by dafnal |
February 18, 2011 · 10:01 am
Cookies are so photogenic
Someone at my yoga studio requested I make them tehina cookies. Tehina is sesame seed paste and is used prolifically in Israeli foods, like hummus, halvah, or straight up as a condiment with falafel. Obviously jumping at the opportunity for an excuse to make cookies I immediately set to the task. I never fail to be in awe of the strange properties of tehina. It can be liquid or turned into a solid, savory or sweet…. whatever it is made into, it’s bound to be delicious.
These little cookies are no exception. It’s similar in a way to the nuttiness of peanut butter. They taste like halvah and melt in your mouth. These are SO easy and quick to make. They will not disappoint. You can easily double the recipe, or use margarine instead of butter to make it dairy-free.
Click on for the recipe!
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by Marc |
February 28, 2010 · 10:08 am
These are from Theeboom Bakery in Amsterdam
American Purim is usually celebrated by many things, one of which is the Hamantaschen. First, let’s get a little background on the Hamantaschen. It is triangular and usually filled with jelly (though my mother ingeniously fills them with chocolate). The word “Hamantaschen” was erroneously thought to mean Haman’s hat, and shaped accordingly. Anyone who knows a bit of German will immediately negate this claim – the word taschen actually means “bags” in modern German, but a few centuries ago, it also meant pockets. So there you have it, Hamantaschen actually means Haman’s pockets. Hope yours aren’t too full of lint!
A few years ago, I spent several months in Amsterdam. Before Purim, I went to the local (really the only) Jewish bakery in town, and asked for Hamantaschen. The puzzled response, as though I was speaking a foreign language (well I guess I was) surprised me. I soon discovered that I would not be able to get Hamantaschen like my mother’s in A’dam, but rather a puffed treat that is the cookie made for Purim. I was a bit upset, but what could I do I was a long way from home.
So Kicheleh, in Yiddish (the Dutch word is Keisjeliesj – a similar sounding word), are fried dough with powdered sugar, and what is the standard Dutch Purim treat. They are shaped to emulate Haman’s ears. I made them last night for dinner, and all my friends argued they are better than Hamantaschen. I disagree, but to each is own.
On this blog we focus on food and its delights. However, for each holiday there is an underlying theme. The other common (and commanded) thing to do on Purim is to give gifts to the poor. As important as food is, there are more important things in the world. So eat your Hamantaschen, and kicheleh, until bursting, but do make sure that you give a something to those who need it most. Chag sameach!
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Filed under Ashkenazi, Bread, Other Stuff, Parve, Purim
Tagged as cookies, Dutch, Jewish, keisjeliesj, kicheleh, Marc, Purim
by amiee |
December 16, 2009 · 2:09 pm
Sometime last week it was brought the the attention of my 4 year old nephew and 6 year old niece that they were part Jewish, which they instantly realized meant more holidays and potentially more sweets and gifts. My sister told them she couldn’t deal with anymore holidays this late in the game and if they wanted to do Hanukkah they would have to ask Aunt Amiee. I have to admit I am a total sucker for those two and will pretty much do anything for a hug from them (I’ve even gone so far as flat out bribery with $2 bills). They were headed over to my mom’s on Friday night, so my sis and her hubby could get some much needed quiet time, so I schlepped myself out to P-town with everything necessary for latkes and some rolled cookie-cutter cookies. On Wednesday I found myself in the middle of Congregation B’nai Shalom’s Hannukah sale and bought some cookie cutters for the bargain price of $2.50. I also found a fantastic book, that I highly recommend for interfaith families, called The Latke Who Couldn’t Stop Screaming: A Christmas Story. On Thursday I mixed up the cookie dough and chilled it so all we would have to do was roll, cut and bake. It was a somewhat challenging evening and I learned a few important lessons: 1. Grandma is an even bigger sucker than I am and lets her little angels do pretty much whatever they want at her house and 2. When trying to teach kids about Hanukkah do not let Grandma decide this is the perfect time to start decorating for Christmas. After several disagreements, cat-trap-building from my nephew, and distinct eye-rolling from my niece, latkes were made, cookies were baked and the menorah was lit by dictatorial fiat. Sometime around 9pm when I was sitting by the fire in silence with a glass of wine, my niece snuck out of bed, gave me a big hug and said, “thank you for doing Hanuukah Aunt Amiee, I love you”, which of course melted away my desire to sell her on craigslist and ensured that I will do it all over again next year.
cookie recipe after the break
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by amiee |
October 16, 2009 · 7:03 am
Mandelbrot is sometimes referred to as Jewish biscotti, but while similarly shaped and twice baked like biscotti, it has its own unique characteristics. Mandelbrot translates from Yiddish as “almond bread” and is a traditional cookie of Ashkenazi Jews. There is very little know about its historic origins but it has been speculated that Jews from Northern Italy brought the biscotti to German Jews and the recipe evolved over time to today’s treat. I had mandelbrot well before the pre-Starbucks espresso craze of the early ’90s introduced suburban America to the biscotti. I remember trying a biscotti for the first time and finding it virtually inedible unless it had been soaked in your coffee. Expecting the softer, crumbly texture of a mandelbrot I almost destroyed my not yet paid off orthodontia biting down on a dry biscotti at my local “italian cafe” the Coffee Roast Express. I’ve rarely eaten them since. My husband’s Grandma Tina used to make mandelbrot every year for Hanukkah and he always looked forward to them. It makes for a nice, not too sweet after dinner treat with coffee or tea. While chopped or slivered almonds are essential, most modern recipes omit almond meal (ground almonds). I suspect it was either hard to come by or expensive, but the exploding “gluten-free” baking trend seems to have made it more readily available. I found a 1lb package at Trader Joes for $2.99. (BTW- never ever try to feed me gluten -free anything that really should have gluten in it. I will throw it at you) The almond meal really creates a nice texture. I also have been having a pretty strong sweet tooth this past week so I made this batch with mini chocolate chips.
Recipe after the jump ….
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