photo: Liz Rueven
This matzah lasagna goes beyond the ordinary matzah/cheese/ jarred tomato sauce Passover mish mash. You’ll love the way the creamy bechamel sauce keeps the lasagna moist and adds depth and nuance while keeping it kid- friendly.
It is a few extra steps but well worth it. Continue reading
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?
By Camillo Ferrari
The vibe at the Lime restaurant in Norwalk, CT is a throwback to the late 70′s. Square sheets of glass protect faded, striped umber and orange tablecloths and customers’ business cards are wedged between cloth and glass. A smattering of haphazardly framed photos of early 1980′s T.V. icons hang next to kitchen tools and framed notices of events from another era.
When Moshe Aelyon described his grandmother’s savory, leek infused meatballs to me, I was hooked even before I tasted them. Leeks impart a more interesting and nuanced flavor than other onions. These are a true Turkish specialty.
Kofte de Pirasa (Leek Meat Balls-for Passover)
These Turkish meatballs have been adapted for Passover. They were a much requested Sabbath specialty in Moshe's childhood home in Instanbul.
When guests exclaimed how much they loved them, his grandmother reminded them of how special they were by claiming, "You should have golden teeth to eat these!"
- 1 pound of ground beef
- 3 bunches leeks (9 stalks), washed and chopped
- 1 cup parsley, washed and chopped
- 1/2 cup matzo meal
- 1 teaspoon salt
- 1 teaspoon freshly ground pepper
- 3 eggs
- 1 cup matzo cake meal
- Vegetable oil for frying
- Lemon wedges for garnish (optional)
- Cut off the bottom, very dark green, tough portion on each leek.
- Slit each leek vertically from top to bottom and rinse them through each layer.
- Slice the leeks vertically into thin strips and then chop them across finely.
- Place the leeks in a pan with a tight fitting lid. Add water to cover and steam the leeks for about 15 minutes. When they are tender, drain out all the excess water and let them cool completely.
- After the leeks are cool, squeeze out all the remaining water with your hands.
- Combine the steamed leeks with ground beef, 1/2 cup of matzo meal, parsley, and eggs. Season the meat ball mix with salt and pepper.
- Form about 25-27 golf ball size koftes. Roll each kofte in matzo cake meal seasoned with salt and pepper.
- Crack three eggs into a shallow dish and beat them.
- Preheat a large sauté pan and when it is medium high, add oil to about ¼ inch deep.
- Dip each kofte in beaten egg and then place them in the oil to fry until they are golden brown. Only turn each kofte once. Remove them from the oil and drain on paper towel.
- serve with a spritz of fresh lemon juice.
Helpful hints from Moshe:
Mud and grit cling to the inner layers of leeks so be thorough when washing them.
You can steam leeks several days ahead. Keep squeezed out leeks in a container in the refrigerator.
Before frying, roll all the koftes out first and coat all with the cake meal before you start frying. That way, you'll be less rushed and the oil won't overheat.