Sunday, April 17, 2011

Cooking for Elliot: Pass-over That Box of Kleenex

On Friday, I had a runny nose. Today, I have the plague. Not quite as bad as the ones in Exodus, but pretty gross. Hence, today's menu is short, sweet, easy to prepare, even easier on a queasy stomach, magically healing (please god), and delightfully Passover holiday appropriate. 

P.S. Note that the Sneezy Sorbet recipe features booze which may not be appropriate for the toddlers in your life, unless your toddlers agree that a little whiskey never hurt anyone. Also, that the tax code is too complicated, and that turtleneck sweaters never go out of style. 
P.P.S. I have no idea if whiskey is kosher, let alone kosher for Passover. And seeing as how I'm already probably going to hell, I figured I'd just be straight up. 

April 17, 2011

"Matzo" Brei
(wheat/gluten-free, nut-free, egg-free, dairy-free, vegan)

Everyone's Happy "Matzo" Ball Soup
(wheat/gluten-free, nut-free, egg-free, dairy-free, vegan)

Spinach, Leek, and Potato Matzo Gratin
(wheat/gluten-free, nut-free, dairy free, egg free, vegan)

Sneezy Sorbet 
(wheat/gluten-free, nut-free, dairy free, egg free, vegan)

"Matzo" Brei
(wheat/gluten-free, nut-free, egg-free, dairy-free, vegan)
*This recipe is based on one created by genius vegan baker Isa Chandra Moskowitz and published in the Girlie Girl Army newsletter. I've replaced the regular matzo with gluten-free Doctor Katz's Oat Gluten Free Matzos

6 gluten-free matzos (see above)
2 tblsps olive oil
1 medium onion, thinly sliced
1/2 pound soft organic tofu, blended until smooth
3/4 tsp salt
Ground black pepper to taste
Dill for garnish

Break the matzoh into pieces that are about 1 1/2 to 2 inches. Place them in a bowl and cover with warm tap water. Let them soak for about 5 minutes, until softened, but not falling apart. Check after 3 minutes, they should be flexible but still intact. Then drain into a colander. 

In the meantime, preheat a large skillet over medium-high heat. Saute the onion in the oil for about 7 minutes, until onion is browned and slightly carmelized. Add the matzoh and tofu and use a spatula to coat the matzoh with the tofu. Add salt and pepper. 

Cook for about 10 minutes, flipping often, until matzoh is nice and browned and most of the tofu has been cooked dry. Let it brown for a few minutes, then use a spatula to cut it into pieces, then flip. Serve topped with chopped fresh dill. 

Everyone's Happy "Matzo" Ball Soup

(wheat/gluten-free, nut-free, egg-free, dairy-free, vegan)
*This incredible recipe was created by Cybele Pascal and posted on Whole Living Daily website 

1/3 cup organic corn flour
¼ cup organic potato starch
¼ cup organic quinoa flakes
1 teaspoon baking powder
1/2 teaspoon xanthan gum
1/2 teaspoon salt
freshly ground pepper
1 1/2 teaspoons Ener-G Egg Replacer mixed with 2 Tablespoons veggie broth
1 Tablespoon applesauce
2 Tablespoons canola oil
4¼ cups low-sodium organic veggie broth
¼ cup very finely minced yellow onion
1 ½ teaspoons finely minced parsley, plus more for garnish
extra finely dill for garnish

Measure out corn flour and potato starch by spooning into dry measuring cups, then leveling off with a straightedge or butter knife. Combine flours with quinoa flakes, baking powder, xanthan gum, salt, and a few turns of freshly ground pepper. Whisk well, and set aside.

Whisk together egg replacer, and applesauce. Add canola oil and ¼ cup veggie broth. Whisk well.

Make a well in the center of the dry ingredients. Add liquid ingredients, and stir with a wooden spoon. Add minced onion and minced parsley, stirring to combine.

Heat the remaining 4 cups veggie broth over medium-high heat.

Meanwhile, wet hands slightly with cool water, and roll dough into balls, about 1 ½-inches in diameter, wetting hands again as necessary.

Once veggie broth has come to a boil, reduce to a simmer, and gently add matzo balls to pot. Reduce heat to low, cover pot and cook 10 minutes.  You don’t want to overcook them or they’ll get soggy, but cook them long enough to cook the onions. 15 minutes max.  Remove from heat.

Adjust salt and pepper to taste. Spinkle in some parsley or dill. Serve immediately.

Spinach, Leek, and Potato Matzo Gratin

(wheat/gluten-free, egg-free, dairy-free, vegan. Can be nut-free)
*Amazing recipe by the equally amazing chef and author Nava Atlas. Apparently, this is similar to the layered matzo casseroles, called minas, that are commonly served at Sephardic Seders (I had no idea until I read this). I've replaced the 1 cup of raw cashews with 8 oz of organic soft tofu for those who can't eat nuts. Also, make sure that you are using gluten-free matzos if you need for this to be gluten-free. Doctor Katz brand Oat Gluten-Free Matzos are sold at Whole Foods.

8 medium potatoes
1 cup raw cashews OR 8 oz soft organic tofu
1 medium ripe avocado, pitted, peeled, and cut into large chunks
Juice of 1 lemon
2 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil
2 large or 3 medium leeks, white and palest green parts only,
chopped and well rinsed
10 to 12 ounces baby spinach, rinsed
2 tablespoons minced fresh dill, or 1 teaspoon dried
1/4 cup quinoa flakes
Salt and freshly ground pepper to taste
6 gluten-free matzos
1 cup grated Daiya soy-free cheese or other dairy-free cheese (Note, while Daiya is kosher it is not necessarily kosher for Passover) 
1/3 cup pine nuts for topping, optional

Cook, bake, or microwave the potatoes in their skins until just tender. When cool enough to handle, peel and cut into 1/4-inch-thick slices.
If using cashews, cover them with 1 cup of boiling water in a heatproof bowl and let stand for at least 15 minutes. Drain the cashews, then combine with the avocado and lemon juice in a food processor. Process until smoothly pureed; drizzle enough water through the feed tube while the processor is running to give the mixture a thick, creamy texture. Not to state the obvious, but this will make the recipe NOT nut-free.
If using tofu, blend together with avocado and lemon juice in a food processor until smooth.
Preheat the oven to 350º F. 
Heat the oil in a large skillet. Add the leeks and sauté over medium-low heat until golden. Add the spinach in batches, covering and cooking until wilted to make room for all of it. Stir in the cashew cream, dill, and matzo meal. Season with salt and pepper.

Break each matzo in half, and place in a shallow container. Cover with room-temperature water in a shallow container until slightly pliable (don’t let them get mushy!), about 2 minutes; drain. Lightly oil a 9- by 13-inch casserole dish.

Layer the casserole as follows: line the bottom with a layer of matzos, using two matzos per layer. Follow with a layer of potato slices, half of the spinach mixture, half of the optional cheese, and another layer of matzos. Repeat, ending with a layer of matzo.

Bake for 30 to 40 minutes, or until top is golden with spots of brown. Let stand for 10 minutes, then cut into squares to serve.

Sneezy Sorbet

(wheat/gluten-free, egg-free, nut-free, dairy-free, vegan)

2 cups water
1/2 cup sugar
1/2 cup honey (more for garnish)
2 tblsps fresh grated ginger
2 tblsps finely grated organic orange peel
1/4-1/2 tsp cayenne pepper

2 cups organic orange juice (fresh squeezed is nice, blood orange juice is even nicer)

3 tblsps fresh organic lemon juice
Whiskey (optional)

Combine first 6 ingredients in a saucepan. Bring to a boil and stir until sugar dissolves. Boil until thick. About 5-10 minutes depending on your pan. Allow to cool.

Combine cooled syrup with orange and lemon juices. Transfer to an ice cream maker and process according to your machine's instructions. Transfer to a container and cover. Allow to firm in the freezer. When ready to serve, scoop into bowl and drizzle with whiskey and honey.

1 comment:

  1. My mom always made matzoh brei growing up and I love the stuff. I can't believe you can make it egg-free! And I'd never heard of gluten-free matzohs before now. Do they taste much different than the regular dry, cardboard-like product?

    Also, that sneezy sorbet sounds like an amazing elixir. I'd certainly rather have a spoon of that than Robitussin.