Author Archives: ari

Apple and Chocolate Heaven cake with honey and cinnamon syrup

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Apple cake for Rosh Hashana – been there, done that. Here’s a new combo that includes the seasonal and traditionally significant tastiness of the ever-so-overdone Rosh dessert. Thank you smitten kitchenal di la restaurant, and my CIA spy (aka my brother) for your inspirations…

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Filed under Dessert, Jewish, Parve, Rosh Hashana

Sweet and Spicy New Year Carrot Salad

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If grad school has taught me anything, it’s that the less ingredients and the simpler the recipe, the better: for the sake of time efficiency and really tasting those yummy fresh veggies! Since Rosh Hashana is on a Monday this year, try out this carrot salad recipe this year to save some time and enjoy some seasonal produce. You can make it an hour before you serve it or a couple days in advance! The longer the carrots marinate in the dressing, the better.

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Filed under Fruit and Vegtables, Holidays, Jewish, Rosh Hashana

Hamantaschen with an Argentine Twist

Hola from Argentina! Despite the large Jewish population here, I’m a bit isolated in the north on a rural farm, without the pleasures of Jewish bakeries so the following recipe was inspired by the ingredients I could get my hands on. As a substitute for the traditional honey, I used dulce de leche, an Argentine sweet gooey delight. Try using it as well as a filling for the cookie!

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Filed under Dairy, Dessert, Jewish, Purim

Polish Egg Bread (for Purim and Shabbat)


“What foods other than hamantaschen are traditional for purim?!”

This is the question I asked myself (and google) this week. According to Wilshire Blvd. Temple in Los Angeles, there are quite a few of other more savory options. Among them are kreplach, filled with minced meat or vegetables to evoke the response of stopping and general noise making upon hearing ‘haman’. Some communities will also eat nuts and beans because *legend has it* Esther ate mostly these foods in the court of King Ahashuerus (he didn’t keep kosher).

So what about this year’s fun shabbat/purim combination?! Polish Egg Bread. Also known as “koyletsh” (or sometimes spelled: keylitsh, keylitch, koilitch, koylatsh) this is an extra rich challah type bread prepared for special occasions and Purim. Why Purim? Apparently the long strands for braiding are supposed to remind us of the ropes used to hang Haman. So morbid.

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Filed under Ashkenazi, Bread, Jewish, Purim, Shabbat

Dilly Carrots

For those of us who can’t jetset to San Francisco to eat the famed Wise Son pickles, this easy-to-do recipe will not only provide tasty results BUT will also make you feel like a DIY superstar. The Heathens have offered a couple different variations of pickling, but I would like to add my favorite from the Ball Complete Book of Preserving. These make a fun gift (perhaps for the Purim mishloach manot you’re making in a couple weeks??)

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Filed under Cured and Pickled, Deli, Fruit and Vegtables, Jewish

Lavender Challah

Why bake the same version is challah each week when it’s so easy to snaz it up?! This Shabbat, try it with some lavendar.

I started, of course, with Amiee’s faithful challah recipe. Instead of adding plain water to proof the yeast, I used a lavendar infused water.

Ingredients:

1 3/4 cup water
3 tb dried lavendar flowers

Method:

Add the water and lavender to a small saucepan or pot and heat slowly to a simmer. Remove it from the heat and let it cool slightly for a few minutes. Strain out the lavender flowers and allow the water to continue to cool to yeast proofing temperature (slightly warm). Continue the challah recipe as normal! *You can keep the flower buds in the water for extra flavor and texture.

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Filed under Bread, Jewish, Parve, Shabbat

Bubbe Julie’s Pesadik Kamish

My Bubbe (Yiddish word for grandmother) Julie is unstoppable. At 90 years old, she is still maintaining a three-story house, driving her car around Vancouver, and cooking up a storm. When my family and I are in town, we eat everything Bubbe makes for us–even if we are not hungry. I can still distinctly remember about 10 years ago when my father was interrogated by a US customs officer for carrying a poppyseed cake in a brown unmarked box, fresh from the oven. “What is in the box?” they asked. “It’s a poppyseed cake baked by my mother-in-law, I promise.” One of my favorites in her baking repertoire is kosher for Passover kamish. It almost doesn’t take like Passover. You may have heard kamish referred to as “Mandelbrot” or “Jewish biscotti”. It’s all the same: sweet, crunchy and delicious.

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Filed under Dessert, Jewish, Mishpokhe, Parve, Passover

Passover Pomelo Bars

Think lemon bar, but not. What’s a pomelo? Wikipedia holds lots of fun facts about this Southeast Asian native fruit, but for the sake of simplicity: biggest citrus, grapefuit-esque but sweeter, DELICIOUS. I was inspired to create a Passover recipe using this pith-ful fruit because I think more people should know about the pomelo and it offers an opportunity to share a Passover tradition I implemented last year (included below). That said, this is a recipe developed by an amateur baker, so please feel free to tweak it as you see fit.

I also invite you to include the pomelo on your Passover table this year, accompanied by the following reading (that I adapted for my seder last year): Continue reading

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Filed under Dessert, Holidays, Jewish, Passover

Kumquat Walnut Challah

Let’s get some chametz in before pesach!

Turns out, the kumquat is in season so I thought it would be fun to mix it into Amiee’s challah dough recipe. Why did I choose a seasonal fruit? Eating seasonally is something I’ve been trying to do a bit more of lately. Although our supermarkets allow us to buy foods grown virtually anywhere in the world all year round, these options are not the most sustainable. By purchasing local foods in-season, you eliminate the environmental damage caused by shipping foods thousands of miles. Buying seasonal produce also provides an exciting opportunity to try new foods and to experiment with seasonal recipes.

The most common variety of kumquat is the Nagami, or oval kumquat, which grows to be about two inches long and an inch in diameter–so cute a tiny! Kumquats have a pale orange rind that’s edible; unlike other citrus, the rind is actually the sweetest part of the fruit! The inner flesh and juice are sour and contain seeds, which you shouldn’t eat, so when you make the puree make sure to take them out!

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Filed under Bread, Breakfast, Dessert, Fruit and Vegtables

Honey Wheat Hamantaschen

It’s okay, go ahead and get excited for this Trader Joe’s Honey Wheat Pretzel inspired Purim treat.

The strongest memory I have of Purim from my childhood included mass-produced, store-bought Hamantaschen served to my Temple community during the Purim Carnival. Chalky, bland, high-fructose-corn-syrup-y and double the price in tickets of all the good carnival games, I was a little less than interested. That’s why I was so excited when my friend and expert baker, Dara, shared her dough recipe with me.

Filling for Hamantaschen is where the FUN comes in. Be creative. Go wild. This year, I am using organic apricot preserves, dark chocolate and slivered almonds.

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Filed under Dessert, Purim