Monday, September 21, 2015

Yom Kippur Recipes and Memories

(This article was previously posted in the Mid-Atlantic Jewish Newspaper Syndication 2015)

Growing up, our Shabbat and Yom Tov meals varied depending upon the whims of my mother (KIH) and grandmother (z”l), but our pre-Yom Kippur meal was always the same without fail.  We would start with a beautiful round raisin challah with honey (“You should be inscribed in the book of life for a sweet New Year!), followed by a wedge of sliced melon (“It’s SO juicy it will help you with your fast”). 

The rest of the meal, with the exception of the roast, had basically been made in a huge stock pot.  My mother (and later my father (z”l) too) would take a ginormous stock pot, fill it ¾ of the way with water then add cut up chickens, whole celery stalks, peeled carrots and potatoes.  The result would be a clear, golden chicken soup and “delicious” boiled chicken (“You don’t want to add too much seasoning because it will make it harder to fast” a.k.a. ”please pass the ketchup….”).  Once a year, for the pre-fast meal, my mother and grandmother would make Kreplach from scratch using my grandmother’s recipe from the “old country”.  Not wanting to waste effort, they used a piece of the chuck roast they were serving during the meal to make those flavorful, delicious kreplach.  We would enjoy them in bowls of rich chicken soup, with large pieces of carrots, celery and potatoes that we fished out of the pot.  It was important that the soup be clear - no one wanted to have a “cloudy New Year”. 

We would finish the meal with honey cake and leftover sweet, sticky homemade taiglach from Rosh Hashanah.

Now that the pre-fast meal is at my house, I try to continue the tradition and legacy that were handed down to me from my grandmother, mother and father.  I hope that by continuing to make the recipes in our home we can pass our heritage to our children, and G-d willing someday they will pass it on to theirs.

May you be inscribed and sealed in the Book of Life for a Happy and Healthy new Year.  G’mar Tov!

Bubbie & Zaide’s Chuck Roast Kreplach (makes 32)
Once my father (z”l) retired as a senior VP of a major technology corporation, he found that he could expend his creative energy through cooking.  He took over making many of our traditional family recipes, all the while lending his engineering expertise to the process.  As a result each recipe became a lesson in design and methodology, nearly always with “six-sigma” results.  One of our family’s favorite memories of my father is of him leaning over the pastry board with a ruler meticulously measuring the kreplach dough to ensure that each kreple was exactly the same size.  It wasn’t that my father was compulsive, it just was how an engineer cooked!  All of his efforts paid off; the kreplach were always delicious and we always tasted the love that he put into making them.

For the Kreplach filling:
1 tbsp canola oil
1 large onions diced - around 1 ½  cups 
½ - ¾  pound chuck meat - roasted then cooled
¼  teaspoon dried ground ginger

Heat the oil in a large skillet over medium-high heat.  Add the diced onions and saute until the onions are caramelized and slightly browned.  Remove from heat and allow to cool.

Using a meat grinder or food processor (I use my grandmother’s old fashioned grinder!), grind the meat with the onions.  Add the ginger and mix to combine.

For the dough:
2 cups all-purpose flour
2 large eggs
2 tablespoons ice water plus more if necessary

Place the flour, eggs and water into a food processor bowl.  Pulse the dough while gradually adding the ice water.  Adding additional ice water as needed, continue pulsing until a cohesive, smooth dough ball is formed. 

Remove the dough and divide it into 2.  On a lightly floured surface, pat one piece of dough into a rough square.  Roll the dough into a 12x12 inch square.  Using a ruler (like my Dad z”l always did!) cut the dough into 16 3-inch squares.  After filling and sealing repeat with second piece of dough.

To make the Kreplach:
¼ cup liquid egg or 1 large egg beaten

Cover a large baking sheet with foil, then spray with non-stick vegetable spray.

Take a 3-inch square of dough.  Brush a light coating of egg around the edge of the square.  Place approximately a teaspoon of meat filling into the center of the square.  Fold the square over to make a triangle, covering the meat.  Gently pinch the sides of the kreple to seal.  Place on the prepared baking sheet.  Repeat with remaining squares.

At this point in the recipe you can freeze the kreplach on the baking sheet. Once the kreplach are frozen, you can remove them from the baking sheet and store them in a zipper freezer bag. 

For the Boiling Water:
1 teaspoon salt
2 tablespoon canola oil

Fill a large 6-8 quart stock pot ⅔ full of water.  Add the salt and canola oil, and bring to a boil.  Carefully add some of the kreplach to the water, being cautious to not crowd them.  Simmer on medium heat for 12-14 minutes until the kreplach are cooked through, stirring occasionally.   Serve in hot, golden, chicken soup (or your personal favorite).

Mini Chuck Roast Knishes (makes 24)
Being super busy around the Holidays, I often will try a “twofer”, i.e doubling a filling that can be used for two recipes.  By doubling the Kreplach filling, you can make your Sukkot meat Knishes with little effort.   No one will know that you saved the time, and you will still get your usual rave reviews.

These can also be made in advance and frozen on a baking sheet before baking.  Store them in a single layer in a well sealed aluminum pan.  To bake, simply place them on a prepared baking sheet and follow the below instructions baking for 25-30 minutes instead of 20-25 minutes.

1 recipe Chuck Steak Kreplach Meat Filling
1 10x15 inch puff pastry sheet defrosted

1 large egg, beaten
dried minced onions, poppy seeds, sesame seeds dried minced garlic, Everything spice

Line a large baking sheet with aluminum foil, then spray with non-stick vegetable spray.  Set aside.

Preheat oven to 375℉.

Roll the dough into a large rectangle.  Cut into 24 even squares.  Place a teaspoon of meat filling in the center of the dough, then fold the ends around the meat pinching to seal.  Place seam side down on the prepared baking sheet. 

Brush the knishes with egg, then top with your favorite topping.  Bake for 20-25 minutes until golden brown.  Serve with your favorite mustard or dipping sauce.

 Bubbies old fashioned grinder, "mit de meat & de onions"
 Sometimes the old things ARE the best!
 Cut the dough in 2
 Check the eggs then put them in the flour...
(check out my cool nail polish too!)
 Measuring the dough with my kid's 
Springfield Land 'O Lincoln ruler....
Just like Dad z"l did!
 Exactly 3 inches!  Dad z"l would be proud!
 Brush the edges with egg...
 A spoonful of meat...
 Tightly seal...
 G'mar Tov!!!

Sukkot knishes with dipping sauces.

Kosher Everyday is dedicated to the memory of my father
Dr. Theodore Saltzberg - Tuvia Ben Nachum Z”L
May his memory be for a blessing - Yihi zichro baruch.

Look for additional information about Edible Experience Kosher Everyday at,,, Mishpacha Magazine’s Kosher Inspired Magazine,
The Chicago Tribune Syndication,
 or on Facebook at Edible Experience by Sharon Matten.

These recipes are for sole, personal use of visitors to Sharon Matten -Edible Experience Kosher Everyday. Edible Experience Kosher Everyday recipes are for your enjoyment but are not to be posted or reprinted without express permission from Sharon Matten. Thank you!!

Sunday, September 6, 2015

Rosh Hashanah Recipes 2015!

With the advent of the Hebrew month of Elul and shofar blowing every morning, it is clear that Rosh Hashanah is just a few weeks away.  We start to prepare the physical aspects of the Holiday, and work to uplift ourselves spiritually,.  We want everything to be special and meaningful for the New Year.  Our meals have particular significance, with Rosh Hashanah “simanim” foods such as beets, carrots, leeks, pomegranates, honey, round challahs, fish, and dates, just to name a few on our table.  In our efforts to elevate ourselves, we give special important characteristics to our foods.  After all “you are what you eat”!   By assigning spiritual attributes to our Rosh Hashanah foods we uplift our meals from the mundane to the holy.  We are saying that we recognize that our foods are not just sustenance, but have the ability to bring us closer to G-d.

I hope that these recipes will help uplift your Rosh Hashanah and the rest of your New Year!  Shanah Tova!!

Pomegranate and dried cherry glazed chicken skewers (20-24 skewers)
The blessing for pomegranates on Rosh Hashana is: “...sheyirbu zechuyotenu” may our merits be increased.

These skewers make a beautiful appetizer. I like to use the ridiculously red Torani pomegranate syrup which gives the skewers a beautiful red color.  It can be found in the liquor section of your local grocery store. If you can’t find it, you can also use any other pomegranate syrup in it’s place.

1 ½-2 pounds boneless skinless chicken breasts - around 3 breasts
2 cups pomegranate syrup (like Torani)
1 tablespoons cornstarch
1 tablespoon soy sauce
1 tablespoon canola oil
½ cup dried cherries

24 7” long skewers
non-stick vegetable spray
additional dried cherries for garnish

Line a large baking sheet with foil.  Spray with non-stick vegetable spray.  Set aside

Remove the tenders from each chicken breast.  Set aside.  With a very sharp boning knife, slice the chicken breasts in half to give two very thin cutlets. Slice each half into 3 long strips.  Repeat with the remaining cutlets.  If the tenders are thick, slice them in half for 2 thin tenders. 

Thread the chicken onto the skewers.  Place into a large baking dish with at least 2” sides.  Pour the pomegranate syrup over the chicken and let marinate for 30-45 minutes, turning the chicken periodically.

Place the skewers on the prepared baking sheet, reserving the marinade.   Broil on medium, with the pan in the middle of the oven, until the chicken is cooked through but not dry.

While the chicken is baking, place the marinade in a 4 quart pot.  Add the cornstarch, soy sauce and canola oil.  Whisk until the cornstarch is completely blended.  Cook on medium-low heat until the sauce thickens.  Add the dried cherries.  Stir to combine.

When the chicken is cooked through, remove from oven and spoon sauce over them.  Serve warm with additional dried cherries as garnish.

Honeyed spiralized red/gold beet salad
The blessing for honey on Rosh Hashana is: “...shetichadesh aleynu shana tova umetuka” We should have a new good and sweet new year.  The blessing for beets on Rosh Hashana is: “...sheyistalku oyveinu” our adversaries should disappear.

I’m a kitchen gadget lover - but only useful kitchen gadgets!  The latest (and greatest) kitchen gadget to hit the market is the spiralizer.  It takes “boring” vegetables and makes them cool and pretty.  This salad will wow your guests with its taste and beauty.  If you don’t have a spiralizer you can julienne the beets instead.

2 medium yellow/golden beets
2 medium red beets
1/2 small onion thinly sliced
2 tablespoons honey
1 tablespoon canola oil
1 teaspoon dried parsley, or 1 tablespoon fresh parsley

Spiralize the gold beets into a medium bowl, then spiralize the red beets into a separate larger bowl.  Reserve the extra pieces from the spiralizer and set aside for the Beet Borscht

Add the onion and honey to the red beets.  Add the gold beets to the larger bowl and toss to combine.  Top with the dried parsley.  Serve room temperature or cold.

Fresh Beet Borscht
When I first started spiralizing beets, I ended up with the extra ends and middles. When you end up with extra make borscht!  I remember going to my Bubbies house as a young girl and sharing borscht “mit potatoes and sour cream” along with a “glezzle of teh”.  As I’m the only one of my immediate family members who has fond beet memories - this borscht will be all for me!!!

I added beet root powder to this recipe to give the borscht a more beety, borschty flavor.  You can purchase kosher beet root powder on or at your local health food store.  If you can’t find it you can just omit it from the recipe.

2 large beets, sliced into 1 ½ by ¼ inch strips
remaining beet scraps from the spiralized beet salad cut into small strips
2 tablespoons sugar
1 teaspoon sea salt
2 tablespoons beet root powder (optional) - but give the borscht a more borschty flavor)
8-10 cups water (8 if not adding the beet root powder)

Combine all the ingredients into a large stock pot.  Bring the water to a boil, then reduce heat to simmer.  Cook for 1 hour.  Serve hot or cold, topped with boiled potatoes and/or sour cream.  Thanks Bubbie!!!

Honey and Cracked Rosemary Tri-Colored Roasted Carrots 
(1 pound)
The blessing on Rosh Hashanah for carrots is: “...”sheyikareh g’zar dinenu, v’yikru lifanechah zechuyoteinu” The decree of our sentence be torn up, and that our merits be proclaimed before You.

I recently found gorgeous multi-colored baby carrots in my local restaurant supply store.  I was grocery cart snooping (as always!) and the gentleman in the next aisle had them on his industrial sized cart. My first thought was  - ROSH HASHANA! I asked him where he had found them, then ran to grab my own 5 pound package.  Sadly, my package only had orange and yellow ones - there were only 2 package left and none with purple carrots.  Big. Sad. Face.  When I returned with my carrots, sad that I didn’t have the beautiful purple ones  - he gallantly offered to give me his!!! Thank you my fellow shopping hero.  I hope you have a happy and healthy New Year!

You can find multi-colored carrots at Trader-Joe’s and some grocery and fruit stores.
This recipe can be doubled or tripled or quadrupled etc.

1 pound tri-colored carrots
1 tablespoon canola oil
1 tablespoon wildflower honey
1 teaspoon cracked rosemary, or 1 tablespoon fresh rosemary chopped
salt and pepper to taste
non-stick vegetable spray
additional honey for drizzling

Preheat oven to 325℉ or 300℉ convection for a convection oven. 
Line a large baking sheet with foil and spray with non-stick vegetable spray.  Set aside.

Scrub the carrots clean, then thoroughly dry them. Place them in a large bowl and toss with the oil and honey.  Arrange them on the prepared baking tray, making sure that they don’t overlap.  Sprinkle the rosemary, salt and pepper on the carrots.  Bake for 15 minutes, then turn the carrots.  Return the carrots to the oven and bake for an additional 15-30 minutes until the carrots are slightly browned and soft.

Remove the carrots from the oven and arrange on a serving tray.  Drizzle with additional honey before serving.

No-Bake Pomegranate Mousse Pie  (makes two 9” pies)
This is the perfect light and creamy ending to your huge Yom Tov meal. It’s quick to make, and doesn’t require precious oven time to prepare. Using ready-made graham cracker crusts also speeds up prep time so you have more time to spend with your family and guests!
No-Bake Fruity Pomegranate Mousse Pie
  • 2 9” ready-made graham cracker crust
  • .3 ounce package Double Berry Jel Dessert 
  • ½ cup Pomegranate Cranberry Juice Blend, cold or room temp (I use Langers)
  • 4 cups whipping cream, divided
  • Dried cranberries and/or fresh pomegranate seeds for garnish
Combine dessert jel and juice in a small bowl. Fill a small saucepan with 1 ½ inches of water. Bring to a boil then reduce heat to a very low simmer. Set the small bowl in the saucepan and stir until mix is completely dissolved in the juice and warm to the touch (not hot). Remove from the water and set aside.
Whip 2 cups of whipping cream until stiff peaks form. Add the Jel/juice mixture to the whipped cream and re-whip until stiff. Spoon into the ready-made graham cracker crusts. Smooth the top using an offset spatula.
Whip the remaining 2 cups of whipping cream. Spread or pipe decoratively on the top of the filling. Refrigerate for at least 2 hours. Slice and serve garnished with dried cranberries or fresh pomegranate seeds. Can be made in advance and frozen. Defrost slightly before serving.
Note: For an even bigger pomegranate flavor, add 2 teaspoons of pomegranate extract flavoring to the mousse.

 Kosher Everyday is dedicated to the memory of my father
Dr. Theodore Saltzberg - Tuvia Ben Nachum Z”L
May his memory be for a blessing - Yihi zichro baruch.

Look for additional information about Edible Experience Kosher Everyday at,,, Mishpacha Magazine’s Kosher Inspired Magazine,
The Chicago Tribune Syndication,
 or on Facebook at Edible Experience by Sharon Matten.

These recipes are for sole, personal use of visitors to Sharon Matten -Edible Experience Kosher Everyday. Edible Experience Kosher Everyday recipes are for your enjoyment but are not to be posted or reprinted without express permission from Sharon Matten. Thank you!!