Black Bean Chili with Butternut Squash

This is adapted from a recent Bon Appetit recipe; the squash is a great addition.
1 tablespoon olive oil
1 onion, chopped
2 teaspoons minced garlic
2 tablespoons chili powder
1 (29 ounce) can fire-roasted tomatoes (you can use regular whole tomatoes if you’re stuck)
2 (15 ounce) cans black beans, drained
2 chipotle chiles from canned chipotle chiles in adobo, minced (make sure to mince; these are VERY spicy)
1 (2 pound) butternut squash, peeled, seeded and cut into 1/2 –inch cubes

Possible Garnish:
Grated Cheddar Cheese
Sour Cream
Chopped Cilantro
Pickled Jalapeno Rings

Heat oil in a Dutch oven over medium heat. Sauté onion and garlic until soft. Add chili powder, tomatoes, beans and chiles and cook for about ½ hour to blend flavors. Stir in butternut squash and cook an additional 30 minutes. Serve over rice. I like it without any garnish but it’s nice to give everyone options.

Peanut Butter Truffles

1 cup margarine, softened
1 cup crunchy peanut butter
2 tablespoons vanilla
3-1/2 cups powdered sugar
2 cups graham cracker crumbs

Cream together margarine, peanut butter and vanilla. Mix in remaining ingredients and beat until smooth. Shape into balls and place on waxed paper-lined cookie sheets. Chill for 1 hour before dipping in chocolate coating and rolling in other toppings (chopped peanuts works nicely here)

Double Ginger Cookies


As you may have noticed from last week’s recipes, I am a big ginger fan. I also like to use crystallized ginger in cookies. This is a heartier cookie than your typical Ginger Crinkle.

1-1/2 cups flour
1 cup whole wheat flour
¾ cup chopped crystallized ginger
1 teaspoon baking powder
½ teaspoon baking soda
½ teaspoon ginger
1 cup sugar
½ cup applesauce
¼ cup oil
½ teaspoon vanilla

Combine all dry ingredients. Make a well in center. Whisk together sugar, applesauce, oil and vanilla. Add to flour mixture and stir until just moistened. Cover and chill for 1 hour. Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Shape dough into balls and roll in sugar. Place on lightly greased cookie sheets and bake for 15 minutes. Let set for 1 to 2 minutes on pan; them remove to wire racks to finish cooling.

Plain Chocolate Truffles


There is actually nothing plain about this taste.

2 cups (1 12-ounce package) semisweet chocolate chips
1 cup pareve whip
1/3 cup margarine, softened
1 teaspoon vanilla

Heat chocolate chips and pareve whip in microwave. Stir until smooth. Stir in margarine and vanilla. Cool, cover and refrigerate for a few hours. Shape into balls and place on waxed paper-lined baking sheets. Refrigerate for an additional hour before dipping in chocolate coating and rolling in toppings.

Mexican Black Bean Lasagna


A variation on the traditional.
9 lasagna noodles, cooked and drained and rinsed with cold water to prevent sticking
1 tablespoon oil
1 onion, chopped
1 teaspoon minced garlic
1 cup water
2 tablespoons chopped cilantro
2 (15 ounce) cans black beans, drained
1 (14-1/2 ounce) can whole tomatoes
2 (6 ounce) cans tomato paste
1 (15 ounce) container ricotta cheese
2 eggs
2 cups shredded Monterey Jack or pizza cheese

Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Heat oil in a large skillet and sauté onion and garlic until soft. Stir in water, cilantro, beans, tomatoes, and tomato paste. Simmer, uncovered for 15 minutes, breaking up tomatoes as they soften. Remove from heat and mix with ricotta cheese and eggs. Place a thin layer of sauce along the bottom of a 9 x 13-inch pan. Top with 1/3 of the noodles, the sauce, then 1/3 of the cheese. Next should be another layer of noodles and sauce. Lastly, place remaining 1/3 noodles and remaining 2/3 cheese. Bake, uncovered, for about 45 minutes.

Whipped Sweet Potatoes with Sautéed Shallots

5 pounds sweet potatoes
½ cup (1 stick) margarine, softened
½ teaspoon cinnamon
Salt and pepper
2 tablespoons oil
¾ pound shallots, thinly sliced

Preheat oven to 400 degrees. Bake sweet potatoes for about 45 minutes – or until soft. Let cool slightly and scoop out flesh. Add margarine and cinnamon and beat until smooth and fluffy. Add salt and pepper to taste. In the meantime, heat oil in a large skillet over medium-high heat and sauté shallots until crisp. Drain on paper towels and scatter atop sweet potatoes.

Coconut Cake

I have been searching for a really good coconut cake. And I think I have finally found it.

1-1/2 cups (3 sticks) margarine, softened
2 cups sugar
5 eggs
1-1/2 teaspoons vanilla
3 cups flour
1 teaspoon baking powder
½ teaspoon baking soda
1 cup coconut milk
½ cup shredded coconut

Icing:
2 cups tofutti cream cheese
1 cup margarine, softened
1 teaspoon vanilla
1 pound powdered sugar
¾ cup shredded coconut for sprinkling all over cake

Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Cream together margarine and sugar. Beat in eggs, then add vanilla. Combine flour, baking soda and baking powder and add to the batter, alternately with the soy milk, beginning and ending with the dry ingredients. Fold in the coconut. Pour into two greased 9-inch round cake pans and bake for about 45 minutes. Cool in pan on wire rack for ½ hour; then remove from pan to finish cooling.

When cakes are completely cool, prepare icing. Cream together all ingredients until smooth. Place 1 layer on a serving plate and spread icing over. Cover with top layer and then frost top and sides. Sprinkle coconut on top and lightly press onto sides. Store in refrigerator. Remove 15 minutes before serving.

Broccoli Cheddar Soup

3 tablespoons unsalted butter, plus 2 tablespoons cold unsalted butter, cut into pieces
1 cup yellow onions or sliced leeks (white parts only, well rinsed)
1/2 teaspoon salt
1/4 teaspoon freshly ground white pepper
Pinch nutmeg
1/2 teaspoon minced garlic
1/2 teaspoon chopped fresh thyme leaves
3 tablespoons all-purpose flour
3 cups pareve chicken stock
1 (16-ounce) package frozen broccoli, thawed and separated
1/2 cup heavy cream, milk or soymilk
1-1/4 cups shredded medium Cheddar (I like the Cabot White Cheddar)
Croutons for garnish (for Passover use toasted matza as a garnish)

Directions

In a medium pot, melt the 3 tablespoons butter over medium-high heat. Add the onions, salt, pepper, and nutmeg and cook, stirring, until soft, 3 minutes. Add the garlic and thyme cook, stirring, until fragrant, for 20 seconds. Add the flour and cook, stirring until the mixture is well blended and smells fragrant, 2 minutes. Slowly add the pareve chicken stock, whisking constantly, and bring to a boil. Reduce the heat and simmer until thickened, about 5 minutes. Add the broccoli and cook, stirring, until tender, for 10 minutes.

Remove the pot from the heat and puree with a hand-held immersion blender. (Alternatively, in batches, puree in a blender or food processor and return to the pot.)

Add the cream and bring to bare simmer to heat through. Add the cheese and cook over low heat, stirring, until melted. Add the remaining 2 tablespoons cold butter, stirring to blend.

Remove from the heat and ladle the soup into bowls. Sprinkle croutons over the top of the soup and serve immediately.

Crisp Orange-Chicken Spring Rolls

Makes 12 spring rolls

Original recipe is from Martha Stewart, adapted by GKC
2 jalapeno peppers, minced (center and seeds removed if you do not like it spicy)
6 cloves garlic, minced
4 teaspoons minced fresh ginger
2 tablespoon white cooking wine
6 tablespoons orange juice
2 tablespoon low-sodium soy sauce
1/2 pound skinless chicken breast, sliced into thin strips
1 tablespoon canola oil
1 large apple, peeled, cored, and cut into thin strips
4 green onions, green part only, cut into short, thin slivers
1 small red bell pepper, seeded and cut into thin strips
1 tablespoon seasoned rice vinegar
1-1/2 teaspoons sesame oil
12 8-inch round dried rice-paper wrappers
1 head Boston or Bibb lettuce, leaves separated and washed

For Sweet and Sour Chili Sauce:
Combine jalapeno pepper, garlic, ginger, wine, orange juice, and soy sauce in a medium bowl. Set aside. Take 2 tablespoons of sauce and toss with the chicken. Reserve the rest of sauce for dipping. Cover and marinate the chicken for 15 minutes. Drain excess liquid.

For Spring Rolls:
In a small pan, heat canola oil and sauté chicken until light brown outside and no longer pink inside, about 2 minutes. Combine apple, green onions, bell pepper, rice vinegar, and sesame oil in a medium bowl; toss to coat. Mix in cooked chicken.

Fill a medium bowl with warm water. Dip one of the wrappers in the water for 15 seconds, or until softened. Carefully transfer it to a dry work surface.

Arrange 2 to 3 tablespoons of the filling in an even horizontal mound just below the center of the wrapper. Roll up the rice paper to form a tight cylinder, folding in the sides about halfway. Assemble the remaining spring rolls the same way.

Coat the large baking sheet with cooking oil. Arrange spring rolls in a single layer, leaving a little space between them. Brush rolls with oil. Cook the rolls until lightly browned and crisp, 8 to 10 minutes, checking frequently to avoid burning. Use a spatula to turn the rolls over and continue to broil another 8 to 10 minutes. Serve each roll wrapped in lettuce leaf, with Sweet and Sour Chili Sauce.

Black Bean Caesar Salad

Easy

2 (15-ounce) cans black beans, drained
1/2 cup prepared salsa
1/2 cup red pepper, diced
¼ cup red onion, diced
½ cup cilantro, chopped
¼ cup corn niblets
1 jalapeno pepper (optional), diced, seeds and membrane removed
4 tablespoons pareve Caesar dressing (such as Mauzone or homemade)

In a large bowl toss together all the ingredients and serve.

Zucchini Kugel

5 zucchinis, cubed
1 tablespoon olive oil
2 onions, diced
1 (16 ounce) can sliced mushrooms, drained
2 tablespoons matza meal
3 eggs
2 tablespoons mayonnaise
1 tablespoon onion soup mix

Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Place zucchini in a pot with water to cover. Bring to a boil; reduce heat and simmer until soft, about 20 minutes. Drain well. Sauté onions and mushrooms in oil until soft. Mix all ingredients together and pour into 9 x 13-inch pan. Bake for about 45 minutes.

Chocolate Peanut Butter (Pareve) Cheesecake

1-1/2 cups graham cracker crumbs
½ cup margarine, melted
2 (8 ounce) tofutti cream cheese, softened
1 cup creamy peanut butter
¼ cup sugar
3 eggs
1-1/2 cups semisweet chocolate chips
2 tablespoons soy milk or nondairy creamer

Preheat oven to 300 degrees. Combine graham cracker crumbs and melted margarine and press into bottom and slightly up sides of a 9-inch spring form pan. Set aside. Beat together 1 package tofutti cream cheese with peanut butter, sugar and 1 egg. Set aside. In a saucepan or microwave, melt chocolate. Stir until smooth. Stir in remaining 8 ounces tofutti cream cheese and soy milk. Beat the eggs and stir in. Spread half the chocolate mixture in the pan. Cover with the peanut butter mixture, then remaining chocolate. Bake for 45 minutes. Cool for 15 minutes. Loosen sides and remove. Cool completely and then chill in the refrigerator for at least 4 hours.

Snickerdoodle Biscotti

½ cup margarine, softened
½ cup sugar
½ cup brown sugar
2-1/2 teaspoons baking powder
1 teaspoon cinnamon
½ teaspoon ginger
½ teaspoon nutmeg
2 eggs
1 egg yolk
1 teaspoon vanilla
3-1/4 cups flour
1 cup chopped walnuts
1 egg white
1 tablespoon water
Cinnamon-Sugar mixture

Preheat oven to 375 degrees. Cream together margarine and sugars until flurry. Add baking powder and spices. Beat in eggs, egg yolk and vanilla. On a low speed, mix in flour and nuts. Divide dough in half and shape into logs. Place on ungreased cookie sheet. Beat together egg white and water and brush atop flattened logs. Sprinkle with cinnamon-sugar. Bake for 20 to 25 minutes – until lightly browned. Cool slightly, slice and return to oven for about 10 minutes – until center is just dry. Cool on wire rack.

Easy “Oh Henry” Bars

Easy
This recipe was submitted by GKC reader, Elana Bacon. We’ve had these and they’re really good – perfect for when you want a treat but don’t want to make too much effort. Thank you Elana!

1 cup peanut butter
1 cup light corn syrup
1 cup sugar
6 cups Rice Krispies
1 cup chocolate chips

Place peanut butter, corn syrup and sugar in a double boiler (or a big glass bowl over a pot of simmering water) stirring every once in a while until smooth. Remove from heat and add the Rice Krispies. Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Smooth batter into a 9×13 pan lined with baking paper. Sprinkle the chocolate chips evenly on to and place in oven for about 5 minutes. Remove from oven and spread melted chocolate across the top of the bars. Cool in the fridge for about 5 minutes. Cut into bars. Most importantly, enjoy!

GKC variation: After adding the Rice Krispies, form mixture into balls. Melt the chocolate chips and roll the Rice Krispie mixture in the melted chocolate. Place on a baking sheet lined with waxed paper and chill. Same taste, slightly more elegant presentation.

Chocolate Biscotti

½ cup margarine, softened
1 cup sugar
2-1/2 teaspoons baking powder
2 eggs
1 egg yolk
2 tablespoons soy milk or nondairy creamer
½ cup cocoa powder
2-3/4 cups flour
½ cup semisweet chocolate chips (regular or miniature)
½ cup chopped toasted almonds (optional)
1 egg white
1 teaspoon water
2 tablespoons sugar

Preheat oven to 375 degrees. Cream together margarine and sugar. Add baking powder, eggs, yolk and creamer. Mix well. Beat in cocoa and flour. Stir in chocolate chips and nuts, if using. Divide dough in half and shape into logs. Place on lightly greased cookie sheet. Combine egg white and water and brush on top of logs. Sprinkle with sugar. Bake for about 25 minutes and cool slightly. Slice and return to oven for about 10 minutes. Cool on wire rack.

Ginger Mandelbroit

½ cup margarine, softened
¾ cup brown sugar
2 tablespoons molasses
2 eggs
2-1/4 cups flour
2 teaspoons ginger (ground)
1-1/2 teaspoons baking powder
2 tablespoons minced fresh ginger
½ cup minced crystallized ginger

Preheat oven to 325 degrees. Cream together margarine and sugar. Beat in molasses and eggs. On a low speed, add flour, ground ginger and baking powder. Mix well Stir in fresh ginger and crystallized ginger. Take a deep breath and enjoy the aroma. Divide dough in half and form into logs. Place on ungreased baking sheet and bake for about 25 minutes. Cool briefly and slice. Return to oven for 5 to 10 minutes – until inside is just dry. Col on rack.

Basic Fried Chicken

Yes, folks, this is the real thing and I know that some of you are going to yell at me about the frying. But no one is forced to make this (unless your kids tasted this at my house!) and everyone likes a little indulgence now and then. (Everything in moderation…)

3 cups flour
2 teaspoons paprika
3 eggs
1/3 cup soy milk or nondairy creamer
2 tablespoons lemon juice
1 chicken, cut in 1/8th’s
Oil for frying

Stir together flour and paprika and place on flat plate. Whisk together eggs, soy milk and lemon juice. Dredge chicken in flour and then dip in egg mixture. Place on a baking sheet and chill for 1 hour (this is the secret step!) Pour oil into a large skillet – electric or otherwise. The oil should be about 2 inches deep. Heat and add chicken when sizzling. Fry for about 10 minutes on each side – until golden brown. Reduce heat, cover and cook for an additional 20 minutes. Drain on paper towel.

Alternatively, after frying 10 minutes on each side, drain immediately on paper towels. Remove from paper towels and place in a baking pan in a preheated 350 degree oven and bake for about 20 minutes.

Apricot-Almond Mandelbroit

6 tablespoons margarine, softened
1 cup sugar
2 eggs
½ teaspoon vanilla
1-1/3 cups flour
½ teaspoon baking powder
¾ cup diced dried apricots
2/3 cup toasted slivered almonds
2/3 cup semisweet chocolate chips

Preheat oven to 375 degrees. Lightly grease 2 baking sheets. Cream together margarine and sugar. Beat in eggs and vanilla. Mix in flour and baking powder, and then remaining ingredients. Divide into four, form into flattened logs and place on the prepared sheets. Sprinkle with sugar. Bake for 20 minutes, remove from oven and cut into then pieces. Return to oven for 5 more minutes, then remove to rack to cool.

The Easiest Sweet and Sour Chicken


Easy

The chicken isn’t even breaded; that’s how easy this is!
2 tablespoons oil
2 pounds skinless, boneless chicken breasts, cut into strips or cubes
2 (18 ounce) jars sweet and sour sauce
1 (20 ounce) can pineapple chunks, drained
1 green pepper, chopped
1 onion, chopped

Heat oil in a work over high heat. Quickly sauté chicken until no longer pink, stirring and turning constantly. Add remaining ingredients and reduce heat. Simmer for 5 to 10 minutes to incorporate all flavors. Serve over white rice.

Peanut Butter Bread


Easy
For those of us who enjoy peanut butter in all its forms…Quick breads are great to have around. They freeze well and can be defrosted quickly for expected or unexpected guests.

2 cups flour
½ cup sugar
2 teaspoons baking powder
¾ cup creamy peanut butter
1 egg
1 cup soy milk or nondairy creamer

Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Stir together flour, sugar and baking powder. Cut in peanut butter with a fork until mixture is crumbly (It’s not worth getting a pastry blender dirty; forks work much better). Whisk together egg and soy milk and stir into dry ingredient just until moistened. Pour into greased 9 x 5-inch loaf pan. Bake for 1 hour. Remove from pan and cool on wire rack.

Moroccan Fish


The way your safta made it!

By Perry Dozetas

Ingredients:
1 bell pepper, chopped into small pieces
1 tomato, chopped into small pieces
1 teaspoon canola oil
3 cloves garlic, minced (or more)
1 jalapeno, chopped
5 pieces of fish, salmon or flounder
1 tablespoon fresh flat leaf parsley, chopped fine
1 teaspoon turmeric
1 teaspoon ground pepper
1 teaspoon salt
1/2 teaspoon paprika

Instructions:

Heat the canola oil over a high heat, add the chopped bell pepper, and cook for about one minute, then add the chopped tomato. Add the turmeric, paprika, salt, and pepper and mix.

Dip each piece of fish into the mixture, then flip it and leave it. Lower the flame; add enough water to cover the fish half way. Add the garlic and jalapeno pepper. Add the parsley and cover the pan.

Reduce the heat and cook for 30-40 minutes.

Maple-Mustard Chicken

Easy

Serves 6-8
8 large bone-in chicken pieces
4 tablespoons grainy French mustard
4 tablespoons Dijon mustard
2 cloves minced garlic
1 teaspoon dried marjoram
4 tablespoons maple syrup

Directions

Preheat oven to 375 degrees F.
Rinse chicken and pat dry. Combine mustard, garlic, marjoram and maple syrup in a small bowl. Spread mustard mixture evenly on top of each chicken piece, being careful to cover as much of the surface as possible to form a “crust.” Arrange chicken in a glass baking dish. Bake for 45 to 50 minutes, or until mustard mixture has formed a crust and is slightly hardened, and juices run clear when the chicken is pierced.

Marinated Tomato Salad

Serves 6 – 8

3 tablespoons chopped fresh parsley leaves
1 tablespoon sugar
1-1/2 teaspoons garlic salt
1-1/2 teaspoons seasoned salt
1/2 teaspoon ground pepper
3/4 teaspoon dried thyme
3/4 cup vegetable oil
1/2 cup red wine vinegar
2 to 3 green onions, chopped
4 to 6 large tomatoes, each cut into 6 wedges

Directions

Combine all ingredients, except tomatoes, in a large measuring cup or mixing bowl. Whisk well. Place tomatoes in a resealable plastic bag and pour marinade over. Marinate at room temperature for up to 2 hours, turning the bag occasionally.

Lay tomatoes on a platter. Drizzle marinade over the tomatoes. Sprinkle with extra parsley and serve.