Roasted Chicken Pieces with Jewish Spices

This chicken is so easy to make and so delicious!!! And it takes no time at all.  You can use a whole cut up chicken, or just breasts, like I did this time.  I buy my chicken from Whole Foods and it is so fresh and good.

  • chicken breasts
  • kosher salt, pepper, onion powder, garlic powder, paprika, and a little cayenne (heaviest on the paprika).

Place chicken breasts on baking pan covered with aluminum foil.  Sprinkle both sides with garlic powder, onion powder, pepper, a little salt, very light amount of cayenne, and lots of paprika.

Drizzle tops of chicken breasts with a little light olive oil.

Roast uncovered at 375 degrees for about 40-45 min. till nicely browned. I use my convection roast setting.  Once or twice during the cooking, take out, and baste with drippings.

Eggs and Potatoes in One Pan

I often make one of my specialties, called brenta, which is a recipe of my Grandma Hindes.  Brenta means burned in Yiddish, and these are basically fried potatoes- a Jewish version of hash browns-  but better (you can find this recipe on this site under potatoes). 

To make this, I put about 1 tablespoon of butter in a small nonstick frying pan and melted it on a medium flame.  Then, I put some leftover brenta (about 1 to 1 1/2 cups) in the pan and flattened them to cover the bottom of the pan.  Then I cracked 2 extra large organic eggs on top of the brenta.  I broke the yolks a little, then I covered the pan, and cooked over a medium high flame until the eggs were cooked.  I served and ate immediately, sprinkling with a little kosher salt and some fresh black pepper.  This Is as yummy as can be. 

The next time I do this, I may sprinkle some grated extra sharp cheddar on top of the eggs as they cook.  I’m also thinking about making this dish but in a larger quantity for my family or to bring to school for one of our teacher breakfasts.  I’d do it in an oval baking dish, and bake it in the oven on a high temperature – of course add more of everything- maybe about 4 cups of the brenta, 1 dozen eggs, and about 1/2 cup shredded cheddar over all.  I’ll keep you posted once I do this for more people than just myself.

Another Pea Soup

I like to keep a  one pound bag of split peas in the house just in case we’re in the mood for pea soup. We just had the big blizzard the day after Christmas, and I was snowed in with my son Benji.  I couldn’t have been happier.  He loves soup, I love him, so I made him a pot of delicious, warming soup.  It was a great day.

1 pound bag of green split peas

1 pound bag of yellow split peas

2 large  onion

4 quarts water

about pound of organic carrots, cut into smallish chunks

kosher salt and black pepper to taste

Rinse the peas.  Put in large saucepan.  Pour the water over.  Peel onions and then pierce with a fork, and place in pot whole.  Put sliced carrots in pot.  Cover and bring to a boil.  Simmer covered about 2 hours over low flame, adding your salt and pepper to taste.

Serve with thin egg noodles, matzoh balls, cooked Kosher hot dogs pieces, or just plain.

Sweet And Sour Turkey Or Ground Beef Meatballs

My son Danny asked me to make sweet and sour meatballs, so I looked at a few different recipes, and then came up with this.  Both my boys really loved the meatballs, but I still like the texture more of meatballs made with beef.  I’m planning to make them this year for the Jewish Holidays, but I think I’ll use organic chopped meat instead of the turkey.  The sauce was delicious! I served them with baked stuffed potatoes, but they’d go well with mashed potatoes too.

Ingredients:

for the meatballs:

  • two pounds ground beef, or ground turkey (I used Empire Kosher ground turkey)- (I’ll use 3 pounds of organic beef the next time I made them)
  • 2 large or extra large eggs (3 eggs for 3 lbs. of beef or turkey)
  • 1/3 cup ketchup (1/2 cup for 3 pounds of beef or turkey)
  • 1 teaspoon kosher salt (1 1/2 teaspoons for 3 lbs.)
  • 1 teaspoon black pepper (1 1/2 teaspoons for 3 lbs.)
  • 1/2 teaspoon garlic powder (opt.) (I didn’t use when I used 3 lbs. of beef or turkey)
  • about 3/4 cup plain bread crumbs (or matzoh meal for Passover) (one cup for 3 lbs. of beef or turkey)
  • 4 oz. unsweetened apple sauce (I used this to give the turkey some moistness) (I used this same amount when I used 3 lbs. of beef)
  • 1/2  onion, grated (didn’t use for beef)

Mix all ingredients together gently.  Dampen your hands and make into meatballs about 1 1/2  in. in diameter.   Set aside while you make the sauce.

for the sauce:

  • one (14 oz.) can jellied cranberry sauce (2 cans for 3 pounds of beef or turkey)
  • one (12 oz.) jar chili sauce (2 jars for 3 pounds of beef or turkey)
  • 1/3 cup dark brown sugar about 2/3 cup for 3 pounds of beef or turkey)
  • 1 – 2 tablespoons lemon juice (2 T. for 3 pounds of beef or turkey)
  • 1/2 small 3 oz. can tomato paste (the tomato paste cuts the sweetness and makes the sauce rich) (1 small can for 3 lbs. of beef or turkey)

In largish pot, put all above ingredients.  Stir over low flame until everything is dissolved.  Place meatballs in carefully.  Place over lowest flame, cover, and simmer for about 30-40 minutes without touching the meatballs.  When the meatballs are firm enough, stir very gently.  Cover and cook for about another hour, mixing gently every so often. 

You can serve immediately, refrigerate and heat up later, or freeze in freezer containers when it is cool enough. 

Read on

  1. Pour the whole jar of chili sauce into a 4 quart saucepan. Fill the chili sauce jar with water and add the water to the pan.
  2. Add the can of cranberry sauce and cook over medium-low heat until the cranberry sauce melts.

Directions for Making the Meatballs:

  1. While the sauce is cooking, mix the meat, egg, and onion together.
  2. Add the rest of the ingredients (bread crumbs through black pepper) to the meat mixture and combine well.
  3. After the cranberry sauce has melted, roll the meat mixture into walnut sized balls and gently drop into the sauce.
  4. Cover the pan and cook the meatballs on medium low for one hour.

This recipe makes around twenty-four meatballs. Serve them with plenty of challah to soak up the delicious sauce.

Sources

Read more at Suite101: Sweet and Sour Cranberry Meatballs http://recipes.suite101.com/article.cfm/sweet-and-sour-cranberry-meatballs#ixzz0wvMfRISf

Delicious Oven Fried Chicken Cutlets For Passover Or Anytime

To make this chicken, all I did was simply adapt one of my regular chicken recipes for Passover.  These are delicious, which I know for sure, since all my children loved them.  In fact, my daughter Randi claims that she likes this chicken more than my not for Passover oven fried chicken cutlets.  These are delicious hot, but also cold.  What I like to do is prepare the chicken before I leave for work in the morning without baking it, stick it in the fridge, and then when I get home, I can just throw it in the oven and dinner is ready in less than 30 minutes.

Ingredients:

  •  1 pound or so of thin sliced chicken cutlets
  • matza meal
  • kosher salt
  • pepper
  • olive oil or any other oil of your choice (I use a combination of extra virgin and light olive oil, but that is not necessary)

Directions:

Preheat oven to 400 degrees.

1.  Line a half sheet pan with aluminum foil, then pour a few tablespoons of oil on it, and shmear it all over the pan.  Pour some oil in a shallow bowl, enough to coat all your cutlets.

2.  Place the cutlets in oil and with make sure the cutlets are all totally coated in the oil.

3.  Pour a good amount of matza meal on a large plate, and add salt and pepper to taste.

4.  Dredge each oil coated cutlet in the matza meal, using your hands to really coat the cutlet well on both sides.  I usually turn the cutlet over a few times, pressing the matza meal into the cutlet.  Then transfer each cutlet to the sheet pan.  Sprinkle a little more salt and pepper over each cutlet and drizzle the top of the chicken very lightly with.

5.  Place in center of oven for about 15 minutes.  Change the setting of the oven to broil- low.  Then cook for another 10 or so minutes just until the top of the chicken is nicely browned.  During this time, watch carefully.  If chicken is starting to burn, then change the setting back to bake at 400 degrees.

Note:  The chicken cutlets I use are very thin.  If your cutlets are thicker, bake them for more time up front, and broil them for a few minutes at the end.  Matza meal takes longer to brown than bread crumbs or corn flakes crumbs.  That’s why I have found it is necessary to broil the cutlets to brown them.  The thin cutlets only need 20-25 min. to cook, and the matza meal will not brown in that time period only on a bake setting.

Vegetarian Pea Soup With Matzah Balls

I have made pea soup for years.  For years, I made it with flanken.  My mother, father, and children loved it.  My in-law Marcia Greenhouse though had the brilliant idea of making the soup without meat and adding matzah balls to the recipe!  Since her son and my daughter were both vegetarians who couldn’t eat chicken soup with matzah balls, she decided, why not make the matzah balls with pea soup?  The consensus in the family is that Marcia’s matza balls are better than mine, and I totally agree.  My daughter Randi always asks me why Marcia’s matzah balls are better than mine, and I just don’t have the answer.   Here is the recipe for my delicious pea soup and my and Marcia’s matzah balls.  Oh, I made a really big pot, and then I freeze the rest in quart containers (with the matza balls).

for the soup: 

  • 6 tubes of Manischewitz split pea soup mix (I throw the seasoning packets away)
  • about 24 cups of cold water (about 5 quarts)
  • kosher salt, about 2 tablespoons or to taste
  • pepper, about 2 – 3 teaspoons or to taste
  • 2 large onions, peeled – but left whole
  • 2 pound carrots, peeled and cut into medium sized chunks
  • optional – 1/2 box of alphabet noodles or barley shaped noodles (only if you are not making matzah balls)

Pour the contents of  6 tubes of Manischewitz pea soup mix into the bottom of a very large pot.  Pour in about 24 cups of water (about 4 cups of water for each soup mix packet).  Pierce the two onions with a fork and place in pot.  Bring to a boil.  Skim scum off top.  Add salt and pepper.  Lower flame to low.  Simmer with top on.  After about one hour, add the cut up carrots.  Continue to simmer with cover on  for at least one more hour until you don’t see any more pieces of dried peas.  Discard onions.  If you are adding the noodles, boil them separately and then add them to the soup when the soup is fully cooked.

for the matzah balls:

  • 1 box (2 packets) Manishewitz matzah ball mix
  • oil and eggs- for quantities, see instructions on box

Follow directions on the box exactly.  Refrigerate batter, according to directions on the box.  Then, form the matzah balls using dampened hands.  Bring a large pot of water to a boil, and boil the matzah balls to that pot and cook according to package directions.  Add  cooked matzah balls to the soup. 

Note:  Freeze leftover soup and matzah balls in quart containers. 

   

Judy’s Sweet And Sour Meatballs or Stuffed Cabbage

I adapted this recipe from my Aunt Florence Fried’s recipe for the filling of her stuffed cabbage.  When I used to make stuffed cabbage, I would make extra meatballs for my children.  My son Danny was the one who really loved these.  My mother loved when I made this, but my father especially loved when I made the stuffed cabbage.

for the meatballs or the filling of the stuffed cabbage:

  • 4 pounds chop meat (85% or 90% lean)
  • 4 eggs
  • about 1 cup of plain bread crumbs (or matzah meal for Passover)
  • 1 cup ketchup
  • salt and pepper to taste

for the sauce for the sweet and sour meatballs or the stuffed cabbage:

  • 4- 8 oz. cans tomato sauce
  • 4- 6 oz. cans tomato paste (I use Contadina)
  • 1 cup water
  • 1/2 teaspoon sour salt (or substitute 1 more lemon for sour salt 9/11)
  • juice of a lemon
  • 2 cups packed dark brown sugar (reduce to 1 1/2 cups)

if you are making stuffed cabbage:

  • 1 large head of new cabbage

for making the sweet and sour meatballs:

Put all the sauce ingredients in a large pot.  Put over low flame and whisk till blended.  Then form meat mixture into meatballs about 1 1/2 inches in diameter.  Gently drop meatballs into pot.  Simmer covered over a low flame about 2 1/2 hours.    Do not stir until your meatballs have set after about 1/2 hour or so.  If you mix while they are still raw, they will not retain their shape.

for stuffed cabbage:

Core and put 1 large head of new cabbage in a very large pot.  Pour cold water in to cover.  Simmer covered until the leaves are soft enough to separate.  Lay out one leaf of cabbage at a time.  Put about one tablespoon of meat mixture in center but towards the bottom of the leaf, then begin to roll up, then fold both sides over, and continue to roll.  Do with each leaf until you have used all the leaves.  Put half of your sauce mixture in bottom of a very large pot.  Then put all of the cabbage rolls, then the rest of the sauce on top.  If you have any leftover meat, make meatballs out of them and add to the top of the pot.  Simmer with the top on about 2 1/2 hours.

Note:  This freezes very well.

Delicious Pot Roast With Velvety Smooth Gravy

The Gravy In This Pot Roast Is Rich And Delicious! 

If you like pot roast, this is a pretty good recipe for it.

  • 3 – 4 pounds of rump or bottom round foast beef
  • 1 tablespoon light olive oil or other vegetable oil
  • kosher salt
  • black pepper
  • 1 large onion, cut into a medium dice
  • 1-8 ounce can tomato sauce
  • 1 1/2 cups beef stock (I used Kitchen Basics)
  • 1/2 cup water

Season the meat on all sides with kosher salt and pepper (I use regular ground pepper for this). Heat 1 tablespoon oil in a dutch oven or pot. Add meat and diced onions to the dutch oven or pot and brown the onions and the meat (on all sides) over a medium to high heat for about 10- 15 minutes. The onions should be really browning along with the meat. You should have lots of browned bits on the bottom and along the sides of the dutch oven or pot. Then take the meat out (temporarily). Add the beef stock and water to the dutch oven or pot. This is called deglazing.  Keep the flame on low, and use a wooden spoon to mix all the browned bits in with the liquid. Those browned bits are what really give flavor to the pot roast and the gravy. Add the tomato sauce, and mix in with the wooden spoon. Put the meat back in. Smoosh the meat around in the gravy. Cover the dutch oven or pot. At this point, you can either cook the pot roast on the top of the stove over the lowest flame if you are using a regular pot. If you are using a dutch oven, then place it in the oven at 325 degrees for 2 1/2-4 hours, depending on the thickness of the roast. If you are cooking the pot roast on top of the stove, turn the meat every 1/2 hour. Even if you are cooking the pot roast in the oven, you can turn it over every half hour, but this is not necessary. Check the meat after 2 1/2 hours to see if it is tender. A fork should go in quite easily when it is done. Thicker pieces of meat will definitely require more time.  When it is done, take the pot roast out of the pot or dutch oven to rest on the counter for a few minutes.

Then make the gravy. You can do two things. You can serve the gravy as is right from the pot, which is basically au jus, or you can make a thicker gravy using about 1 1/2 cups of the pan drippings.  To do this, take about 1 1/2 cups of the au jus out of the pot, and put it through a sieve or strainer. Then pour the liquid into a small saucepan. Whisk in about 2 tablespoons of flour until you can’t see any of the flour. Bring to a simmer, and simmer for about 3-5 minutes until thickened. If the gravy is too thick, add a little water. If you think it’s too thin, turn the heat off, add a little more flour, whisk it in, and then simmer for a few more minutes. (For those who like au jus or the natural gravy, you should still have some of that left in the pot to serve.)

Slice the roast with a sharp knife into about 1/4 inch thick slices. Place on serving platter and either drizzle some of the au jus or gravy over it, or serve it with the au jus or gravy on the side.

Note: You can make this in a crock pot, but you should do the first steps of browning the meat and onions as stated above. Instead of cooking the meat in the oven or on top of the stove, transfer it into a crock pot, and cook on low for about 4-5 hours until tender.

Serving Suggestions: Serve with either baked potatoes, mashed potatoes, or egg noodles.

Ellen’s Delicious Passover Pineapple Kugel

Learn To Make This Outstanding Pineapple Kugel For Passover!  

I adapted this recipe from a recipe I got from my friend Ellen Wachstein.  Ellen is an amazing person and a wonderful friend! I have so many memories of the happy times my family spent over the years with Ellen, her husband Bobby, and her three great children, Toby, Steven, and Alexa. My favorite memories are of the many days our two families spent together at the Phillips Avenue Beach Pavilion in Deal, New Jersey, or of the many times our two families just hung out together at their house or our house.  Anyway, my family was lucky to be invited over to the Wachstein’s for a Passover Seder one year.  Bobby Wachstein does a fabulous job of leading the Seder!  Of course, I was very into the food.  One of the dishes Ellen made for the Seder was her Passover pineapple kugel.  I loved it.  I got the recipe and I make it every year for Passover.  Whenever I am invited to anyone’s home for a Seder, I always bring this dish, and it  gets rave reviews.  I know if you make this pineapple kugel for Passover once, it will become a favorite of yours, too!

  • 3/4 cup (1 1/2 sticks) Fleischmann’s unsalted margarine (use unsalted margarine to make this dish pareve, otherwise you can use salted margarine or butter) (used margarine for Passover 2014)(used butter Passover 2015)
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt (you only need salt if you are using unsalted butter or margarine)
  • scant 2/3 cup granulated sugar
  • 2- 20 ounce cans crushed pineapple in natural juice, strained but not dry at all (you will not be using the juice)
  • 6 extra large eggs, mixed in a small bowl (switch to 7 ex. lg. next time– to give a little more liquid)
  • 4 cups of dry matza farfel (used whole canister April 2014) This year, I used 14 oz. of matza that I broke into pieces myself when I couldn’t find farfel)
  • 2 teaspoons cinnamon, plus extra for sprinkling on top (also sprinkled cinn. and sugar on top April 2014) I used 2 1/2 teaspoons 2015 and sprinkled top too

to make the kugel:

Preheat oven to 350 degrees.  Put the margarine into a 9 x 13 baking dish, rectangular or oval, and place in the oven.  When it is melted take out the pan, swirl the margarine around in the pan to make sure that the sides and bottom are well greased.  Pour the melted margarine into a large mixing bowl and set aside.

Place a colander in the sink.  Put the whole canister (14 oz.) of matza farfel in the colander.  Run warm water over the matza farfel.  When the matza farfel starts to soften, turn the water off.  The pieces of farfel should be soft, but not mushy.  This is the tricky part.  Because if you have let too much water soak into the matza farfel, it will turn into one glob of mush, and you will have to throw it away and start all over.  Hold the colander with both hands and shake the excess water out, the way you would if you were draining pasta.  Dump the matza farfel into the large mixing bowl with the melted margarine.  Mix the farfel gently with the melted margarine using a rubber spatula.  Pour the sugar and the drained pineapple into the mixing bowl and mix gently with the rubber spatula.   Pour the beaten eggs in, and mix gently to incorporate well.  Add the cinnamon, and mix in.

Pour into prepared pan.  Sprinkle the top with additional cinnamon.  The cinnamon on the top is what is going to make the kugel look pretty, so be generous.  Bake about 60 – 65 minutes until kugel is browned on the sides and the bottom.  Serve.

Hint #1:  You can bake this in advance, then cut up into 24 pieces, place in heavy duty aluminum foil, and then heat up later either  in the microwave (If you are heating this up in the microwave, take it out of the aluminum foil, and place it on a microwave safe plate).

Hint #2:  I like to bake this in a clear glass baking dish so I can see if the sides and the bottom are browning.  If you bake this in a ceramic baking dish, it will be harder for you to know if the kugel is done.

Aunt Helene’s And Aunt Francine’s Delicious Broiled Chicken And Potatoes

This Chicken Is Wonderful To Make For A Friday Night Shabbat Dinner!

My ex-husband Joe Kahn has two wonderful aunts, his Aunt Francine Shure and his Aunt Helene Caplan.  They were welcoming and loving to me when Joe brought me to their homes in the suburbs outside of Baltimore, Maryland.  I spent the most time at Aunt Francine’s and Uncle Richard’s house.  I loved going there because they were loving, fun, and warm people.  (I really miss those times!)  I also loved going to Frannie’s house because she was (and still is, I’m sure) a fantastic cook.  This recipe for broiled chicken and potatoes was often served when Joe and I were invited over for dinner.  Joe has told me many times about the wonderful Friday night (Shabbat) dinners that were held at his house hosted by his mother Bernice Kahn.  Joe remembers that Aunt Helene was in charge of the chicken.  She prepared it at her house and brought it over because there just wasn’t enough room in Bernice’s oven to cook all the chicken for the 18 or so people who were going to be eating.  Joe has unbelievably wonderful memories of those Friday night dinners.  A memory I have of eating this meal in Richard and Francine’s dining room is how much Richard enjoyed Francine’s cooking, and how complimentary he was about everything she put on the table. It was just fun to be with them!  Please try this recipe – it is a foolproof recipe for delicious chicken!

  • 1 or 2 whole chickens, cut up in eighths
  • kosher salt *(optional- see note below)
  • pepper, garlic powder, and paprika
  • dried onion flakes OR 1-2 onions, minced                 
  • 1 or 2 large cans of whole baby white potatoes
  • light olive oil or schmaltz (chicken fat)

for the chicken:

Preheat oven to broil.  Cover a half sheet pan with heavy duty aluminum foil.

Season the cut up pieces of chicken with salt, pepper, garlic powder, and paprika on both sides.  Place on prepared pan so the bottom of the chicken is facing up.  Broil until the top of chicken is nicely browned, 5-10 minutes.  Then turn and broil until the skin side of the chicken is nicely browned, about 5-10minutes.  Then cover with aluminum foil and cook at 325  degrees for about 45 minutes to an hour more. the cooking time will depend on the size of your chicken pieces.

for the potatoes:

Take the potatoes out of the can and rinse them well in cold water.  Put a little oil or schmaltz in a cast iron skillet or any type of frying pan.  Fry the minced onions, seasoning them with a some paprika and some salt.  When the onions are starting to brown, throw the potatoes in with the onions.  Season the potatoes generously with paprika and a little kosher salt (optional).  Toss the potatoes with the onions as the onions brown.  When the onions are really browned, place the potatoes and onions in a serving bowl.    

OR

Rinse the potatoes with cold water as above.  Pour a few tablespoons of oil  on the bottom of the casserole dish.  Put the potatoes in the dish.  Sprinkle the potatoes generously with paprika, and place the casserole in the oven uncovered while you are broiling and baking the chicken.  Just be sure that you put the casserole underneath the chicken so that the potatoes don’t burn while you are broiling the chicken.  Toss the potatoes and the onions a few times during the cooking.  If the potatoes don’t have enough color, add a little more paprika.  The potatoes will be ready to serve when the chicken is done.

*Note:  The original recipe calls for NOT USING any salt when you season the chicken.  That’s because Kosher chickens were being used, and Kosher chickens are already salted.  So if you are using Kosher chicken, OR if you are trying to cut down on salt, just eliminate the salt from the recipe.