It has been a whirlwind of activity over here in Brunswick!
I am teaching four classes for the Library on Affordable Cooking, a Class on Modern Jewish Cooking at Now You’re Cooking in Bath, a class for the Beth Israel Congregation on Vegetarian Jewish Party Food, doing a fancy mocktail party for the folks at MCHPP and dun dun dun dah dah….. PLANNING MY FIRST POP-UP!!!!!! YES !
More details on that when they are fully sussed, but my friend Christine Burns-Rudalevige and I are planning some thing AMAAAAAAZING!
In the meantime…
Here are the recipes for the class I will be teaching tomorrow night on Modern Jewish Cooking– what is that you may ask?There are probably as many interpretations of that as there are the Torah. For me it’s food that strikes a cord of remembrance without being necessarily the traditional recipe, adding some thing unexpected, or mixing Ashkenazi with Sephardic flavors.
When I was young my grandparents would bring back oranges from Israel (also from Florida), and they would talk about how amazing the orange juice was there, and I imagine the after years of Eastern European fare that the explosive bright flavors of the Middle East were as much a part of the spiritual awe as the visit to the wailing wall was.
There are Eastern European flavors that have yet to make it to many of our tables as well, I often day dream about the dishes I would make for my grandparents if they were still here, ones that would open the doors to their food memories as children.
For my Poppa Hy who was Romanian I would make him pastrami spiced smoked lamb with a bit of spicy whisky spiked sour cherry chutney, a salad of slightly pickled kohlrabi ,radishes and parsley, and a halvah cake with roasted quince.
For my Nanny Mattie- the only one born in America (though of Russian decent) I would make for her the most perfect fried chicken, potato salad laced with caviar, an heirloom tomato salad and a raspberry tart, because she was very fancy.
For my Poppa Willy a communist from Warsaw, whose family were learned sophisticates I would make lightly fried slightly pickled trout with a horseradish cream, thick slices of schmaltz brushed garlic rubbed toasted pumpernickel bread, a salad of bitter greens and sweet onions and an apricot torte plus a glass of tea with plum jam and slivowitz.
And for Bella, my Bubbie, I would make a stew of wild mushrooms browned in butter and thyme enriched with mushroom stock with a thick dollop of sour cream and a flurry of dill fronds, I would make her slow slow roasted eggplant drizzled in tehina and pomegranate seeds, and a dense sour rye with handmade butter and raw scallions- and I would make her my impossibly rich flour-less chocolate cake.
If they were all together I would make them this meal, which would pay no particular allegiance to any but hint at all. (And since none of them really kept Kosher I would totally use butter all those places where you see coconut oil and sour cream in place of cashews and tofu)
RECIPES from Modern Jewish Cooking Class at Now You’re Cooking
- 1 cup all purpose or bread flour
- .25 cup rye flour
- 2 Tbs Buckwheat flour
- 2 tbs poppy seeds
- 1 teaspoon yeast (dry active or instant)
- .5 teaspoon kosher salt
- .5 cup warm water (110° F for active – 120° for instant)
- 2 teaspoons olive oil
- .25 cup sesame seeds
- 2 Tbs caraway seeds or nigella seeds
- Place flours, yeast, poppy seeds, and salt into a mixing bowl.
- Add water and oil and beat for 1 minute.
- Place dough (it will be sticky) on a floured surface and cover with a towel. Let rest for 10 minutes.
- After 10 min., preheat a cast iron skillet to med-high.
- Divide dough into four and shape each piece into a ball.
- Mix caraway seeds & sesame seeds and spread out on work surface
- Press each ball into the seeds on one side
- Roll each ball into a 6-inch circle.
- Cook on HOT cast iron pan brushed with olive oil
- Sprinkle with additional salt while hot if desired
Creamy Horseradish Vinaigrette (Dairy Free)
- .5 cup silken tofu
- 1 .5 tablespoons apple cider vinegar
- 1 clove garlic, minced
- 1 small shallot, minced
- 1 tablespoon prepared horseradish or grated fresh horseradish
- .25 cup water
- 2 tablespoon olive oil
- ½ cup chopped dill & chives
- Place tofu, vinegar, horseradish, garlic, shallots and ½ herbs in food processor
- Blend until pureed
- While processor is running , add water, followed by oil
- Season to taste with salt & pepper
- Stir in remaining herbs
Smoked Trout, Beet & Apple Salad
- 2 filet smoked trout
- 6 small steamed beets, peeled & steamed
- 1 tart apple
- 1 sweet apple (like a honey crisp or ginger-gold)
- 1 small shallot, thinly sliced
- juice & zest of 1 lemon
- dill fronds to garnish
- Squeeze half a lemon over shallot and let sit
- Skin trout and break in to bite size pieces , reserve skin for optional garnish
- Dice beets into cubes
- Peel apple and dice into cubes (same size as beets)
- Toss apples & beets with 1 tablespoon of Horseradish dressing
- Spoon a small amount of dressing in to the center of a plate
- Arrange beet and apple cubes + shallots over top
- Lay trout bits on top of that
- Scatter crisped trout skin & dill fronds over top
* Trout “Grebenes”
Charmoula Cornish Hen Stuffed with Ptitim & Quince
4 Cornish Game Hens
- 1 teaspoon cumin seeds
- 1/3 cup (15g) coarsely chopped flat-leaf parsley
- 1/3 cup (15g) coarsely chopped cilantro leaves and tender stems
- 1/3 cup mint
- 3 cloves garlic, peeled and chopped
- 1 teaspoon smoked paprika
- 1-2 teaspoons fresh lemon juice
- 1 tablespoon or so Orange Juice
- 6 to 8 tablespoons (90 to 125ml) olive oil
- 1/2 teaspoon salt
- 1/2 teaspoon harissa
Preheat oven to 450
- Place Hens in a large zip lock bag and pour 3 /4s of the marinade over then- squish and squeeze until each hen in completely covered- marinate 8- 24 hours
- Remove from marinade, pat dry
- Season inside with salt & pepper
- Stuff as much Cous Cous in as you can
- Sew shut or truss
- Arrange on a rack over a roasting pan, brush with olive oil
- Roast 30 minutes, reduce to 350- roast an additional 10-15 minutes until thigh meat registers 170
- Drizzle with reserved Charmoula
Spiced Ptitim with Quince & Hazelnuts
- 2 Cups Ptitim aka Isreali Cous Cous,
- 2 1/4 cups water
- 1 pinch saffron (optional) in 1 tbs hot water
- 1 cinnamon stick or 1 tsp cinnamon
- 4 cardamom pods
- 1 tablespoon dried rose petals (optional)
- 1.5 cup diced poach quince
- 1 preserved lemon, cored minced or 1 tablespoon lemon zest
- 2 Tbls olive oil
- Juice of 1 Lemon
- 1 Teaspoon chopped thyme leaves
- .25 cup chopped roasted hazelnuts
- Heat oil in bottom of a pan
- Add cinnamon stick & cardamom pods
- Heat until fragrant
- Add water, saffron, a few pinches of salt & rose petal
- Bring to a boil
- Add couscous bring to a boil
- Lower heat cover and simmer until all the water has been absorbed
- Whisk together lemon juice, thyme leaves, lemon zest & olive oil
- Pour over hot cous-cous mix to combine
- Gently fold in cubed Quince
- Serve warm or at Room temperature
- 4 quince
- 2 Tablespoons honey
- 2 strips orange zest
- 5-6 black peppercorns
- cinnamon stick
- Peel, quarter, and core each quince.
- Put the quinces, honey, and lemon zest in a 3-quart saucepan.
- Add enough water to cover the quinces by 1 inch (about 1-1/2 quarts).
- Bring to a boil over medium-high heat.
- Put a plate or a lid that’s smaller than the saucepan on the quinces to submerge them.
- Reduce the heat to a simmer and cook until the quinces are tender when pierced with a knife, about 45 minutes.
- Let them cool in the cooking liquid.
Butternut Squash, Red Carrot & Red Onion
- 1 large butternut squash, peeled & cubed
- 6 large red carrots, washed well, peeled only if not organic
- 2 red onions quartered
- 1-2 tablespoons olive oil
- salt & pepper
- 2 teaspoons sumac
- Heat oven to 450
- Place sheet pan in oven – 10 minutes until a drop of water beads on the surface
- Toss vegetables in salt, pepper & sumac
- Carefully remove sheet pan from oven
- Pour vegetables and arrange in a single layer
- Roast 30 minutes until soft and caramelized, stir every so often, keep an eye on the squash it will cook faster than the onions
- Arrange vegetables on a platter, drizzle tehina sauce over top, scatter herbs and nuts if using.
- ¼ cup tehina
- 3 tbs olive oil
- juice of 1 lemon
- 1 clove garlic, crushed
- ¼ cup cold water
- salt & pepper to taste
- chopped mint or parsley to garnish
- toasted sesame seeds or pine nuts (optional)
- Whisk together tehina, lemon juice & water
- Add garlic
- Whisk in olive oil until it is the consistency of honey
Caramelized Pear Blintzes with Cashew Sour Cream
- 1 cup flour
- 1-1/4 cup cashew milk or water
- 2 eggs
- 1 teaspoon sugar
- pinch of salt
- 1-1/4 tablespoons olive oil, divided
- Put everything in a blender or food processor and blend until smooth.
- Transfer to a bowl with a spout, cover and refrigerate for an hour.
- Heat a pan with coconut butter
- Pour enough batter into the center of the pan to cover about 1/3 of its surface area then quickly pick it up and use a swirling motion to cover the rest of the pan.
- Let this cook until the edges start turning brown and grab an edge with a flat spatula then use your fingers to lift the edge and get the rest of the spatula under the crêpe and flip it.
- Cook for about another 30 seconds or until you see some brown spots when you peak under the crêpe.
- Transfer to stack ,stack them on top of each other with a paper towel between each one
From Crepe to Blintz
- Place 1 1/2 tbs of caramelized pear in off center, closer to left hand side
- Fold bottom up mid way to filling
- Fold top down
- Fold left side and roll towards right side
Repeat until complete , you can freeze if you like for later use
- Heat knob of coconut oil in pan
- Lay blintz seam side down
- Cook until edges start to brow the flip
- Allow other side to brown
- Remove to warm plate
Serve with dollop of Cashew Cream and a scattering of maple cashews
- 5 almost ripe pears, peeled, cored and diced
- 2 tablespoon brown sugar
- pinch salt
- 1 vanilla bean scraped
- 1 Tbs coconut oil
- Heat coconut oil in pan
- Add pears & vanilla
- Stir to combine
- Add sugar and salt
- Saute over low heat, until fragrant and soft
- Let cool slightly
Cashew sour cream
- 1 cup raw cashews
- 2 teaspoons cider vinegar
- 1 teaspoon lemon juice
- 1/8 teaspoon fine sea salt
- Soak 20 minutes
- Blitz in blender till creamy and smooth