Tag Archives: easy

Chicken and Meatball Fricassee and Chicken Paprikash

Wheat-free * Dairy-free * Gluten-free * Paleo~~~

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I really don’t know what the real difference is between chicken fricassee and chicken paprikash as mom made them both the same way – except she used wings and added meatballs when she made the chicken fricassee.    Chicken paprikash she would use bigger pieces of chicken and serve with nokerle (very heavy dumplings) or she would add rice to the pot and make chicken and rice.  No matter which variation she made, they were all delicious!  Enjoy! Continue reading Chicken and Meatball Fricassee and Chicken Paprikash

Roasted Peppers

Wheat-free * Dairy-free * Gluten-free * Vegetarian * Vegan * Parve * Paleo~~~

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There’s nothing like homemade roasted peppers for making tasty sauces, dips, for antipasto or toppings for bruschetta, in salads or on sandwiches.  The ones you buy in jars pale in comparison to homemade; and they are so easy to do.   Although you can roast green or purple peppers, it is more common to use red, orange or yellow pepper because they have a lovely sweetness once they are cooked.  You can roast peppers on a grill as well as under the broiler.

The first and very important step is to select fleshy peppers.  Unfortunately these are usually the ones that are the more expensive ones from Holland.  You’ll recognize them by the big green stem and they should be heavy when you pick one up.  The peppers that are not as fleshy don’t roast particularly well and I just skip it if I can’t find the fleshy ones.

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Preheat the broiler.  After you’ve rinsed your peppers, cut them in half through the stem

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Then remove the stem, seeds, and any white pith.

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Cut the halves in half to make quarters and place on a baking sheet lined generously with foil.

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Place under broiler and cook until charred.

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Turn and cook second side until charred.

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Immediately roll up the cooked pepper in the foil that was lining the pan.  This lets the peppers steam as they cool, making it easy to remove the skins.

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When the peppers have cooled, open the foil packet and peel the papery/blistered skin from the fleshy part of the peppers.

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Now you have peppers ready to eat or cook with.

My favorite thing to do them them is chop them up; add plenty of garlic, some fresh or dried herbs, and some extra virgin olive oil, a little salt to taste and you are good to go.

CIMG4320   flaxseed crackers with roasted peppers and scallion

Pork Tenderloin with Apples and Cranberries

Wheat-free * Dairy-free * Gluten-free *  Paleo ~~~

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I don’t cook pork often but I’m very fond of pork tenderloin.  It’s quite tasty, not fatty, and doesn’t take too long to cook…but is it paleo?  There are differing opinions on that subject.  Clearly I am of the “it’s okay” school.  The thumbs down for pork is about the relatively high amount of polyunsaturated fatty acids compared to that of other meats.  On the other hand, compared to vegetable oils, pork is a real lightweight.  So my take on it is – okay to eat pork sometimes.  Aim for lower fat cuts.  Try to get pork from local farmers instead of mass producers…and when you do eat it…Enjoy!
Continue reading Pork Tenderloin with Apples and Cranberries

Onion Soup

Wheat-free * Dairy-free * Gluten-free * Vegetarian~~~

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I have always loved onion soup and I have many memories associated with it.  The best version I ever had was at The Brasserie at 1a.m. with my college boyfriend.  The soup was super hot with melt-in-your-mouth onions, a piece of bread saturated with savory soup just slightly sweet from the onions, and tons of ooey-gooey perfectly melted cheese – sheer heaven – and, of course, I was in love – everything tastes blissful when you’re in love.  The next is a restaurant that was my family’s favorite Georges Rey.  We would go there to celebrate birthdays, anniversaries, graduations, etc.  I’d always order their onion soup as my appetizer – it was awesome.  My first attempt at making onion soup was when I was “baby sitting” my best friend who had had surgery.  I made the soup and it quickly became our favorite (turns out another friend of hers came to pay a visit and that was the first time I met her future husband). Fast forward a billion years and I’m giving up dairy, but I had cooked some onion soup earlier in the week, I might as well just try the soup naked.  Surprisingly, it was delicious – even without the cheese or the bread.  Now-a-days onion soup is just one of those things I like to have around for when I’m craving some comfort food or maybe just want some happy memories.  This delicious soup is easy to make and you probably already have the ingredients for it in your pantry/liquor cabinet.  Bon Appetit!
Continue reading Onion Soup

Basic Asparagus Preparation and Hollandaise Sauce

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As Spring approaches (though it’s hard to tell when you’re still wearing your winter down coat) the vegetable that epitomizes Spring for me is asparagus.

I really like asparagus.  I like them even thinner than pencil thin.  My mom always preferred them really fat asparagus – she liked the meatiness.  The great thing about asparagus is that size does not matter (really, I’m not just saying that).  What is important in choosing asparagus is that they be firm, no limpness.

Look for asparagus with tips that are closed – and certainly avoid any that are starting to look wet and dark or slimy.

The bottoms of many asparagus can be tough which is why we snap them off.  Chose ones that are green all the way to the bottom as white on the bottom is definitely going to be tougher and you will be discarding more of the asparagus when you snap it – but that does not affect the flavor or mean the rest of the asparagus will be tough as well.

The proper way to prepare asparagus is to let the plant tell you where the tough part starts.  Do this by holding the asparagus with one hand on the bottom and the other in the middle or slightly towards the top.  Bend the asparagus until it snaps, leaving the bottom part to be discarded and the top to eat.

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My favorite way to prepare asparagus is to roast them.

Preheat your oven to 400F.  Line a baking pan with aluminum foil.  Now remember the Misto olive oil sprayer I recommended some months ago?  Now is the perfect time to use it.  Spray the pan with a light film of olive oil.  Add the asparagus and give a light spray.  Using the Misto prevents the asparagus from getting too greasy.  Bake 15 minutes or until softened (the timing will vary depending on how thick your asparagus are), turning once during baking – and that’s it.

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If you like, you can serve them with Hollandaise sauce.
Continue reading Basic Asparagus Preparation and Hollandaise Sauce

Lemon and Herb Baked Salmon

Wheat-free * Dairy-free * Gluten-free * Parve * Paleo~~~

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Another brief post because I am very very busy this week.  I’m having 17 for first seder, and for the second seder I am cooking (with a lot of helpers) for 142 (yes, you heard that right) for my synagogue.  Since the second seder is on Shabbat (Saturday night ) and you can’t turn the oven on until after sunset; we are serving a cold meal and this salmon is the main entree.  Not only is it delicious cold, but it’s just as good served hot.  It also makes a nice change from gefilte fish as an appetizer.

Have a wonderful holiday this weekend – be it Easter or Passover.
Continue reading Lemon and Herb Baked Salmon

Paleo Pecan Passover Cookies

Wheat-free * Dairy-free * Gluten-free * Vegetarian * Parve * Paleo ~~~

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These are the cookies that my friend Dori always used to bake for Passover.  They’re a real hit and so easy to make it’s embarrassing.  Like the macaroons last week, these are very sweet.

I don’t know about you, but I am knee deep in Passover preparations so I will keep this post short.  Hope you’ll forgive me.
Continue reading Paleo Pecan Passover Cookies

Macaroon Thumbprint Cookies

Wheat-free * Dairy-free * Gluten-free * Vegetarian * Passover * Parve

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I’ve been making these macaroons for about a billion years (okay, slight exaggeration).  I found the recipe in one of those cookbook/pamphlets that you could send a dollar to the company and they send the booklet to you.  This one was from Baker’s and it was chocolate and coconut recipes.  I don’t think I own the booklet anymore, but I liked the recipe so much that I copied it (by hand because in those days you had to go to a store to make copies) into a blank book that  now contains most of my favorite recipes from various (non-online) sources.

There is no doubt that these are very sweet cookies.  If you are one of the “I don’t like stuff too sweet” people, skip this recipe but forward it to anyone you know who adore sweets.  Needless to say, these are perfect for Passover.
Continue reading Macaroon Thumbprint Cookies

Organic Shortening – and Dairy-free Flourless Chocolate Torte Revisited

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I always thought shortening was evil.  That is until I found out that my favorite food in the world (birthday cake frosting) was made of shortening and confectioners’ sugar and maybe vanilla (I like my birthday cakes all white – no chocolate for me) – and that it makes for a very flaky pie crust.   But still, it’s one thing to buy a cake or pie from a bakery and another to use the stuff at home.  So why am I devoting a post to shortening?

For one thing, I’m talking about organic shortening.  It’s not hydrogenated oils (evil) like the kind you find in supermarkets.  It’s palm oil (the oil from a palm seed) and nothing else – more importantly – it’s not hydrogenated (a process that turns oil that is naturally liquid at room temperature into shortening that is solid at room temperature).  The flavor is very neutral which is a great deal better than the other options.  As for its health benefits or lack thereof – I’m not too sure as I’ve seen some articles that praise it and others that say it’s downright bad for you.  But to be honest now that “science” has declared butter and eggs okay, I’m not sure anyone knows anything about foods anymore.

I’ve never really been thrilled with my butter replacement choices since going dairy free.  Ghee (clarified butter) has a flavor that overwhelms the delicate flavors of baked goods.  Non-dairy margarine has too stuff in it and I’m not overly in love with the flavor.  Coconut oil leaves everything tasting slightly coconutty and further the consistency can be tricky depending on the room temperature – in the summer it’s liquid and in the winter it’s rock solid.  Oil tends to be…oily.  But this particular shortening is solid but soft like butter that’s been allowed to soften.

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I’ve been playing around with this shortening since I purchased it and find it to work pretty well in any of the recipes that I’ve used coconut oil in.  Here’s the Chocolate Torte  made with shortening.  It’s denser and chocolate-ier than the original I posted last year.  Here’s the recipe: Continue reading Organic Shortening – and Dairy-free Flourless Chocolate Torte Revisited

Gluten-free Dairy-free Sweet Noodle Pudding (Kugel) for Passover

Wheat-free * Dairy-free * Gluten-free * Vegetarian * Parve ~~~

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In my last post I told you about great gluten free, kosher for Passover noodles and I promised you a recipe for noodle kugel (noodle pudding), so here it is.

In the olden days I used to make a spectacular noodle pudding with sour cream and cottage cheese and pineapple (although the pineapple had to be omitted a long long time ago when I became violently allergic to it).  So, I was a little worried about how a non-dairy, gluten free kugel would come out.  The answer is GOOD – really good.

I suspect my family will miss my matzoh kugel this year, but honestly the gluten free matzoh – even though it tastes quite good – just disintegrates and turns to mush when I add the broth to the veges and matzoh.  So I hope they will forgive me or even better learn to love this noodle pudding instead.  Oh yes, it freezes (which is why I could make it today and plan to serve it at seder) well; just reheat before serving.
Continue reading Gluten-free Dairy-free Sweet Noodle Pudding (Kugel) for Passover