Archive for April, 2011

Schlissel Challah

April 28, 2011

It is a custom to bake a schlissel challah (key challah) for the first Shabbos after Passover. There are different traditions, with some baking their house key (wrapped in foil) into the challah, and some baking an image of a key into the top of the challah.

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Creamy Citrus Almond Dressing

April 28, 2011

I was given a jar of almond butter that was certified as kosher for Passover, and I wanted to make creative use of it. At first, I was focused on desserts, but then I thought about all the savory uses made of peanut butter and decided to work on a salad dressing.

Asian peanut butter sauce was my original inspiration, but the final results are entirely different and much more subtle.  This healthy citrus-ey sauce has a lushness that suggests a much richer cream or mayonnaise base.

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Naked Spanakopita

April 27, 2011

For Passover, I made a spinach kugel inspired by a recipe from Ina Garten’s first book. Her recipe for spinach pie has enticed me since I bought her book many years ago. The concept is that it is like spanakopita, but with more filling. Ina’s recipe calls for lining a small pan with a few layers of buttered filo, and then piling on a huge mound of spinach. I was thinking at first of replacing the filo with Passover blintz leaves (bletlach), but got lazy and decided to leave the spinach pie “naked.”

The resulting spinach kugel was delicious, but I think I would like it better spread thinner, in a larger pan. Next time, I would use a 9″x13″ pan instead of an 8″ pan.

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Gluten-Free German Chocolate Cake

April 27, 2011

You will not believe that this German chocolate cake is gluten-free. I served this to serious German chocolate cake fans, and they were incredulous.

The cake is moist, with an intense chocolate flavor that stands up to the decadent frosting. (more…)

Coconut Cookies, Two Ways

April 27, 2011

Francois Payard has a recipe for coconut tuiles in Simply Sensational Desserts that I thought would be perfect for Passover. The ingredients are just powdered sugar, eggs, melted butter, and coconut.

I was a little uncertain about substituting kosher for Passover powdered sugar for the powdered sugar called for in the recipe, so I used an equal weight of regular granulated sugar and tried to dissolve it well in the eggs before adding the shredded coconut. I left out the small amount of melted butter the recipe called for and added in a bit of vanilla.

Well, maybe it was all my changes (I am going to try the recipe again), but I did not get the wafer thin cookies that I was aiming for. The cookie were thin and crisp, but not thin enough to be tuiles. I went in the other direction, baking the cookies as thick as possible. The resulting cookies were chewy macaroons.

The flavor of the cookies was pleasant enough, but what really made these cookies taste special was spreading them with tart lemon curd. Heavenly. These cookies are the ideal complement for a lemon mousse, but they would be luscious dipped in chocolate as well.

Something for me to experiment with again . . . (more…)

Passover Cheesecake

April 27, 2011

Two small cheesecakes, one vanilla and one chocolate.

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You Say Apple Cake, I Say Apple Kugel

April 21, 2011

The above picture is from this much earlier post–I have no pictures from the two apple cakes/kugels that I made for Pesach. But, it is the same recipe, an apple cake based on a recipe by Dorie Greenspan that works perfectly as a kugel.

My sister says that she has an apple kugel that is phenomenal. It, too, is really an apple cake recipe that can be served as a kugel. And, as you can see, the recipe is rather similar to my recipe, but with a hazelnut topping. (more…)

Chocolate Cake with Mocha Frosting, Coffee Chips, and Toffee Crunch

April 21, 2011

This Passover chocolate cake, with mocha frosting, with espresso mini chips and chopped toffee pressed into the sides and top.

Homemade Almond Coconut Macaroons

April 21, 2011

I love Passover macaroons. These cookies taste like a cross between almond macaroons and the coconut macs that come in the can. (more…)

Also . . . .

April 21, 2011

Gluten-free mandelbread thins.

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