Monthly Archives: August 2012

Shabbat Recipe Roundup: Labor Day Edition!

Its finally here, the last Shabbat of the Summer season and Labor Day weekend. Time to fire up the grill and pour yourself a fruity cocktail to enjoy one last time until next year. Make a toast to end of Summer with my recipe for Strawberry Lemonade Martinis.

I love asparagus – grilled, roasted, blanched, sprinkled with feta…but I had never seen a recipe quite like this one for Smoky Glazed Asparagus. This seems like an ideal side dish for a BBQ themed Shabbat dinner.

Barbecued chicken and ribs – can you imagine a more decadent way to finish off this summer!? Try this Asian inspired BBQ’d Sesame Chicken from The Food Yenta, and why not also serve some Asian Style Short Ribs, recipe from The Kosher Foodies.

Two meats – why not two desserts too! Pina Coladas aren’t just for fruity drinks, they are also for dessert with these Pina Colada Popsicles from Couldn’t Be Pareve. Take advantage of the bounty of fresh fruit and whip up David Lebovitz’s recipe for Angel Food Cake to serve alongside – cut up some fresh berries and peaches, sprinkle with 1 tsp of sugar and the juice from half a lemon squeezed on top.

Happy cooking, Shabbat Shalom and Happy Labor Day Weekend everyone!

 

Posted on August 30, 2012

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Strawberry Lemonade Martini

Yield:
2 servings


Fresh strawberries. Lemonade. And vodka. What better way to enjoy the end of summer than with a refreshing combinations of these seasonal flavors.

Prefer to make it a mocktail? Just leave out the alcohol! You can even try to make your own lemonade from scratch!

strawberry lemonade martini

Strawberry Lemonade Martini

Posted on August 28, 2012

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Desperately Seeking Chocolate Chips

As you may recall, this Spring Trader Joes’ semi-sweet chocolate chips went from certified Kosher pareve to certified Kosher dairy. And people went nuts. It was Duncan Hines and Stella D’oro all over again but maybe even worse. The Wall Street Journal reported that people stocked up 40, 50 and 90 bags of the coveted chocolate chips at a time. And who can blame them – at $2.29  per bag they were the best bargain around.

Dani Klein from YeahThatsKosher explained that the real problem is that some dairy chocolate chips could be mixed into the bag, so the OK could not guarantee that a bag of the sweet chips would be entirely dairy-free.

Well, so long Trader Joe’s pareve chocolate chips, at least for the foreseeable future. But what now? Personally I am opposed to spending the exorbitant prices that most kosher markets charge for simple items like pareve chocolate chips. And as an avid baker, I need to keep a stock of the staple like any other TJs chocolate chip junkie and can’t afford to be spending $4 or more for a 12 ounce bag.

So where to get the goods at a decent price?

A number of large supermarket chains carry their own certified Kosher pareve chocolate chips, for very reasonable prices. For example, you can buy a 24 ounce Shop Rite brand of chocolate chips for $5.49 and I’ve even seen it on sale for less periodically.

Stop and Shop carries their own brand of pareve chocolate chips as well.

And this past weekend at a Target store I came across Enjoy Life Food’s Chocolate Chips which are dairy free and certified Kosher by the cRc. At $3.29 per bag they are not quite as cheap as the Trader Joe’s variety, but I would wager still less than most specialty kosher markets.

Know of some good pareve chocolate chips at competitive prices? Let us know!

Posted on August 27, 2012

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Shabbat Recipe Roundup

Summer is certainly a season of jamming. But how about a savory jam? Try serving this Eggplant Jam alongside your challah this week to start off your Shabbat meal.

Not only do I love salads with beets, but I also love updated versions of traditional Jewish dishes such as this Borscht Salad featured this week on Jewcy. Serving with a meat meal? Just leave off the optional feta cheese.

I love making roasted potatoes for Shabbat dinner each week, but I get bored of the same old potatoes if I don’t change up my recipe now and then. That’s why I got excited when I came across this recipe for Fried Smashed Potatoes with Lemons from Giada De Laurentis.

When the sun is shining and the weather is still nice, the last thing you want to do is spend all day preparing  a main dish. This recipe for Herb Marinated Grilled Chicken from The Overtime Cook is a simple and fast way to serve up Shabbat dinner without spending all day in the kitchen. Want to pump up the flavor? Make sure to marinate the chicken overnight.

I am all about the decadent desserts, especially when chocolate is involved. But sometimes you just need a light and sweet finish to your meal such as this Melon Carpaccio with Lime.

Happy cooking and Shabbat Shalom!

 

Posted on August 23, 2012

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Last Chance for Summer Grilling

I can hardly believe the end of August is upon us. The days have started to cool slightly, and the High Holidays are nearly here! But before we jump into Fall and holiday menu planning, we still have two more weekends left including Labor Day. And nothing says summer is still here like some grilling.

But by the end of the summer I am done done done with hamburgers and hot dogs. So what to grill?I think the question is more appropriately – what shouldn’t you try on the grill!?

Upgrade your hot dogs and hamburgers

I LOVE hot dogs. But after awhile I do need to change things up and grilled sausages with onions and peppers is a great way to do it. And if you find yourself in Los Angeles you must try some Jeff’s Gourmet Sausages. You can also try Jack’s Gourmet kosher sausages or if you’re in NYC try the homemade sausages at Prime Butcher & Bakery.

Instead of grilled chicken breasts try some grilled chicken wings or even these Cherry BBQ Chicken Drumsticks.

In the mood for a burger but willing to trade in the beef? You can always swap out your favorite beef burger for ground lamb, chicken or turkey. Or you could even throw out the meat all together and opt instead for fish like these Spicy Tuna Burgers from The Kosher Foodies.

Grill up some fruits and veggies

There’s nothing bad about some simple corn on the cob grilled and sprinkled with salt.  But like the hot dog, you might be dreading another tired bite. Try instead my husband’s recipe for Grilled Corn and Avocado Salad.

I also love this super simple recipe for Grilled Zucchini with Cumin.

And even though I’ve written about it before, I can’t get enough of anything with grilled peaches during the summer. If you’ve never tried a sweet and savory homemade salsa, you must try The Food Yenta’s Grilled Peach Salsa.

Make your own BBQ sauce

I never loved BBQ sauce until I made my own. And once you make your own you’re going to keep coming up with things to put it on – chicken, brisket sandwiches and maybe even hamburgers! I opt for recipes that use ketchup, brown sugar and something for a little kick – like this recipe that uses chipotle peppers from Ree Drummond.

Posted on August 22, 2012

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Farm Stand Fresh Recipes

Yield:
4 servings


Grilled Peaches With Mascarpone and Yogurt
If you’re anything like me then you probably find yourself perusing the farmer’s markets each weekend during the summer to enjoy the bounty of colorful produce – fresh tomatoes in every color, shape and size; green and yellow squash and juicy peaches. I love picking out new items each week depending on what looks fresh. But sometimes I run out of ideas of what to do!

I’ve put together some of my favorite simple recipes you can try to use up your end-of-summer farmer’s market finds.

Last summer I made this recipe for Blackberry Buttermilk Cake and I could not stop making it! The buttermilk makes for a flavorful and moist cake, and the fresh berries add a great tang! I’ve also made this cake with raspberries and blueberries and it came out just as good. At Rosh Hoshanah I even made the cake with apples on top – so experiment away!

My in-laws’ garden this year is overgrown with sweet cherry tomatoes – but how many tomato salads can you eat!? I love this recipe for Broken Lasagna with Zucchini Tomato Sauce to use up some of those garden fresh tomatoes and squash.

This past weekend we picked out some cucumbers for a salad with some fresh-from-the-garden basil. To make a simple cucumber-basil salad: slice the cucumbers into rounds and chop the basil. Make a simple dressing made with 1/4 cup white vinegar, 1 Tbsp sugar, salt and pepper to taste. Drizzle the cucumbers with the dressing and basil and serve!

And for the simplest farm fresh dessert with peaches – try my grilled peaches with mascarpone and yogurt.

Grilled Peaches with Mascarpone and Yogurt

Posted on August 20, 2012

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Kosher Fried Chicken

Yield:
4 servings


If you are a health nut or adverse to things fried, then just skip right over this post because there is nothing healthy or healthful about this recipe. But it is delicious!

I am a born and bred New Yorker, but there is a large part of me that wishes I was a true Southern gal. I love country music and I especially love Southern food. But whats a kosher gal to do when it comes to fried chicken!? In order to come up with an authentic fried chicken recipe that I could also adapt to be kosher, I did my homework and interviewed lots of real Southern gals over the years to find out their secrets to good fried chicken.kosher-fried-chicken

It seems that what the matzo ball is to Jewish women, fried chicken is to many Southern women: everyone has their own “perfect way” to do it. Some ladies shared that you must use a cast iron skillet. Others preferred an egg dip instead of soaking in buttermilk. Even though I am not really Southern, I think the key to a quality kosher fried chicken is the multiple phases of seasoning and using a deep fryer. I like using this Calphalon Deep Fryer but if you don’t have a deep fryer you can also use a large, deep pot.

Kosher Fried Chicken

Posted on August 17, 2012

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Shabbat Recipe Roundup

I’ve never made water challah myself, but I’ve heard from friends and foodies alike how good it is – even without eggs! That’s why I got excited when I saw this scrumptious looking recipe for Water Challah with Cinnamon Streusel from Classically Kosher.

Another great recipe that caught my eye this week is for Potatoes, Corn and Avocado with Horseradish Dressing. What a great summer side dish – and no dairy necessary!

I can’t get enough of sweet summer zucchini grilled and dressed simply with olive oil and salt. But if you’re looking for a side dish that takes the summer squash up a notch you might like this Couscous Salad with Zucchini and Roasted Almonds.

When I can’t figure out what main dish to make I usually turn to my tried-and-true Best Roast Chicken with citrus and fresh herbs. It always comes out juicy, flavorful and with just the right amount of crispy skin to munch on.

And what better way to end a summery Shabbat meal than with an Israeli inspired Frozen Limonana from The Shiksa. I can’t wait to try this!

Happy cooking and Shabbat Shalom!

 

Posted on August 16, 2012

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The Power of Pita

They say that math is an international language since its the same no matter where you come from; but I say that food is truly the ultimate language that brings people together. And such is the story of two chefs from Jerusalem: Yotam Ottolenghi, an Israeli and Sami Tamimi, a Palestinian. After meeting in London in 1990 they struck up a friendship and later a partnership in their London restaurant and deli Ottolenghi. Next month their first cookbook together, Jerusalem, will be released. Food and Wine has the full story in this month’s issue which is fascinating but I especially loved this quote about the project:

Jerusalem, a cookbook that is a postcard from and a love letter to their childhood home, its history and its many-layered culinary traditions. It is as much a call to peace as it is a celebration of cuisine, arguing that food could be a way to bring a measure of understanding to a city riven by mistrust and fear. “It takes a giant leap of faith, but we are happy to take it—what have we got to lose?—to imagine that hummus will eventually bring Jerusalemites together, if nothing else will,” the duo write.

Can’t wait for the cookbook? Try their recipe for Stuffed Eggplant with Lamb and Pine Nuts. And if you’re feeling inspired by the flavors of Jerusalem and the power of pita, you can always try making your own pita and hummus at home.

 

 

 

 

Posted on August 14, 2012

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Shabbat Recipe Roundup

I can always count on The Challah Blog to come up with a new and exciting way to serve challah. Making a sourdough starter may seem daunting, but its not as hard as it sounds and its a great tool to have in your culinary belt. Try some Rustic Sourdough Challah for a fun twist this week!

My dad loves making broccoli rabe sauteed with garlic and olive oil, but sometimes you need to change up that same old recipe with a something new, like this Tomato and Broccoli Rabe Salad which is also perfect to use up some of those summer tomatoes.

Panzanella salad is a classic Italian salad made from day old bread and fresh veggies, and its a perfect cool side dish for hot summer days. And while we’re twisting things up this week, why not try What Jew Wanna Eat’s version of the classic dish with her Israeli Panzanella Salad.

Chicken legs are a super way to make a cheap meal – but I don’t often see good recipes just for just the chicken legs. Which is why I was delighted to find this Fennel Garlic Chicken Legs recipe, which is tasty, easy and affordable.

And last but not least is a simple sorbet recipe. But instead of something fruity, try David Lebovitz’s Chocolate Sorbet to finish off your Shabbat dinner.

Shabbat Shalom and happy cooking!

Posted on August 9, 2012

Note: The opinions expressed here are the personal views of the author. All comments on MyJewishLearning are moderated. Any comment that is offensive or inappropriate will be removed. Privacy Policy