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Hamantaschen

March 10, 2011

 

This three cornered cookie celebrates the Jewish holiday of Purim.  It is a “victory” food commemorating the bravery of Queen Esther, a very young wife who dared to convince her husband of an evil presence in his court.   The result was the betterment of the king’s realm and the lives of her own Jewish people.

Recipe adapted from The Jewish Festival Cookbook (1954 ed.)

 

1/2 cup butter

1 teaspoon grated orange rind

1 cup sugar

1 egg

2 tablespoons orange juice

2 cups sifted flour

2 teaspoons baking powder

1/4 teaspoon salt

 

Using an electric mixer, cream the butter with the grated orange rind and gradually add the sugar.  Add the egg and orange juice.  Sift together flour, baking powder and salt; then add to mixture.  When the dough reaches a soft consistency, remove and chill.  Turn out on a floured board and roll to 1/4 inch thickness. Cut into 3 inch circles and fill each with a spoonful of prune filling.  Slightly roll the sides of the circle to form a triangle, leaving the filling exposed.  Bake at 350 degrees for 20 minutes.

Yield:  2 dozen

 

Prune Filling:

2 cups cooked prunes, seeded and chopped

grated rind of one lemon

1 tablespoon lemon juice

1/3 cup of sugar

Mix all ingredients.

Picnics for the Well Dressed Sandwich

March 9, 2011

 

It matters not where you escape for joy of food and nature.  Simple pleasure can be sitting quietly and watching life.  Exchanging fast for slow creates peace in any day.  Toss a chip to a squirrel and see if he looks you square in the eye as he chomps down.  Feed a sandwich corner to a noisy duck. Wait for a turtle as it paddles to a warm rock.  Watch for a falcon to amaze with speed and precision.  Good picnics are a real workout, and not suitable for the antsy.

Smoked Salmon Sandwich

March 9, 2011

 

A twist on the classic lox and bagels.

 

Rustic Italian or French bread, sliced and toasted

4 ounces goat cheese, softened

4 tablespoons green onions, chopped

Avocado, thin sliced

Fresh lemon juice

Beefsteak tomato, thin sliced

Smoked salmon, thin sliced

 

In a medium bowl, blend the goat cheese with the green onions. Splash sliced avocado with lemon juice. To assemble sandwich, spread toast with cheese spread; add 3 avocado slices and a slice each of tomato and salmon.  Sandwich may be left open faced or closed.  Either way, cut in quarters and serve with bagel chips.

Mardi Gras Tapenade

March 8, 2011

 

Tapenade crowned toast with Mardi Gras colors of purple and green!

 

1 clove garlic, minced

2 anchovy fillets, rinsed

4 tablespoons fresh parsley, chopped

1 tablespoon lemon juice

2 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil

1 cup kalamata olives, pitted and chopped

Rustic French bread, toasted, cut in triangles

 

In food processor fitted with steel blade, combine garlic, anchovies, and parsley.  Pulse a few times. Follow with lemon juice and olive oil and process until almost smooth. Incorporate the olives with a few final pulses.  Transfer to covered bowl and refrigerate at least an hour to enhance flavors.  Mound on toast and garnish with freshly chopped parsley.

 

Whitefish on Pumpernickel

March 7, 2011

 

Pumpernickel bagels, sliced and lightly toasted

Whipped cream cheese spread

English cucumber, sliced

Smoked whitefish, skinned and boned

 

Spread cream cheese on the toasted bagels, dress

with two or three slices of cucumber and complete

with the smoked whitefish.  Cover, cut in half and

serve with Kosher dill pickles.

Grilled Cheese Sandwich

March 6, 2011

 

The Rolls Royce of grilled cheese sandwiches.

 

Rustic French bread, sliced and lightly toasted

Mayonnaise

Beefsteak tomato, sliced

Gruyere cheese, 1/4 inch slices

 

Spread mayonnaise on the toasted French bread.

Top with one slice each of the tomato and cheese;

then, sandwich with other slice of toast.  Lightly

butter a medium skillet and grill sandwiches over

medium heat until cheese melts, about 4 minutes

per side.  Allow to rest a minute; cut into quarters

and serve with Cape Cod potato chips.

Chicken Salad Sandwich

March 6, 2011

 

A classic made simple.

 

2 cups onion soup

1 small onion, sliced

4 skinless, boneless Kosher chicken breasts

1/2 cup mayonnaise

2 tablespoons Dijon mustard

1/2 cup celery, chopped

4 tablespoons green onions, chopped

Salt and pepper, to taste

White bread, sliced, crusts removed

 

Bring soup to a boil, add onion and chicken breasts, cover and simmer until chicken is tender. Discard onion;  remove chicken to a cutting board to cool. Cut into bite sized portions and transfer to a mixing bowl.  Add mayonnaise, mustard, celery, green onions. Salt and pepper to taste.  Mix well, cover and refrigerate at least an hour to enhance flavors.  Toast white bread, spread with mustard and mayonnaise; complete with the chicken salad.  Dress with the usual suspects: lettuce, tomato and sliced dill pickle. Plate and add potato chips (Cape Cod brand).  Garnishes nicely with green onions and stuffed green olives.