Leftover Vegetable Peel Stock

A great way to use vegetable peelings to make delicious soup.

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I hate wasting food, and try to do everything I can to use my leftovers in creative ways, including this recipe that uses vegetable peal to make a delicious and rich stock.

Ingredients

  1. whole peppercorns
  2. 4 Tablespoons salt
  3. fresh parsley
  4. leftover garlic peels
  5. leftover tomatoes
  6. 3 whole garlic cloves
  7. leftover onion peels
  8. 1 whole onion
  9. leftover celery stock
  10. 2 whole celery stalks
  11. leftover carrot peels
  12. 4 quarts water
  13. 3 carrots, whole

Directions

In a large stockpot, add leftover vegetables, parsley and peppercorns. Fill the pot with three quarts of cold water, and cover pot with lid.

Bring soup up to a boil then reduce heat to low. Simmer uncovered for one hour. Pour soup through a strainer into a large bowl, discarding vegetables and herbs, then season stock with salt.

Freeze vegetable stock in plastic containers or ice cube trays for up to 6 months.

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Shannon Sarna is the editor of The Nosher. Born to an Italian mother who loved to bake, a Jewish father who loved to experiment, and a food chemist grandfather, loving and experimenting with diverse foods is simply in her blood. Her writing and recipes have been featured in Tablet Magazine, JTA News, The Jewish Week, Joy of Kosher Magazine and Buzzfeed. She graduated from Smith College in Northampton, MA with a degree in Comparative Government and Spanish Language and Literature and currently lives in Jersey City, NJ. To see what Shannon is cooking and eating, follow her on twitter @shasarna and on Instagram.

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Curried Vegetable and Chickpea Soup

A warm soup for a cool night.

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Over the past week or so I've been kind of obsessed with soups. On Monday I had soup for breakfast, lunch, and dinner. In the past eight days I've been unplugging my crock pot for no more than 12 hours before starting again with a new soup.

But with soups, unlike with almost anything else, I will do a lot of finicking around until I get it exactly right. On Sunday I started with this recipe for Curried Vegetable and Chickpea soup, but I revised as I went, and at the end spent a while seasoning and changing things up before I finally loved it.

So how do you test recipes? Are you ever faithful to the original, or do you feel free to throw other things in willy-nilly, and figure you’ll season and fix as you go?

Ingredients

  1. juice of 1 lime
  2. 1/4 cup honey
  3. 1 Tablespoon molasses
  4. 1 can coconut milk
  5. 8 oz baby spinach
  6. 1/4 teaspoon black pepper
  7. 5-8 medium tomatoes, roughly chopped
  8. 1 medium head cauliflower, cut into bite-sized florets
  9. 2 (16 oz) cans chickpeas, drained and rinsed
  10. 2 Tablespoons buillion
  11. 2 cups water
  12. 1 jalapeno chili (or other hot chili), seeded and minced
  13. 3 cloves garlic, minced
  14. 1 Tablespoon ginger, peeled and minced
  15. 2 teaspoons brown sugar
  16. 2 all-purpose potatoes, peeled and diced
  17. 1 Tablespoon salt
  18. 1 Tablespoon curry
  19. 1-2 leeks, cleaned well and roughly chopped
  20. 1 Tablespoon olive oil
  21. 1 large onion, chopped

Directions

Heat the oil in a skillet over medium heat. Sauté the onion and leeks with one teaspoon of salt until translucent, about 5 minutes. Add the potatoes and another teaspoon of salt, and sauté until just translucent around the edges.

Stir in the curry, brown sugar, ginger, garlic, and chili and cook until fragrant, about 30 seconds. Pour in 1/4 cup of water and scrape the bottom of the pan to deglaze. Pour this onion-potato mixture into the bowl of your crock pot.

To the slow-cooker, add the rest of the ingredients. The spinach will probably fill up the crock pot, but don't worry, it will cook down. Make sure the liquid comes at least halfway up the side of the bowl. If it doesn't add water 1 cup at a time. Cover and cook for 4 hours on HIGH. Taste and adjust salt and other seasonings as needed.

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Tamar Fox is an associate editor at MyJewishLearning.com. She has an MFA in fiction writing from Vanderbilt University, and a BA from the University of Iowa. She has worked as the editor of the religion blog at Jewcy.com, and is on the Editorial Board at The Jew and the Carrot. She spent a summer as a fellow at Yeshivat Hadar, and was a Senior Apprentice Artist for four years at Gallery 37 in Chicago.

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Apple Cranberry Sauce

Sweet and tart, it's delicious on latkes.

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While there's nothing like the traditional applesauce and sour cream, here's a bit of variation. It's easy to make and tastes great.

Ingredients

  1. 1/2 cup honey, or to taste
  2. 9 medium apples
  3. 8 oz bag of fresh cranberries
  4. 1 teaspoon lemon rind

Directions

Core and cut apples. Cover well with water and cook until soft. Stir occasionally to prevent sticking. Cover cranberries with water and cook until very soft (about twenty minutes). Drain. Put apples through foley food mill (I see them often in second hand stores) or force through colander to remove skins and seeds. Add cranberries, honey, and lemon rind.

Note: Depending how tart or sweet you like your sauce, you can add more honey.

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Apple Pear Sauce

A sweet topping for your latkes.

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While there's nothing like the traditional applesauce and sour cream, here's a bit of variation. It's easy to make and tastes great.

Ingredients

  1. 3 teaspoons lemon rind
  2. 5 medium pears
  3. 8 medium apples
  4. 1 teaspoon cinnamon

Directions

Core and cut apples and pears. Cover well with water and cook until soft. Stir occasionally to prevent sticking. Put through foley food mill (I see them often in second hand stores) or force through colander to remove skins and seeds. Mix in lemon rind and cinnamon.

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Spring Quinoa with Pesto & Greens

A beautiful spring salad; perfect for your seder, for a Passover lunch, or year-round.

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quinoa for passover

You might have heard rumors that there's a grain-like food that's kosher for Passover. Better than a new flavor of matzah, quinoa (pronounced keen-wha) is a seed that resembles and tastes like a grain, and can be found at your local grocery store.

While it's a relative newcomer to the American kitchen, having only been introduced to the States in the past 20 years, this ancient Andean seed has been an important food in South America for over 6000 years. A member of the goosefoot family, which is also the family of beets, swiss chard, lamb's quarters, spinach, and amaranth, quinoa is not technically a grain, but can be used as one in cooking.Year-round, quinoa is perfect for vegans, those with celiac, and anyone looking for a change from rice. It's gluten-free and contains all of the essential amino acids, making it a complete protein. You might be wondering why quinoa is allowed on Passover, when your favorite rice and lentils are not (if you are an Ashkenazic Jew). Ashkenazic rabbis ruled that kitniyot–products made from corn, rice, millet, and legumes–are prohibited on Passover because they are too similar to grains that are already forbidden on Passover. But quinoa didn't make the kitniyot list, because it is a new world crop, and medieval Ashkenazic rabbis were not aware of its existence.
Furthermore, because quinoa grows in the high altitude of the Andes, where hametz does not grow, there is no chance of cross-contamination with the grains on the do-not-eat list. As long as quinoa is processed in a factory that does not also process grains, it's kosher for Passover and ready for your holiday table. Some approved certifications include the Half-Moon K (KOAOA), found on the Trader Joe's and Ancient Harvest brands of quinoa.
While there is no religious precedent against eating quinoa, there are still those that forbid it. For example, the Vaad Hakashrus of the Eida HaCharedis, a Jerusalem-based ultra-Orthodox organization opposes quinoa on Passover because they believe it is included in the kitniyot prohibition. They also express concern over the potential for cross contamination with any prohibited grains. But the companies mentioned above assure that this is not a problem, and the majority of the kosher-keeping community seems to be embracing this wholesome and satisfying Andean treat for their week without wheat.

Ingredients

  1. 1/2 cup dried cranberries
  2. 1 small red oninon, diced
  3. 1/2 teaspoon salt
  4. 2 cups water or stock
  5. 1 cup quinoa, rinsed
  6. 1 teaspoon fresh lemon juice
  7. 1/4 cup olive oil
  8. 1 teaspoon salt
  9. 1/2 cup walnuts
  10. 1 clove garlic
  11. 2 cups parsley, washed, with large stems removed
  12. 1/2 cup parsley leaves, chopped
  13. 2 teaspoons olive oil
  14. 2 teaspoons fresh lemon juice

Directions

Start by making the pesto (this can be made up to a week ahead of time). Place the parsley, garlic, walnuts, and salt in a food processor and process until smooth. Scrape down sides and turn the motor back on, drizzling in the olive oil. Add lemon juice and adjust seasoning. Set aside. If you don't have a food processor for Passover use, you can chop everything super-fine. The salad will have a much rougher texture, but will be just as delicious.

Combine the rinsed quinoa and the water in a medium saucepan. Bring the water to a boil, reduce to low heat, cover, and cook for 12 minutes, or until the grain is translucent and the germ is opaque. If there is any extra water, drain. Set aside to cool.

In a large bowl, combine the cooked quinoa, 1/2 cup of the pesto, onions, cranberries, additional chopped parsley, olive oil, and lemon juice. Add more pesto if desired, and salt and pepper to taste. Serve at room temperature.

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Elisheva Margulies is a natural foods chef and holistic health counselor based in St. Louis, MO. She owns Eat with Eli and offers personal chef services, catering, cooking classes and nutrition counseling to the community. Eli is also involved with Hazon and works actively within her Jewish community to help people eat more health-supportive food and to kick the margarine addiction. Please visit www.eatwitheli.com.

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Persimmon and Pistachio Cupcakes

What to eat on the birthday of the trees.

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Anyone who has hosted or attended a Tu Bishvat seder likely remembers a cornucopia of fruit on the table. This agricultural abundance can be somewhat confusing because, unlike Sukkot and Shavuot, Tu Bishvat is not associated with any particular harvest period. Instead, fruit’s connection to Tu Bishvat is more metaphysical. As Lesli Koppelman Ross’ writes:

On Tu Bishvat it is traditional to eat fruit associated with the land of Israel. The “classical” fruits are the seven species described in Deuteronomy 8:8, “a land of wheat and barley, of vines, figs, and pomegranates, a land of olive trees and honey” Since leaving Palestine, Jews throughout the world have maintained connections with the Land of Israel on Tu Bishvat by eating fruits produced there.

In other words, eating the fruits associated with Israel–even if they are out of season–helps root the holiday in the land where it originated. Additionally, the kabbalists, who helped re-imagine Tu Bishvat’s celebration in 16th century Safed, developed practices of ritualized fruit consumption as a tool for spiritual elevation.

For those people who are less interested in kabbalistic ritual, serving a fruit-inspired dinner on Tu Bishvat–either after the seder, in lieu of a seder, or on the Shabbat closest to the holiday–can be a great way to honor Tu Bishvat’s agricultural roots. To get you started, the two menus below (one meat, one vegetarian), feature fruit in every course. B’teavon!

Tu Bishvat Dinner Menu (Meat)

Grapefruit & Mint Salad (recipe)
Moroccan Chicken with Lemons and Olives (recipe)
Jeweled Rice with Dried Fruit & Nuts (recipe)
Persimmon and Pistachio Cupcakes (recipe blow)

Tu Bishvat Dinner Menu (Vegetarian)

Grapes and Caramelized Pecan Salad (recipe)
Orange and Maple Baked Tofu (recipe)
Roasted Sweet Potatoes and Apples (recipe)
Pear & Chocolate Cake (recipe)

Ingredients

  1. 1/2 cup pistachios, toasted and chopped
  2. 1/8 teaspoon ground cardamom
  3. 1/8 teaspoon groud cinnamon
  4. 2 teaspoons baking soda
  5. pinch of salt
  6. 2 1/2 cups flour
  7. 3/4 cup sugar
  8. 3/4 cup pureed persimmon
  9. 1 cup almond milk
  10. 1 teaspoon vanilla
  11. 4 eggs
  12. 1/2 cup margarine, room temperature

Directions

Line two cupcake trays with cups and preheat oven to 350 degrees. Stir together all dry ingredients except sugar in a bowl and set aside. In a separate bowl, combine persimmon, almond milk, and vanilla and set aside. In a third bowl, cream the margarine and sugar until light and fluffy.
Alternate folding in the flour mixture and puree mixture into the creamed margarine until just incorporated. Fill cupcake cups until three-quarters full and bake 20-25 minutes until golden. Let cupcakes cool, then top with vegan buttercream frosting and sprinkle with pistachios.

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Leah Koenig is a writer and cookbook author whose work has been published in The New York Times Magazine, Saveur, CHOW, Food Arts, Tablet, Gastronomica, and Every Day with Rachael Ray. Leah writes a monthly food column for The Forward and a bimonthly column for Saveur.com called “One Ingredient, Many Ways.” She is the former Editor-in-Chief of the award-winning blog, The Jew & The Carrot, and she is a frequent contributor to MyJewishLearning.com, where her recipes are very popular, and highly praised. Her first cookbook, The Hadassah Everyday Cookbook: Daily Meals for the Contemporary Jewish Kitchen, was published by Rizzoli in 2011. The book was named one of the “Best Books of 2011? by Library Journal and The Kitchn called it “a big, beautiful book that is also down-to-earth and completely accessible.”

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Lavender Cheesecake with Shortbread-Almond Crust

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  1. Yield: 8
  2. Prep: 30 minutes
  3. Cook: 35 minutes
  4. Total: 1 hour, 5 minutes
shavuot cheesecake

As the Jewish calendar's most dairy-friendly holiday, Shavuot's list of traditional foods read like a who's who of milk and cheese. And aside from perhaps the sour cream-topped cheese blintz, no dairy recipe is more iconic on Shavuot in America than cheesecake.

In The Book of Jewish Food (Knopf, 1996), Claudia Roden writes that Jews started making cheesecake, or kasekuchen in German, in Central and Eastern Europe where it was popular in both Jewish and non-Jewish cuisines around the 18th-19th centuries. The dessert was a natural fit for Shavuot, which falls during springtime right as people's cows and other animals were giving birth, and therefore producing milk. Making soft curd cheese was the perfect way to extend the shelf life of excess milk–a practice that Roden writes was popular amongst Eastern European housewives.

It was not until Jews migrated to America, bringing their recipes and affinity for cheesecake with them, that the dish took on a specifically Jewish identity. And it was not until the 20th century that New York-style cheesecake emerged. Unlike its European ancestors, New York cheesecake was dense and smooth, rather than textured.

As Arthur Schwartz writes in Jewish Home Cooking (Ten Speed Press, 2008), in 1872 a “New York dairyman…combined cream with milk to create an ultra rich cheese.” By the 1880s, the product was being produced and distributed under the name Philadelphia Brand cream cheese, and was primed to take homemade curd cheese's place in American Jewish kitchens.

Schwartz writes that the new cream cheese-based cheesecake was popularized in famous New York delis (non-kosher, of course) such as Reuben's, Lindy's and later in Brooklyn at Junior's. In America, the basic cheesecake recipe was also altered by the addition of fruit toppings (e.g. cherries, strawberries, and blackberries in syrup) and whipped cream.

Like the bagel, cheesecake in America has transcended its Jewish identity. Junior's cakes are now sold through the national shopping network QVC, and The Cheesecake Factory has nearly 150 locations across the country. Still the sweet, creamy treat remains a Jewish classic, and a no-brainer for the Shavuot table.

For a classic cheesecake, check out Joan Nathan's recipe.

If you want, change things up by topping plain cheesecake with fresh fruit, chocolate chips, jam, chopped crystallized ginger, or fruit syrup. You can experiment with the crust by swapping ginger snaps, chocolate or vanilla wafers, or oatmeal cookies for the graham crackers.

Ingredients

  1. 2 8-oz packages cream cheese, softened
  2. 1/2 teaspoon vanilla extract
  3. 1/3 cup honey
  4. 2 teaspoons sugar
  5. 6 Tablespoons unsalted butter, melted
  6. 3 Tablespoons dried lavender flowers
  7. 1 cup pulverized shortbread cookies
  8. 1 1/2 cups blanched almonds
  9. 2 eggs

Directions

Pulverize almonds in a food processor until they become powdery and flour-like. Transfer almond flour to a bowl and stir in crushed shortbread cookies and sugar. Add melted butter and stir to coat evenly. Tip mixture into a 9-inch pie pan and press evenly into the bottom and sides. Refrigerate while making the filling.

Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Gently crush the lavender buds and put in a small bowl. Pour 2 1/2 Tablespoons of boiling water over them and let steep for 15 minutes. Strain out lavender buds and set aside approximately 1 Tablespoon of the lavender-infused water.

In a medium bowl, beat together the cream cheese, honey, and vanilla until smooth. Beat the eggs in one at a time until well blended. Pour in the lavender infusion a little at a time, stirring until fully combined. Pour into pie crust and bake for 35-40 minutes until the filling is just set, but still a little wobbly in the center. Let cool to room temperature, then chill for at least 4 hours or ideally overnight.

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Leah Koenig is a writer and cookbook author whose work has been published in The New York Times Magazine, Saveur, CHOW, Food Arts, Tablet, Gastronomica, and Every Day with Rachael Ray. Leah writes a monthly food column for The Forward and a bimonthly column for Saveur.com called “One Ingredient, Many Ways.” She is the former Editor-in-Chief of the award-winning blog, The Jew & The Carrot, and she is a frequent contributor to MyJewishLearning.com, where her recipes are very popular, and highly praised. Her first cookbook, The Hadassah Everyday Cookbook: Daily Meals for the Contemporary Jewish Kitchen, was published by Rizzoli in 2011. The book was named one of the “Best Books of 2011? by Library Journal and The Kitchn called it “a big, beautiful book that is also down-to-earth and completely accessible.”

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

Hungarian Fruit Soup

A yummy fruit soup for Tu Bishvat.

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  1. Yield: 10-12
  2. Prep: 20 minutes
  3. Cook: 15 minutes
  4. Total: 35 minutes
fruit soup

Slightly adapted from Matthew Goodman’s Jewish Food: The World at Table

Ingredients

  1. 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
  2. Up to 1/2 cup sugar
  3. 1 cinnamon stick
  4. 1/4 teaspoon salt
  5. Juice and zest of one lemon
  6. 1 pound plums, pitted and chopped
  7. 7 cups water
  8. 2 pounds peaches, pitted and chopped
  9. 1/2 cup sour cream (optional)

Directions

Put fruit, water, and salt in a soup pot and bring to boil. Add lemon juice, zest, cinnamon stick, vanilla, and 1/4 cup sugar. Lower heat and simmer for 15 minutes, stirring occasionally. Remove cinnamon stick.

Puree the soup in the pot with a hand (immersion) blender, or in batches in a standard upright blender. Transfer to a bowl and stir in additional sugar, to taste. Refrigerate overnight and serve with sour cream.

Did you like this article? MyJewishLearning is a not-for-profit organization.

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Leah Koenig is a writer and cookbook author whose work has been published in The New York Times Magazine, Saveur, CHOW, Food Arts, Tablet, Gastronomica, and Every Day with Rachael Ray. Leah writes a monthly food column for The Forward and a bimonthly column for Saveur.com called “One Ingredient, Many Ways.” She is the former Editor-in-Chief of the award-winning blog, The Jew & The Carrot, and she is a frequent contributor to MyJewishLearning.com, where her recipes are very popular, and highly praised. Her first cookbook, The Hadassah Everyday Cookbook: Daily Meals for the Contemporary Jewish Kitchen, was published by Rizzoli in 2011. The book was named one of the “Best Books of 2011? by Library Journal and The Kitchn called it “a big, beautiful book that is also down-to-earth and completely accessible.”

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

Haroset from Egypt

Apples, nuts, and cinnamon symbolize the mortar of our Egyptian toil.

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haroset

On the Passover seder plate, haroset symbolizes the mortar used by slaves in Egypt.

From The Book of Jewish Food, published by Alfred A. Knopf, Inc. Reprinted with permission.

Ingredients

  1. 1/2 cup (60 g) walnuts coarsely chopped
  2. 1/2 cup (125 ml) sweet red Passover wine
  3. 1/2 lb (250 g) pitted dates, chopped
  4. 1/2 lb (250 g) large yellow raisins or sultanas

Directions

Put the dates and raisins/sultanas with the wine in a pan. Add just a little water to cover. Cook on very low heat, stirring occasionally, until the dates fall apart into a mush. Cook until it thickens to a soft paste. Pour into a bowl and sprinkle with walnuts.

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Claudia Roden is one of England's leading food writers. Her works include the James Beard Award winning The Book of Jewish Food and A Book of Middle Eastern Food.

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Ashkenazi Haroset

A recipe for the

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haroset

On the Passover seder plate, haroset symbolizes the mortar used by slaves in Egypt. These are the classic Eastern European ingredients. Only the proportions vary.

From The Book of Jewish Food, published by Alfred A. Knopf, Inc. Reprinted with permission.

Ingredients

  1. 2 medium-sized tart apples
  2. 1/2 cup (50 g) walnuts, chopped
  3. 1/2 - 1 teaspoon cinnamon
  4. 2 - 3 tablespoons sweet red wine
  5. 1 tablespoon sugar or honey, or to taste

Directions

Peel, core, and finely chop or grate the apples. Mix with the rest of the ingredients.

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Claudia Roden is one of England's leading food writers. Her works include the James Beard Award winning The Book of Jewish Food and A Book of Middle Eastern Food.

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