photo: Whitney Fisch

photo: Whitney Fisch

Yearning for something pasta-like with a savory kick just about now? Of course, you are! We’re mid-way through Passover! 

And while vegan may not be your thang, these “meatballs” may just change your mind.

Whitney Fisch, blogger at JewHungry dreamt up this Spaghetti Squash with Homemade Tomato Sauce and Quinoa Meatballs for a gluten-free, meat-free spaghetti like treat. Be sure to visit her blog to see what else she’s whipping up.

Note: In her header notes for this recipe, Whit refers to cashew cream as an alternative or addition to tomato sauce. For that recipe click here and scroll ALL the way down through her drool worthy round-up of decadent mac n’ cheese recipes. It’s there, promise!

This recipe was created for our collaborative e-book, 4 Bloggers Dish: Passover; Modern Twists on Traditional Flavors, 2014.

Spaghetti Squash with Quinoa Meatballs

4 servings

My family has adopted this recipe during the non-Passover days as we continue to lessen the amount of pasta we consume. Plus, this is another one of those sneaky recipes where I trick my toddler into eating vegetables. I like to add the cashew cream sauce that I make to the marinara sauce sometimes just to spice things up. Or, if you’re not a tomato fan, you can add the cashew pesto sauce to the spaghetti squash and omit the marinara altogether. Finally, I like to add honey to my recipe because I prefer a sweeter sauce, but feel free to omit it per your taste preference. Whitney Fisch

This recipe is kosher for Passover, pareve (dairy-free), vegan and gluten-free


    for Spaghetti Squash and Sauce:
  • 1 spaghetti squash, cut in half and roasted
  • 2 lbs. of Roma tomatoes, coarsely chopped
  • 5 tbsp of oil
  • 1 medium onion, chopped
  • 5 cloves garlic, chopped
  • 3 tbsp tomato paste
  • 1 tbsp kosher salt
  • 1 tbsp pepper
  • 2 tbsp dried oregano
  • 2 tbsp fresh basil, finely chopped
  • 2 tbsp honey (optional)
  • for Quinoa Meatballs:
  • Prep Time: 10 minutes
  • 2 cups of cooked quinoa
  • 2 tbsp tomato paste
  • 1 egg
  • ¼ cup almond flour
  • 2 tbsp dried oregano
  • 1 tbsp garlic powder
  • ½ tbsp kosher salt
  • 1 tbsp pepper


    for Roasting Spaghetti Squash:
  1. Cut the squash in half lengthwise with a sharp knife. Be careful, go slow, and cautiously slice the squash in half.
  2. Scoop out and discard the seeds.
  3. Preheat the oven to 400 degrees.
  4. Place squash halves cut side up on a baking sheet. Brush with oil and season with salt and pepper.
  5. Roast for about 45 to 50 minutes, or until a fork punctures the flesh of the squash easily. If the squash seems to be drying out while baking, brush with an additional tablespoon oil.
  6. Remove squash from the oven and allow it to cool just enough so you can handle it, about 3 to 4 minutes.
  7. Scrape the flesh from the squash into wonderful, stringy “noodles” with a sturdy fork and place in a small serving bowl. If some of the strands clump or gather together, simply separate them using your hands.
  8. for Quinoa Meatballs:
  9. Cook the quinoa according to the directions on the bag
  10. Once quinoa is cooked, let cool for 10 minutes or until room temperature
  11. Combine cooked quinoa, tomato paste, egg, almond flour and spices into a mixing bowl and stir until equally mixed.
  12. Using wet hands, form quinoa mixture into 1 inch balls.
  13. Arrange meatballs on a rimmed baking sheet sprayed with oil, and bake about 15 to 20 minutes.
  14. for Marinara Sauce:
  15. Using a large skillet, heat oil over medium high heat. Add onions and garlic to the skillet and sauté until onions are translucent.
  16. Next, add the tomatoes to the pan and sauté for another 5 minutes or until tomatoes have begun to break down.
  17. Add the spices and tomato paste to the skill and stir to combine.
  18. Reduce heat to low, cover and let sauce simmer for 15 – 20 minutes, stirring occasionally.
  19. With roughly 5 minutes left to simmer, taste the sauce and adjust the spices according to your preference.
  20. Add the honey
  21. Once the sauce has broken down, turn off the heat. Using an immersion blender, blend the sauce together until smooth. Taste and adjust seasoning as needed.


Do- ahead:

Meatballs can be frozen for up to a week. Again, rewarm in a 350 degree oven. Sauce may be kept in an air-tight container for up to a week.



Originally Posted in “Spaghetti Squash with Quinoa Meatballs
photo: Amy Krtizer

photo: Amy Krtizer

We don’t think it’s possible or even imaginable to make it through Passover without a few kugels on the holiday table.

And why not?

 They serve a crowd and can be assembled in advance. They can lean sweet and creamy or savory and sassy.  And they’re a perfect vehicle for tossing in extra vitamin packed veggies and fresh flavors with snipped herbs of most any kind.

Thanks, Amy Kritzer, blogger at What Jew Wanna Eat, for sharing this recipe with our readers. We’re thoroughly charmed by these little darlings.

Here’s Amy’s perspective on their adorable size: “Why are mini things so much better? Cupcakes are better than cake; sliders beat out big burgers. And these individual kugels dominate normal, big kugels. Plus, there is some zucchini sneaked in there for a healthy kick.”

When it was time to chose a cover image for “4 Bloggers Dish: Passover” we all agreed to use this gorgeous photo from Amy. You may remember it from all of our shameless PR but you may not have tried this recipe yet. DO!

Are you serving kugel at your Passover Seder or during the holiday week? Tell us what your family favorites are!



Individual Potato and Zucchini Kugels

12 servings

Amy Kritzer first published this recipe in our e-book, "4 Bloggers Dish: Passover". We loved it so much that we graced our book cover with the image.

This recipe is Passover ready. It is non-dairy (pareve) and gebrokts


  • 2 medium potatoes, washed well
  • 2 medium zucchini, washed well
  • 2 cloves garlic
  • 1/2 onion
  • 1/4 cup vegetable or olive oil
  • 3 eggs, whisked
  • 3 tablespoons matzo meal
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • 1/2 teaspoon pepper
  • 1/4 teaspoon of sugar


  1. Preheat oven to 400 degrees
  2. Grease one muffin tin or line it with cupcake liners. Set aside.
  3. Grate the peeled potatoes, unpeeled zucchini, garlic, and onions by hand or with a food processor. Squeeze out any liquid with cheesecloth or paper towels.
  4. In a bowl, mix together oil, eggs, matzo meal, salt, pepper, and sugar.
  5. Add the potato mixture to the egg mixture and combine.
  6. Scoop into greased muffin tins and cook 40 minutes or until golden brown.


Freezer Instructions: Once kugels have cooled, wrap tightly and freeze for up to 2 months.

Prep Ahead Guide: Can be made 3 days in advance.

Originally Posted in “Kugelettes Are More Fun
Photo: Liz Rueven

Photo: Liz Rueven

I’ve been feeling all warm and fuzzy as we wind our way towards Passover this year.

It was only a year ago that I met three like-minded bloggers and we had the crazy idea of pooling our very different viewpoints and co-authoring a Passover cookbook together. We bonded over countless hours of recipe brainstorming, strategizing, and late night laughter, ditzy from too many hours of Google Chat.

In just four intensely focused months, we created the e-book, 4 Bloggers Dish: Passover, Modern Twists on Traditional Flavors.

The beauty of it is, that we are now true friends, despite the fact that we have never all been in the same room.  If any of us were to need something, food related or not, I believe we would be right there for each other. Talk about the beauty of technology!

I finally met Whitney Fisch in L. A. this fall, and we fell into breathless conversation over kosher Mexican tacos as if we were old pals.  Sarah Lasry and I are lucky enough to live on the same coast and try to make the time to meet in the city. I recently introduced her to my community in CT where she taught an awesome class in hamantaschen making for Purim. Amy Kritzer is coming up from Austin to check out the NYC scene this week and to celebrate with family. We have an early morning breakfast date to eat too much chocolate laced babke and shoot pics of early spring veggies at the Union Sq. Greenmarket.

I encourage you to check out their blogs (click on their names, above). I know you’ll love them as much as I do.

In the spirit of our one year anniversary I’ll be posting some of our favorite recipes from our e-book. Of course, we would love for you to click on over to AMAZON and buy it here. Shameless plug,  I know.

Wishing you all an inspired week of preparation and happy cooking.

Dilly Leek Croquettes for Passover

16 croquettes, 2 inches each

Leeks are often used as a symbol of Spring on the Passover Seder plate. Their bright green color and gradation of tone from white to wintery dark green, reminds us of our transition to a new season and rebirth as the earth awakens.

If you use leeks on your Seder plate, buy extra so that you will have them handy for this easy side dish. If you don’t, pick them up when stocking your vegetable bin so you can enjoy the mellow onion flavor of these delicious croquettes (a latke by another name, I know).

This recipe is pareve (non-dairy) and gebrokts


  • 4 medium leeks, dark green tops (1-2 inches) removed and discarded. Clean very well under running water to remove the trapped dirt. Rough chop.
  • 2 medium-large Idaho potatoes, peeled and quartered.
  • 3 eggs (1 set aside)
  • ¼ cup matzah meal
  • 2 Tb. fresh dill, washed, dried and chopped (must be fresh)
  • salt and pepper to taste
  • canola oil for frying


  1. Place chopped leeks and potatoes in large pot of water. Fill water to 1 inch over the vegetables. Simmer 35-40 minutes or until fork pierces through potatoes.
  2. Drain vegetables in mesh strainer. When cool enough, use hands to press as much water as possible out of the veggies. Pat dry with paper towels.
  3. Place cooked leeks and potatoes in a large mixing bowl and use an egg masher to smash the veggies.
  4. Beat 2 eggs and add to the mixture. Add matzah meal , salt and pepper and fresh dill.
  5. Heat ¼ inch of oil in large, non-stick pan until hot but not smoking.
  6. Beat last egg. Arrange bowl of mixture and egg near frying pan.
  7. Form 2 inch patties with your hands and flatten slightly. Carefully dip into egg and allow excess to drip back into the egg bowl.
  8. Gently place the patties in frying pan and cook until lightly browned. Flip and cook second side.
  9. Remove from pan and place croquettes on a plate lined with paper towels. Serve hot.


Tip: These tasty croquettes may be served with a squeeze of lemon alongside any chicken, fish or meat dish. For a dairy meal, consider serving them topped with a dollop of sour cream or plain yogurt.

Prep Ahead Guide: They may be made 1-2 days in advance and re-heated on a foil lined tray in a 350 degree oven.

Freezer Instructions: Flash freeze these tasty croquettes by placing them in a single layer on a foil lined tray on an even surface in the freezer. After 2 hours, place them in a Ziploc bag and seal well. Flash freezing prevents them from sticking to each other, allowing you to remove a few at a time. Re-heat in 350 degree oven on a foil lined tray.


Originally Posted in “Dilly Leek Croquettes for Passover
photo: Liz Rueven

photo: Liz Rueven

Macaroons for Passover are as ubiquitous as rain in springtime. And why not? Gluten-free, dairy-free and super easy to make, you can march yourself right by those packaged goods and whip these up in no time.

Here’s the easiest and most basic recipe for this Passover classic. Consider it a starting point. Add mix-in’s that catch your fancy. Consider chopped pistachios or almonds, chocolate chips, orange or lemon zest or poppy seeeds. Dip into melted chocolate (or drizzle) and they become gourmet. Bake your own and you’ll relish these moist mounds in a whole new way.

Thank you, Tova’s All Natural, for this recipe.

And no guilt, please, if you’re not up for baking. Click here for all you need to know about where to order your Passover desserts.

Chocolate Dipped Macaroons

18 macaroons

Passover macaroons are a great basic to keep on hand because they store well and stay moist.

Here's a super easy, basic recipe. Get creative with mix in's and they will look and taste gourmet.

This recipe is kosher for Passover, gluten-free and dairy free (pareve)


  • 1 1/3 Cup of sweetened coconut flakes
  • 1/3 cup of sugar
  • 2 Egg whites
  • 1-2 Tablespoons of potato starch
  • 1 Teaspoon Vanilla
  • A pinch of salt
  • 3-4 ounces of fine kosher for Passover chocolate melted (to dip baked and cooled macaroons)


  1. Preheat oven to 325 degrees
  2. Combine ingredients in a mixer then scoop or shape into 1 ounce rounds
  3. Place on lined or sprayed baking sheet
  4. Bake for 18-20 minutes until browned
  5. When cooled, dip in chocolate and let them cool to form a thin shell


Thank you, Tova's All Natural, for this recipe


Originally Posted in “Chocolate Dipped Macaroons
Thai Coconut Tilapia courtesy of Marcia Selden Catering

Thai Coconut Tilapia courtesy of Marcia Selden Catering

Contributed by Marcia Selden Catering

We all know someone (heck it could be us) who says they don’t like fish.  Most likely it’s because they say it smells, well… fishy.  These dishes will convert even the staunchest non-fish eaters with these mild and delicious recipes.

Tilapia is a great intro fish because not only does it not smell like anything, it has a very mild taste and texture.  It’s readily available, the texture is very similar to chicken, and the best part?  Tilapia cooks very quickly, so you’ll have dinner ready in NO time! Also, while we don’t normally love frozen fish, tilapia is fine to buy frozen.  It defrosts in a few minutes in a bowl of warm water.

Haddock, scrod or cod are your next best bet, still very mild but a little thicker in texture.  Any of these recipes can be made with any of these fishes.

Thai Coconut Tilapia

4 servings

Coconut milk lends creaminess to this spicy fish dish. Control the heat by adjusting the amount of red curry paste and sriracha.

This dish is non-dairy (pareve) and fish.


  • 1 Tbs. coconut oil (or any cooking oil)
  • 1 small red onion
  • 1 bunch of green beans
  • 1 large carrot, peeled and thinly sliced
  • 1 red pepper, cut into thin strips
  • 1 can light coconut milk
  • 3 Tbs. Thai red curry paste
  • 4 tilapia fillets- 4 oz. each
  • ½ C. diced cilantro
  • ¼ C. thinly sliced scallions
  • 1 lime, cut into 4 wedges
  • Kosher salt
  • Sriracha (optional)


  1. Heat a large pan to medium heat. Melt coconut oil in the pan, and sauté onion until it begins to soften, about 2 minutes.
  2. Add carrots and cook for about 5 minutes. Add green beans and red pepper.
  3. Add curry paste and coconut milk to the pan. Stir until the curry paste is fully dissolved into the coconut milk, cook for 5 minutes.
  4. Add fish and cook on medium high heat for 5 to 6 minutes.
  5. Season to taste with salt and garnish with cilantro, green onion, and a wedge of lime before serving.

Mediterranean Tilapia Saute

4 servings

This easy one-pan dish sings with the basic flavors of the Mediterranean.

Serve over any whole grain and your meal is complete.

This recipe is non-dairy (pareve) and fish.


  • 2 tsp. olive oil, divided
  • 1 small onion, diced
  • ½ C. white wine
  • 3 cloves garlic, thinly sliced
  • 4 (4-ounce) tilapia fillets
  • 1 C. canned petit Italian seasoned diced tomatoes, with juice
  • ½ C. chopped pitted green or black Greek olives
  • 2 Tbs. capers
  • 1/4 Tsp. dried crushed red pepper, optional
  • 2 C. packed fresh baby spinach leaves
  • Salt and pepper


  1. In a large nonstick skillet heat 2 teaspoons of oil over a medium-high heat.
  2. Add onion and sauté for 2 minutes.
  3. Add the wine, garlic, fish, tomatoes, olives and capers and crushed red pepper.
  4. Cover and cook until fish is opaque in the center, about 2½ minutes per side.
  5. Remove lid, add spinach and continue cooking for 3 minutes.
  6. Season with salt and pepper.

Coconut Panko Crusted Tilapia

4 servings

For anyone who loves their fish with a crispy coating, here's a great solution without frying in an abundance of oil.

This recipe is non-dairy (pareve) and fish.


  • 1 C. flour
  • 2 eggs
  • ½ C. unsweetened coconut flakes
  • 1 Tbs. chili powder
  • 1 C. Panko breadcrumbs
  • 1 tsp. Kosher salt
  • 4 tilapia fillets
  • 2 Tbs. vegetable oil


  1. Place flour in a shallow bowl or dish. In a small mixing bowl, whisk eggs until combined.
  2. On a plate, mix coconut, Panko, chili powder, and salt with a fork.
  3. Heat oil in a medium saucepan over low heat.
  4. Dip tilapia first into flour, then into egg and lastly into coconut-Panko mixture.
  5. Place breaded fish in pan, increase heat to medium and cook on first side for 1½-2 minutes.
  6. Flip fillets and cook on other side until fish is cooked through and flakes easily with a fork, about 3 more minutes.

Originally Posted in “Three Fish Recipes for Non- Fish Lovers

Photo: Michael Bennett Kress

The New Passover Menu by Paula Shoyer enticed me from the first moment I flipped through it’s fifty plus recipes. And for fans of Shoyer’s previous baking cookbooks,  you’ll be thrilled to find 16 mostly gluten-free, kosher for Passover desserts.

Paula’s straight forward approach and sense of humor infuse these pages with easy to follow and mostly health conscious recipes. She begins with an overview called “Freedom from Passover Food Oppression”, reminding home cooks about how stringent Passover food restrictions can be. And then she offers solutions.

Shoyer breaks it all down with simple instructions on preparing for the holiday, planing your Seder table and arranging your Seder plate.

Once the foundations and rules are set (great reminders even for experienced celebrants and useful for newcomers) she launches eight menus, each with 4-6 dishes, including longer sections for an “Updated Ashkenazic Seder Menu” and an “International Seder Menu“. These eight menus are supplemented with a Breakfast section (gluten- free waffles and pancakes? yes, please) and a decadent dessert section, the area that Shoyer is best known for.

Starting at the beginning, I jumped into her chapter on new ideas for the Ashkenazic menu to see what she would illuminate as NEW.

I found it in her recipe for  Chicken Soup with Chicken Meatballs and Zucchini Spaghetti (scroll down for recipe).

Her soup is a traditional and basic chicken soup, much like mine. The twist is in the lovely rendition of protein rich chicken dumplings floating in broth. For those who don’t want the calories of matzah balls, this is a great solution. And for those who love ‘em, she confesses freely to using the packaged mix (ok, I do too) and shares ideas on how to fancy them up with additions like chopped cilantro, parsley or ginger.

What’s really new here is a reliance on fresh ingredients and much less filler like matzah meal and other starches. Take her Asparagus, Zucchini and Leek Kugel (seasonal!) which only includes a 1/4 cup of matzah meal and is sans potatoes. Here’s a great way to lighten up, include a load of spring greens and honor culinary traditions. For those of you who  can’t imagine a kugel-less Seder, this one’s for you.

The International Seder Menu includes eight recipes influenced by the flavors of Turkey, Morocco, France and the U.S. You’ll find the requisite Middle Eastern Charoset, chunky with textures of chopped dates and figs and seasoned with nutmeg and ginger. Consider serving an array of different Charoset renditions at your Seder and get the conversation going about where they originated and why certain ingredients were used in different countries.

photo: Michael Bennett Kress

I love the Sephardic Poached Fish in Pepper Sauce loaded with garlic, onions, fresh cilantro and plenty of chili powder. Shoyer suggests serving it as a main course for lunch. I see it as a lighter and spicier alternative to heavier meats or braised chicken for a weeknight dinner.

The chapters called Italian Vegetarian Menu and BBQ Dinner Menu feel particularly fresh, with the former including a touching tribute to Shoyer’s father, Reubin Marcus, when he was stationed in Northern Italy during WWII. She lovingly tells the story of how he and his army buddies organized two Seders with plenty of moxie and out-of-the-box creativity and planning, while stationed there.

With that, Shoyer includes four straightforward Italian dishes including a handy and easy Gnocchi with tomato and light cream sauce and this do-ahead crowd pleaser, Eggplant Parmesan.

photo: Michael Bennett Kress

The BBQ Diner Menu reminds us that Passover is a celebration of the emerging spring season. Shoyer reminds us to fire up the BBQ if weather permits. Basic recipes for Garlic Marinated Steak with Onion Jam and Roasted Eggplant with Bell Pepper Vinaigrette will have me reaching for this volume long after the holiday ends.

photo: Michael Bennett Kress

Shoyer is a renowned kosher baker so her fans will turn to the final section of this cookbook  with much anticipation. They will be pleased.

photo: Michael Bennett Kress


She includes 15 new desserts, many of which are gluten-free. Like her prior baking books, she presents a broad range of baked goods here including Fully Loaded Cookie Bars (jammed with pistachios, pecans, shredded coconut, ground almonds,chocolate chips, raisins and dried cranberries- whew!), easy-to-make Triple Chocolate Biscotti and this elegant  hazelnut, coffee infused Opera Cake, filled and topped with chocolate ganache.

The New Passover Menu would make a great holiday gift or a handy all-in-one Passover addition to your own library.  We’re giving one copy away so be sure to click back in tomorrow to enter. It will be easy, promise!

To read more about why we love Paula’s The Kosher Baker click here.

All photos and recipe reprinted with permission from New Passover Menu © 2015 by Paula Shoyer, Sterling Publishing Co., Inc. Photography by Michael Bennett Kress

Chicken Soup with Chicken Meatballs & Zucchini Spaghetti

14-16 servings

This recipe is from The New Passover Menu by Paula Shoyer. All photos and recipe reprinted with permission from New Passover Menu © 2015 by Paula Shoyer, Sterling Publishing Co., Inc. Photography by Michael Bennett Kress.

Advance prep: Soup may be made 3 days in advance or frozen; meatballs may be made 1 day in advance.

Equipment: Measuring cups and spoons • Large soup pot • Cutting board • Knives • Vegetable peeler • 2 medium bowls • Large sieve or strainer • Garlic press • Food processor

From Paula Shoyer: "Like most people, I love matzoh balls. Although everyone knows me as a from-scratch baker, I am admitting here that I always make matzoh balls from the mix. After eating my mother’s matzoh balls for years, which alternated from year to year between light and fluffy and something else (I think because of variations in egg sizes), once I tried the balls from the mix, I never went back. Constant dieting has forced me to avoid them, so I developed chicken meatballs as an alternative. They even look like matzoh balls. But the traditionalists out there need not worry, as I have also provided ideas below for updating traditional matzoh balls."


    For the Soup
  • 2 whole medium chickens, cut into pieces
  • 2 large onions, quartered
  • 6 carrots, peeled and cut in half
  • 1 leek, white and light green parts only, cut lengthwise in half
  • 6 stalks celery with leaves, cut crosswise in half
  • 4 cloves garlic, peeled
  • 2 parsnips, peeled and cut in thirds
  • 1 fennel bulb, quartered
  • 1 turnip, peeled and quartered
  • 2 bay leaves
  • 1 tablespoon kosher salt
  • 1 gallon (3.8L) water
  • ½ bunch parsley
  • ½ bunch dill
  • Salt and black pepper
  • For the Chicken Meatballs
  • 2 boneless chicken breasts (about 5–6 ounces each)
  • 1/4 cup (60ml) chicken stock
  • 2 tablespoons ground almonds or matzoh meal
  • 2 cloves garlic, crushed
  • 1 large egg
  • 2 scallions, thinly sliced
  • 1/4 teaspoon salt
  • 1/4 teaspoon black pepper
  • for the GARNISH
  • 2 medium zucchini, not peeled


    To make the soup
  1. PLACE the chicken pieces in a large pot. Add the onions, carrots, leek, celery, garlic, parsnips, fennel, turnip, bay leaves, and salt.
  2. Add the water and bring to a boil.
  3. Use a large spoon to skim the scum off the top of the soup. Cover the pot, reduce the heat to low, and let the soup simmer, checking after 5 minutes and skimming off any additional scum.
  4. Add the parsley and dill, cover, and simmer for 2 hours. Let cool.
  5. Strain through a large sieve, reserving the carrots to return to the soup when serving.
  6. Taste the soup and add more salt or pepper if necessary.
  7. To make the meatballs
  8. WHILE the soup is cooking, prepare the meatball mixture.
  9. In the bowl of a food processor with the metal blade attachment, mix together the chicken, stock, ground almonds, garlic, and egg until a paste forms.
  10. Add the scallions, salt, and pepper and pulse a few times to mix.
  11. Transfer the meatball mixture to a medium bowl, cover with plastic wrap, and chill for up to 1 day, until ready to shape and cook the meatballs.
  12. USE a spoon to scoop up the meatball batter and wet hands to shape it into 1 1/2-inch (4-cm) balls. Bring the strained soup to a simmer, add the meatballs, cover, and cook for 8 minutes.
  13. To make the garnish
  14. MEANWHILE, prepare the zucchini “spaghetti” for the garnish.
  15. Slice the zucchini lengthwise into 1/4-inch-thick (6-mm) slices.
  16. Keeping the stack together, use a vegetable peeler to shave the zucchini into long strips.
  17. Slice the reserved cooked carrots into rounds and return them to the soup.
  18. Top each serving of soup and meatballs with some of the zucchini spaghetti.


Matzoh Ball Variations (gebrokts)

Combine your choice of any one of the following with one packet from a 5-ounce (142g) package of matzoh ball mix to make 13 matzoh balls. Plan on 2 matzoh balls per person:

• 1 teaspoon fresh finely chopped ginger plus 2 teaspoons finely chopped cilantro

• ½ teaspoon black pepper

• 1 carrot peeled and chopped into 1/4 inch (6 mm) pieces

• 1½ teaspoons mixed finely chopped fresh herbs, such as rosemary, thyme, and basil

Originally Posted in “Chicken Soup-Hold the Matzah Balls
photo: Liz Rueven

photo: Liz Rueven

Contributed by Melissa Roberts

By now, winter feels endless. Had enough heavy stews and soups already? Even when stuck in winter’s grip, you can bring the warmth of sunnier climes to the table with this one dish fish entree that combines the flavors of Provence.

Thick cod fillets are nestled in a rustic tomato based sauce with fennel, bell pepper, plenty of sliced garlic, onions and olives. The vegetables are cooked down to their essential richness, then finished with a hit of orange zest. The ease of this dish is perfect for a weekday meal rotation, and even better, the sauce’s flavors deepen if made a day or two ahead. Just reheat in the baking dish or bring to room temperature before adding the cod.

photo: Liz Rueven

photo: Liz Rueven

Cod in Provencal Fennel-Tomato Sauce

4 servings

Recipe: Melissa Roberts

A deglaze of Pernod or Pastis, an anise flavored liquor (and distant cousin of absinthe) complements the licorice flavor of the fennel in the sauce. In fact, it’s an essential ingredient in bouillabaise, a Provencal classic. If you don’t have Pernod on hand and prefer not to add it to your bar collection, white wine can easily be substituted without sacrificing flavor. Butter is added at the end to enrich the sauce, but can be also be omitted if making the dish dairy free. Flexibility is key to rustic cooking.

This recipe is dairy with pareve (non-dairy) option


  • 4 tablespoons olive oil, divided
  • 1 medium yellow or red onion, chopped
  • 1 medium fennel bulb with tops, tough outer layer trimmed and bulb chopped (reserve fronds)
  • 1 medium bell pepper (any color), chopped
  • 2 fat garlic cloves, thinly sliced
  • kosher salt and freshly ground black pepper
  • 3 tablespoons Pastis or Pernod*
  • 1 (32 ounce) can peeled plum tomatoes, drained of juice
  • 1/3 cup pitted picholine or kalamata olives, halved
  • 1 tablespoon unsalted butter**
  • 4 (6 ounce) center cut Atlantic cod fillets
  • 1 orange


  1. Heat 3 tablespoons oil in a 12-inch heavy skillet over medium heat.
  2. Add onion, fennel, and ½ teaspoon salt and cook, stirring occasionally, until just softened, about 10 minutes.
  3. Add pepper and garlic and cook, stirring occasionally until vegetables are completely softened, 8 to 10 minutes more.
  4. Add Pastis and cook, stirring until half of liquor is evaporated. Add tomatoes, crushing them with your hands or with the back of a spoon, then olives and ½ teaspoon each salt and pepper.
  5. Simmer sauce 15 minutes. Remove from heat and stir in butter. Transfer to a 2-quart shallow baking dish.
  6. Preheat oven to 350F with rack in middle.
  7. Arrange cod fillets over sauce. Drizzle top of fish with 1 tablespoon oil and sprinkle with salt and pepper. Bake until fish is opaque and just cooked through, 12 to 14 minutes.
  8. Chop ¼ cup’s worth of fennel fronds. Zest some orange over cod fillets (best done with a microplane) and sprinkle fish with chopped fronds.


*A equivalent amount of dry white wine may be substituted.

**Butter enriches the sauce at the end, but omit it if you wish to make the dish dairy free.

Cook’s note: Sauce (without fish) can be made and kept chilled in an airtight container up to 3 days ahead. Bring to room temperature or reheat in baking dish before adding fish.

Originally Posted in “Cod Provencal & Dreams of Warmer Days
photo: Sarah Lasry

photo: Sarah Lasry

We’re switching it up and baking savory hamantaschen for our Purim celebration next week. And  it couldn’t be any easier.

We’re starting with the perfect basic hamantaschen dough we posted last week. Scroll up or click here to find it.

For a Middle Eastern inspired filling, we’re folding the dough around falafel, popping it all in the oven and drizzling with our favorite tehina. Follow my friend, Sarah Lasry‘s recipe, below, for a totally unexpected savory twist on this traditional treat.

Pair this 3 corned beauty with an Israeli salad (chop chop) and it’s safe to call this dinner.

Note:  Happy holiday! The holiday of Purim begins on Wednesday night, March 4 and continues through March 5, 2015. To see other recipes and learn more about this festive holiday click here and here.

We’d love to know how you celebrate!

What kinds of costumes do you and your kids wear? Your favorite hamantaschen filling? The most creative items you’ve given/ received in Purim gift baskets? We want to know!


photo: Sarah Lasry

photo: Sarah Lasry

Falafel Stuffed Hamantaschen

18 hamantaschen

These hamantaschen are a savory twist on the traditional Purim treats.

Recipe: Sarah Lasry, The Patchke Princess

recipe is dairy free (pareve)


  • 1 perfect hamantaschen recipe (see above)
  • 2 tbsp. dried parsley
  • 1/2 tbsp. Zaatar *optional
  • 2 envelopes falafel ball mix (one box usually contains 2 envelopes)
  • Olive oil


  1. Add the parsley and zahtaar spice to the prepared hamantaschen dough.
  2. Knead the dough and spices together until combined.
  3. Prepare the falafel ball mix according to directions
  4. Roll out the hamantaschen dough and cut out 2 inch circles.
  5. Place the circles onto a prepared parchment lined cookie tray.
  6. With slightly wet fingers, roll small falafel balls from prepared mix and place into center of cut out dough circles
  7. Pinch the 3 tips of dough, creating a triangle shape around the falafel ball. Make sure the edges are tightly closed. (You might need to wet the edges slightly)
  8. Brush a little olive oil on top of the hamantaschen and bake in oven for about 15 -20 minutes until edges are slightly golden.
  9. Remove from oven onto wire rack and let cool completely.


Serve these hamantaschen drizzled with your favorite tehina.

Originally Posted in “Falafel Stuffed Hamantaschen
photo: Shushy Turin-Shine;

photo: Shushy Turin-Shine;

It’s a little early, I know. But the weekend is fast approaching and with it comes an opportunity to commit to mastering the most whimsical of all baked goods: Hamantaschen!

So when Sarah Lasry posted a little preview of what I’ll be posting here NEXT week, our friend Shushy over at Cooking in Heels flipped head over her stilettos for this dough. Sarah promises it’s fabulous, even for those of us who have had problems with corners popping open and shapes looking too, well, UN- triangular. Yup, both Sushy and I confess freely to being hamantaschen challenged.

With thanks to Shushy, who stirred up a lot of expectation on her Instagram account (do check out her fabulous blog) and Sarah Lasry, one of my  ”4 Bloggers Dish: Passover” co-authors and go to recipe expert at Patchke Princess, here’s a dairy free (pareve) dough without a bit of margarine.

YAY for coconut oil!

For more ideas on hamantaschen fillings (chocolate and apricot and kid friendly jelly) and doughs (chocolate and anise and peanut butter), click my previous posts here and here.

Be sure to check back for another hamantschen recipe next week. I’m sworn to secrecy but I CAN tell you that it’s time for something savory- and we’ll have it right here for you.

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The Perfect Basic Hamantaschen Dough

18 hamantaschen

This recipe is courtesy of Sarah Lasry

If you would like to make this dough in advance: wrap it tightly in plastic wrap and keep in fridge. However the dough will be very hard from the coconut oil when you first remove from fridge, so you MUST leave it for a minimum of 2 hours on countertop to get to room temperature before using.

This recipe is non-dairy (pareve)


  • 3/4 cup coconut oil, room temp.
  • 2/3 cups sugar
  • 1 egg, room temp.
  • 1 tsp. pure vanilla extract
  • 2 tbsp. grated & finely chopped fresh lemon & orange rinds (the peel of about 1 large lemon & orange)
  • 2 1/4 cup flour
  • 1/4 tsp. salt
  • 3-4 tbsp. orange liqueur (I use Cointreau or you can use orange juice)


  1. Add the coconut oil and sugar to the bowl of an electric mixer. Using the whisk attachment, cream the sugar and oil till smooth (about 3 minutes)
  2. Add the egg, vanilla & citrus peel one at a time and whisk until combined.
  3. Slowly add the flour one cup at a time to mixer and whisk some more until a dough starts to form.
  4. Add the salt.
  5. Use a rubber spatula to scrape down the sides.
  6. Add the orange liqueur one tablespoon at a time and mix until the dough comes together easily. The dough should not be sticky but pliable and easily removable from the bowl. (You might need a little more liquid to achieve the desired consistency)
  7. At this point you can roll out the dough and fill with your favorite hamantaschen filling.
  8. Bake in 350 F pre-heated oven for about 13-15 minutes on a paper lined cookie sheet.
  9. The Hamantaschen are done when they a slightly golden at the edges and still soft to the touch.
  10. Remove from tray and let cool entirely on rack.
  11. Your Hamantaschen will be crispy with a little chewy bite.


Originally Posted in “The Perfect Hamantaschen Dough
photo courtesy of Marcia Selden Catering

photo courtesy of Marcia Selden Catering

Contributed by Marcia Selden Catering

This colorful citrus salad will brighten even the dreariest mid- winter day. When the forecast calls for snow, this melange of veggies will be a welcome and vibrant addition to your table.   Keep it simple and vegan (pareve) as tangy and fragrant blood oranges balance the sweetness of the roasted golden beets.    Or add a handful of toasted pine nuts and a crumbled salty cheese such as feta, ricotta salata or chevre, if you’d like, for a delicious pop of color and flavor.

If you can only imagine warm food at this time of year, this salad is also delicious when served warm!

For more on blood oranges, why they blush that gorgeous ruby red and why they are so darn healthy, click here.

Blood Orange, Golden Beets & Balsamic Roasted Fennel Salad

4 servings

Blood Orange, Golden Beets & Balsamic Roasted Fennel Salad

This bright and bold salad is the perfect antidote to grey winter days. Try to source your citrus directly from southern orchards whenever possible.

Thank you Marcia Selden Catering, Stamford, CT. for this recipe share.

This recipe is pareve (non-dairy), vegan, gluten-free.


  • 1½ lbs. fennel bulbs (2 fist-sized fennel bulbs)
  • 1 lb. golden beets
  • 2 Tbs. extra virgin olive oil
  • 2 Tbs. balsamic vinegar
  • 3 blood oranges, peeled sliced into rounds
  • 2 C. arugula
  • Kosher salt and pepper


  1. Preheat oven to 400°.
  2. Rinse and slice fennel and beets into ½” thick slices.
  3. Place sliced fennel and beets on a baking sheet (optionally lined with a Silpat baking mat) and drizzle with olive oil and balsamic vinegar. Toss to coat the slices. Sprinkle with salt and pepper.
  4. Place in oven and roast for 30 minutes, carefully flipping the slices after 15 minutes.
  5. Remove and let cool for 10 minutes before tossing with arugula and blood oranges.
  6. Add a small drizzle of olive oil and season to taste with kosher salt and pepper before serving.

Originally Posted in “Blood Orange Salad Brightens Winter Days