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This pickle is ready right away, but it improves with age.
The very first scene in the movie Like Water for Chocolate showcases buckets of diced onions – as a symbol of tears and heartache. This salad makes short work of zesty onions and hot peppers and heartache, if any, is sheerly physical, not emotional! I use surgical gloves (my fruit and vegetable store stocks them). They make handling the hot peppers a piece of cake. This can be enjoyed on it its own but I prefer it on baguette sandwiches or atop a mixed green salad. The vinegar is optional - it does make things a bit more watery but gives it an acidic bite. The salt also makes things watery. You can leave that out too and add it as you dole out the salad. For more recipes from this film, check out the novel by the same name, which includes most of the recipes seen being prepared in the film.
Healthy and tasty, easy going, complex carbs. Serve chilled or warm. This big batch is on hand for quick lunches (poached salmon steak or herb infused chicken breast?) or put it alongside an omelette. It is good food, always at the ready. Complex carbs? Sure but nothing else about it is complex. Feel free to change the grains or use other sorts of canned beans or chick peas.
There are many versions of this standard pastry wrapped mashed potato entrée. This is pretty traditional and as good as any knishes off a New York street vendor. If your kids or anyone else doesn’t like onions or a pronounced onion taste, omit the sautéed onions and use the onion powder called for. This makes tons of little knishes or about 2 dozen hefty, grandma styled knishes. If you were really busy, you could even use boxed mashed potatoes for a shortcut and still have amazing knishes. You can also use storebought puff pastry or Sour Cream Mock Puff Pastry.
Nothing beats a tender, crispy, slightly sweet, golden corn fritter. This is a summery morsel that is a meal on its own but it is intended as as side dish or appetizer. Fresh corn is best but even canned corn comes up shining in this delicious teaser. Serve with hot sauce or go sweet with a spritz of pure maple syrup or peach chutney.
This is the simplest, sunniest dish you can imagine. You layer on the ingredients – don’t bother stirring – slow roast and dip in. It is reminiscent in method of a Sabbath cholent but wonderfully flavorful and upbeat. It is best at room temperature or slightly chilled.
Ratners of New York, a beloved but now departed family restaurant that specialized in vegetarian kosher, served a vegetable cutlet with gravy. Their cookbook (which you can find on Ebay or second hand stores) included their own original version of this entrée and more recently Arthur Schwartz celebrated the recipe in his new cookbook, Jewish Home Cooking, Ten Speed Press. A vegetable cutlet is super for vegetarians and would make a nice main or side dish for Passover. I’ve made my own version of vegetable cutlets. It is a salute to Ratner’s and the wonderful creativity of kosher cooks who could take shoe leather, fry it with onions and make it taste good.
These mini kugels and are so tasty. You can also use the batter to make small vegetable latkes.
There are various ways of preparing this new classic (new meaning the last 40 years or so; it debuted in the 70’s). Essentially it is spaghetti or linguine tossed with fresh, springy vegetables such a peas, broccoli, asparagus in a light cream sauce that includes Parmesan, pine nuts and is all topped with basil. Chefs are tirelessly revamping it their way. This is my version – it is fresh, flavorful and not weighed down with the original mushrooms (which I love but to me are heartier versus springy fare). The only ‘difficult’ part of this dish is the vegetable preparation. And just make sure you choose a great imported Italian pasta as the foundation.Some chefs blanch the vegetables for this in a water broth that also contains a rind of Parmesan cheese for extra flavor. Another added touch with be a shaving of truffles, finely minced garlic croutons and some dots of chevre, or goat’s cheese.
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Pomegranate juice seems to be vying with blueberries of late, for its health benefits. Sweet potatoes, slow braised in this juice, yielded deeply rich and flavorful potatoes. I also suggest half mango and half pomegranate juice for a variation on a great theme. ….and just in case you tire of the marshmallow and sweet potato bake (also in my recipe archives)