21 April 2011

The highs and lows of cooking for Pesach

It seems there's been a lot of highs and lows for me lately in the kitchen and Pesach was not to be passed over, so to speak, on this front.

My mom asked me to make a cake or some manner of sweetness for Monday's seder. I was happy to oblige and my search for an interesting and different option began. You'd be surprised by how few options there are out there on the internet and baking is just not something that I'm comfortable making up. Anyway, I ended up using a Nigella Lawson recipe from her book Feast for damp apple and almond cake. It worked out quite well (no pics, however) but would have probably been better if I'd had the right cake pan. But not bad for a first try.

This year, I also wanted to do something different than going out and buying dem coconut macaroons, jellied fruit slices, or Manischewitz kosher for Pesach chocolates. J bought a Bonnie Stern cookbook that had a few gems in it. Although her recipe did lead me astray on the issue of whether or not to stir the caramel as it cooked (you stir constantly btw), I did get a particularly tasty treat to share with friends and family.
Basically whip up some caramel - that's 1 cup of butter and 1 cup of brown sugar - then spread it over a few matzahs. Let it get all nice and bubbly, get it out the oven and sprinkle a bag of chocolate chips (kosher for passover, of course), wait five minutes and give it a nice schmear to cover it all up. Let it cool, which usually takes a few hours, then break it up into small pieces. Let the oohs and ahhs ensue as everyone enjoys the matzah crunch.

Oh yeah, so that was the high. The lowest of the low: matzah balls like golf balls. They were not a delight. I shall try to remedy that before the week is over. Following the instructions properly will likely help.

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