Rosh Hashanah, Yom Kippour and….Kreplach?

Posted on August 28th, 2012 by

A blog post by Gift Shop Manager Esther Weiner.

Did I say kreplach? In the same breath as the High Holidays? Yes, I did…and since you asked, I’ll tell you why. Since I was a child my mother, Pearl Printz, served her delicious golden chicken soup every Friday night, always with her home-made noodles. Of course for the high holidays, kreplach floated in the soup, hiding between the noodles. It was kind of a tradition that kreplach and Rosh Hashanah were a team. When I got married and moved to Baltimore, my mother-in-law, Fannie Weiner, made kreplach, they too were delicious, and I was hooked on learning how to put them together.

Well, after trial and error I came up with my own recipe and now my family will not sit down to the table unless they know that kreplach will come with the chicken soup! So my friends who follow blogs, I am stuck…but, I must admit, happily so.  Even though it’s a big job, I love making kreplach. I make what seems like tons of them so that they last through the holidays, the extras hidden in my freezer, to surface on Shabbat dinners with friends and family (…”what, kreplach?”) and the bounty continues to be enjoyed through the year, as long as they last.

Definition of kreplach:  Small dough squares, filled with a mixture of seasoned cooked meat, served with a soup, usually chicken soup, although they have been known to float in vegetable soup as well.

eta:

KREPLACH

(dough squares filled with meat), makes approximately 150 pieces

 DOUGH

Use a food processor, it’s easier. Into the processor bowl put:

3 cups regular flour

3 eggs

1 tsp salt

Scant ¼ cup warm water

PROCESS all of the above until dough forms a ball. If necessary add a bit more water to the machine as it processes. Stopping the motor to push down the dough.

REMOVE the dough, knead on a board or clean countertop until smooth. Wrap in plastic wrap and refrigerate.

 

FILLING

Any combination of cooked chicken and beef, or chicken and veal or beef and veal. Meat can be cooked in a soup, removing the cooked meat when cool and cut into small pieces. There should be about 1 ½ lbs of cooked meat. Saute a large onion (or 2 medium size onions) in oil together with minced 4-5 pieces garlic until golden. Grind the meat together with the onions (they should be ground twice otherwise the meat could be chunky). To the ground meat mixture add 2 or 3 eggs (depending on your amount of meat), about 3 tblsp fine bread crumbs, salt and pepper to taste.

 

ROLL OUT DOUGH

Cut off a small piece of dough, roll out as fine as possible, dough should be quite thin. Cut into strips then into 2” squares, fill with a half tsp. of meat mixture, fold to form a triangle, close the ends by pressing them tight. Drop the filled triangles into a pot of simmering lightly salted water, cook for 10 minutes. Remove with a slotted spoon and put into a bowl, lightly sprinkle with oil. Continue until all the meat is used.

NOTE:  kreplach will freeze well in strong plastic bags.

 

 

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Cholent, “the right way”?

Posted on February 27th, 2012 by

In a recent post for the Aish HaTorah blog http:///www.aish.com/sh/t/e/48969646.html, Judy Gruen divides the (Jewish) world into cholent lovers and cholent haters. Heinrich Heine (who converted to Christianity in 1825 but remembered his Jewish roots all his life) described cholent as “ambrosia” and “the food of heaven” in an early ode to culinary Judaism. Put him, perhaps tongue in cheek, in the cholent-lovers category. . . I was on the fence. Head on over to our sister blog at the Chosen Food website to see what Karen has to say!

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“You don’t have to be Jewish to love Levy’s”

Posted on October 2nd, 2011 by

A blog post by associate director Anita Kassof.

How many of us remember that famous advertising slogan for Levy’s rye bread? The fact of the matter is, Levy’s had it right with that 1960s ad campaign; Jewish and kosher-style food have wide appeal. Think matzoh ball soup, bagels and lox, corned beef on rye, and no matter what your background, your mouth starts watering. Statistics bear out the claim. According to Sue Fishkoff, author of Kosher Nation: Why More and More of America’s Food Answers to a Higher Authority (2010), the majority of people who buy kosher food products aren’t even Jewish. 

To honor the New Year—and to prove my point that great Jewish recipes are great for everyone—I share below a favorite recipe for “Jewish Apple Cake,” which I make every Rosh Hashanah as a sweet way to welcome the New Year. I urge you to try it out and see what you think. I promise you won’t be disappointed.

Image via Flickr.

The recipe is adapted from Covenant’s Still Cookin’ 50th Anniversary Edition (1997), which I received as a thank you gift after I addressed the Covenent Guild many years back. Founded in 1947, the Covenant Guild is a women’s philanthropic group that raises funds for various organizations in theBaltimore area.

Whatever your own holiday food traditions and however you observe Rosh Hashanah—even if you don’t observe it at all—may the coming months be filled with sweetness for you and your families.

4 eggs

2 1/2 c. sugar, divided

½ c. cinnamon

3 c. flour

3 Tbsp. baking powder

2 tsp. vanilla

1 c. neutral oil (I use canola)

½ c. freshly squeezed orange juice

5 medium apples (I like to use tart ones)

3/4 c. chopped walnuts or pecans (optional)

Preheat the oven to 375 degrees.

Mix cinnamon and ½ cup sugar.

Peel the apples, cut them into thin slices, and toss them with about a tablespoon of the cinnamon sugar mixture. Set aside.

Sift the remainder of the sugar, flour, and baking powder together in a large bowl. Add oil and eggs, one at a time, beating on medium speed as you go. Beat in orange juice and vanilla. The batter will be very thick and goopy.

Coat a large pan or pans with oil or cooking spray, coat with flour, and shake off excess. I have used two round cake pans, or one 9×13 inch pan.

Layer batter and apples, ending with apples, which you should press down into the batter. Use all the syrupy liquid that the apples have released. You can even swirl it on top after you’re done layering things. The cake will be pretty messy and gooey but, trust me, it turns out fine—super moist and not too sweet. Top with cinnamon sugar mixture and chopped nuts.

Bake for about 1 hour, testing after first 30 minutes, especially if you are using two smaller pans.

The original recipe says you can invert the cake on a platter after it has cooled, but I’ve never been able to do that. Never mind—even served straight out of the pan, it’s delicious!

 

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