Maple Walnut Truffles

Not sure how to make truffles? No worries – this truffles recipe is simple enough, and tastes incredible.

1 (14 ounce) can sweetened condensed milk
½ cup butter, cubed
7-1/2 cups powdered sugar
2 cups chopped walnuts
2 teaspoons maple flavoring or extract
1 teaspoon vanilla
4 cups semisweet chocolate chips
2 ounces bittersweet chocolate, chopped
2 teaspoons shortening

In a small saucepan, combined sweetened condensed milk and butter. Cook over low heat, stirring constantly, until butter is melted. Pour powdered sugar into a large bowl. Add melted butter mixture and beat until smooth. Stir in the walnuts, maple flavoring and vanilla. Roll into balls and place on waxed paper-lined baking sheets. Refrigerate until firm – about 1 hour. In a microwave, melt the chocolate chips, bittersweet chocolate and shortening. Stir until smooth. Dip balls into chocolate and place on waxed paper. Let stand until set. Store in an airtight container in the refrigerator.

Tzipi’s Mother’s Cheesecake Squares

My friend Tzipi gave me her mom’s cheesecake recipe. It’s creamy, delicious, and super easy to make. Thanks Tzipi!

Filling:
6 ounces cottage cheese
10 ounces farmer cheese
4 eggs
4 tablespoons flour
1 cup sugar
2 teaspoons lemon juice
8 ounces sour cream

Crust:
½ cup (1 stick) margarine or butter
2 cups graham cracker crumbs
2 tablespoons sugar

Crust:
Preheat oven to 350 degrees.
Melt margarine or butter and mix with graham cracker crumbs, and sugar. Press into bottom of 9×12 lasagna pan.

Filling:
Blend all ingredients with hand mixer until smooth.
Pour cheese mixture on top of crust.
Bake for 1 hour. Let cool and refrigerate. Cut when cold into squares.

Lemon, Ginger, Raspberry Iced Tea with Raspberry Ice Cubes

I am on a personal mission to rid the beautiful Shabbos table of soda and soda bottles. Here is a tea to try that both adults and kids will enjoy.

1 cup raspberries or other berry of choice, rinsed
Water for ice cube trays, plus 8 cups water, divided
1/3 cup honey
1/2 cup (2 ounces) coarsely chopped fresh ginger (you can leave the peel on)
6 tea bags, mixture of white tea and raspberry zinger (all raspberry if you prefer)
½ cup lemonade or fresh lemons, juiced
1 bottle seltzer
Mint sprigs, for garnish

Place about 2-4 berries in each compartment of an ice cube tray. Fill with water and freeze.

Place honey, 2 cups water and ginger in a saucepan and bring to a boil. Reduce heat and simmer over low heat for 5 minutes. Remove from heat and add tea bags. Let mixture steep for at least 30 minutes and up to 1 hour, then strain out tea bags and ginger.

In a pitcher combine strained liquid with 6 cups seltzer and lemonade. Chill in refrigerator.

Serve in a pitcher with raspberry ice cubes and fresh mint

Lemon and Honey Roast Chicken

Easy

This is my new favorite go-to chicken dish. It’s super easy and really full of flavor. The color is glossy and the roasted lemon is fabulous.
1/4 cup plus 1 teaspoon honey
2 tablespoons plus 1 teaspoon fresh lemon juice
2 tablespoons soy sauce
3 chickens, cut in 1/8’s
Kosher salt
5 large rosemary sprigs
9 garlic cloves, quartered
1-2 lemons, cut into 12 wedges

Preheat the oven to 450°. In a small bowl, combine the honey, lemon juice and soy sauce. Set the chickens on a large rimmed baking sheet and season with kosher salt and pepper and sprinkle with fresh rosemary. Scatter the garlic and lemon all over the chicken and in between the chicken pieces. Brush two-thirds of the honey glaze over the chickens. Roast in the middle of the oven for 30 minutes.

Reduce the oven temperature to 325°. Brush with the remaining glaze. Roast the chickens for about 45 minutes longer, until the juices run clear when the thighs are pierced; turn the pan halfway through roasting. Serve with the roasted garlic and lemons.

Strawberry Bread

A friend made this for a local charity event. It is moist and can be made a few days ahead of time. It is perfect cake to have around for sleepover guests to munch on all day.
3 cups flour
½ teaspoon cinnamon
1 teaspoon baking soda
Pinch salt
2 cups sugar
4 eggs
1-½ cups canola oil
2 pints strawberries, quartered

Preheat oven to 350 degrees. In a mixer, blend all ingredients except strawberries. Mix until smooth, about 1 minute. Add strawberries and mix until just incorporated. Spray a Bundt pan with non-stick cooking spray. Pour the batter into the prepared pan. Bake for 55 minutes.

Tropical Quinoa Salad

1 cup quinoa
½ cup mandarin oranges, drained, reserve 2 tablespoon juice
1 cup diced pineapple
2 cups broccoli, blanched *see how to blanch broccoli, below
2 medium carrots, sliced into matchsticks
4 scallions (green onions), sliced
1 teaspoon orange zest
A handful of fresh cilantro and mint leaves, rough chopped
Kosher salt and pepper, to taste

For the dressing:
1/4 cup pineapple juice
2 tablespoons mandarin orange juice
Fresh juice from 1-2 limes
1/4 cup rice vinegar
1/2 cup olive oil
2 tablespoons gluten-free soy sauce
1 inch ginger, grated
1 teaspoon sugar

Cook 1 cup quinoa according to package instructions.
When the quinoa is ready, scoop it into a large bowl and fluff it with a fork. Allow it to cool.

Dressing:
In a large glass measuring cup, whisk together the dressing ingredients. Taste test.

When the quinoa has cooled, pour in the dressing and toss lightly. Add the pineapple, broccoli, carrots, scallions, fresh cilantro and mint. Gently combine the ingredients. Add kosher salt and pepper, to taste.

Cover and chill to let the flavors blend

Roasted Broccoli with Garlic and Red Pepper

Easy
This is a great and easy side dish for mid-week or for Shabbos night. It is surprising how the high temperature roasting makes the broccoli so delicious and the little punch of pepper gives it just the perfect amount of spice.
1-¼ pounds broccoli heads, cut into florets (about 8 cups)
3 ½ tablespoons olive oil, divided
2 garlic cloves, minced
Large pinch of dried crushed red pepper

Preheat oven to 450 degrees. Toss broccoli and 3 tablespoons oil in large bowl. Sprinkle with kosher salt and pepper. Transfer to large rimmed baking sheet. Roast 15 minutes. Stir remaining ½ tablespoon oil, garlic and red pepper in small bowl. Drizzle garlic mixture over broccoli and toss to coat. Roast until broccoli is beginning to brown, about 8 minutes more. Season with salt and serve.

Rye Bread

photo: maryjanesfarm.org

Now that we can eat chometz again, I am in the mood to bake more than just my usual challahs. Here’s a nice light rye bread that will be a big hit.
¼ cup honey
¼ cup molasses
2 teaspoons salt
2 tablespoons margarine
2 tablespoons caraway seeds
1 cup boiling water
2 rounded teaspoons yeast
¾ cup warm water
2 cups rye flour
2-1/2 to 3 cups whole wheat flour

Combine honey, molasses, salt, margarine, caraway seeds and boiling water in a small bowl. Stir until smooth and honey is dissolved. Cool to lukewarm

In a larger bowl, combine yeast and warm water. Allow to proof (bubble up!) – about 5 to 10 minutes – and stir in honey mixture and rye flour. Add whole wheat flour gradually, stirring until combined. When dough is no longer sticky, knead until smooth and elastic. Spray with nonstick cooking spray and cover with a damp cloth. Let rise until doubled – about 1-1/2 to 2 hours.

Punch dough down and divide in half. Shape each half into a round loaf and place on a greased baking sheet. Cover and let rise again – about 1 hour this time.

Preheat oven to 375 degrees. Bake for about 30 minutes – until crust in browned all over and loaves sound hollow when tapped. Remove from baking sheet and cool completely on wire racks.

Rich Pound Cake

photo:tasteandseefood.com

Just in case your wife isn’t a chocolate fan, try this simple but oh-so-delicious pound cake. Serve with fresh berries and a dollop of whipped cream. This is a dessert that is much better when made dairy but if that is a problem use margarine instead of butter and soy milk or nondairy creamer instead of the regular milk.

1 pound butter, softened
3 cups sugar
6 eggs
4 cups flour
1 teaspoon baking powder
¾ cup milk
1 teaspoon almond extract
1 teaspoon vanilla

Preheat oven to 300 degrees. Beat together butter and sugar until creamy. Beat in eggs until well combined. Combine flour and baking powder and add to mixture alternately with the milk, beginning and end with the dry ingredients. Stir in almond extract and vanilla and pour into greased 10-inch tube pan. Bake for about 1-1/2 hours. Cool in pan on wire rack for 15 minutes. Remove from pan and finish cooling on wire rack.

Peanut Chicken Stir Fry

photo: flickr

Don’t let the list of ingredients intimidate you; this is an easy weeknight dinner.

2 pounds boneless, skinless chicken breasts, cut into strips
2 tablespoons peanut oil
2 heaping teaspoons minced garlic
1 cup snow peas
1 cup broccoli (you can use the frozen)
1 (4 ounce) can sliced water chestnuts, drained
1 (4 ounce) can bamboo shoots, drained
¼ cup brown sugar
2 tablespoons corn starch
1 teaspoon ginger
1 cup chicken broth
½ cup soy sauce
½ cup peanut butter, smooth or chunky
1 cup roasted peanuts (if you have allergies, throw in cashews instead or omit the nuts altogether!)

In a wok, heat peanut or grapeseed oil over medium-high heat. Add chicken and sauté until most of pink is gone. Add garlic and vegetables and continue to stir-fry. In a small bowl, whisk together the brown sugar, corn starch, ginger, broth, soy sauce and peanut butter (this can also be done with a hand immersion blender). Pour over chicken mixture and bring to a boil. Reduce heat and simmer for about 5 minutes. Throw in peanuts and serve over long-grain or basmati rice.

Fudge Tartlets

photo: minibitescookies.com

½ cup margarine, softened
3 ounces tofutti cream cheese
1 cup flour
½ cup semisweet chocolate chips
2 tablespoons margarine
1/3 cup sugar
1 egg
1 teaspoon vanilla

Frosting:
¼ cup margarine, softened
¼ cup cocoa
3 cups powdered sugar
2 tablespoons nondairy creamer or soy milk
1 teaspoon vanilla

Beat together margarine and tofutti cream cheese. On low speed add flour until completely combined. Form dough into a ball, wrap in plastic wrap and chill for about 1 hour. Shape dough into 24 balls and press each ball along the bottom and up the sides of ungreased muffin cups.

Preheat oven to 325 degrees. Melt together chocolate chips and margarine and stir until smooth. Stir in sugar, egg and vanilla. Mix well. Spoon 1-1/2 to 2 teaspoons filling into each pastry-lined muffin cup. Bake for 20 to 25 minutes – filling with puff up but will settle down again upon cooling. Cool in pans for 5 minutes; carefully remove to wire rack to finish cooling.

When tarts are cool, make frosting. Beat together all frosting ingredients until smooth. Pipe or spoon frosting onto tartlets. Mom will be so impressed!

Curried Apple Soup

photo: veggiesyarnsandtails

A break from the heavy soups of winter.

4 tablespoons margarine
1 onion, chopped
4 Granny Smith apples, chopped
2 teaspoons curry
1 teaspoon sugar
8 cups chicken stock or 2 (32 ounce) boxes pareve chicken broth
½ cup uncooked rice
½ teaspoon pepper
1 cup nondairy creamer or soy milk
¼ cup chopped cilantro (optional)

In a large stockpot, melt the margarine over a medium heat. Add the onion and sauté until soft. Add the apples, curry and sugar and continue to sauté – about 5 minutes. Pour in chicken stock and rice and bring to a boil. Reduce heat to a simmer, cover and cook for about 20 minutes. Remove from heat and cool slightly. Using hand immersion blender, purée soup until smooth. Stir in pepper and nondairy creamer or soy milk. Reheat and serve. Garnish with cilantro, if desired.

Gingerbread Cupcakes with Tofutti-Cream Cheese Frosting

photo: blogspot

I have probably already let the cat out of the bag that I like ginger and gingerbread in almost all its forms – and these cupcakes are no exception!

½ cup sugar
½ cup margarine, softened
½ cup molasses
2 eggs
2 cups flour
1 teaspoon baking soda
1-1/2 teaspoons ginger
½ teaspoon cinnamon
½ teaspoon allspice
¾ cup water

Icing:
1 (8 ounce) package tofutti cream cheese
¼ cup margarine, softened
1 teaspoon cinnamon
1 teaspoon vanilla
4 cups powdered sugar
2 teaspoons nondairy creamer or soy milk

Preheat oven to 375 degrees. Beat together sugar, margarine, molasses and eggs. Stir in remaining ingredients and pour into 18 paper-lined muffin cups. Bake for 15 to 18 minutes. Cool briefly in pans; then remove to wire racks to finish cooling. When completely cool, make icing.

Beat together tofutti cream cheese, margarine, cinnamon and vanilla. On low speed, slowly add the powdered sugar and the nondairy creamer. Pipe onto cupcakes or just spread with a spoon. Store in the refrigerator.

Not Your Mother’s Potato Salad

4 pounds ( 6 to 8 ) red or white potatoes, peeled, cubed, cooked and cooled)
4 hot house tomatoes, diced
2 stalks celery, sliced
1 green pepper, thinly sliced
1 papaya, cut into cubes
½ red onion, minced

Dressing:
½ cup olive oil
¼ cup lime juice
¼ cup vinegar
1/4 cup mango chutney
1 jalapeno, minced
¼ cup chopped cilantro

Combine all salad ingredients in a large bowl. In a separate container, combine all dressing ingredients and shake well. Pour over salad and toss to make sure it is all covered. Cover and chill at least 1 hour before serving.

Ambrosia

2 (8 ounce) containers Rich’s whip
2 pints strawberries, sliced or 1 (10 ounce) package frozen strawberries, defrosted
1 (19 ounce) can pineapple tidbits, drained
2 (4 ounce) cans mandarin oranges, drained
½ cup coconut, toasted

Beat whip until stiff peaks form. Mix with fruit and refrigerate until ready to serve. Spoon into martini or champagne glasses. Sprinkle with toasted coconut.

Variation: Feel free to add other fruit if you desire. Some people add maraschino cherries or grapes. Some even add miniature marshmallows (Yes, I know, those don’t count as a fruit!)

Mother’s Day Goat Cheese and Spinach Omelette

2 big handfuls baby spinach
2 tablespoons butter
8 pieces sun-dried tomato packed in oil, drained and finely chopped (alternatively, use ¼ cup sliced shitake mushrooms)
2 scallions, trimmed and thinly sliced
1 tablespoon fresh basil
Kosher salt and freshly ground black pepper
6 large eggs
2 ounces goat cheese (1/2 a small log), cut into thin slices (or use Alouette or Boursin cheese)
Wash and dry the spinach then chop it coarsely.
Heat the butter in a large nonstick ovenproof skillet over medium heat. Stir in the sun-dried tomato and scallion and cook, stirring, until the scallion is wilted, about 2 minutes. Season lightly with salt and pepper. Stir in the spinach and cook until wilted and all liquid is evaporated, about 4 minutes.
Meanwhile, in a mixing bowl, beat the eggs with salt and pepper to taste.
Lower the heat to medium. Pour in the eggs and let them sit a few seconds until they start to set around the edges. Using a plastic spatula push a piece of the set edge gently toward the center. Tilt the pan and let some of the unset egg from the top fill the little gap you just made. Keep going around the edge of the pan like this, until there is no more unset egg on top.
Scatter the goat cheese slices over the top of the omelet. Sprinkle the sliced basil over the goat cheese. Put the skillet under the broiler and leave the oven door open, cook just until the top of the omelet is set and puffed, about 2 minutes.

Chocolate Pistachio Bread

photo: chocolatjuice.com

2/3 cup sugar
½ cup margarine, melted
¾ cup soy milk or regular milk if you want it to be dairy
1 egg
1-1/2 cups flour
1 cup chopped pistachios
½ cup semisweet chocolate chips
1/3 cup cocoa
2 teaspoons baking powder

Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Beat together sugar, margarine, milk and egg. On low speed, beat in remaining ingredients. Pour into greased 9 x 5 x 3-inch loaf pan. Bake for 50 to 55 minutes. Cool 10 minutes in pan, then remove onto wire rack to finish cooling.

Ice Blended Coffee Malted

Adapted from original recipe by the Hungry Girl

2 teaspoons malted milk powder (find it with the cocoa powder at the market)
1 teaspoon unsweetened cocoa powder
1 teaspoon instant coffee granules or instant espresso granules
1 – 3 no-calorie sweetener packets (like Splenda or Truvia) or 3 tablespoons sugar (or more to taste)
1/4 cup light vanilla soymilk
1 tablespoon half and half or whole milk
5 – 8 ice cubes or 1 cup crushed ice
Whipped cream for the top

Put all dry ingredients in a tall glass. Add 2 oz. (1/4 cup) hot water, and stir until ingredients have completely dissolved. Add 5 oz. cold water.

Add soymilk, half and half, and ice, and stir well. Top with real whipped cream and a straw.

MAKES 1 SERVING

Schlissel Challah

Here’s how I know that the Almighty has a sense of humor. On the Shabbos after Passover, just when you think you may never want to see the inside of a kitchen again, there is a particular custom to bake schlissel challah. For those whose Yiddish is a little rusty, schlissel means key – and baking a key inside the challah is meant to be a propitious sign for livelihood. That’s the humor. We all want a decent livelihood so how can we ignore this opportunity? Here’s one of our favorite challah recipes to make your forced return to the kitchen especially delicious. If this doesn’t open up the gates of income, I don’t know what will!


Perfect Challah with Sweet Crumble Topping
This is the most delicious challah ever – promise. The only “complaint” expressed is about starting the meal with dessert!

4 teaspoons active dry yeast
4 cups warm water
2 cups sugar
2 cups oil
8 eggs
2 tablespoons salt
12-14 cups bread flour (hi-gluten flour)

In a large bowl pour water over yeast. As it is proofing (bubbling), add sugar. After yeast has tripled in size and is no longer bubbling (about 5 to 10 minutes), add oil, eggs and salt. Whisk everything together. Then begin stirring in flour, 3-4 cups at a time. Continue until it is no longer possible to stir in anymore. Take dough out of the bowl and on a clean work surface, knead dough until it is elastic, about 5 minutes. If it is sticky, add more flour. Sprinkle oil around bowl and roll dough in oil to keep it moist. Cover with a damp towel and let it rise for 2 hours in a warm place. Punch dough down, braid and place in greased pans. Cover again and let braided challahs rise for another hour. Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Sprinkle loaves with streusel topping. Bake for 35 to 40 minutes.

Optional Streusel Topping:
1 cup sugar
1 cup flour
½ cup margarine, cut into pieces (alternatively, you can use ½ canola oil)

Mix sugar, flour, and margarine with fork or in food processor to form a crumble. Sprinkle on top of challah before baking. (I usually double it and just keep remainder in the freezer to use week after week)

Purim Seudah

Here are some menu ideas to make your Purim extra festive!
Asian Lamb Chops

Red Velvet Whoopie Pies

Indian Cauliflower and Potatoes

Vegetable Samosas – New Hamatashen from Shalom Bombay
Yellow Cake Mix Hamantashen
More Hamantashen Recipes from our readers
Beer and Barbeque Minute Steak

Tequila-Lime Chicken

Penne Vodka with Herbed Chicken

Grasshopper Pie

Smoked Trout Dip
Cilantro-Garlic Dip
Sticks of Fresh Vegetables – Carrots, Celery, Jicama, Radish, Baby Corn
Assortment of Crackers
Smoked Salmon on Wontons
Spicy Chili
White Rice
Spinach with Coconut
Sweet Potato with Granola
Peanut Butter Pretzel Tart with Chocolate Drizzle

Asian Lamb Chops




15 (3 ounce) lamb chops


2 teaspoons minced garlic


2 tablespoons sugar


2 tablespoons lime juice


2 tablespoonsoy sauce


¼ cup olive oil


1/3 cup chopped cilantro

Place the lamb chops in a roasting pan and season with garlic and sugar. Whisk together lime juice, soy sauce and olive oil and drizzle over chops. Cover and marinate overnight in the refrigerator. Preheat oven to 400 degrees. Roast, uncovered, for 20 to 30 minutes. (I do 30 minutes because I like meat, especially lamb, well done). Garnish with cilantro.

Leftover Candy Chocolate Bark

1 pound bittersweet chocolate chips
3 (2.1-ounce) Butterfinger candy bars cut into irregular 1-inch pieces, or other candy bar of choice
3 (1.4-ounce) heath toffee candy bars, cut into irregular ½ inch pieces or other candy of choice
8 (.55 ounce) peanut butter cups, each cut into 8 wedges, or other candy bar of choice
¼ cup honey-roasted peanuts
3 ounces high quality white chocolate, chopped
Reese’s Pieces and/or M & M’s

Line baking sheet with foil. Stir chocolate chips in heavy medium saucepan over low heat until melted and warm (not hot) to touch. Pour chocolate onto foil, spread to ¼ inch thickness (about 12 x 10 inch rectangle). Sprinkle with Butterfinger candy, toffee, peanut butter cups, and nuts, making sure all pieces touch melted chocolate to adhere (or use whatever candy you have leftover).

Put white chocolate in heavy small saucepan. Stir constantly over very low heat until chocolate is melted and warm (not hot) to touch. Remove from heat. Dip spoon into chocolate, wave from side to side over bark, creating zigzag lines. Scatter Reese’s Pieces and M&M’s over, making sure candy touches melted chocolate.

Chill bark until firm, 30 minutes. Slide foil with candy onto work surface. Peel off foil and cut bark into irregular pieces.

Vegetable Samosas (The “New” Hamantashen)


By Chef Vijay Jagtiani, Shalom Bombay, Glatt Kosher Indian Cuisine NYC and Teaneck

For 16 Samosas

For the filling:
6 potatoes with skin
2 tablespoons vegetable oil
1 teaspoon cumin seeds
2 inches peeled fresh ginger
2 chopped green chilies
½ chopped onion
1 cup frozen green peas
2 tablespoons chopped cilantro
½ tablespoon turmeric powder
¼ tablespoon coriander powder
½ tablespoon salt
¼ tablespoon chili powder

Boil potatoes, remove skin, mash and set aside.

In a non-stick pan heat oil. Add cumin seeds, ginger, green chilies and onion and brown. Add peas. Cook 2-3 minutes and add mashed potatoes.

Mix cilantro, turmeric, coriander and chili powder together. Mix into the potato mixture and let cool for 15 minutes in fridge

For the dough:
¼ cup of white flour
¼ cup of vegetable oil
½ tablespoon of salt

Mix all of the ingredients together until they form a hard dough. Make lemon size balls of dough. Place the balls on a flat surface and press with a rolling pin to get an average thickness. Cut to make a half circle. Take one of the half circles. Dip your forefinger in water and line the edges of half circle with the wet finger. Then give it a shape of cone. Stuff it with about 1 tbsp of prepared filling and seal it firmly. Deep fry. Serve with sweet chutney and enjoy.

Sweet Chutney:
2 cups white vinegar
2 cups ketchup
1 pear, peeled
1 pound red seedless grapes
2 bananas
1 tablespoon cumin seeds
½ tablespoon chili powder
Pinch of orange/red food color powder

Grind vinegar, ketchup, pear, grapes and bananas together in food processer. Add salt according to taste; then cumin, chili and food color. Mix and enjoy.