Passover orders are rolling in and I wonder (as I do every year) how I will manage to do all of the shopping and cooking for just two big days. I have already started to prepare some things for my own Passover Seder which for the first night will be an all-vegetarian one (Greek Matzah Meal-Spinach Pie, Layered Matzah & Cheese Mina, Syrian Pistachio Macaroons with Orange Blossom Water, Syrian Apricot Charoset, and Yemenite Date-Raisin-Pomegranate Charoset — all safe and sound in the freezer by now!).
Lenore is another great client of mine and she lives just around the block, so it’s very convenient. Because her family cannot all be together on the actual dates of the Seders, we are doing a “pre-Passover” Seder (with all of the traditional trimmings) on Sunday, March 17th, which happens to also be St. Patrick’s Day. Green is the color of choice to symbolize the Irish as well as St. Patrick’s Day, and it got me thinking about the karpas on the Seder plate (the green vegetable representing spring). Perhaps on this night we should dip a bunch of four leaf clovers into our salt water to ensure a year of good luck? Either way I think that I already have the luck of the Irish since cooking a Seder on Sunday gives me time to recuperate before preparing for four more Seders the following week. (Thank you Lenore!)
Trio of Charosets:
–Syrian Charoset with Apricots, Pistachios, and Orange Blossom Water
–Moroccan Charocet “Truffles” with Dates, Raisins, and Walnuts, Rolled in Cinnamon
–Libyan Charoset with Pecans, Dates, Allspice, Nutmeg, and Fresh Ginger
*Above served with mini matzah crackers
Italian Whitefish with Capers, Caramelized Onions and Horseradish Marinade
(in place of usual gefilte fish)
Mixed Green Salad with Avocados, Artichoke Hearts, Toasted Nuts
Moroccan/Syrian Chicken with Lemon, Olives, and Oregano
Sephardic Brisket with Prunes, Onions, Cumin, Coriander, and Ginger
Potato Kugel (gotta find a good Ashkenazi recipe!)
Syrian Style Long Grain White Rice with Fried Onions and Pine Nuts
Pistachio Macaroons with Orange Blossom Water
Sweet & Salty Toasted Ground Almond Cake with Almond Syrup
*Ask Lenore to provide sorbets, fresh fruit, maybe chocolate things?
Norene Gilletz’s potato kugel. Amazing recipe, glass dish makes it crispy. I look forward to it all year (our hostess makes it)
1/4 cup oil
4 large potatoes, peeled and cut in chunks
1 large onion, cut in chunks
1 1/2 teaspoon salt (or to taste)
1/4 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
1/4 cup flour or potato starch
Preheat oven to 375°F. Pour oil in 7 x 11-inch or 8-inch square glass baking dish. Place casserole in oven and heat until oil is piping hot, about 5 minutes.
Grater attachment (food processor): Grate potatoes, using light pressure. (The harder you press, the coarser the texture.) Transfer potatoes to a colander. To wash out the starch and keep potatoes white, rinse under cold running water. Squeeze dry and pat with paper towel.
Steel Blade attachment: Process onion until minced, about 8 seconds. Scrape down sides of bowl. Add eggs, salt and pepper. Process for 3 to 4 seconds. Combine with grated potatoes and flour or potato starch in a large mixing bowl. Add about 3 tbsp. oil, leaving remaining oil in casserole. Mix well.
Pour potato mixture into casserole. Sprinkle a little additional oil on top. Bake uncovered for about 1 hour, or until well browned and crispy.
6 to 8 servings. Keeps 2 to 3 days in the refrigerator. Reheats well. Freezing is not recommended.
Thanks Norene. I am thinking about what a Sephardic kind of kugel would be. The Persians have various baked vegetable pies called “kuku-ye” that are similar to the frittata in that they use a lot of eggs mixed with a vegetable and bake it in the oven. One particularly simple and good one is made with cauliflower, eggs, salt, pepper, and a little bit of oil.
Hi Jennifer. That sounds yummy. The Sephardi friends I put you in touch with for the Passover cookbook a few years ago make really nice vegetable pies. I love potato kugel but find other kugels too starchy. Frittatas are great though and nice and filling for Pesach.
Did we chat about the book Stella’s Sephardic Table?
I might make your apricot jam for Passover as they don’t have any good ones in the stores.
Hi Denise, I once interviewed Stella for my Passover cookbook and have heard of her new cookbook. I should get it and take a look! If you like apricots, you should check out my Syrian apricot charoset recipe on the blog: http://toogoodtopassover.com/2013/03/04/syrian-charoset-with-apricots-orange-blossom-water-and-almonds/