Vanilla Milkshakes

photo: visualphotos.com

This is the basic building block of milkshakes. You can change the flavor of the ice cream or add your favorite fruit to create a completely different beverage.

3 cups ice cream
1-1/2 cups milk (it will definitely be richer with whole milk)
2 teaspoons vanilla
2 teaspoons sugar

Blend all ingredients on low to medium speed in blender and serve. Makes 2 servings – don’t forget to share!

Pesto Rolls

4-1/2 to 5 cups flour
2 heaping teaspoons yeast
¾ cup nondairy creamer or soy milk
½ cup water
½ cup margarine
1/3 cup sugar
1 teaspoon salt
1 egg
½ cup purchased basil pesto or make your own

In a large bowl, combine 2 cups of flour and yeast; set aside. In a microwave or saucepan, heat soy milk (or creamer), water, margarine, sugar and salt until lukewarm and margarine begins to melt. Add to flour mixture and stir. Add egg and whisk together. Stir in pesto. Add remaining flour, one cup at a time, stirring constantly. Knead until dough becomes smooth and elastic. Shape dough into ball and roll in an oiled bowl. Cover and let rise for 2 hours. Punch dough down and divide in half. Let it rest for 10 minutes. Divide each piece of dough into nine pieces shape into balls. Place in greased muffin tins. Cover again and let rise an additional ½ hour. Preheat oven to 375 degrees. Bake for 12 to 15 minutes – until golden. Remove from pans to cool on racks.

If you’re still craving homemade bread, I highly recommend this semolina one.

Mushroom Brisket

¼ cup plus 3 tablespoons olive oil
2 to 3 onions, thinly sliced
4 (8-ounce) packages sliced mushrooms
1 (5-pound) brisket
2 cups beef broth
¼ cup ketchup
2 tablespoons brown sugar
1 tablespoon flour
2 teaspoons instant coffee (not prepared)
½ teaspoon pepper

In a large skillet, heat ¼ cup oil over low heat. Add onions and cook until soft and lightly golden – do not brown. Remove from pan, add 1 tablespoon olive oil and sauté the mushrooms until browned. Remove and toss with onions. Heat remaining oil in pan and add brisket. Sear on both sides – about 5 minutes each. Preheat oven to 325 degrees.

Place ½ of the mushroom-onion mixture along the bottom of a large roasting pan. Top with brisket and rest of mushroom-onion mixture. Whisk together beef broth, ketchup, brown sugar, flour, coffee and pepper. Pour over brisket. Cover tightly and cook for about 4 hours, basting halfway. Let stand and rest before slicing. Keep in gravy for reheating.

Everyone loves brisket and everyone has their favorites. If this one doesn’t do it for you (although I can’t imagine why!), try one of our popular hits.

Chicken-Zucchini Stir Fry

1 cup chicken broth
3 teaspoons cornstarch
3 teaspoons rice vinegar
4 teaspoons soy sauce
2 tablespoons peanut oil
2 teaspoons minced garlic
2 teaspoons minced fresh ginger
2 pounds skinless, boneless chicken breasts, cut into strips
2 zucchini, chopped
4 stalks scallions, chopped
Peanuts or cashews (optional)

Whisk together chicken broth, cornstarch, rice vinegar and soy sauce and set aside. Heat peanut oil over medium-high heat in wok. Add garlic and ginger and sauté briefly Add chicken and stir fry until no longer pink. Add zucchini and scallions and continue sautéing until browned. Add sauce and bring to a boil. Reduce heat and simmer for 2 to 5 minutes. Serve over rice. Top with peanuts or cashews if desired.

We like stir-fry in almost all its permutations. This recipe is another one of our favorites.

Thai Pasta with Sweet Potatoes

2 tablespoons olive oil
2 large sweet potatoes, peeled and cubed
1 teaspoon sugar
1 teaspoon chili powder
1 teaspoon cinnamon
1 (16 ounce) package fusilli
1 cup peanut butter
1 (8-ounce) package tofutti cream cheese
2 tablespoons chili sauce
2 tablespoons soy sauce

Preheat oven to 400 degrees. Toss sweet potatoes with olive oil and spices. Spread in pan and roast until soft – about 1 hour, stirring every 20 minutes. Cook pasta according to package directions. Drain, reserving 1-1/2 cups water. In a sauce pan combine the peanut butter, tofutti cream cheese, chili sauce and soy sauce. Stir in the reserved water. Toss pasta with sauce and sweet potatoes.

As a variation, you can just make more sweet potatoes, adjusting the spices accordingly and serve them without the pasta or sauce as a side dish. For another sweet potato treat, check out this dish.

Quick Blueberry Cheesecake (Pareve) Trifle


This trifle couldn’t be easier – you can substitute fresh fruit tossed with a little sugar or liqueur if you prefer.

1 (8-ounce) package tofutti cream cheese
1 cup powdered sugar
1 teaspoon vanilla
2 cups pareve whip, beaten to stiff peaks
2 packages lady fingers
1 (21-ounce) can blueberry pie filling

Cream together tofutti cream cheese, powdered sugar and vanilla. Gently fold into whip. Line a trifle bowl with lady fingers. Spread with ¼ of whip mixture. Add another layer of lady fingers and another layer of whip. Spread half of pie filling over this. Repeat. Chill completely before serving and keep stored in the refrigerator.

If you’re a trifle fan, you might also like this strawberry shortcake version.

Pecan Crusted Halibut with Dijon Cream Sauce

photo by Becky Luigart-Stayner


I love making halibut because it’s a hearty alternative to other white fish and different flavor to traditional salmon. This one is easy and creamy and very filling. I love the combination of Dijon mustard and butter. Sometime I add fresh tarragon to finish it with a little more spice.

1 cup all-purpose flour
1/2 teaspoon kosher salt
3/4 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
2 teaspoons coarse grained Dijon mustard
2 large eggs
1-1/4 cups pecans, finely chopped
1-1/4 cups fresh or dried breadcrumbs
8 (6-ounce) skinless halibut fillets
1/4 cup butter

For the fish:
Combine flour, salt, and pepper in a shallow bowl. Whisk mustard and eggs in another shallow bowl. Combine pecans and breadcrumbs in a third shallow bowl.

Dredge each halibut fillet in flour mixture, shaking off excess. Dip halibut in egg mixture to coat; drain excess. Place halibut in pecan mixture, pressing slightly to coat both sides of the fillet.

Melt 2 tablespoons butter over medium heat. Add fillets, in batches, and cook 2 minutes on each side or until lightly browned, adding additional butter as needed. Arrange fillets on a foil-lined baking sheet. Bake at 350 degrees for 10 minutes or until done. Serve with Dijon Cream Sauce.

Dijon Cream Sauce
1 cup heavy whipping cream or milk
1/2 cup coarse grained Dijon mustard
Kosher salt
Freshly ground black pepper
¼ cup fresh tarragon (optional)

Combine cream and Dijon mustard in a medium saucepan. Whisk constantly over low heat 3 minutes or until heated. Season to taste with salt and pepper. Add tarragon and drizzle over halibut.

Pareve BBQ Chicken Pizza

The kosher version of this popular pizza is amazing and surprisingly close to the treif version (just with imitation chicken). Barbeque chicken pizza became all the rage when the California Pizza Kitchen craze made it popular way back. I still remember my non-Jewish friends talking about how good it was. GKC loves this one and my kids request it often.

2 packages pizza dough (I like Trader Joe’s)
1 cup of your favorite barbeque sauce
1 cup tempeh or soy imitation chicken strips
3 tablespoons olive oil
1 red onion, sliced
1 red pepper, sliced
½ cup chopped cilantro
1 cup shredded mozzarella cheese

Preheat oven to 375 degrees.

Heat the olive oil in a large sauté pan. Cook the onions and the peppers until soft, about 6-7 minutes. Remove from heat. Add the imitation chicken strips and the barbeque sauce and mix well.

Roll out the pizza dough and place onto a baking sheet or a pizza stone. Spread the onion, pepper, chicken mixture over the pizza dough. Sprinkle the cilantro and the cheese on top. Then add some kosher salt and pepper to taste.

Bake for 20 minutes, or until cheese is melted and bubbly.

Chocolate Chip Banana Bread

by Beverly Mills

Easy
From GKC reader Leora Weinreich

GKC loves it when reader share recipes. This one is easy and low in fat (only 1 egg and ¼ cup of oil). It seems like a good one to have around as a snacking cake or a mid-week light dessert.

3 ripe bananas, mashed
1 cup flour
1 cup sugar
1 egg
1/4 cup canola oil
1 teaspoon baking soda
1/2 cup chocolate chips

Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Grease a loaf pan and set aside.
Mash the bananas with a potato masher, a fork, a spoon, or your hands (potato mashers work best).
Add the flour, sugar, egg, canola oil, and baking soda. Mix until doughy. Then add chocolate chips. Pour into prepared pan.
Bake for 1 hour. Enjoy!

Asian Soy Lettuce Hand Rolls

16 large butter lettuce leaves
1/2 cup Asian sweet chili sauce
1 pound Soy Ground Round (soy ground meat)
2 scallions, minced
2 tablespoons soy sauce
1 teaspoon cornstarch
2 tablespoons peanut oil
3 medium shiitake mushrooms (about 1 ounce), stemmed, minced
2 garlic cloves, minced
1 teaspoon minced peeled fresh ginger
1/4 cup unsalted, roasted cashews, chopped

Arrange lettuce leaves on a large platter. Pour chili sauce into a small bowl; place on platter with leaves. Mix soy ground round, scallions, soy sauce, and cornstarch in a medium bowl; marinate 10 minutes at room temperature, stirring occasionally. Heat oil in a large nonstick skillet. Add mushrooms; stir-fry 15 seconds. Add garlic and ginger and stir-fry 10 seconds. Add soy meat mixture and cook, stirring often, until golden brown and cooked through, about 3-4 minutes. Spoon mixture into lettuce leaves, dividing equally. Garnish with cashews. Roll leaves around filling and dip into chili sauce.

Salmon Burrito


This is a great weeknight dinner or lunch anytime. I like to eat it sometime before a fast because it is filled with carbs but also has some healthy protein in it. Its great with smoked salmon too but that may be too salty before a fast.

2 tablespoons vegetable oil
8 large eggs
2 tablespoons milk
1/2 teaspoon kosher salt
1 teaspoon pepper
2 tablespoons chopped chives
1 red pepper, sliced and cut in half
1 cup diced tomato
8 ounces cooked salmon fillet (I use whatever is left over from a weeknight salmon dish), cut into bite-size pieces or smoked salmon
1/2 cup cream cheese, softened
4 large (burrito-size) flour tortillas, warmed
Salsa (optional)

1. Heat oil in a skillet over high heat. Add eggs and milk; scramble in skillet. Cook until barely set, then stir in salt, pepper, chives, red pepper, tomato, and salmon.

2. Spread 2 tablespoons cream cheese onto center of each tortilla. Spoon warm egg mixture over cheese, dividing evenly. Roll up burritos, tucking in ends. Serve with salsa if you like.

Angel Hair Pasta with Mixed Color Tomato Sauce

photo: Kana Okada

The tomatoes are so ripe and delicious this time of year. In this recipe we used different color tomatoes to give it more color and flavor. If you only have Roma tomatoes or Vine Ripe red ones the recipe still comes out very tasty.
2 tablespoons pure olive oil
4 garlic cloves, minced
2 large shallots, minced
1 pound yellow tomatoes, diced
1 pound ripe green heirloom tomatoes, diced, or vine ripened red ones, diced
1/4 cup chopped basil
2 sage leaves, finely chopped
Kosher salt to taste
1/2 pound angel hair pasta
2 tablespoons unsalted butter, at room temperature, or 2 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil

In a skillet, heat the oil. Add the garlic and cook over low heat until fragrant, 2 minutes. Add the shallots and cook over moderate heat, stirring, until softened, 4 minutes.
In a bowl, toss the tomatoes with the garlic, shallots, basil and sage. Season with salt.
In a pot of boiling salted water, cook the pasta until al dente; drain and transfer to the large bowl. Toss well with the butter; serve.

Watermelon and Tomato Salad with Mozzarella Cheese and Onion-Lemon Dressing

Watermelon and tomatoes are so good for a pre-fast meal. They both contain a lot of water to keep you hydrated.

3 cups watermelon, cut in chunks
3 cups tomatoes, cut in chunks
3 green onions, finely chopped
3 tablespoons lemon juice
6 tablespoons olive oil
Kosher salt and pepper to taste
1 cup good quality mozzarella cheese, cut in ½ inch pieces

Whisk together the lemon juice and olive oil. Add kosher salt and pepper to taste. Toss the watermelon, tomatoes, onions and cheese. Add the dressing, toss and serve.

Salmon With Balsamic Sauce

Photo by Patrina Tinsley

2 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil
1 small shallot, minced
1 thyme sprig
1/2 teaspoon cracked black pepper
1/2 cup balsamic vinegar
2 tablespoons heavy cream
4 tablespoons cold unsalted butter, cut into tablespoons
Salt and freshly ground black pepper

Four 6-ounce skinless salmon fillets

In a medium saucepan, heat 1 tablespoon of the olive oil. Add the shallot and cook over moderate heat until softened, about 4 minutes. Add the thyme sprig, black pepper, and balsamic vinegar and boil over high heat until reduced to 2 tablespoons, about 12 minutes. Remove the pan from the heat and whisk in the cream, then whisk in the butter, 1 tablespoon at a time. Season the sauce with salt and pepper.

In a large nonstick skillet, heat the remaining 1 tablespoon of olive oil until shimmering. Season the salmon fillets with salt and pepper and add them to the skillet, skinned side up. Cook over moderately high heat until the fillets are browned, about 4 minutes. Turn the salmon and cook over moderate heat until the fish is just opaque throughout, about 3 minutes longer. Transfer the salmon to plates, spoon the sauce over the fish and garnish with ground black pepper. Serve immediately.

At GKC we really like salmon and have many recipes posted. This is one of our oldies but goldies. My son even made it for a dinner party recently!

Seared Tuna Steaks with Citrus Sauce

photo by Con Poulos


1/2 cup soy sauce
1/4 cup mirin or rice vinegar
1 small shallot, thinly sliced
1/2 jalapeño, seeded and chopped
2 tablespoons fresh orange juice
One 3-inch strip of lemon zest plus 1 tablespoon fresh lemon juice
1 teaspoon sugar
1/4 teaspoon ground coriander
1 tablespoon vegetable oil
Four 4-ounce tuna steaks, 1 inch thick

Salt and freshly ground pepper.

In a small saucepan, combine the soy sauce, mirin (or rice vinegar), shallot, jalapeño, orange juice, lemon zest and juice, sugar and coriander. Simmer over moderate heat until reduced by half, about 8 minutes. Strain the sauce.

In a large nonstick skillet, heat the oil until shimmering. Season the tuna with salt and pepper. Cook over high heat for 1 minute per side. Transfer the tuna to a platter and let rest for 1 minute; thickly slice and serve with the sauce.

If you are a fan of seared tuna (and we are!), you can try this recipe as well.

Grilled Halibut and Tapenade Bundles

photo: sunset.com

Original recipe by Sunset magazine, edited by GKC

12 very large romaine lettuce leaves
2 tablespoons Dijon mustard
1/2 cup green olive tapenade or homemade
1 pound halibut fillets (1 inch thick)
Olive oil
Lemon wedges

Heat grill to medium – about 375 degrees. Cook lettuce leaves 2 or 3 at a time in a pot of boiling water until ribs are flexible, 1-1/2 to 3 minutes and then transfer to a bowl of ice water. Lay leaves flat with smooth sides up on kitchen towels and pat dry.

Spread the 8 largest leaves with olive tapenade. Cut fish into 8 pieces, each about 2-1/2 inches wide. Place 1 piece at base of each leaf. Top each piece of fish with 1 teaspoon of Dijon mustard. If leaf isn’t big enough to enclose fish, overlap leaf with another. Roll up each bundle from base, folding in sides (gently crack lettuce ribs if needed). Brush bundles with oil. Discard any extra leaves.

Grill bundles, turning once, until fish is just opaque, 8 minutes. Serve with lemon.

Halibut is so expensive so we like to save it for very special recipes like this one.

Pasta with Tomato and Eggplant Sauce

photo by Todd Coleman

Serves 4 -6

2 medium eggplants, cut into 3/4-inch cubes
7 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil
Kosher salt and freshly ground black pepper, to taste
1 small yellow onion, minced
1 teaspoon crushed red chile flakes
5 cloves garlic, minced
1 (28-ounce) can whole peeled plum tomatoes, undrained and crushed by hand
16 fresh basil leaves, torn by hand
1 pound twist pasta or spaghetti
4 ounces good quality mozzarella cheese, grated

Heat oven to 500 degrees. Put eggplant into a bowl and drizzle with 4 tablespoons oil. Toss to combine and season with salt and pepper. Transfer eggplant to 2 baking sheets and bake, turning occasionally, until soft and caramelized, about 20 minutes. Transfer to a rack and set aside.

Heat remaining oil in a 5-quart pot over medium heat. Add onions and cook, stirring, until soft, about 10 minutes. Add chile flakes and garlic and cook, stirring, until garlic softens, about 3 minutes. Add tomatoes and half the basil, season with salt, and cook until heated through, about 5 minutes.

Meanwhile, bring a large pot of salted water to a boil. Add pasta and cook, stirring occasionally, until just al dente – about 9 minutes. Drain pasta and transfer to tomato sauce. Stir in reserved eggplant and toss to combine. Stir in remaining basil and season with salt. To serve, transfer pasta to a platter and garnish with mozzarella cheese and a little drizzle of olive oil.

The pasta possibilities are endless. You might enjoy this light and easy spinach and feta version.

Imitation Lobster and Potato Chip Rolls

photo by John Kernick


Lobster rolls are a fun food item available at many beach food stands and restaurants. I have always been intrigued by their popularity and when the imitation lobster came out in kosher markets, I had to try out a version. I think the results are both fun and delicious.

1 cup mayonnaise
1 celery rib, finely diced
1 teaspoon Dijon mustard
2 garlic cloves, finely grated
2 tablespoons fresh lemon juice
1-1/2 teaspoons Worcestershire sauce
1-1/2 teaspoons Tabasco
2 tablespoons snipped chives, plus more for garnish
Kosher salt
1 pound imitation lobster meat, cut into small chunks
2 tablespoons unsalted butter or margarine
6 hot dog buns
One 4-ounce bag potato chips

In a bowl, whisk the mayonnaise, celery, garlic, lemon juice, Dijon mustard, Worcestershire, Tabasco and the 2 tablespoons of chives; season with salt. Refrigerate until chilled.
Cut the imitation lobster into chunks. Mix into dressing and chill for one hour.

Melt the butter on a large griddle or in a large skillet. Add the closed buns and toast the outsides over high heat, turning frequently, until lightly browned, about 3 minutes. Transfer the buns to a platter, split the tops and fill with the lobster salad. Tuck the potato chips into the rolls, garnish with chives and serve.

And while we’re talking imitation fish, try these terrific imitation crab cakes.

Crispy Fish with Pickle Remoulade

Pickle Remoulade
1 cup mayonnaise
1/4 cup minced celery
1 small shallot, minced
1 garlic clove, minced
2 tablespoons spicy mustard
2 tablespoons sweet pickle relish
2 tablespoons chopped drained capers
2 tablespoons chopped flat-leaf parsley

Crispy Fish

1 cup cornmeal
1 cup panko (Japanese bread crumbs), crushed
1/2 cup all-purpose flour, plus more for dusting
1 teaspoon salt
1/2 teaspoon cayenne pepper
1/2 teaspoon garlic powder
1/2 teaspoon onion powder
1/4 teaspoon dried thyme
1/4 teaspoon dried sage
1/4 teaspoon ground ginger
1/4 teaspoon ground cumin
3 large eggs
Eight 5-ounce skinless flounder fillets
Vegetable oil, for frying

In a bowl, combine all of the ingredients for the pickle remoulade. Refrigerate until ready to serve.
In a pie plate, whisk the cornmeal, panko, 1/2 cup of flour, the salt, cayenne, garlic powder, onion powder, thyme, sage, ginger and cumin. In another pie plate, beat the eggs. Dust the flounder with flour, then dip in the beaten egg; coat in the panko mixture, pressing the crumbs to help them adhere. Transfer the fish to a baking sheet.
In a skillet, heat 1/4 inch of vegetable oil. Fry the fish in 2 batches over moderately high heat, turning once, until the crust is golden and crisp and the fish is cooked through, 4 minutes. Drain the fish on paper towels.

Serve the fish with toasted bread and pickle remoulade.

What is fried fish without French fries? You might as well go all out!

Salmon with Stone Fruit Slaw

Stone fruit slaw recipe adapted from bon appétit

Make sure you use firm fruit for this recipe. You want the fruits to hold a good julienne slice to give the appearance of a slaw and not a salsa. It is very flavorful and works well with grilled chicken too.

6 salmon fillets, skin on
1 tablespoon grated peeled fresh ginger
1 tablespoon rice vinegar
1 tablespoon vegetable or peanut oil
2 teaspoons brown sugar
¼ teaspoon curry powder
¼ teaspoon crushed red pepper (to taste, or optional)
1-½ pounds assorted firm stone fruit (about 5, such as plums, nectarines, peaches, all julienned)
2 scallions, thinly sliced
Kosher salt

For the slaw:
Whisk the first 6 ingredients in a medium bowl. Add fruit and scallions, toss gently to coast. Season to taste with salt.

For the salmon:
Preheat the oven to 400 degrees. Drizzle the fish with olive oil and kosher salt and pepper to taste. Bake for 15 – 18 minutes or until fish is opaque but cooked through. Serve warm or room temperature with stone fruit slaw.

Ravioli and Spinach Lasagna with White Sauce

photo: foodnetwork.com

2 (1 pound) boxes cheese ravioli, defrosted
2 tablespoons butter
2 tablespoons margarine
2 cups Imagine pareve chicken broth
½ cup half-and-half
½ cup grated parmesan cheese
¼ teaspoon nutmeg
¼ teaspoon pepper
2 (8 ounce) packages shredded mozzarella or pizza cheese
1 (10 ounce) package frozen chopped spinach (optional)

Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Melt butter in a medium pot over medium heat. Whisk in flour until smooth. Slowly pour in pareve chicken stock, whisking constantly so that mixture thickens.  Next slowly add in the half-and-half, whisking constantly so that the mixtures thickens.  Stir in the cheese, nutmeg and pepper. Cook for about 2 minutes until cheese is thoroughly incorporated. In a 9 x 13-inch pan place small layer of sauce. Next add a layer of ravioli. Sprinkle cheese over ravioli and cover with sauce. If your family likes spinach, add a layer here. Add another layer of ravioli, more sauce and cover the whole top with cheese. Bake, uncovered, for 45 minutes to 1 hour.

If you feel like potchke-ing, try these delicious lasagna rolls.

Chickpea and Feta Salad

photo: marylandmeals.com


Easy

2 (15-ounce) cans chickpeas, drained
1 tomato, chopped
1 roasted red pepper, chopped
½ cup feta cheese, crumbled

Dressing:
1 tablespoon red wine vinegar
¼ cup fresh lemon juice
1 tablespoon cumin
1 teaspoon fresh minced garlic
½ teaspoon crushed red pepper flakes
¼ cup olive oil
Salt and pepper to taste

Toss together salad ingredients in a medium bowl. Whisk together all dressing ingredients except olive oil. Gradually whisk in olive oil. Pour over salad and mix well. If not serving immediately, refrigerate until ready to serve.

If you’re a fan of chick peas, try this great side dish.

Chocolate Pound Cake


The best pound cakes are made with butter. Since you aren’t eating meat anyway, this is your chance to make a special, simple yet rich, weeknight dessert.

3 cups sugar
1 cup butter, softened
3 eggs
1-3/4 cups whole milk
1 teaspoon vanilla
3 cups flour
1 cup cocoa
1 tablespoon baking powder

Preheat oven to 325 degrees. Cream together sugar and butter until fluffy. Beat in eggs, milk and vanilla until well mixed. Stir in flour, cocoa and baking powder. Pour into greased 12-cup Bundt pan. Bake for about 1-1/2 hours. Cool in pan for 10 minutes before removing to wire rack to cool completely. You can serve alone, dusted with powdered sugar, with a dollop of (real!) whipped cream or with some fresh berries.

If you’re in the mood for more chocolate, this cake is worth trying even though it isn’t dairy!