Author Archives: Amy Kritzer

Amy Kritzer

About Amy Kritzer

Amy Kritzer is a food writer and recipe developer in Austin, TX who enjoys cooking, theme parties and cowboys. She challenges herself to put a spin on her Bubbe’s traditional Jewish recipes and blogs about her endeavors at What Jew Wanna Eat. Her recipes have been featured on Bon Appetit, Daily Candy, The Today Show Blog and more. You can follow her blog, http://whatjewwannaeat.com/.

Smoked Salmon and Goat Cheese Quiche

Yield:
8 servings

Though most Jews name Hanukkah, Purim or Passover as their favorite of the many (many) holidays, I have always been a little partial to Yom Kippur. For real.

breakfast-quiche-1Daily life can be so hectic, between keeping up with Netflix and waiting in line for your daily Pumpkin Spice Latte, so having a day dedicated to reflection and atonement (in between naps and binge watching The Food Network) is a meaningful change of pace. And of course, at the end of the day of fasting, there’s the food.

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Our break fast spread was as traditional as they come. Kugels, coffee cake, an assortment of rarely-touched pre-made Italian cookies from the local Jewish supermarket, and the pièce de résistance, the bagel spread. When pangs of hunger set in during the final hours, this is what I focused on. Dozens of bagels, lox, red onions, tomatoes, capers, and an assortment of cream cheeses from chive to strawberry. While others were vying for an end piece of coffee cake, I went straight for the good stuff. Half of an everything bagel, never scooped, schmeared with plain cream cheese, lots of lox, red onions and capers. Always a delicious meal, but especially after a day of fasting.

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This year, I decided to take all my favorite bagel toppers and put them in a quiche. I love quiche, but hadn’t made one since culinary school. The salty capers and smoked salmon paired with creamy tart goat cheese and sweet red onions is pretty magical. I highly recommend the homemade crust; the flakiness is worth the extra effort. The best part is (okay, besides the eating part) that you can easily make this ahead of time and serve at your break fast.

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Smoked Salmon and Goat Cheese Quiche

Posted on September 28, 2014

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

Black & White Cookie Cheesecake

Yield:
1 9-inch cheesecake

There are two foods that are just quintessential New York City to me. Cheesecake, and black and white cookies. Well, and bagels. And pizza. Is coffee a food? But if we’re talking desserts, it’s cheesecake and black and whites all the way.

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I have been known to whip up some brownies on a whim or throw together a dozen cupcakes like it’s nobody’s business. But cheesecake is an all day affair. The long baking time and cooling does not match my impatient manner. Waiting until the next day to dive in? Fuhgettaboutit! So I usually only bake one for special occasions. Like Shavuot, a holiday where you are basically commanded to eat cheesecake. But this creation is a game changer. I’m going to need cheesecake a lot more often. Just in time for boat season.

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I thought about simply decorating a cheesecake in black and white cookies, but I wanted more. I wanted the cheesecake to literally become a black and white cookie. So I started with a cakey crust in place of a traditional graham cracker one. Over that are layers of vanilla and chocolate cheesecake laced with lemon. On top? Oh icing, but of course. Instead of the classic one black and one white side, I made a crazy pattern. Because this is a crazy kind of cake. But you do what you like!

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Black and White Cookie Cheesecake

Posted on May 19, 2014

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

White Wine Braised Chicken Thighs with Tomatoes and Potatoes

Prep:
10 minutes

Cook:
50 minutes

Yield:
4 servings

Though Passover can be an intimidating time to cook, (two Seders, no chametz, trying unsuccessfully to eat real food instead of just chocolate covered matzah) I love it. I thrive at updating traditions and the challenge of creating recipes so tasty, you’d actually want to eat them post-Passover.White-Wine-Braised-Chicken-Thighs-with-Leeks,-Potatoes-and-Tom-3Not surprisingly, I try to go where no cook has gone before (though maybe that’s for good reason). Manischewitz Ice Cream and Deep Fried Matzo Balls are some of the twists I’ve experimented with. When it comes to mains, I like to play around too. Sephardic seasoned salmon, tangy short ribs or brisket in a hearty mushroom sauce. I’m salivating just writing this. But the most requested type of main dish that I get? Chicken. Plain, boring chicken. Sigh. White-Wine-Braised-Chicken-Thighs-with-Leeks,-Potatoes-and-Tom-1I like to give the people what they want, but after tasting this version I’ll admit I was wrong! Chicken can be a wonderful dish when cooked well. This one-pot Passover meal has chicken thighs braised so tender in a white wine sauce you don’t even need a knife. Served with tomatoes, leeks and potatoes so it’s filling and healthy at the same time. That way, you can have more room for macaroons and chocolate-covered matzah.

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White Wine Braised Chicken Thighs with Tomatoes and Potatoes

Posted on April 1, 2014

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

Lox and Schmear Rangoon

Yield:
20

If Christmas is a time for tradition and family, then count me in! But I’m not talking about building gingerbread houses and trimming the tree. Our Jewish Christmas traditions were more about moo shu, a movie (ideally in the Home Alone series) and maybe a trip to the local casino. Usually, we’d pile in the car and head over to Cheng Du, one of the only restaurants open that day in town, and fill up on chicken & broccoli, vegetable dumplings and fortune cookies. And then an hour later when we were hungry again, finish the leftovers.

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A few years ago, maybe turned off by the crowds or MSG, or inspired by my love of eating at home, I decided to start making my own Chinese food for Christmas instead. One bite of my homemade General Tso’s Chicken and I was hooked! This year, I took the decidedly unkosher Crab Rangoon and swapped the crab for lox. The result? Like a fried version of my favorite bagel breakfast. Why didn’t I think of this sooner? Now you can have lox and schmear for every meal. Christmas can’t come soon enough!Lox-and-Schmear-Rangoon-sta

Adapted from Rasa Malaysia.

Lox and Schmear Rangoon

Posted on December 23, 2013

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

Beet Chips with Spicy Honey Mayo

Prep:
20 minutes

Cook:
25 minutes


I’m kind of obsessed with beets. I’ve made Beet Fries, Pickled Beets and even Beet Hummus. Not only are they tasty and healthy, but a shade of vibrant pink (or golden yellow) that pops on your holiday table. Beets are rich in vitamin C, fiber, and some even consider them to be a natural aphrodisiac. Can’t hurt! Pass by the canned variety in favor of the more flavorful fresh. Totally versatile, beets are perfect roasted, pickled, raw or in this case, fried.

beet-chips-2-stampSprinkled with a little salt, these crunchy chips are delicious on their own, and even better when paired with a sweet and spicy pareve mayonnaise. Sort of a modern twist on apples dipped in honey. I used just red beets, but throw in some golden ones as well for a colorful addition to your Rosh Hashanah meal. The prayer said over beets in Hebrew means to remove, which signifies the hope that enemies and faults will be removed in the New Year.

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Amy Kritzer is a food writer and recipe developer in Austin, TX who enjoys cooking, theme parties and cowboys. She challenges herself to put a spin on her Bubbe’s traditional Jewish recipes and blogs about her endeavors at What Jew Wanna Eat. Her recipes have been featured on Bon Appetit, Daily Candy, The Today Show Blog and more. You can follow her on TwitterPinterest and Facebook and watch her cooking videos on Google+.

Beet Chips with Spicy Honey Mayo

Posted on August 19, 2013

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

Honey Horseradish Chicken

Yield:
4 servings

honey horseradish chickenGrowing up, Passover meant sweet and sour brisket. Slowly braised in the oven for hours until Bubbe declared it was tender enough to eat. Sounds simple enough, but that poor brisket was in and out of the oven and examined and re-examined until it was dry. So we tried chicken one year. Surely that would fare better. But the story was the same- Bubbe, my Mom and Aunts gathered around the oven trying to determine if the chicken was done. Opening and closing the door, all whilst poking and prodding the poor bird. “Is it done?” “It looks done.” “No I see pink!” They were petrified of giving the whole family salmonella. Sigh.

Passover recipes are actually some of my favorite to develop- the limit in ingredients forces me to get creative and put together recipes that I never would otherwise. I decided to make a roasted chicken as homage to that Pesach- it would work for a seder, or you could nosh on it for meals during the chametz free week. Honey and mustard is one of my favorite combos, but of course mustard is out. How about horseradish instead as a nod to the seder meal? The horseradish gives the chicken a subtle spiciness much like a Dijon would, and is balanced with the sweet honey- delicious!

Honey Horseradish Chicken

Posted on March 13, 2013

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

Neopolitan Hamantaschen

Yield:
30 cookies

Purim has always beenIMG_6397 one of my favorites out of the many, many Jewish holidays. Dressing up in fun costumes, masks, festive food and drinks. What’s not to love? One of my fondest memories growing up was attending out synagogue’s annual Purim Carnival. They went all out with games, face paint, and prizes all to celebrate Esther saving the Jews from Haman’s plans of extermination. Of course, as a young foodie, one of my favorite parts was the carnival themed food. While others went straight for the popcorn or cotton candy, I was all about the build your own ice cream sundae bar. Oh my. I piled on scoops of strawberry, vanilla and chocolate, rainbow sprinkles and a cherry or two.

Hamantaschen, the symbolic Purim cookie, are a great base for all sorts of flavors. I’ve made Chocolate Dipped Hamantaschen, Hamantaschen Tarts and even Caramelized Onion Hamantaschen. But when it came time to recreate a version this year, I reminisced about my favorite ice cream flavors and went with Neapolitan. A strawberry cookie filled with chocolate and drizzled with vanilla. Why should kids have all the fun?

Amy Kritzer is a food writer and recipe developer in Austin, TX who enjoys cooking, theme parties and cowboys. She challenges herself to put a spin on her grandmother’s traditional Jewish recipes and blogs about her endeavors at What Jew Wanna Eat. You can follow her on Twitter and Facebook and watch her cooking videos on Google+.

 

Neopolitan Hamantaschen

Posted on February 11, 2013

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

Coconut Latkes with Cranberry Applesauce & Cardamom Mascarpone

Yield:
10 latkes


coconut-latke1Just when I’m starting to recover from the gluttony fest known as Thanksgiving, bam! It’s already time for Hanukkah. Bring on the fried. Growing up, my Mom cooked both traditional and sweet potato latkes every year for my brother and me. We looked forward to these tasty fried treats almost as much as getting the latest Everclear CD or a new set of Pogs, hypothetically speaking of course.

I continue the tradition by cooking for our annual Chrismukkah gathering and showing my friends that latkes are way more than a Jewish hashbrown. Last year, I served up Mexican Potato Latkes, which were gobbled up faster than you can say “chag sameach.” This year, inspired by my leftover cranberries from Thanksgiving, I went with a slightly sweet approach. Coconut gives the latkes a subtle flavor and extra crunch, while the cranberry applesauce and cardamom mascarpone brings a tartness that lends itself to the perfect bite. Since I am not hopeful of having a white Hanukkah with the 80-degree weather we have be having in my home in Austin, TX, I garnished the plate with extra coconut to resemble snow. Wishful thinking, perhaps?

Amy Kritzer is a food writer and recipe developer in Austin, TX who enjoys cooking, theme parties and cowboys. She challenges herself to put a spin on her grandmother’s traditional Jewish recipes and blogs about her endeavors at What Jew Wanna Eat. You can follow her on Twitter and Facebook and watch her cooking videos on Google+.

Coconut Latkes with Cranberry Applesauce & Cardamom Mascarpone

Posted on December 3, 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

Bubbe’s Mushroom Challah Dressing

Yield:
10-12 servings


Thanksgiving isn’t a Jewish holiday, per se, but with the abundance of traditional foods and family, it may as well be! Favorite Thanksgiving foods can vary greatly by family (I recall getting in a heated brawl with my roommate over green bean casserole vs. Brussels sprouts one year. Brussels sprouts all the way!) But certain foods seem to find their way to every table, such as turkey, cranberry sauce, pie and of course stuffing.

Unfortunately, I won’t be making the schlep from Texas to Connecticut to have Thanksgiving with my family this year. Which means I will miss the yearly gathering of everyone around the oven, opening and closing the door repeatedly questioning whether the bird is done, all whilst prodding and probing at it for clues. Miss you guys!

In order to continue the tradition in my own home, I decided to recreated Bubbe’s famous Challah Dressing (since it is cooked outside the turkey it is technically a dressing, and not stuffing) with my own twists. I swapped out the onions for leeks, and added carrots and lots of fresh herbs. If you can’t find any of the fresh herbs, you can substitute dried as noted. Dried herbs are more intense, so make sure to use less. Delish! Definitely a holiday dish everyone can agree on.

 

Amy Kritzer is a food writer and recipe developer in Austin, TX who enjoys
cooking, theme parties and cowboys. She challenges herself to put a spin on her
grandmother’s traditional Jewish recipes and blogs about her endeavors at What
Jew Wanna Eat. You can follow her on Twitter and Facebook and watch her
cooking videos on Google+.

Bubbe's Mushroom Challah Dressing

Posted on November 15, 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

Pomegranate Brisket with Cranberry Succotash

Prep:
30 minutes

Cook:
3-3 1/2 hours

Yield:
4 servings



Rosh Hoshanah is one of my favorite Jewish holidays to cook for. Each year I look forward to the Fall smells, sense of renewal, traditions and of course eating lots of apples and honey. Now that I live in Texas, I sadly do not always get to spend the New Year with my family back east. But I do always take the opportunity to dream up a new version of my favorite main dish – brisket. In Texas, brisket is BBQ king.

Slowly smoked until it nearly falls apart and then smothered in a sweet and tangy sauce. I, of course, braise my brisket and enjoy feeding it to doubtful locals who are always won over by the tender meat and sweeter accompanying sauce. Plus, no special equipment besides an oven required!

I have wanted to try to create a pomegranate brisket for some time as a nod to the Rosh Hoshanah tradition to eat fruit that has just recently come into season. The pomegranate is often used for this purpose! Pomegranates are a little tricky to find in Texas, but the juice is plentiful and makes a perfect braising liquid. Served with pan juices and a crunchy, fresh succotash, this brisket is a new spin on an old favorite. If you have access to pomegranates, feel free to replace the dried cranberries with fresh pomegranate arils. This recipe can be doubled to feed a crowd, but remember the cooking time will be longer too.

Amy Kritzer is a food writer and recipe developer in Austin, TX who enjoys cooking, theme parties and cowboys. She challenges herself to put a spin on her grandmother’s traditional Jewish recipes and blogs about her endeavors at What Jew Wanna Eat. You can follow her on Twitter and Facebook and watch her cooking videos on Google+.

Pomegranate Brisket with Cranberry Succotash

Posted on September 5, 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