Chanukah Cocktails! Don’t Miss These Great Drinks at your Chanukah Party
When it comes to wine, everyone has an opinion, so what do you do when you’re hosting a Chanukah party and everyone wants something different? We asked our resident party expert (and director of wine education for Royal Wine Corp.) Jay Buchsbaum and he suggested mixing up a batched cocktail. Why? It’s easy, you can make it in large quantities ahead of time, and people can help themselves as opposed to you pouring every glass. Jay lists some favorites below, but the possibilities are endless. So grab a large punch bowl or pitcher (or several, if you’re creating more than one recipe) and don’t just host your party, enjoy it too!
Passion Fruit Bubbly
Dreidel Rum Punch
Just remember, the important thing about hosting a party is spending time with friends and family, not your kitchen. Enjoy and happy Chanukah!
Perfect for juicing because it is high-powered. Includes a power base, 1 tall cup, 2 short cups, 1 flat blade and 1 emulsifying blade, 2 re-sealable lids, pocket nutritionist and manual with recipes.
Available at Amazon.com for $99 and at Costco.com for $79
Summer is time for fresh fruit, lighter foods and cooler appetizers. I often serve Tuna Tartare, or Smoked Salmon in a Spinach Salad. I also love to serve a refreshing summer chilled soup, like White Grape Gazpacho with Toasted Almonds or Super Flavorful Mango Curry Soup.
This week, I bring you a few more cold soup options. Sweet and/or zesty but all super infused with flavor. All choices are refreshing and make a great summer appetizer.
Summer fruits, barbeques and fresh herbs, the dynamic and spectacular trio that scream summertime is here. Last week I started on barbeque essentials and marinades (much more to come on that), and seasonal summer fruit and vegetables, are coming soon, so today, I’m sharing a few simple steps and tricks to making an outdoor or indoor herb garden. I love cooking with fresh herbs. They are pungent, fragrant and add tremendous flavor to any dish, from salads, stews, vegetables to even ice cream. They are so easy to grow at home and I love experimenting with different varieties like lemon basil, wild rosemary, and Long Island dill. My basil and rosemary grow wild outside amongst the peonies, petunias, and gerandiums. Here’s a pic.
The best way to start using fresh herbs is to create a garden of herbs, its beautiful and fragrant. Here is what you need:
- fresh herb plants from the nursery or seeds (select varieties that you like, I suggest, basil, parsley, dill, rosemary, tarragon, sage, cilantro, chives…okay anything you like) MOST grow best in full or partial sun
- container with drainage
- potting soil
Select a Container and Provide Drainage
Based on the number of herbs you want to include in the container (plan the tall ones in the back and shorter in the front) and the spacing required, determine the size of the garden’s container. The container needs to have drainage so water won’t collect in the base. Cut or drill a hole in the bottom of the container if it does not have one.
Add Potting Soil
Fill container halfway with potting soil.
Arrange and Plant
Arrange the plants in a pleasing composition according to their spacing requirements — take into consideration their mature size. Place taller plants in the back and shorter varieties in the front.
Top Off the Container
After all the herbs are in place, fill the rest of the container with potting soil to about an inch below the rim.
Pack down the potting soil with the back of the shovel or your fingers.
Water the newly planted herbs liberally.
Add labels to your herb garden so you can keep track of what’s growing. Place the container outside in a sunny spot or in the windowsill with direct sunlight coming through.
Cut your herbs and use them in these great recipes:
Corn and Black Bean Salad with Basil Lime Vinaigrette
Chicken Breasts in Rosemary Apricot Sauce
Crunchy Roasted Rosemary Potatoes
Coffee Rubbed Steaks with Chimichurri Sauce
Herb Marinated Turkey Roast
Salmon with Green Herbs and Lemon
Lemon Basil Sorbet
Chocolate Rosemary Truffles
Need a great, gorgeous, whimsical gift for that someone who has everything?
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This soup is like a meal in a bowl. It’s nutritious and filling and super delicious. For me, it has become a classic and a keeper.
1 (3 1/2-ounce) package fresh shiitake mushrooms
4 cups chicken stock
6 (1/4-inch) slices peeled fresh ginger
3 garlic cloves, minced
1 green onion, cut into 2-inch pieces
1 star anise, optional (I usually skip this)
6 ounces dried udon noodles (thick Japanese wheat noodles)
1 tablespoon canola oil
2 teaspoons minced peeled fresh ginger
1 garlic clove, minced
1/4 cup sake or dry white wine
2 cups shredded cooked chicken breast (about 8 ounces)
1 tablespoon lower-sodium soy sauce
1 tablespoon honey
1/4 teaspoon kosher salt
1/4 cup diagonally cut green onions
Remove stems from mushrooms; reserve stems. Thinly slice mushroom caps; set aside. Combine mushroom stems, chicken stock, ginger, garlic, green onion and star anise in a large saucepan. Bring to a boil. Cover, reduce heat, and simmer 20 minutes. Remove from heat. Let stand 10 minutes. Strain stock through a sieve over a bowl; discard solids.
Cook udon noodles according to package directions and rinse with cold water;
Heat a large saucepan over medium-high heat. Add canola oil to pan; swirl to coat. Add reserved sliced mushroom caps to pan, and sauté for 2 minutes. Add minced ginger and minced garlic; sauté for 1 minute. Add sake, and cook for 4 minutes, scraping pan to loosen browned bits. Add stock to pan. Bring to a boil, and reduce heat to medium-low. Add chicken, soy sauce, 1 tablespoon honey, and salt; simmer for 2 minutes or until chicken is thoroughly heated. Divide noodles evenly among 4 bowls. Add 1 1/2 cups soup to each bowl. Sprinkle each serving with 1 tablespoon green onions.
Drizzle this sauce instead of toss it. It looks prettier and doesn’t make the beans look a duller color.
1 pound green beans, trimmed
1/4 cup olive oil
2 tablespoons tahini
2 tablespoons fresh lemon juice
1 minced medium clove garlic
Kosher salt and freshly ground black pepper
2 tablespoons coarsely chopped fresh flat-leaf parsley, or 2 teaspoons dried parsley
Bring a medium pot of well-salted water to a boil over high heat and cook the green beans until crisp-tender, about 3 minutes; drain and cool under cold running water.
In a small bowl, whisk together the olive oil, tahini, lemon juice, garlic, and salt and pepper to taste. Drizzle the green beans with the dressing, sprinkle with the parsley, and serve.
Many GKC readers request recipes and products for children and adults that have food sensitivities and allergies. Although this is not our specialty, GKC is fortunate to have other readers and friends who have expert experience and advice. Tamar Warga, mother of 10 children, 4 with severe allergies shares some of her personal experience and recipes for a family with allergic children. She has written a Rosh Hashannah e-cookbook called, “A Taste of Sweetness” (she wrote a Passover e-cookbook also, called “A Taste of Freedom”. Through the crucible of allergic emergencies, this cookbook was forged.
GKC spoke to Tamar and she shared how she created and adapted her life to meet the needs of her family, as if parenting 10 children was already not a full time job.
Here is her story, “My first experience with food allergies was when my oldest son was 15 months old. After eating scrambled eggs, he began rubbing his eyes and breaking out in hives around his eyes and the bridge of his nose. My first impulse was to bathe him (thinking he had rubbed food into his eyes). When I realized the rash was spreading quickly I called his pediatrician who advised “give him Benadryl and go to the nearest ER if he shows any signs of difficulty breathing.” DIFFICULTY BREATHING?!
Over the next few months his food allergy list grew to include tree nuts, peanuts, melon, pineapple, and kiwi. Thankfully, my oldest son outgrew most of his food allergies by the age of three. Little did I know that a few years later we’d be forced to deal with his twin brothers, food allergies that would make his experience look like a stroll in the park.
Twin boys with allergies? Yup, identical twins with identical multiple severe food allergies. They were miserable from the get go even when they were exclusively breastfed (reacting to the allergens in my diet- unbeknownst to me). Their “no list” included eggs, tree nuts, peanuts, soy, dairy, wheat, oats, all grains (oats, spelts, etc…).Reactions were frequent even when the ingredients weren’t problematic. Cross-contamination and even skin contact would elicit reactions. Thank Gd the ER was close by. At first, finding a “yes list” for them was overwhelming.
Overwhelming, but not impossible. I did manage to find things for them (and their younger brother who is also food allergic) to eat that were not only edible but enjoyable. They were my inspiration for my first cookbook “A Taste of Freedom” (Allergy friendly Passover Cookbook) and for my latest one ” A Taste of Sweetness”. My hope is that other people who have to avoid common allergens will see that living with allergies while challenging can be very sweet.”
GKC previewed A Taste of Sweetness. It’s easy, delicious, allergic sensitive recipes that is available as an e-book through this link. A Taste of Sweetness celebrates the flavors, textures, and traditions of Rosh Hashana cooking.
All recipes are dairy and nut free. Most recipes are egg-free, and without fish. Many are gluten free as well.
A Taste of Sweetness is just $5. Click here to receive the link and start enjoying Tamar’s delicious recipes like Pomegranate Leek Quinoa and Honey Chicken for Rosh Hashanah today.
Read recipe for Eggless Round Challah.
You just can’t always be gourmet; sometimes you have to be a little low-brow and go for comfort food. Originally named Frito Pie and made with ground beef, this recipe has been modified and adapted for the kosher consumer. Your family will be so glad we did!!
4 cups corn chips, crushed
1 cup flour
1 tablespoon baking powder
½ cup margarine, melted
2 tablespoons canola oil
2 onions, chopped
½ teaspoon kosher salt
1/8 teaspoon cayenne pepper
2 pounds vegetarian ground round
1 tablespoon chili powder
2 teaspoons cumin
1/8 teaspoon crushed red pepper
2 teaspoons oregano
2 cloves garlic, minced
3 cups crushed tomatoes
½ cup tomato paste
2 cups pareve chicken stock
1 (15 ounce) can red kidney beans, drained
Grated cheddar cheese
Sliced avocadoes or guacamole
For the dough: Preheat oven to 350 degrees. In a large mixing bowl, stir together crushed corn chips, flour, baking powder and margarine. Whisk in eggs. Press dough into bottom and up sides of 2 8-inch pie pans. Line crust with dried beans or pie weights and bake for 10 minutes. Remove from oven.
For the filling: In a large Dutch oven, heat oil. Add onions and sauté until soft, about 3 minutes. Stir in salt and cayenne. Add ground round, chili powder, cumin, crushed red pepper and oregano to the pot. Cook for about 5 minutes, stirring constantly. Stir in garlic, tomatoes, tomato paste, stock and kidney beans. Bring to a boil, reduce heat and simmer, uncovered, for about 1 hour.
Pour mixture into prepared crusts and bake for ½ hour.
Serve with garnishes.
The Succah is put away; we successfully fed our families 19 holiday meals and took a well-needed break last week. GKC is back and ready for fall. Here in New York that means changing leaves, changing wardrobe, and eating seasonal foods. That’s trendy anyway, eating foods of the season especially those that are grown close to home.
We suggest you take a minute or two to explore a few activities that you enjoy. For us, that means more cooking and cooking classes. Recently we bonded with the JCC of Manhattan and were so impressed with the line-up of chefs and classes they offer. Unique at the JCC, The Patti Gelman Culinary Arts Center is the only fully equipped kosher kitchen to offer both dairy and meat cooking classes in Manhattan. The culinary studio remains bustling throughout the week with instructive cooking classes held daily for adults, teenagers and children. Their intimate, hands-on classes are an ideal place for beginners as well as experienced cooks to improve their cooking skills. I can’t wait!
The Chef-Instructors hail from a wide variety of culinary backgrounds, resulting in classes that are as diverse as they are delicious. They offer classes with well-respected chefs from successful restaurants, cookbook authors (we hope to be included when our book is out this summer!), caterers and private chefs, wine experts, food purveyors, and other culinary authorities. Here are a few upcoming classes that we are considering but for a complete listing go to their website JCCManhattan.org and sign up. Many thanks to the JCC for sharing this sneak peak recipe for Tuscan White Bean Soup from a recent class, just for GKC readers. It’s just a sample of the delicious recipes that are taught, shared and distributed with each class. Sunday night soup just got a little better.
I’m currently deciding which classes to take, anyone want to come?
11/2 (9 – 11 a.m.) Moms In The Kitchen (Delicious Nibbles for Busy Moms)
Active mom and professional chef Kim Pistone leads this series featuring wholesome meal plans for busy moms. Homemade granola, wraps, hummos and more.
11/8 (7 pm) The Tuscan Table
Join chef Sarah on a special journey through creating this traditional, simple, and rustic trattoria type fare. You’ll create escarole salad with walnut red wine vinaigrette, slightly mashed roasted sunchokes with goat cheese, homemade butternut squash and ricotta ravioli with sage brown butter, whole roasted branzino with lemon anchovy radicchio, classic tomato and garlic bruschetta, and for dessert, homemade tiramisu.
11/10 (7 pm) Savory and Satisfying Soups (I think they created this one for me!)
A hearty soup served with a piece of crusty bread, salad or sandwich makes for a wonderfully delicious and nutritious meal. You’ll make tomato fennel soup with a grown-up grilled cheese panini with pesto, fontina, and gruyere; pumpkin soup with lime cream, toasted pepitas and crispy tortilla matchsticks; mushroom barley soup with cremini, shiitake and oyster mushrooms; green minestrone with fresh pesto and grated parmesan; oatmeal honey wheat bread; and a winter green salad.
11/17 (7 – 9:30 pm) Thanksgiving Favorites
Simplify and enjoy your holiday cooking by learning tricks for preparing traditional holiday recipes ahead of time. The mouthwatering menu includes all the trimmings: turkey and gravy, cranberry and orange relish, mashed potatoes, apple stuffing, braised Brussels sprouts with hazelnuts, honey glazed carrots, and pecan pie–sure to please anyone who is coming to dinner!
12/1 (7-9:30 pm) Holiday Entertaining Made Easy
Learn time saving party planning tips and presentation ideas while you shake a festive cocktail and prepare a selection of delicious hors d’oeuvres. Create pomegranate margaritas and sparkling white sangria, crudités with roasted red pepper and walnut dip, bite–size goat cheese cheesecakes, plantains topped with mango, pomegranate and avocado salsa, honey roasted peppered pecans, truffled deviled eggs, parmesan wafers, smoked salmon, wasabi and pickled ginger tartines and perfect pissaladiere strips.
12/8 (7-9:30 pm) Delicious Dishes from Great NY Restaurants
Cheers to chef Irene who once again demystifies how to create signature restaurant dishes right in your own home! You’ll learn to prepare a mouthwatering tomato tatin from La Goulue, Telepan’s savory vegetable bread soup, Craft’s zesty beet salad with beet vinaigrette, NOBU’s famous black cod with miso, Bouley’s fabulous fingerling potato puree, The Red Cat’s sautéed zucchini with toasted almonds and pecorino, and WD50’s heavenly cherry clafouti.
At GKC, cooking is a hobby, a passion, a business, and something that we constantly try to improve. Now that the kids are back in school, and the schedules are more permitting, take a class with us at the JCC in NYC!
Although this recipe definitely requires adult involvement, your kids will enjoy pressing their thumbs in the middle of the cookie to make the indentation (or using a spoon to accomplish the same result!) and then watching you fill the hole and seeing the exciting result.
½ cup margarine, room temperature
1-1/2 cups sugar
2 cups flour
1 cup cocoa powder
2 teaspoons baking powder
2 egg yolks
2 tablespoons corn syrup
½ cup shredded coconut
½ cup chopped pecans (if your kids have an aversion to nuts, you can leave these out!)
Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Spray cookie sheets with nonstick spray. Cream together margarine and sugar until fluffy. Beat in eggs. On low speed, add flour, cocoa powder and baking powder and continue beating until fully combined. Roll dough into balls and roll in sugar. Flatten and press ¼-inch indentation into center of each cookie. Bake for 8 minutes. In the meantime, combine egg yolks, corn syrup, coconut and nuts, if suing. Place about a ½ teaspoonful into center of each cookie. Return to oven and bake an additional 4 to 5 minutes until set. Cook for 5 minutes before transferring to rack to finish cooling. Makes about 2 dozen.
To toast the nuts, arrange in a single layer on a baking sheet. Bake in a preheated 350 degrees F oven for 6 to 8 minutes until lightly toasted. Cool completely before using.
Nutella-Swirl Pound Cake (Pareve or Dairy)
Adapted from original recipe by Lauren Chattman author of Cake Keeper Cakes
I use the pareve chocolate spread instead of Nutella to make this pareve. Either way it is delicious.
1 ½ cups flour,
4 eggs, at room temperature
2 teaspoons vanilla extract
¾ teaspoon baking powder
¼ teaspoon salt
2 sticks unsalted margarine, or butter, softened
1 ¼ cups sugar
1 13-ounce jar of Nutella or 13 ounces of Pareve Chocolate spread (the pareve spread may need to be softened in the microwave to spread like nutella does. Heat in 20 second intervals, until spreadable but not cooked)
Preheat the oven to 325. Spray a 9 x 5 inch loaf pan or 6 2 x4 inch mini loaf pans with non-stick spray. In a glass measuring cup lightly beat the eggs with the vanilla. In a medium bowl, whisk the 1 ½ cups of flour with the baking powder and salt.
In a large bowl, using a mixer beat the margarine with the sugar at medium speed until fluffy about 3 minutes. With the mixer at medium-low speed, gradually beat in the egg mixture until incorporated. Add the flour mixture in 3 batches, beating at low speed between additions. Continue to beat for 30 seconds longer.
Spread one –third of the batter in the pan, then spread half of the Nutella or chocolate cream on top. Repeat with another third of the batter and the remaining Chocolate cream or Nutella. Top with remaining batter. Lightly swirl the chocolate cream into the batter with a knife. Do not over mix.
Bake the cake for about 1 hour. (Smaller cakes will require about 40 minutes). Cool the cake in the pan for 15 minutes.
2 ½ cups flour
2 ½ teaspoons baking powder
½ teaspoon salt
1 ¾ cups sugar
¾ cup oil
1 package lemon jello
¾ cup apricot nectar
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
Preheat oven to 325° and grease Bundt pan
In large mixing bowl stir together flour, baking powder and salt. In small bowl mix together sugar and oil. With electric mixer on low, blend both mixtures. Add eggs one at a time, then jello, nectar and vanilla extract, blending until combined. Bake in greased pan for 1 hour at 325°.
For glaze, mix together:
½ cup orange juice
2 cups confectioners’ sugar
1 grated rind of an orange
Juice and grated rind of a lemon
Run knife around edges and pour over the hot cake. Cool thoroughly in pan before removing.
Baked Flounder and Tomatoes in a Creamy Wine Sauce
Cream of Sweet Potato Soup
Creamy Spinach or Cauliflower Kugel
Dairy Berry Fruit Soup
Dairy Cantelope and Fruit Soup
Mozzarella Stuffed Portobello Mushrooms
Mushroom Salad with Shaved Parmesan
Mustard Roasted Red Snapper
Oven Roasted Potatoes
Potato and Mushroom Casserole
Salmon in Puff Pastry
Savory Pesto Cheesecake
Ultra Creamy Ultra Rich Mashed Potatoes
Baked Rice Pudding
Chocolate Truffle Cheesecake
Seven Layer Magic Cookie Bars
White Chocolate Pound Cake
Almond Lover Cheesecake
Strawberry Custard Trifle
Streusel Coffee Cake
The Best Plain Cheesecake
Ginger Pound Cake
Lemony Almost Fat Free Cheesecake
Mascarpone Cheesecake with Nutella Drizzle
Dolce De Leche Cheesecake
Fig or Plum and Almond Tart
by Chef Thomas Dugal, Above and Beyond Cateres and Eventeurs
Baby Arugula Roasted Candy Cane Beet and Goat Cheese”
Marie Antoinette Bittersweet Chocolate Mousse Cups with White Chocolate Curls and Blackberry Coulis
Napoleon of Arctic Char and Chilean Cea Bass with Roasted Red peppers and Steamed Spinach
Chocolate Fudge Squares with Mocha Glaze
by Chef Carlos Montoya, Bari Restaurant
Soy Ginger Tuna with Wild Mushrooms