery Carrot Soup

1 onion, chopped
1 teaspoon minced garlic
1 teaspoon oil
1 pound carrots, peeled and cut into chunks
10 thin slices fresh ginger
¼ teaspoon crushed chili pepper flakes
4 cups chicken broth (real or pareve)
2 tablespoons soy sauce
2 tablespoons creamy peanut butter
1 teaspoon sugar
1 teaspoon sesame oil
1 cup nondairy creamer

In large stockpot, sauté onion and garlic in oil until softened. Add carrots, ginger, chili pepper flakes and broth and bring to a boil. Reduce heat and simmer until carrots are tender – about 30 minutes. Stir in remaining ingredients and purée with hand blender.

Thai Spicy Green Beans

spicy-greenbeans copy
1 pound green beans, trimmed
¼ cup creamy peanut butter
1 tablespoon sugar
2 tablespoons rice vinegar
2 tablespoons soy sauce
2 tablespoons minced fresh ginger
1 tablespoon oil
1 teaspoon minced garlic
¼ teaspoon crushed red pepper flakes
Chopped peanuts, if desired

In a medium saucepan, bring about 6 cups of water to a boil. Add beans and cook for about 6 minutes; drain and rinse with cold water. Whisk together all remaining ingredients except peanuts. Cover and refrigerate. Just before serving pour dressing over beans and garnish with chopped peanuts, if using.

Peach Custard Tart

5 peaches, sliced
1 pre-baked tart crust (recipe follows)
1 cup sugar
2 egg yolks
¾ cup pareve whip
2 tablespoons flour
¼ cup sliced almonds

Preheat oven to 325 degrees. Arrange the peach slices atop tart crust in a decorative pattern. Whisk together sugar, egg yolks and whip. Stir in flour. Pour carefully over peaches. Sprinkle almonds over top and bake until custard is almost set – about 35 minutes. Cool and remove sides of tart pan.

Tart Crust

2 cups flour
1 cup margarine, room temperature
½ cup sugar
2 tablespoons vinegar

Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Combine all ingredients (use a kitchen aid or food processor) and press into 10-inch tart pan. Bake until golden.

Smoked Turkey Salad

4 cups shredded Chinese cabbage
2 cups shredded Iceberg lettuce
2-1/2 cups cubed smoked turkey
1 (15 ounce) can cut hearts of palm, drained
1 cup fresh pea pods, trimmed
1 (15 ounce) can mandarin oranges, drained
¼ cup dried cranberries
¼ cup toasted slivered almonds

½ cup orange marmalade
2 tablespoons soy sauce
4 teaspoons apple cider vinegar
1/8 teaspoon ginger

Toss together salad ingredients. Heat dressing ingredients and stir until marmalade is melted. Cool. Mix gently with salad and serve.

Jalapeno Slaw

1 package cole slaw
1 red onion, thinly sliced
1 fennel bulb, thinly sliced
2 jalapenos, seeded and thinly sliced
1/3 cup olive oil
3-1/2 tablespoons red wine vinegar
2 tablespoons chopped cilantro
1 teaspoon sugar
Salt and pepper to taste

In a large bowl, toss together cole slaw, onion, fennel and jalapenos. Whisk together dressing ingredients and pour over vegetables. Mix well.

Dolmas (Grape Leaves) Salad

¼ cup pine nuts
½ cup thinly sliced scallions
1 tablespoon olive oil
1-½ cups long-grain white rice
2-½ cups pareve chicken broth
½ cup chopped preserved grape leaves (reserve brine)
¼ cup lemon juice
¼ cup raisins
¼ teaspoon pepper
¼ cup chopped fresh dill
1 lemon, rinsed and quartered

In a medium saucepan over medium heat, sauté pine nuts and ¼ cup scallions in oil until softened – about 5 minutes. Stir in rice, broth, grape leaves, ¼ cup brine, lemon juice, raisins and pepper. Bring to a boil; reduce heat to low, cover and simmer until liquid is absorbed – about 35 minutes. Fluff rice and cool. Stir in dill and remaining scallions. Garnish with lemon. Serve warm or at room temperature.

Pink Lemonade Dessert

2 cups graham cracker crumbs
½ cup margarine, melted

1 (8 ounce) package tofutti cream cheese, softened
2 (4 ounce) packages instant vanilla pudding
1 (12 ounce) can frozen pink lemonade concentrate, thawed
1 (8 ounce) container frozen whipped topping, thawed

Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Mix together graham cracker crumbs and margarine and press into bottom of 9 x 13-inch pan. Bake for 7 minutes and cool completely.
Beat cream cheese and pudding mix until light and fluffy. Add lemonade concentrate and beat until mixed well. Fold in 2 cups of the topping and spread over crust. Spread remaining topping across tilling. Refrigerate for at least 2 hours.

Creamy (without the cream) Chicken Soup

By my friend Shira

It is the perfect comfort food and so flavorful
4 carrots, cut in chunks
4 celery ribs, cut in chunks
1 parsnip, quartered
1 large onion, quartered
1 turnip, cut in chunks
2 leeks, chopped in chunks
1 green pepper, cut large pieces, about 4
1 hand full of fresh parsley (about ½ cup)
1 hand full of fresh dill (about ½ cup)
1 chicken flavor bouillon cube
2 chicken breasts without skin
10 black pepper corns
4 tablespoons kosher salt
water to cover

Place all vegetable, herbs, pepper, and bouillon cube in a large stock pot. Place the chicken on top. Cover with water (approximately 7-8 cups). Bring the mix to a boil. Lower the heat, cover, and simmer for 4 hours. Cool. Remove the green pepper and discard. Remove the chicken. With an immersion blender, puree the soup until it is smooth and creamy. Add the salt, taste and adjust the seasonings, if necessary. (I remove parsnip,turnip,onion,leeks,parsley,dill and green pepper before I puree)

Stuffed Flank Steak

1 flank steak, or minute steak, about 1-½ pounds
1 package (10 ounces) frozen chopped spinach, thawed and squeezed dry
4 ounces sun-dried tomatoes, chopped
2 tablespoons seasoned breadcrumbs
2 cloves garlic, minced
2 tablespoons olive oil
1 egg, lightly beaten
¾ teaspoon salt
½ teaspoon black pepper

Heat oven to 425°. Place a rack in a shallow baking pan. Coat with cooking spray.

Lay steak on work surface. Staring at a long side, slice steak in half without cutting through all the way. Open like a book and flatten to an even thickness (you may want your butcher to do this for you)

In a bowl, combine spinach, garlic, breadcrumbs, sun-dried tomatoes, 1 tablespoon of the oil and the beaten egg.

Season steak with ½ teaspoon of the salt and ¼ teaspoon of the pepper. Press spinach mixture onto steak, leaving a 1-inch border. Beginning on a short end, roll up to enclose filling. Tie steak with cotton twine at 2-inch intervals.

Rub steak with remaining tablespoon oil and season with remaining ¼ teaspoon each salt and pepper.

Heat a large nonstick skillet over medium-high heat. Brown meat on all sides, about 5 minutes total. Transfer steak to prepared rack.

Roast at 425° for 35 minutes or until internal temperature registers 135° on an instant-read thermometer. Remove meat from oven; let rest, covered, 10 minutes before slicing.

Green Rice – Ginger Cilantro Rice

1 cup long-grain white rice
1-inch-long pieces fresh ginger, peeled, each cut into 4 rounds, plus plus 1 teaspoon minced peeled fresh ginger
1 2/3 cups low-salt chicken broth
1 1/3 cups chopped fresh cilantro
1 green onion, thinly sliced
3 tablespoons vegetable oil
1 tablespoon Asian sesame oil
1 teaspoon (or more) unseasoned rice vinegar

Combine rice and ginger rounds in large saucepan. Add broth; sprinkle with salt. Bring to boil, stirring often. Cover; reduce heat to low. Simmer until rice is tender and broth is absorbed, about 18 minutes. Meanwhile, combine chopped cilantro, green onion, and minced ginger in mini processor. Add both oils and 1 teaspoon vinegar. Blend until almost smooth. Season cilantro oil to taste with salt, pepper, and more vinegar, if desired.
Transfer rice to bowl. Remove ginger rounds. Mix in cilantro oil and serve.

Molten Chocolate Cakes

4 tablespoons unsalted margarine room temperature, plus more for muffin tin
1/3 cup granulated sugar, plus more for muffin tin
3 large eggs
1/3 cup all-purpose flour
¼ teaspoon salt
8 ounces bittersweet chocolate, melted
Confectioner’s sugar, for dusting
Pareve Whipped cream, for serving (optional)

Preheat oven to 400°. Butter a 6-cup muffin tin. Dust with granulated sugar.

With an electric mixer, beat margarine and granulated sugar until fluffy. Beat in eggs one at a time. Reduce speed, and beat in flour and salt. Beat in chocolate. Divide batter among muffin cups.

Place tin on baking sheet; bake until cakes no longer jiggle when tin is shaken, 8 to 10 minutes. Let cool 10 minutes.

Turn out cakes onto serving plates, bottom sides up. Dust each with confectioner’s sugar, and serve with whipped cream if desired.

Berry Iced Tea

For the tea:
4 berry-hibiscus herbal tea bags (recommended: Celestial Seasonings Red Zinger)
4 cups water or seltzer
1/2 cup simple syrup or to taste
1/2 orange, cut into wedges
1/2 lime, cut into wedges
8 frozen raspberries or strawberries
For the simple syrup:
1/4 cups sugar
1/2 cup water
1/4 teaspoon vanilla extract
Put tea bags in a heatproof pitcher.
In a saucepan bring water just to a boil and pour over tea bags. Steep tea 5 minutes and remove tea bags. Cool tea and chill, covered, until cold, about 1 hour.
Stir in simple syrup, to taste. Squeeze orange and lime wedges into tea and add wedges. Serve tea in tall glasses. Garnish with frozen raspberries.
To prepare the simple syrup:
Add sugar and water to a microwave safe bowl. Microwave for 1 minute; stir until sugar is completely dissolved. Let syrup cool.

Romaine Salad with Turkey and Dried Cranberries

¼ cup whole berry cranberry sauce
2 tablespoons light mayonnaise
1 ½ tablespoons red wine vinegar
2 teaspoons Dijon mustard
2 hearts of romaine chopped (6 cups)
1 cup 1 ½ inch thick sliced smoked turkey, diced
½ cup chopped toasted pecans
½ cup dried cranberries

In a small bowl, blend cranberry sauce, light mayonnaise, red wine vinegar, and Dijon mustard. Mix well.

In a serving bowl, combine romaine lettuce, turkey, pecans, and dried cranberries. Drizzle with dressing and serve.

Roasted Chicken with Satay Sauce

Great for leftover chicken
Recipe by Ina Garten

For the sauce:
1 tablespoon good olive oil
1 tablespoon dark sesame oil
2/3 cup small-diced red onion (1 small onion)
1 1/2 teaspoons minced garlic (2 cloves)
1 1/2 teaspoons minced fresh ginger root
1/4 teaspoon crushed red pepper flakes
2 tablespoons good red wine vinegar
1/4 cup light brown sugar, packed
2 tablespoons soy sauce
1/2 cup smooth peanut butter
1/4 cup ketchup
2 tablespoons dry sherry
1 1/2 teaspoons freshly squeezed lime juice
1 rotisserie chicken
Cook the olive oil, sesame oil, red onion, garlic, ginger, and red pepper flakes in a small, heavy-bottomed pot on medium heat until the onion is transparent, 10 to 15 minutes. Whisk in the vinegar, sugar, soy sauce, peanut butter, ketchup, sherry, and lime juice; cook for 1 more minute. Cool.
Using a sharp knife, carefully remove the entire breast of the rotisserie chicken and slice it diagonally in 1/2-inch-thick slices. Skewer the chicken slices with wooden sticks and serve with the sauce. Reserve the remaining chicken.

Barley Gazpacho Salad

1 cup pearl barley
1 ½ cup lower-sodium vegetable broth
1 ½ cup water
6 plum tomatoes, finely chopped
1 crushed clove of garlic
1 small yellow or orange pepper finely chopped
½ seedless cucumber, finely chopped
1 tablespoon extra-virgin olive oil
2 teaspoons sherry vinegar
½ teaspoon hot pepper sauce
½ teaspoon salt
1/8 teaspoon smoked paprika
1 avocado

In a 3-quart saucepan, combine barley, vegetable broth, and water. Bring mixture to a boil, cover and reduce heat to medium-low. Simmer 35 to 40 minutes or until barley is tender. Cool completely.

In a large bowl, combine tomatoes, garlic, pepper, cucumber, extra -virgin olive oil, sherry vinegar, hot pepper sauce, salt, and paprika. Add cooled barley, stirring until well mixed.

Top with thinly sliced avocado.

Affogato Sundae with Almond Biscotti


4 servings

1 pint pareve whipping cream
1 teaspoon cinnamon
1/8 teaspoon almond extract
1 cup coffee, make using 1 cup hot water and 2 teaspoons instant coffee (regular or flavored)
1 pint pareve vanilla ice cream
1/4 cup sliced almonds, toasted
2 almond biscotti cookies (recipe follows)

With a whisk or hand-held mixer, whip the cream in a bowl until very thick but still liquid. Add the cinnamon and almond extract and whip until soft peaks form.

Put 1 large scoop of pareve ice cream into a serving dish. Pour ¼ cup coffee; over the ice cream. Sprinkle a tablespoon of the almonds over the ice cream and coffee mixture and top with a dollop of the flavored whipped cream. Place one or two biscotti cookies into the sundae on an angle. Repeat with remaining ingredients and serve immediately.

Almond Biscotti
1 cup blanched almonds
2 ¼ cups flour
1 teaspoon baking powder
1/8 teaspoon salt
¾ cup sugar
2 whole eggs (lightly beaten)
2 tablespoons water (or lemon juice and zest)
3 ounces chocolate chips
1 teaspoon vanilla or lemon extract
1 egg white

Preheat oven 375°. Toast almonds for 5-7 minutes. Grind 1/3 of almonds. Chop remaining almonds.

Add flour, baking powder and salt to a bowl then add nuts, and stir. Make well in center, add sugar, eggs and water to well. With fork stir together, add vanilla extract and form into a ball of dough. Combine well and then gently knead in the chocolate chips.

Divide dough into 2 pieces. Roll into two logs, ½ inches thick. Top with egg white. Bake for 20 minutes.

Reset oven to 275°. Cut the cookies into diagonal slices and place on their side. Return to cookie sheets and bake for 30 minutes. Flip cookies half way.