Rosh HaShanah meals

11 September 2007

I’m hosting erev Rosh HaShanah dinner and second-day lunch. I’m also making desserts for the other four meals (1st day lunch, erev 2nd day dinner, Shabbat dinner, and Shabbat lunch).

Dinner Menu:

Butternut squash soup (from a box, plus frozen pureed squash, plus lots of curry powder)
Pastrami-wrapped dates [done]
Apricot chicken and apricot tofu (coat chicken with mixture of apricot preserves and mustard and bake 45 min at 350; garnish with aprioct halves) [done]
Brown rice with roasted pecan and garlic
Zucchini with cranberries and almonds (couldn’t find currants) [done]
Green salad
Carrot ring (my mother’s recipe, see below) [done]
Flourless chocolate torte [done]

Lunch Menu:

Crudites [done, i.e. bought]
Stuffed artichokes (based on this, but quadrupled and slightly modified, including using canned artichoke bottoms) [done]
Chicken satay (based on the initial recipe here) [done]
Red onion and orange salad [done]
Rosemary potatoes
Green beans amandine
Chocolate mousse (see bottom of this post; of course I skipped the whpped cream since it’s a meat meal) [done]

Desserts for other meals:
Amaretto cake (this recipe minus 1/2 cup rum, plus 1/3 cup amaretto) [done]
Apple pie [done]
Strawberry angel trifle
Pavlova [done]

Mom’s Carrot Ring

3 cups shredded carrots
2 eggs
1/2 cup brown sugar
1 cup margarine
dash lemon [juice, I presume]
2 cups flour
1/2 teaspoon salt
1/2 teaspoon cinnamon

Preheat oven to 350°.

Mix all ingredients and pour into a well greased tube or bundt pan. Bake for 45-50 minutes.

I’m tired. Surprising, eh?


Overdue recipe post

24 March 2007

So I hosted Shabbat dinner over a week ago, and promised to post recipes. Let’s see what I can remember…

*Stuffed mushrooms. I looked at some recipes and ultimately came up with my own. (See below.)
*Giardiniera (store-bought)

Main Course:
*Roasted tomato salad. (Notes: I skipped the first step of peeling the tomatoes; skipped the garnish; and used dried basil rather than fresh.)
*Mashed potatoes (instant, ’cause I’m wimpy like that).
*Green salad.
*Ribeye steak with the best marinade ever. (Notes: I used ordinary brown sugar, and simply broiled the steaks for about 5 minutes per side, since I don’t have a grill.)

*Chocolate amaretto cake, which started from a recipe I found online but was adapted somewhat. (See below.)

Oh, and on Thursday night, as part of my effort to use up some things before Pesach, I baked a loaf of “Spice Bread.” It started with this recipe, which I basically destroyed. My version is below.

Stuffed Mushrooms
3 pints white mushrooms (I would have preferred bigger mushrooms – mini-portabellas or something – but couldn’t find them)
1/2 c chicken or vegetable broth
1 shallot, minced
1 to 2 T. minced garlic
1 to 2 t. fat-free mayo
1 c. cooked and cooled long-grain rice (I used half of a Near East rice box)
dried basil
saffron (the original recipe called for tarragon, which I didn’t have, but I did have some leftover saffron)
2 t. olive oil

  1. Preheat oven to 375.
  2. Remove the stems from the mushrooms and chop the stems finely. In a nonstick frying pan over high heat, bring the broth to a boil. And the shallot, garlic, and mushroom stems. Cook, stirring occasionally, until most of the liquid has evaporated, about 2 to 3 minutes.
  3. In a medium bowl, combine everything from the frying pan, rice, mayo, and saffron.
  4. Wipe out the frying pan with a paper towel. Add the olive oil and mushroom caps; saute 20-30 seconds. [Note: next time I’d skip this step entirely, and just spray the baking sheet with olive oil spray.]
  5. Arrange caps, open end up, on a baking sheet coated with cooking spray. Mound rice mixture into each cap. Bake until mushrooms are tender but still hold their shape, about 10 minutes.
  6. To serve, dust each cap lightly with paprika. (Or, forget this step until the mushrooms have been devoured, as I did.)

Serves 8.

Chocolate Amaretto Cake
1/2 c margerine
2 oz semi-sweet chocolate
2 eggs (or 1/2 c eggbeaters), well-beaten
3/4 c sugar
1/2 c flour
1/4 c amaretto liqueur

  1. Preheat oven to 325.
  2. Grease an 8×8 pan or a 9-inch round pan (or an 8×11 pan, like I did, and end up wiht cake that’s about 1 cm thick!).
  3. Melt margerine and chocolate in microwave for 45 seconds; stir until completely melted; set aside to cool.
  4. Stir eggs into cooled chocolate mixture. Add sugar and flour, mix well.
  5. Pour into prepared pan and bake 35 minutes. Cake will still be soft. Cool cake.
  6. Poke holes all over surface of cake with a fork; pour amaretto over top of cake. Cover and refrigerate overnight.

Since my cake was so flat, I cut into individual servings, plated it, and served each with a scoop of pareve chocolate Rice Dream (non-dairy “ice cream”).

Bastardized Spice Bread
2 c flour
1 tsp baking soda
1 tsp baking powder
1 tsp thyme
1 tsp Italian seasonings
1 tsp cinnamon
1/4 c eggbeaters
1 c honey
1 c skim milk

Standard quick bread instructions:
Mix dry together in large bowl; mix wet together in small bowl; mix wet into dry. Stir until completely blended.

My batter was way too liquid-y, so I added another cup of flour. It was still pretty goopy, but I was afraid to add any more flour.

Put into non-stick or sprayed (small) loaf pan and bake at 375 F for 50 min…or until the middle bounces back when lightly pressed down.

Mine is good, but a bit runny (under-cooked?) in the middle.

Shabbat dinner

17 November 2006

Super-easy recipes, impressive-looking meal.

Feta Stuffed Artichoke Bottoms, slightly modified:

  • Did not add any oil (olives and red peppers had plenty of their own)
  • I found that each 13-ounce can contained 4 or 5 artichoke bottoms, so I used 3 cans.

Butternut squash soup from a box, with pureed butternut squash added in, with a generous sprinkling of curry powder.

Salad of watercress leaves, mandarin oranges, and hearts of palm.

Super-easy ceviche
1 pound white trout, halibut, or other white fish (filleted)
1 red onion, diced
1-2 cups lemon juice
1 cucumber, diced

Cut fish into bite-sized pieces. Mix fish and onion in a glass baking pan (i.e., shallow non-reactive dish). Pour enough lemon juice over the mixture to cover it, cover with plastic wrap, and refrigerate at least 8 hours, up to 24 hours. Occasionally uncover and turn pieces over (or, forget to do that). Add more lemon juice if you feel like it.

When ready to prepare: carefully drain the lemon juice from the pan. Add diced cucumber to the mix, toss to mix well. Divide mixture evenly among four martini glasses. Cover with plastic wrap and put back into refrigerator. Before serving, garnish with cilantro.

Chocolate mousse
1 c chocolate chips
1 (12.5-ounce or so) package firm silken tofu
1 tsp vanilla
1 c fat-free whipped cream, thawed

Melt the chocolate chips in the microwave for 1 minute; stir until fully melted.
Squish the tofu in your hands (or cut it into small pieces) and put it in the blender. Add vanilla. Blend until well-mixed.
Add chocolate, and blend until well-mixed.
Add whipped cream, and blend into well-mixed.
Pour into bowl or into individual ramekins. Refrigerate at least 2 hours, or up to a couple of days (cover it if it will be more than a few hours).

Top with berries if desired, and/or serve each with a pirouette.

Sunday brunch

12 November 2006

Had two girlfriends over for needed catch-up time.
Baked French Toast modified as follows:

  • Cut the recipe in half
  • Reduced to 3 eggs
  • Reduced to 1 1/4 cups of skim milk, with no half-and-half
  • Skipped the butter / brown sugar / corn syrup topping.

Watercress-Citrus Salad with Grilled Figs modified as follows:

  • Used fresh figs, not canned
  • No tarragon or pine nuts or almonds
  • Did not soak figs in vinagrette before broiling
  • Next time, I’d top the figs with feta / goat cheese before broiling.

Smoked Salmon Roses modified as follows: