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Tag Archives: side dishes

Quinoa with Peas and Cranberries

Submitted by Laura, a Challah Bytes reader

Ingredients

1 cup uncooked quinoa
2 cups water
Salt to taste (I use 3/4 of a teaspoon to one cup uncooked quinoa)
1 small (or medium) onion — depends on how much you like onions
1 tablespoon curry powder — you can use less if you don’t want it too spicy
1/4 – 1/8 cup apple cider vinegar – depends on how “vinegary” you want it — I used a little less than 1/4 cup
1 tablespoon brown sugar — you can use a little more if you want it sweeter
1/4 cup small frozen green peas
1/4 cup unsweetened dried cranberries — not cranberry sauce

Method

1) Place uncooked quinoa in a fine-mesh strainer and wash thoroughly. Drain well.
*Tamar’s note: I usually soak my quinoa in water for about 30 minutes and then drain, this takes off some of it’s bitterness.

2) Put quinoa in a pot with two cups of water and salt .
3) Cover and bring to a boil.
While the quinoa is being brought to a boil slice onion into small pieces (cubes) and fry lightly in some oil until they are translucent and beginning to brown. Turn off flame and set aside.
Also, at this time, give the peas and cranberries a quick “dunk” in boiling water, strain and set aside
4) When quinoa comes to a boil, turn flame down and continue to cook quinoa until all the water is absorbed — around 10-15 minutes.
5) Turn off flame, keep pot covered and let steam for around five minutes — can be a little longer.
6) Quickly add vinegar, spices, lightly fried onions, brown sugar, peas and cranberries to the cooked quinoa; stir everything together.
7) Cover pot, and let everything “steam” together for around ten minutes.

Thanks Laura, for sharing with us this flavorful dish!

Cauliflower Cheese Toss

Ingredients

1 bag bug-free frozen cauliflower
2-4 onions
4 tablespoons oil
1 ½ tsp. salt
½ tsp. pepper
Leftover challah for crumbs, for a total of 1-2 cups breadcrumbs
½ cup shredded yellow cheese (or more, if you can afford the calories!)

Method

Use as much cauliflower, or, alternatively, broccoli, or even a mix of both, as you think will feed your crowd.
For 4 people, you only need about 4 cups of cauliflower total (or about a half bag of the average size frozen veggie bags).

In a large (dairy) covered pot place 1 inch of water with the cauliflower.
Steam the cauliflower for 5 minutes.

How to steam:
Turn the flame under the pot of veggies on high just until you see steam, which should not take longer than 5 minutes!

Uncover the pot so the cooking process will stop. Otherwise, you will have very soft cauliflower.
Drain the cauliflower and make sure there is no water left in the pot.
Then add the cauliflower back in, uncovered.
Not overcooking it also preserves more of its natural vitamins and minerals.
Drain off any excess liquid.

I like this with lots of onions, so I used two large ones for only a half a bag, along with a full cup of toasted breadcrumbs.

Slice 2-4 large onions in half lengthwise.
Start to sautee them in 3 tablespoons oil. You can use butter as well, as it certainly will taste great.
Keep stirring and sautéing them until they start to caramelize and turn golden brown.
Before they are too dark, quickly add in the breadcrumbs and add another 1 tablespoon of oil.
Toss repeatedly in the pan, and make sure it does not burn.
Turn off the flame and add in ½ tsp. pepper and 1 ½ tsp. salt.
Place this all back in the pot the cauliflower was steamed in.
Toss to distribute everything evenly.
Turn on the flame for two – three minutes to heat.
When hot, spoon out into the serving dish.
Sprinkle cheese on top for garnish and serve immediately.

This idea is not terribly difficult to do but it tastes so good you will be surprised by how quickly it gets eaten up!

Veggie Roll Up Hamantaschen

Great and Tasty Side dish to your Purim meal!

Ingredients

You’ll need a package of puff pastry dough (also known as ‘batzek alim merudad’)
In a large frying pan with about 3 Tablespoons of canola oil, sautee all or a combo of the following veggies, sliced:

2 onions
A few cloves of garlic
1 red pepper
1 green pepper
1 yellow or orange pepper
1-2 cups of white bean sprouts
2 carrots, shredded

Method

Sautee until they are softened; toss with 1 teaspoon of salt and a pinch of ground black pepper. Let it cool down and drain it. If you think the veggies are too wet, you can always toss them with one tablespoon of flour to coat them. You can also add in a bit of salt and pepper and a dash of soy sauce to the veggie mix. Toss together.

Cut off slices from the puff pastry, fill the top and center with the cooked veggies and roll it up like a jelly roll. Cut marks in the top of the pastry roll for when you will slice it later on.

Suggestions From Our Readers

Cut out squares of the dough and fill the center with the veggie mix. Then close it over to resemble a triangle, seal it by pressing down on the edges with the tines of a fork and you hereby here a sort of hamantaschen look to your veggie bourekas!

Batsheva wrote me that she does this by cutting out circles ( a cookie cutter or glass will do the trick) and then shaping them like hamantaschen. I tried this and it didn’t stick so well, but it could have just been that I used too much filling.

Rochel from Bat Yam wrote me her ideas too:

Thanks so much for sending this to me. I was amazed at your recipe here because it is one (of the few) I already invented for my own family!!!

Nu, with a few differences…
1) I cut the dough into squares and fold them into triangles with the vegetables as a filling
2) I “paint” it with egg and sprinkle on lots of sesame (d-e-l-i-c-i-o-u-s)
3) I do different sizes so the kiddies get “eggrolls” and the adults get “borekas”
4) I add grated squash (kishuim) for sweetness to the stir fried vegetables (the kids don’t notice the taste but it’s healthy for them)
5) I find using malawach (cut into half or quarters or eighths!) is also very good with this

This is a very favorite Shabbos treat in our house. Try my variations and enjoy!

Either freeze it like this until the day you use it, or proceed to baking it in a 350F oven until it is totally golden browned and crunchy.

Slice and enjoy!

For added fun make a mushroom sauce to go over it.

Chanukah Potato Latkes — THREE IDEAS!

What would Chanukah be, after all, without those old time favorites, our Latkes? Here we’ll just see different ways to serve this favorite oldie, and perhaps even a way to cut down on the amount of oil in a typical latke:

This makes about 10-12 ordinary sized latkes.
This same recipe/ratio can be used for all ideas.

Ingredients:

5 potatoes, peeled
1 large onion or two small ones
3 eggs
2 teaspoons of salt
1/2 teaspoon pepper
2 tablespoons flour or breadcrumbs, optional

Method (for all latke ideas)

In a food processor fitted with the sharp “S” blade, puree the onions completely until liquidy. Add the eggs and puree one more minute. Pour this mix out into a large bowl.
Change the blade to the shredding device. Shred the potatoes. Squeeze out the extra moisture and add them into the onto the onion mixture.
Add the salt and pepper and optional starch. Mix well.

Latke Idea 1: Ordinary Latkes:

Spray a large frying pan with oil spray so the latkes will release easier. Add in 2 tablespoons of oil and let it get hot.
Put down mounds of potato mix all over your pan, about 3 tablespoons in size. As they begin to sizzle, flatten them with a spatula. Let them become brown and crunchy, and then flip to the second side to finish frying. Remove them to plate with paper towels on it to absorb some oil. Add a bit more oil to the pan and continue frying latkes until they are all ready.

Latke Idea 2: Latke ‘Muffin Kugelettes’:

Preheat your oven to 375°F (200°C).
Prepare a 12 cups muffin tin, by putting in muffin cups and then spray each one very well with baking oil spray.
Add a small amount, about a teaspoon, of oil to each muffin cup.

Spoon the potato mixture into your waiting muffin cups. Slide into your hot oven and let it sizzle and bake until golden brown on top and sides. Now you have individual potato latke muffin “kugelettes” without standing on top of a hot frying pan or stovetop!

They even serve great Friday night. After baking one or two pans worth of them, let them cool. Then place the kugelettes into a 9×13 pan, one next to the other. Slide them into a hot oven about 20 minutes before Shabbos and let them reheat, open, for 15 minutes. Cover then loosely and turn off the oven. Leave them there until the meal. They won’t be quite as crispy as if you would have eaten them directly from the pan, but they are still quite good and will get eaten up down to the last bit.

Latke Idea 3: “Lite” Latkes:

Another “lite” idea for latkes is that lo and behold, you can make them in the oven! It’s a lot easier and faster than frying them, plus there is a lot less oil involved. Simply layer a baking tray with baking paper, and then spray the baking paper with an oil spray.
Spoon individual latkes onto the tray and slide them into a preheated oven 375° F (200° C) and let them sizzle until golden.
If you feel a need you may flip them halfway through in order to make both sides of the latke crunchy.

Chocolate Chip Cheese Latkes

Here’s a sweet idea that the kids are sure to love…

Ingredients

2 eggs
¾ cup soft white cheese or cottage cheese (OR a 250 gram container of 5% Israeli white cheese, ‘gveena levana’)
1 cup milk
3 Tbls. light brown sugar
½ tsp. salt
3 T. canola oil
3 tsp. baking powder
2 cups flour
¼ cup chocolate chips

This recipe also works great as whole wheat or spelt. For whole wheat, substitute the same amount of flour with a light whole wheat flour.
For spelt use the same amount of flour plus an additional 2 tablespoons; I’ve done it with whole grain spelt, which is darker and heavier, as well as white spelt, which makes it come out whiter and lighter. Spelt is a bit lighter in general than wheat so if the batter looks too loose to you, either cut down slightly on the milk or add another ¼ cup of spelt flour. When spelt is baked or fried into patties it can sometimes come out tinted a bit green. This is normal.
Of course this recipe works just fine with ordinary white flour!

Method

Put the ingredients, in the order listed, into a large bowl. Mix well with a fork, or for added smoothness, use a hand beater. One it is smooth, sprinkle in about ¼ cup mini or regular chocolate chips. If you have access to them, you can even get creative and add peanut butter or caramel chips instead…

Lightly spray a large frying pan (a.k.a. ‘griddle’) with baking spray and heat it over a medium sized flame. When hot, pour out small amounts of batter all over the pan for smaller latkes, such as the ones featured here, or larger amounts for full sized ‘pancakes’. Serve with syrup or cream cheese of your choice and enjoy!

Zucchini Cheese Potato Latkes

This makes enough for about four hungry people or six regular people, all depending on how long ago they ate before you started to fry these up…

Ingredients

1 medium sized onion
2 eggs
2 medium zucchinis, scrubbed and washed well
4 medium potatoes, peeled
¼ cup breadcrumbs (if you don’t have, you can use matzo meal)
½ cup yellow cheese such as parmesan or mozzarella, shredded
2 stalks fresh parsley, chopped, optional
½ tsp. salt
¼ tsp. pepper
2 T. mustard, Dijon or Spicy Yellow
2 T. – 4 T. oil
Oil baking spray

Method

In a food processor fitted with the sharp “S” blade, puree the onions completely.
Add the eggs and puree one more minute.
Change the blade to the shredding device.
Shred the zucchinis and potatoes onto the onion mixture.

Pour this vegetable mixture out into a large bowl and add the breadcrumbs, cheese, and fresh parsley. (Adding it in really adds to the nice look and taste of this recipe. I only wrote it’s optional in case you have fussy little people who won’t eat them if they see ‘those green things’ coming out of their latkes…) Add in the salt, pepper and mustard. Mix well by hand.

Take out a large frying pan and spray it well with a thin coating of baking spray.
Add 1-2 Tablespoons of oil to this and start to heat it on a medium to high flame. You will use the other tablespoons of oil when frying up the second batch.

Form small patties out of the cheese/vegetable mixture with the help of a tablespoon and place them by spoonfuls onto the hot pan.

Using your spoon, shape them a bit more to make them look nice while they are on the pan. Flatten slightly with a spatula.

Let them sizzle until browned on the first side, then flip and do the same to the other side.
You’ll be nicely surprised to see that this small amount of oil is sufficient to do the trick of ‘frying’ your latkes to a nice crunchiness. When they are done, lay them out on a flat plate that is lined with one or two paper towels, to drain them of the outside oil a bit more.

Pumpkin Muffins

Ingredients

4 eggs, separated
3 cups finely ground whole wheat flour
1 cup regular whole wheat flour or more of the finely ground
1 tsp baking powder
3 tsp baking soda
2 cups light brown sugar OR white sugar
½-1 tsp nutmeg
1 & ½ tsp cinnamon
1 cup finely chopped walnuts (when you’re not making it for Rosh HaShanah)
1 cup any color raisins
1 cup canola oil
2 cups fresh pumpkin, mashed and drained
2/3 cup soy or rice milk (you can use water if you don’t have this on hand)
3-4 Tbls maple syrup

Method

Preheat your oven to 350°F (180°C).
Separate the eggs, placing the whites into the mixer. Beat the whites until they are snowy and white; DO NOT TURN OFF YOUR MIXER. You will NOT have to use two bowls, I guarantee it!
While the mixer is still running, turn it down a bit to medium. Add the yolks, oil, sugar, nutmeg, and cinnamon. Turn the mixer down a tad more, just a tad, and add the flours, baking powder, baking soda, soy milk/water and syrup. Turn off the mixer and raise the beater so it can drip off into your bowl. Quickly toss the raisins in a small bowl with another 2 Tbls of any kind of flour. This is a great tip to remember for yourself; tossing raisins into flour prevents it from sinking to the bottom of whatever muffin, cake or baked item you are making. Anyhow, after you’ve done this, add it to the batter in the bowl, along with the pumpkin and the optional nuts.

Topping

Put about ½ cup dark or light brown sugar in a bowl, along with 2-3 Tbls more cinnamon. Toss together with a spoon and sprinkle over muffin batter right before they go into the oven.

Spoon batter into muffin trays lined with muffin liners (in Israel I used size 4 for large muffins, size 2 for mini ones) about ¾ of the way full, a bit more if you like large tops on them. Bake for 25-30 minutes, checking after 20 minutes to see if a sharp knife or toothpick inserted into one muffin’s center comes out clean. Remove from oven immediately after it tests clean so they will not dry out. Cool in the tray for five minutes, then on wire racks until cold. These are so good straight out of the oven. If you don’t ruin your secret of whole wheat, none of your kids, or even your teenagers, will ever know the difference. These freeze great as well.

Spinach Noodle Kugel

Ingredients

This makes enough for a 9×13 pan.

1 bag (400 grams) of wide noodles, white or whole wheat
4 eggs, or 5 egg whites
3 tsp salt
½ tsp pepper
1 large onion, diced
½ bag of Bodek frozen spinach, defrosted and drained (about 400 grams of spinach total)
1/3 cup canola oil
2 Tbls olive oil

Method

Spray the baking tray with oil spray or line it with baking parchment paper. Preheat the oven to 350°F (180°C).
Sautee the diced onion in the olive oil until just starting to turn golden. Set aside.
Boil the noodles until just about done, as they are anyways going to be baked in the oven again. Drain and wash off well.
After you have defrosted the spinach for about 20 minutes, simply squeeze it by handfuls before putting it into the noodle mixture. This will keep some of the vitamins they have still intact, as well as retaining more flavor and texture than if it is steamed first.
In a large bowl, combine all the ingredients, as well as the onion you set aside earlier. Pour into the waiting pan.

To create the “buttered breadcrumb” topping effect seen here:
Pour about 1 cup of breadcrumbs (mine were made from leftover challah that was toasted and then ground in the food processor) together with ¼ cup or so of oil into a pan.
Turn on the flame and toss then several times while they are toasting together. Remove from heat when they are lightly browned and toasted. Sprinkle this generously all over the top of the kugel. Bake for 30-40 minutes until done and the crumbs on top are golden brown but not burned.
Delicous!

Spinach Kugelettes

Ingredients

3 cups finely ground whole wheat flour OR a mix of different flours
¼ cup white sugar or light brown
¾ cup olive or canola oil
3 eggs
1 cup almond milk
1 Tbls baking powder
1 tsp baking soda
1 & ½ tsp salt
¼ tsp. pepper, optional
10 oz (315 grams) frozen spinach, defrosted and squeezed by hand
1 medium onion, diced
2 scallions, chopped
1-2 Tbls additional olive oil for sautéing
1/2 cup corn meal (NOT cornflour, this is a thickening agent. Cornmeal is coarse and resembles yellow grains.)

Method

Sautee the onion until clear, add the scallion on top of it and sautee only two more minutes. Remove from heat and set aside.

Place the eggs and the liquid ingredients into the mixer bowl. Mix together for about two or three minutes. Add in all else EXCEPT the corn meal and mix until just blended.
Sprinkle a bit of the corn meal into the bottom of each muffin liner. Then pour kugelette mixture into each one until close to the top.

Bake at 350°F (180°C) for 25-35 minutes, or until a toothpick inserted into one center comes out clean. These are really different but quite tasty.

Sweet Zucchini Bread

This recipe makes two standard loaf pans’ worth, or three small ones. It’s blessing is mezonos, even though it is called a ‘bread’. It’s really more like a cake consistency.
This “bread” has no yeast and is more the consistency of cake.

Ingredients

3 eggs
2 tsp. vanilla extract
1 cup canola oil
1¾ cup white or light brown sugar
1 (8 oz.) can crushed pineapple, drained
2 cups shredded zucchini, washed and unpeeled
2 tsp. baking soda
¼ tsp. baking powder
¾ tsp. salt
1–2 tsp. cinnamon
3 cups flour
1 cup golden raisins
1 cup coarsely chopped walnuts

Method

Beat eggs, vanilla, oil, and sugar together until thick. Add in the pineapple, zucchini, baking soda, baking powder, salt, and cinnamon. Then add in the flour, and on top of that, the raisins and walnuts.

Tip for side of page:
It’s always best to add the raisins on top of the flour as once the raisins are coated with flour, they will not sink down to the bottom of whatever cake or muffin they are in, where they may burn.

Mix until this just until it is completely blended together and resembles a thick batter.

Pour into loaf pans that have been lined with parchment baking paper and bake at 350°F / 180°C for 45 minutes to an hour. They are done when a cake tester or knife inserted into the middle comes out clean and only very slightly sticky. These loaves stay moist and slightly sticky inside. Slice and serve, or freeze for later use.

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