I have a President’s Conference to blog about, and a meeting with the most fantastic Rita.

But while I finish churning those posts, albeit far too late, enjoy the following amazing recipe. It comes directly from Joy of Kosher / Bitayavon Magazine, which is definitely worth buying!

Please follow @joyofkosher on twitter if you use it and you enjoy the recipe!

“Classic Chocolate Sandwich Cookie with Vanilla Filling”, courtesy of Joy of Kosher Magazine. Please do me a favor and like their Facebook page or send Jamie Geller a shout-out on twitter .
Makes 3 dozen cookies – unless you use a big glass to cut them, like I did. Then you might want to double the recipe, like I did.

Chocolate Cookie
1 c. unsalted margarine, room temp.
1 c. granulated sugar
1 egg
1 tsp. pure vanilla extract
1 c. all purpose flour
3/4 c. cocoa powder
1 tsp. baking powder
1/4 tsp. baking soda
1/2 tsp. salt
They might not look as gorgeous as Jamie’s photographs in her magazine and web site, but they looked good enough for us and taste great. 

Vanilla Filling
1/4 c. unsalted marg, room temp.
1/4 c. veg. shortening (I just used 1/2 of marg. and skipped shortening)
1 tsp. pure vanilla extract
2 c. confectioners’ sugar

1. Begin by preparing the cookies. Combine the margarine and sugar in a large mixing bowl and beat on med. speed until light and fluffy, around 2 min.s Add the egg & vanilla and beat until well incorporated.

2. In a separate bowl, whisk together the flour, cocoa powder, baking powder, baking soda and salt. Gradually add the dry mixture to the creamed margarine mixture, beating on low speed. Continue to mix until the dry ingredients are just incorporated.
3. Divide the dough in half, wrap in plastic wrap and refrigerate for 1 hour. (in our case overnight.)
4. Preheat the oven to 350. Line a baking sheet with parchment paper and set aside
5. Take one portion of dough out of the refrigerator and place on a lightly floured surface. Roll the dough to 1/8 inch thickness and cut out the cookies using a round cookie cutter (app. 2 inches in diameter).
6. Transfer the cookies to the prepared baking sheet and bake in the preheated oven for 12 minutes.
7. Transfer the cookies to a wire rack to cool completely.
8. While the cookies are cooling, prepare the filling. Combine the margarine, veg. shortening and vanilla extract in a large mixing bowl. Gradually add the confectioners’ sugar until the filling comes together.
9. Transfer the filling to a piping bag or plastic sandwich bag with a corner cut off. Once the cookies have cooled, pipe the filling onto half of the cookies and top with the remaining cookies.
**I spread it with a knife and it worked just great.

Passover Granola

March 19th, 2013

I am posting this again, because it is still my favorite and I have been receiving requests. More Pesach posting to come!

This is my favorite Pesach recipe. I got it from “Stove Tops Personal Chef Service” several years ago when speaking about Pesach at a local Hadassah meeting.

I have talked about the Pesach granola so much that everyone is tired of hearing about it. But it is easy to make, yummy to eat and with yogurt is a million times better than pesach cereal for breakfast.

You can substitute or omit most of the ingredients. I recommend mixing it right in the pan you bake it in. My hope is I am giving you enough time to buy the ingredients.

If you make it, PLEASE post a comment.

Ingredients:
4 c. matzo farfal, or broken up pieces of matzo
1 c. slivered almonds
1 c. dried raisins/cranberries
1 1/2 c. sweetened, shredded coconut
2 tsps cinnamon
2/3 c. veg. oil
1 c. honey
2 tsps Kosher salt

Preheat oven to 350 degrees

Toss the matzo, almonds, fruit, coconut and cinnamon together in a large bowl ( I do it in an aluminum pan I am baking in). Pour the oil and honey over the mixture. Stir until the mixture is thoroughly coated. Add the Kosher salt and toss.

Spray pan with non-stick spray ( usually don’t do this step.) Pour mixture onto the sheet pan. Bake, stirring occasionally with a spatula, until the mixture turns a nice, even, golden brown, about 25-30 minutes.

Remove the granola and cool on the sheet pan. Stir occasionally as it cools. Store the granola in an airtight container.

Variations: you can add chocolate chips when cool, add more dried fruit, change or add more nuts.

 

Seven Stones

Please visit next week as I host the Haveil Havalim Blog Carnival (and “celebrate” turning 40!).

This week I want to leave you with my FAVORITE Pesach recipe… so you can join me in hording the ingredients that run out at the store.

As much as Purim is not my favorite time of year... Pesach is. I love freshening up the house, the arrival of spring, the intensity and seder (order) of the holiday.

When I start to think about Pesach, I start to think about granola. Pesach granola. I love to make it, I love to serve it, and I especially love to eat it.

My recipe is based on the one from “Stove Tops Personal Chef Service” in NJ.  Several years ago I was asked to speak about Pesach at a local Hadassah meeting, and this was the gem I walked away with.

It is easy to make, yummy to eat and with yogurt is a million times better than pesach cereal for breakfast.

You can substitute or omit  ingredients. I recommend mixing it right in the pan you bake it in. My hope is I am giving you enough time to buy the ingredients.

PESACH GRANOLA

Ingredients:
4 c. matzo farfal, or broken up pieces of matzo
1 c. slivered almonds
1 c. dried raisins/cranberries
1 1/2 c. sweetened, shredded coconut (the stores run out of this one.) 
2 tsps cinnamon
2/3 c. veg. oil
1 c. honey
2 tsps Kosher salt

Preheat oven to 350 degrees.

Toss the matzo, almonds, fruit, coconut and cinnamon together in a large bowl ( I do it in an aluminum pan I am baking in). Pour the oil and honey over the mixture. Stir until the mixture is thoroughly coated. Add the Kosher salt and toss.

Spray pan with non-stick spray ( usually don’t do this step.) Pour mixture onto the sheet pan. Bake, stirring occasionally with a spatula, until the mixture turns a nice, even, golden brown, about 25-30 minutes.

Remove the granola and cool on the sheet pan. Stir occasionally as it cools. Store the granola in an airtight container.

Variations: you can add chocolate chips when cool, add more dried fruit, change or add more nuts. 

I try to make a variety of batches, but we always run out. I don’t like Pesach cakes, candies or cookies, so this becomes my treat for the week.

If you make it, PLEASE post a comment. Happy Pesach prepping! 

This year, I have been making Challah Hamentaschen rolls instead of cookies. I just end up with more hamentaschen than I want to look at, and decided I had to do something different. Since I had been working with bread dough for hamentaschen anyway, I decided to try something similar on pizza night, and it was really easy and fun… it would make a great kids’ option for a dairy seudah.

The secret to the success is the dough. I have a great pizza dough recipe, adapted from one on the web many years ago. This is a great dough to use for hamentaschen, but it is also a fast and easy dinner solution throughout the year. (Not that you ever need that…)

 

 

Pizza dough – for a family of 9 I double this: 

Take 2 cups of warm water, and combine with

4 tablespoons of sugar (or honey) and 

4 tablespoons of yeast

let sit… perhaps near your oven preheating to 425 degrees…. 

Combine in another bowl

3 1/2 cups of flour

2 teaspoons of salt

1/2 cup of oil

(at this point, if you want to get fancy, you can add some yummy herbs into your dry mixture too. )

If you are like me, by the time the kids have helped with the dry ingredients and the phone has rung once or twice, it has been about 10 minutes for the yeast to rise. But you can let it sit or not, depends on your taste and preference – and how “last minute” the last minute dinner solution is.

Combine the wet and dry ingredients, and knead until a wonderful pizza dough consistency. [ If you choose to use whole wheat flour, you may have to add some more warm water. ]

You can shape into pizzas or hamentaschen right away. Spray your baking pan with lightly before putting on the pizza dough.

If you are making hamentaschen, make sure the dough circles are very spread out and relatively thin. Since you are folding them up and the dough rises, it ends up being a lot of dough. Add a dollop of sauce and some shredded cheese and whatever toppings gladden your Adar and bake at 425 for about 15 minutes! Enjoy!

If you make them, I would love it if you let me know.

 

 

 

 

 

As if it didn’t happen?

April 24th, 2011

If any of you haven’t completely given up on me  yet and are reading this, then it will be most likely after Pesach has come and gone… without a single blog post from me. Not an essay, not a recipe. And I even came up with a brand new one of my own today for stuffed mushrooms that is SO good…but I suppose it will have to wait to be posted until next year.

What can I say? I decided that being relaxed, organized and happy this Pesach was going to be my priority this year. I am happy to say that I have succeeded for the most part, and I will post about my lessons learned and successes after the holiday. But the only way this happened was to allow something to go overboard, and one was blog posting. I apologize.

I am quite sure there is a direct correlation; I have lost my patience with the kids twice in the five minutes I have scrambled to write and type even this. How pathetic to lose my winning streak in the home stretch of the game.

I truly hope that once we are back to a school routine, I will find a better balance.

In the meantime, please send me your favorite experience from this whole Pesach, as I would like to use them in a future post.

What is the moment YOU want to hold on to?

Whatchagot Soup

December 29th, 2010

Robert Urich and Avery Brooks in "Spenser for Hire"

Robert Parker used to write a detective series about Spenser, a private investigator. (The series was turned into a TV show in the80′s.)  Spencer was a real tough guy, but he also loved to cook. His specialty was taking the random ingredients in his fridge and turning them into something impressive and delicious. When I read the books all those  many years ago I dreamed of being that kind of cook.

A week and a half ago I got a whopper of a cold. It took me a long time to feel better, and it reached a point where all I wanted to eat for days was soup. 

I used to love making interesting soups. I cooked them for me and my husband all the time before I had all of these kids. They only like chicken soup. So lame.

Soups are the best if you aspire to cook like Spencer, using up what you have in the house. During my spate of illness, I did come up with one soup that was really good. Even with my smell and therefore taste compromised, it was good and my husband agrees.

A couple of years ago I started taking the stems of broccoli and trimming, cleaning and freezing them. I then use them in soups, saving the money, the food and the nutrients. Sometimes I have to shave the trunk a little if it is particularly thick, but they can be used to make a delicious cream of broccoli soup if you save up enough of them.

In this case, I used them in my most recent successful “watchagot” soup:

One large onion

4 broccoli stems, defrosted in the microwave, and chopped

2 stalks of celery, chopped

minced garlic

a handful of sweet mini peppers that had to get used up, seeded and chopped

1 can of diced tomatoes

1 tsp. marjoram

1 tsp. sage

1 tsp. basil

1 tsp. oregano

salt and pepper to taste

Sautee the onions in a tiny amount of olive oil, as they approach clear, add the minced garlic, and the celery. Heat on med. until soft. Add the can of tomatoes, fill the can with water and add. Add the seasoning. Bring to a boil, then simmer for a while – until you finish your phone call, change that diaper, answer those two urgent emails, or whatever.

Use a hand blender, mixing everything well until you get desired consistency. Simmer for a while longer; a half hour or until you just can’t wait anymore, and then enjoy.

If you don’t have a hand blender, you should get one. If you need enough recipes to justify the purchase, email me  and I will load you up. I couldn’t live without mine; I have two, a dairy and a meat one.

If you have any great “whatchagot” recipes, please post them!

Send yourself an email.

April 6th, 2010

We are in the middle of changing the house back after Pesach. I am actually not procrastinating by blogging, but rather making good use of a break forced upon me to nurse the baby to sleep.

I still want to write an email about our sedarim. Lack of Hol Hamoed combined with all of the strep throat in our house has made it tough for me to write.

Every year, around this time, I have developed the habit of sending myself an email. If I write myself notes for next year, I will lose them.

I can send it to myself, or save it as a draft. I have a  list of the recipes that worked, the number of boxes of matzah we needed (4 more than last year,) and what spices and other things I am packing away for next year, vs. what I have to buy.

This is more or less what mine looks like this year:

Only spice needed to buy is paprika. Saved the rest. Have dill. Two sippy cups left, and no bottles.

Don’t buy coffee filters; they are w/ the coffee m aker.

Do buy saran wrap.

steam bags are in with pareve stuff.

Handle on “nice” negelwasser broke off.

New tablecloth liner for the dining room – keeping it for all year round.

New dish towels, and new fridge liners; shelf liner as well.

One roll of white duct tape.

No pesach plata anymore.

Mashed potato kugel worked well, and choc. chip cookie recipe from imamother.com – try to cut and paste into here.

I have plastic fancy plates and cutlery for both seders for 2011.

Need a matzah cover (mom? )

Need fleishig tupperware, at least a couple.

Use timers in the house, that worked.

20 boxes of matzah, at least 4 batches of granola, and 3 cream cheeses were enough. Salami, and kobanos.

P

esadich mousse cake was good, kids liked the sorbet cups.

Stuffed mushrooms with CAKE MEAL

20 pounds of potatoes and 9 dozen eggs.

mashed potatoes, often. Liked the most.

Chicken legs doable, instead of 8 piece cut up.

Fire poppers: bake schnitzel with matzo meal breading. cut into pieces. Mix half a bottle of ketchup w/duck sauce and chili pepper flakes and brown sugar. Bring to boil, then pour over chicken and bake. (Mindy’s recipe).

___

Have you sent yourself an email yet?

Hope it was a great holiday for you. (It was for us.)