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holiday, Page 2

biscotti1-cafe-liz

Chocolate Passover biscotti

These biscotti have a tendency to vanish. Biscotti are twice-baked cookies, once into a loaf, and the second time after being sliced, and until crunchy. Something about the denseness means they don’t lose much — if anything — from being made with matzo meal instead of flour, and thus kosher …

fruit-soup-cafe-liz

Matzo balls in Persian fruit soup

I had a particular Persian meatball dish in mind when I made this — meatballs stewed in a broth of dried fruit. Fruit plays a central role in savory cooking in Persian cuisine. While dried fruit is more commonly associated with another holiday, Tu Bishvat, Passover also happens to fall …

cranberry-charoset

Cranberry charoset

This is a play on a classic charoset — a Sephardi-style nut/date spread with a decidedly new-world twist. Cranberries are a new-world fruit, so it’s highly unlikely that they started appearing in any traditional Jewish cuisine too many centuries ago. But hey, it’s been 500 years since Columbus sailed the …

mushroom-croquettes1-cafe-liz

Passover mushroom croquettes

Pork-obsessed Spanish cuisine is not known for being kosher friendly, but classic croquettes can easily be made not only kosher and vegetarian, but kosher for Passover, to boot. Croquettes are breaded dumplings filled with a bechamel cream, flavored with any number of things. I learned the technique from my friend …

passover-cafe-liz

Passover 2010 on Cafe Liz

Passover is rapidly approaching. The stores have already stopped stocking my favorite cookies and chocolates (no baker’s chocolate for Passover? really guys?) You, like us, are preparing for the week of unleavened bread, whether that means planning a seder, or just coming up with things to eat for the week. …

birds-nests-cafe-liz

Purim special: Hamentaschen-shaped bird’s nest baklava

Purim is approaching, and while I haven’t decided on a costume, I did decide to dress up my hamentaschen in Middle Eastern outfits. Hamentaschen are traditional Ashkenazi Jewish cookies notable for their three-pointed form, which according to tradition resembles the three-cornered hat of Haman, the holiday’s antagonist. (In Hebrew, for …

sweet-potato-pancakes

Orna & Ella’s sweet potato pancakes

I guess I lack holiday spirit. It’s Hanukkah, but I haven’t been able to get in the mood for grease. After making six types of latkes last year, and frying them in more than enough oil to keep a hanukkiyah burning for eight days, I went a different route this …

challah1

Mom’s challah

I’m not entirely sure where my mom got this recipe, but I got it from her. It’s a surefire way to impress at a Friday night dinner. It has this warm, yeasty flavor in the hours after it’s baked that dissipates as the hours pass, turning it back into just …

dirtcake

Dirt cake

Spot the impostor: It’s not a plant, it’s a cake. It only looks like a plant. (OK, a fake plant. But still.) I got this recipe from my mom, who’s been playing it for laughs since I was a child. This is my second year making it myself (for a …

passion-fruit-cheesecake1

Passion-fruit citrus cheesecake

This cheesecake has a fabulous, tangy flavor, thanks to the passion fruit, orange and lemon. It also almost ended in complete and total disaster due to my impatience. It’s been quite a while since I’ve made a cheesecake — about 51 weeks, right around last year’s Shavuot, to be precise …