To Grill or Not to Grill

Yes, I know it’s grilling season. But years ago our grill’s time was up. Now I use a grill pan on the stove and my marvelous Breville oven to beat the summer heat.

So here are some non grilling summer recipes many of which you can adapt if you prefer to cook  outdoors.

July 15Pineapple-Cucumber-Gazpacho-Start with a cold soup like pineapple gazpacho (See: Cool Food for a Hot Day, Jun 26, 2016). You’ll need a good knife and some kind of blender to puree the mixture. It goes together quickly especially if you buy a precut pineapple. And it can be as spicy as you wish with the addition of extra jalepeno. Or try a little of Trader Joe’s Chili Lime seasoning to spice up the soup. Pomegranate seeds or plump blueberries might make a colorful garnish. Continue reading

Plain and Not So Plain Chicken

CookingThe silver lining to the pandemic has been that our son and daughter-in-law (Moish & Charissa) ― who used to get together with friends every Friday ―are, instead, coming over every week for Shabbat dinner. This past week, Charissa commented that she never cooks chicken herself, partly because she doesn’t like the thought of handling raw chicken but also because she doesn’t know how to cook chicken.

Did I say that the menu every week is always chicken? Lou grew up having chicken for dinner every Friday night for Shabbat. When we were married, I decided to continue that tradition. However, whereas Lou’s mom made chicken the same way every week, I wanted to vary what I served – hence I have a very large number of different chicken recipes. So here is an excerpt of the chicken chapter of the family cookbook I am compiling. I’ll start simple with some roasted chicken recipes … Continue reading

Easy Cooking

kitchen_at_shomrei
It’s been a while since I posted new recipes. Passover cooking and general languishing (that’s the stage between flourishing and depression, according to my daughter) got the better of me. Then the dishwasher died.

Dinners have been very simple- ad hoc stir fries with lots of vegetables, baked fish or chicken, salads and soup and lots of things from the freezer.

Continue reading

Four Questions

questions.inddWhere does it say that brisket is the dish of choice on Passover? Where does it say that gefilte fish is de rigueur? Where does it day that sweet wine is a must? And where does it say that one is obligated to replicate everyday food rather than going with natural food that can be eaten anytime?

The Lampert Library’s staff (me) has researched the questions: there are no rules. Much of what’s served- other than ritual foods- is just custom and what was available or what could be adapted. Even among the ritual foods there is a lot of choice. Continue reading

It’s Cauliflower Time

CAULIFLOWER

Cauliflower has come into its own. It’s become the vegetable of the moment. It’s healthy, versatile, and usually available. You can rice it, dice it, roast it, puree it… and hide it.

Enjoy some of these cauliflower discoveries that are certainly not like the way my mother made cauliflower.

Here’s a cauliflower menu from appetizer through main course. I haven’t tried it in a dessert yet, but I know there must be recipes out there. And most of these are also suitable for Passover which will be here before we know it. Continue reading

Starting with Starters

Recipe blog picture

Back in September at the start of the (Jewish) new year, I started a new project – compiling my recipes into a book for my daughter and daughter-in-law. The project posed several challenges – many of my “recipes” were just scribbled suggestions of ingredients while some were not written down at all. Still others were actual recipes that I had found over the years – except that I didn’t follow any of them as written and had not noted down my modifications.

So …. I have embarked on a year-long (or possibly longer) journey which involves making each recipe and writing down the ingredients and directions for all the items I cook. In addition, at the request of my daughter-in-law, I am taking pictures so that she knows what the finished recipe looks like. Continue reading

Mmm, Mmm, Good! and Good for You

1 27 recipes seven species

Today, January 28 is TuB’Shevat. What better time to celebrate soup made with vegetables, herbs, spices, and grains from the earth.  Accompany soup with a salad featuring fruit; add a cracker made from grain, and end with a sweet treat like dates or grapes. You now have a meal that is a  slightly unorthodox tribute to TuB’shevat. And don’t forget a glass wine.

Traditionally, the following foods are eaten on TuB’Shevat: wheat, barley, grapes, figs, pomegranates, olives and dates. In addition, nuts -especially almonds- are included along with other fruits and vegetables mentioned in the Bible. See if you can find a mention of each of the seven species in this article. Continue reading

Everything Hanukkah

Dec 10 hanukkah-stampIt’s finally here, Hanukkah- a bright spot on the calendar with the flickering candles, the shiny gelt, and the glistening oil for the latkes.

This year, of course, is different. We won’t be sharing as we usually do, but there are lots of things to see and do if you take advantage of the virtual offerings in food, music, art and literature. You can even party online.

And what better time to revive the oldest entertainment around-storytelling: reading aloud as a family. Continue reading