Chicken Sausage Gumbo


Yet another great use for leftover chicken!!

1 pound sausage, cut into thick slices (the recipe calls for smoked sausage but I prefer the hot ones; you can even use the sweet ones, depending on your family’s taste)
2 tablespoons oil
4 tablespoons flour
1 onion, chopped
2 stalks celery, chopped
1 teaspoon minced garlic
1 green pepper, chopped
4 cups chicken broth (you can use the boxes of Imagine chicken or no-chicken broth if you don’t have any homemade)
1 (29 ounce) can diced tomatoes
1 to 2 teaspoons Creole seasoning
4 cups chopped cooked chicken

Cook sausage over high heat in a Dutch oven, stirring often, until browned. Add oil and whisk in flour. Add onion, celery, garlic and green pepper; sauté for about 5 minutes. Stir in broth, tomatoes and seasoning. Bring to a boil; reduce heat and simmer for 5 minutes. Stir in chicken and heat through. Serve over rice.

Pecan Pie

Crust:
Adapted from Martha Stewart Pies and Tarts
This is enough for two pie crusts – make one pie for now, and freeze one for later!
2-1/2 cups flour
1 teaspoon salt (I usually leave salt out when I am baking but since this was out of my league I put it in)
2 sticks unsalted margarine, cut into tablespoon-size pieces
About 1/3 cup cold water (just from the tap, no ice cubes involved)

Place flour, salt and margarine in the bowl of a food processor. Using the steel blade, pulse to combine. You should get pea-sized pieces. Add water and process VERY BRIEFLY to form one main lump, surrounded by lots of little pieces of dough. Gather it together to form a ball. Cut in half and let the dough rest a few minutes (you can start pulling together your filling ingredients) Roll out the dough between two large pieces of plastic wrap – this seems to be the secret (or at least one of them!) Keep the dough completely covered with plastic wrap so that none of it actually touches the rolling pin or the counter (or your kitchen table, as was my case). Remove the top layer of wrap and gently put the crust down in a pie pan – I used these ruffled ones that happen to be designed by the same friend!) Using extra dough hanging down, pinch the edges. Then, push your index finger in at whatever spacing you like, all the way around, to form the fluting. Voilà! Pour in filling. If you have any extra dough and you have any cookie cutters, you can top with some shapes – I like the leaves on sale now (!) at Williams-Sonoma. Get ready for the applause!

Tuscan White Bean Soup

Serves 8

INGREDIENTS
FOR THE SOUP:
1 pound dried cannellini beans
¼ cup smoked turkey, cut in small chunks
1 yellow onion, quartered lengthwise
1 celery stalk, quartered crosswise
1 carrot, quartered crosswise
2 cloves garlic, peeled and lightly crushed
1 bay leaf
1 quart chicken stock
Finely ground sea salt, preferably gray salt
2 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil

FOR THE BASIL TOPPING:
1/4 cup extra-virgin olive oil
1 tablespoon minced garlic
1/4 to 1/2 teaspoon red pepper flakes
1/4 cup lightly packed fresh basil leaves
Sea salt and freshly ground black pepper

Cook the beans: Rinse the beans, place in a saucepan, and add cold water to cover by 2 inches. Bring to a boil, cover, and remove from the heat. Let stand for about 20 minutes, then drain.

Return the beans to the saucepan along with the smoked turkey, onion, celery, carrot, garlic, and bay leaf. Pour in the chicken stock and then add water as needed to cover the beans by 2 inches. Slowly bring to a simmer over medium-low heat. (If you heat them too fast, the skins may break.) Adjust the heat to maintain a bare simmer and cook, uncovered, until the beans are almost tender, 20 minutes or longer. Add salt, to taste, and continue cooking until the beans are tender but not mushy, about 20 minutes longer. Remove from the heat and let the beans cool in the liquid.

Strain the cooled beans and other solids through a sieve, reserving the liquid. In a food processor or with a hand blender, puree the beans and solids in batches with 3 1/2 cups of the cooking liquid and 2 tablespoons olive oil.. Season, to taste, with salt and pepper, then bring to a simmer over medium heat, stirring occasionally.

Meanwhile, in a small skillet over high heat, warm the 1/4 cup olive oil. Turn on the fan above your stove. Add the garlic to the skillet and cook, stirring occasionally, until it begins to turn brown. Add the red pepper flakes and cook for a few seconds, then add the basil. Cook until basil wilts.

To serve, ladle the hot soup into warmed bowls. Top the soup with the basil mixture.

Zaatar Salmon

Easy

Serves 6
2-½ – 3 pounds salmon (I like the tail end, skin on piece)
Juice of two lemons
1 lemon sliced very thin
4 tablespoons olive oil
1 tablespoon Zaatar spice (available at most grocery stores and Persian markets)
1 teaspoon kosher salt

Rinse salmon and pat dry. Place salmon skin down on a low-sided pan, lined with foil. Preheat oven to 425 degrees. Drizzle olive oil and lemon juice over the salmon. Sprinkle the kosher salt and the Zaatar spice over the salmon. Lay the lemon slices on top of the salmon. Bake for 15 to 20 minutes.

Lemon Couscous

Easy
Submitted by my friend Yael

4 tablespoons cilantro
2 tablespoon scallions
1/2 cup craisins
½ cup dried apricots
1 cup couscous, prepared
¼ cup toasted almonds, sliced
Mix all ingredients together.

Dressing
¼ cup canola oil
3 tablespoons lemon juice
1 teaspoon lemon zest
½ teaspoon kosher salt

Whisk dressing ingredients together. Pour over the couscous. Toss well. This is best if made a day ahead of time and the flavors have a chance to blend. Serve warm or at room temperature.

Spaghetti with Red and Yellow Peppers (and Salmon too, optional)

3 large red bell peppers (or 1 cup cut in strips from a jar)
3 large yellow peppers (or 1 cup cut in strips from a jar)
¼ cup extra virgin olive oil
4 large shallots, thinly sliced
½ teaspoon salt
¼ teaspoon ground black pepper
1 cup dry white wine
2 cups pareve chicken stock or vegetable stock
1 pound spaghetti
½ cup Italian parsley, chopped
½ cup grated Parmesan cheese
2 salmon fillets, cooked and cut into chunks (optional)

To cook salmon, lightly season salmon with salt and pepper, drizzle with olive oil and cook in a 400-degree oven for 15-18 minutes.

Preheat the broiler. Cover a heavy baking sheet wit foil. Arrange the bell peppers on the baking sheet and broil until the skins brown and blister, about 20 minutes. Enclose the peppers in a resealable plastic bag and set aside until cooled to room temperature. Peel and see the cooled peppers and cut them into strips.

Heat the oil in a saucepan. Add the shallots and cook about 3 minutes. Add the pepper strips, salt and pepper and sauté for 5 minute. Add the wine and broth and cook over low heat for 20 minutes or until the peppers are very soft.

Bring a large pot of water to a boil. Salt the water and add the pasta and cook until tender about 8-10 minutes. Drain.

Add the pasta, parsley, salmon, and cheese to the pepper sauce. Stir to combine and serve.

Another Red Velvet Cake


(this one with berries)

The original recipe comes from Bon Appetit but we adapted it to make it pareve and substituted strawberries for the raspberries. I like it because it has less red coloring than other red velvet cakes and is just as gorgeous and delicious.

Serves 12

CAKE
2-1/4 cups sifted cake flour (sifted, then measured)
2 tablespoons unsweetened cocoa powder
1 teaspoon baking powder
1 teaspoon baking soda
1/2 teaspoon salt
1 cup coffee rich or soy milk
1 tablespoon red food coloring
2 tablespoons plus 1 teaspoon distilled white vinegar
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
1-1/2 cups sugar
1/2 cup (1 stick) unsalted margarine, room temperature
2 large eggs

FROSTING
2 (8-ounce) packages tofutti pareve cream cheese, room temperature
1/2 cup (1 stick) unsalted margarine, room temperature
1 tablespoon vanilla extract
2-1/2 cups powdered sugar
3-1/2-pint baskets fresh strawberries (optional)
3-1/2-pint baskets fresh blueberries (optional)

PREPARATION

FOR CAKE:
Preheat oven to 350°F. Grease and flour two 9-inch-diameter cake pans with 1 1/2-inch-high sides. Sift sifted flour, cocoa powder, baking powder, baking soda, and salt into medium bowl. Whisk coffee rich, food coloring, vinegar, and vanilla in small bowl to blend. Using electric mixer, beat sugar and margarine in large bowl until well blended. Add eggs 1 at a time, beating until well blended after each addition. Beat in dry ingredients in 4 additions alternately with coffee rich mixture in 3 additions.
Divide batter between prepared pans.
Bake cakes until tester inserted into center comes out clean, about 27 minutes. Cool in pans on racks 10 minutes. Turn cakes out onto racks; cool completely.

FOR FROSTING:
Beat pareve cream cheese and margarine in large bowl until smooth.
Beat in vanilla. Add powdered sugar and beat until smooth.
Place 1 cake layer, flat side up, on platter.
Spread 1 cup frosting over top of cake. Arrange 1 basket strawberries and 1/2 basket blueberries atop frosting, pressing lightly to adhere. Top with second cake layer, flat side down. Spread remaining frosting over top and sides of cake. Arrange remaining berries decoratively over top of cake. (Can be made 1 day ahead. Cover and refrigerate. Let stand at room temperature 1 hour before serving.)

Easy Lemon Pasta with Chicken

Easy

Serves 4
1 pound dried penne
1 cup leftover roasted chicken, or 2 chicken breasts, grilled, cut in strips
3 tablespoons olive oil
Salt and freshly ground black pepper
3 cloves garlic, sliced
1/4 teaspoon red pepper flakes
3 tablespoons roughly chopped fresh parsley, for garnish
2 lemons, juiced
1 teaspoon lemon zest

Directions
Cook the pasta in a large pot of boiling salted water, until al dente. Drain well.

Heat the oil over medium high heat in a large sauté pan. Add the garlic and red pepper flakes to a sauté pan and sauté until fragrant. Add the cooked pasta and turn heat off. Mix all together.

Remove pasta to a large bowl. Add chicken to the warm pasta and season with salt and pepper. Sprinkle in chopped parsley. Add the juice of 2 lemons and the lemon zest. Mix well and serve.

Angel Hair Pasta with Sun-Dried Tomatoes and Goat Cheese

Serves 5
1 (10 ounce) jar sun-dried tomatoes packed in oil, chopped (oil reserved)
1 small onion, chopped
4 garlic cloves, minced
¼ cup tomato paste
1 cup dry white wine
1 pound angel hair pasta
3 tablespoons chopped fresh Italian parsley
1 teaspoon salt
½ teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
3-4 ounces soft goat cheese, coarsely crumbled

Heat 3 tablespoons of the oil from the sun-dried tomatoes in a large, heavy skillet over medium heat. Add the onion and sauté until tender, about 3 minutes. Stir in the garlic and sauté until fragrant about 1 minute. Add the tomato paste and cook for 2 minutes, stirring constantly. Add the wine and chopped sun-dried tomatoes and simmer until the liquid reduces by half about 2 minutes.

Bring a large pot of water to a boil; add a generous amount of salt. Add the pasta and cook until al dente, stirring, about 4 minutes. Drain, reserving 1 cup of the cooking liquid. Add the pasta and parsley to the tomato mixture and toss to coat, adding some of the reserved pasta water to moisten. Season the pasta with sat and pepper. Mound in pasta bowls, sprinkle with the goat cheese.

Homemade Pappardelle

Recipe by epicurious.com

5 cups all purpose flour, divided
1-1/2 teaspoons salt, divided
6 large eggs, divided
6 large egg yolks, divided
6 tablespoons (or more) water, divided

Place 2-1/2 cups flour and 3/4 teaspoon salt in processor; blend 5 seconds. Whisk 3 eggs, 3 yolks, and 3 tablespoons water in bowl.

With machine running, pour egg mixture through feed tube. Blend until sticky dough forms, adding water by teaspoonfuls if dry.

Scrape dough out onto floured work surface. Knead dough until smooth and no longer sticky, sprinkling lightly with flour as needed if sticky, about 8 minutes. Shape into ball. Cover with plastic wrap and let rest 45 minutes. Repeat with remaining flour, salt, eggs, yolks, and water.

Divide each dough ball into 4 pieces. Cover dough with plastic wrap.

Set pasta machine to widest setting. Flatten 1 dough piece into 3-inch-wide rectangle. Run through machine 5 times, dusting lightly with flour if sticking. Continue to run piece through machine, adjusting to next-narrower setting after every 5 passes, until dough is about 26 inches long. Cut crosswise into 3 equal pieces. Run each piece through machine, adjusting to next-narrower setting, until strip is scant 1/16 inch thick and 14 to 16 inches long. Return machine to original setting for each piece. Arrange strips in single layer on sheets of parchment.

Repeat with remaining dough. Let strips stand until slightly dry to touch, 20 to 30 minutes. Fold strips in half so short ends meet, then fold in half again. Cut strips into 2/3-inch-wide pappardelle. DO AHEAD: Can be made 1 day ahead. Arrange pappardelle in single layer on sheets of parchment. Stack sheets in roasting pan. Cover; chill.

Cook 4 -5 minutes in boiling salted water.

Root Vegetable, Barley and Spinach Soup


We had this for dinner last week with some whole wheat challah. Yum.

2 tablespoons olive oil
1 onion, chopped
2 leeks, white part only, chopped
1 teaspoon minced garlic
2 stalks celery, chopped
4 carrots, chopped
1 bulb fennel, chopped
2 parsnip, chopped
1 cup barley
3 (32 ounce) boxes Imagine No-Chicken Broth (or a similar product)
1 teaspoon pepper
1 (8 ounce) bag spinach
1 teaspoon nutmeg

Grated parmesan or mozzarella cheese (optional)

In a large stockpot, heat the oil. Add the onion, leeks and garlic and cook until slightly softened. Add the celery, carrots, fennel and parsnip and sauté for 2 more minutes. Add barley and pareve chicken broth and bring to a boil. Reduce heat, sprinkle in pepper and simmer for about 45 minutes. Add spinach and nutmeg and cook for an additional 5 minutes. Pass the cheese, if desired.

Chicken with Pears and Fennel

credit: spinachtiger.com

Just can’t hold back my love of fennel!

2 bulbs fennel, thinly sliced
2 tablespoons oil
1-1/2 pounds strips of skinless, boneless, chicken breast
1-1/2 cups apple juice
2 teaspoons five-spice powder (just use pepper if you don’t have any but this gives a more interesting flavor)
½ cup apple juice
2 tablespoons cornstarch
¼ cup white wine vinegar
4 pears, sliced

Heat oil in a large skillet over medium-high heat. Add chicken and sauté until inside is not longer pink – about 6 minutes. Gently stir in fennel, 1-1/2 cups apple juice and the five-spice powder. Simmer, covered, for about 5 minutes. Stir together the remaining ½ cup apple juice with the cornstarch and add to pan. Stir until thickened. Whisk in vinegar and then add pear slices. Cook until heated through – about 3 minutes.

Chewy Granola Bars


You can never have enough recipes of enough food for after-school snacks

1 cup brown sugar
2/3 cup peanut butter
½ cup corn syrup
½ cup margarine, melted
2 teaspoons vanilla
3 cups quick-cooking oats
½ cup coconut
½ cup sunflower seeds
½ cup raisins
2 tablespoons sesame seeds
1 cup semisweet chocolate chips (everyone needs a little treat after school!)

Preheat oven to 350 degrees. In a large bowl, combine brown sugar, peanut butter, corn syrup, melted margarine and vanilla until well blended. Stir in remaining ingredients. Press evenly into greased 9 x 13-inch pan. Bake for 15 to 20 minutes. Cool and cut into bars. Good for lunches also…

Vietnamese Chicken Soup

credit: mediterrasian.com

Easy
This not only uses up leftover soup and leftover chicken; it tastes great.

2 tablespoons oil
4 carrots, thinly sliced
2 stalks celery, thinly sliced
2 teaspoons minced garlic
12 cups chicken broth
4 ounces rice noodles or vermicelli
3 cups cubed cooked chicken
2 scallions, thinly sliced
¼ cup hoisin sauce
¼ cup sesame sauce
½ teaspoon hot pepper sauce

Heat oil in a large stockpot over medium-high heat. Add carrots, celery and garlic and sauté for about 5 minutes. Add broth and bring to a boil. Add rice noodles or vermicelli and return to a boil. Cook, uncovered, until noodles are ready. Stir in remaining ingredients and heat through.

Chicken Dumplings in Green Onion and Shitake Broth


Serves 8

Although you can make smaller dumplings, I make large ones for this soup and they look very dramatic in the bowl.
3 quarts reduced-sodium chicken broth
3 tablespoons soy sauce
2 pounds ground chicken (or a combination of turkey and chicken or chicken and meat)
4 green onions, thinly sliced, tops and bottoms divided
4 garlic cloves, chopped
4 teaspoons toasted sesame oil, divided
2 teaspoons minced fresh ginger
2 teaspoons chili sauce
1 teaspoon salt
1/2 teaspoon pepper
8 square egg roll wrappers (6 in. wide)
8 fresh shiitake mushrooms, thinly sliced

Directions
1. Combine broth and soy sauce in a medium saucepan and bring to a boil. Reduce heat to barely a simmer.

2. Mix chicken (or other meat combination), onion bottoms, garlic, 2 teaspoons sesame oil, the ginger, chili sauce, salt, and pepper in a bowl. Arrange egg roll wrappers on a work surface. Shape chicken filling into 8 balls and put 1 ball on the center of each wrapper. Moisten wrapper edges with water and pull up all 4 corners of each wrapper to meet in the center. Working from center down, pinch edges together to seal tightly, forming 4-sided pyramids.

3. Lower dumplings gently into broth, cover, and simmer until cooked through, about 8 minutes. In last 2 minutes of cooking, add shiitakes. Spoon each dumpling into a bowl and ladle broth on top. Sprinkle with onion tops and remaining 1 tsp. sesame oil.

Southwest Rice and Corn Salad with Lemon Dressing

Serves 8
1 cup long-grain white rice
1/4 cup fresh lemon juice
4 tablespoons olive oil, divided
1-1/2 cups fresh corn kernels (cut from 2 ears) or frozen corn kernels, thawed
1 cup chopped fresh poblano chiles or green bell pepper
1 cup diced seeded yellow bell pepper
1 cup 1/2-inch cubes yellow zucchini
1 avocado, halved, peeled, diced
1/2 cup thinly sliced green onions
1/2 cup chopped fresh cilantro

PREPARATION
Cook rice until just tender, 12 to 15 minutes. Drain and rinse in cold water. Drain again.
Meanwhile, whisk lemon juice and 3 tablespoons oil in small bowl. Season dressing to taste with salt and pepper.

Heat 1 tablespoon oil in large nonstick skillet over medium heat. Add corn, poblanos, yellow bell pepper, and zucchini. Sprinkle with salt and pepper. Sauté until vegetables are just tender, 6 to 7 minutes; scrape into large bowl. Add rice, avocado, green onions, cilantro, and dressing; toss to coat. Season with salt and pepper.

Mexican Brisket

Featured in Meals in Minutes, By Jamie Geller

To see other great recipes from Jamie, go to www.blog.kosher.com

Serves 6
2 tablespoons packed dark brown sugar
1 tablespoon kosher salt
2 tablespoons mustard powder
1 tablespoon garlic powder
1 tablespoon ground cumin
1 tablespoon ground coriander
1 teaspoon ancho chili powder
1 (2-½) pound beef brisket
2 tablespoons canola oil
1 cup beef broth

Preheat oven to 375 degrees.
In a small bowl, whisk together brown sugar, salt, dry mustard, garlic powder, cumin, coriander and chili powder. Rub the spice mixture all over the meat.
Heat the oil in an ovenproof heavy-bottomed pan. Over high heat, brown brisket for 4 to 5 minutes on each side.
When the meat is brown, add broth, cover and place in oven for 1 hour and 20 minutes.

Gluten Free Fudgy Brownies

Adapted by GKC, original recipe by glutenfreegoddess.blogspot.com

I am not a gluten free specialist but tried these with both gluten free guests along with others who are not gluten sensitive. All raved about them.

Makes 9 – 12 brownies

Dark Chocolate Brownies

5 ounces dark chocolate (use a high quality chocolate that has 70% cocoa like Scharffen Berger)
1/2 cup margarine
2 eggs
1 cup packed light brown sugar
1/2 rounded cup almonds, processed into a fine meal, or 1/4 ground almonds
1/4 cup rice flour (original recipe calls for brown rice flour)
1/2 teaspoon fine sea salt
1/4 teaspoon baking soda
2 teaspoons vanilla extract

Optional:
1/2 cup chopped pecans or walnuts, if desired
1/2 cup extra semi-sweet chocolate chips for the top (I recommend this)

Preheat the oven to 350 degrees F. Line an 8×8-inch square baking pan with foil and lightly oil the bottom.

Using the microwave, melt the dark chocolate and margarine in a large (microwave safe) measuring cup. Stir together to combine. Set aside.

In a mixing bowl, beat the eggs on medium high till frothy. Add the brown sugar and beat until the mixture is smooth. Add the melted chocolate mixture into the egg-sugar mixture a little at a time – incorporate it slowly- and beat well for a minute. The chocolate will look smooth and glossy.

In a bowl, combine the dry ingredients: almond meal, rice flour, fine sea salt and baking soda; whisk together. Add the dry flour mix into the chocolate mixture and beat well for a minute. Add the vanilla, beat another half a minute or so. If adding nuts, stir in the nuts by hand and spread the batter into the prepared baking pan [this brownie batter is much thinner than any brownie batter, don’t worry]. Shake the pan a little bit to even out the batter.

Layer the semi-sweet chips all over the top of the batter and press them in slightly, if adding. Bake in the center of a preheated 350 degree F oven for 33 to 35 minutes, or until the brownies are set. Don’t overcook. (The Gluten free Goddess recommends to err on the side of gooey. Gluten-free brownies taste better slightly undercooked and soft in the middle than over-cooked and crumbly.)

Cool on a wire rack; and remove the brownies from the pan by gripping the foil edges. Chill before cutting. These brownies were outstanding slightly chilled.

Spinach and Smoked Salmon Salad

1 pound fresh spinach
½ cup toasted pecan pieces (not candied)
½ pound smoked salmon, torn into small pieces
½ red pepper, thinly sliced
½ yellow pepper, thinly sliced

Dressing:
2/3 cup olive oil
¼ cup red wine vinegar
2 tablespoons balsamic vinegar (if you don’t have, just use all red wine vinegar)
2 tablespoons orange juice
1 teaspoon dill
Salt and pepper to taste

Combine all salad ingredients in a large bowl. Using a hand blender (or just shaking well), mix together dressing ingredients until emulsified. Toss with salad.

Peanut Butter Brownies

There are many variations on this theme; this is one of the best (and easiest!)

1 (19.9 ounce) package chewy fudge brownie mix
3 ounces tofutti cream cheese
1 cup creamy peanut butter
2 tablespoons soy milk or nondairy creamer
1 egg yolk
1 (16 ounce) can chocolate frosting
Chopped peanuts for garnish (optional)

Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Prepare brownie mix according to package directions. Grease the bottom only of a 9 x 13-inch pan and spread batter in pan. Beat together the tofutti cream cheese, ½ cup peanut butter, soy milk and egg yolk. Carefully spread over batter. Bake for ½ hour. Cool on wire rack for 1 hour. Stir together frosting and remaining ½ cup peanut butter. Spread over cooled brownies. Sprinkle with chopped peanuts if desired.

Apple Cranberry Wild Rice

I always get so excited when I see that a new or unique product is kosher. I can’t resist bringing it home. But then it frequently sits on my shelf – and sits and sits. So I was very glad to find this recipe that uses the Apple Cinnamon jelly I “had to have”. This is a nice side dish for your Chanukah brisket.

2 boxes long grain and wild rice
3 cups water
½ cup dried cranberries
1 cup Apple Cinnamon jelly
½ cup sliced almonds (optional)

Combine rice, season packet and water in a saucepan. Bring to a boil; reduce heat and simmer, covered, for 5 minutes. Remove from heat. Stir in jelly and cranberries and let stand until absorbed – 5 to 10 minutes. Garnish with sliced almonds if desired.