Friday, May 28, 2010

A Fabulous Shabbat Lunch for Late May--Delicious Hot, Cold or Room Temperature

Roasted Peppers
Vitello Tonnato
Wild Rice
Mixed Veg Stirfry
Fruit Salad
Chocolate-Chip Cookies

**All recipes avaialble on the Kosher Cookbook App for iPhone**

Wednesday, May 26, 2010

I am an Accommodating Hostess (Within Reason!)

I found myself nodding my head vigorously as I read Andre Knowlton's BA Foodist column in Bon Appetit this week. I am a big believer in adapting my menu to suit the needs of everyone at my table. At any given time, I have had to plan for allergies, vegetarians and lactose intolerance--as long as my guests let me know ahead of time, I am happy to (and even enjoy the challenge of) making sure that everyone has something to eat. I don't, however, feel that I am required to adapt my meal to every fad diet that walks in my door.

A heads up--if you're invited to dinner at my house while you're on some sort of master cleanse, you may have to make due with ice water and scintillating conversation or a rain check ;)

Thursday, May 20, 2010

A Post-Shavuot Shabbat Lunch Menu from Kosher Cookbook

As much as I love the dairy delicacies of Shavuot, I find myself craving something distinctly meaty for the Shabbat after. This menu incorporates roast beef in a light and refreshing way!

French string bean salad
Sesame Chicken Fingers
Roast Beef Salad with Piquant Orange-Ginger Dressing
Pasta Primavera
Chocolate Chip Mousse
Fruit Salad

**All recipes available on the Kosher Cookbook App for iPhone**

Monday, May 17, 2010

Fish-free for Shavuot! Gloria's Spinach & Feta Cheese Roll

Spinach & Feta Cheese Roll D Yield: 2 rolls-about 8 slices per roll

The feta cheese adds a salty kick to the spinach which is then mellowed out with the cottage cheese all rolled up in crispy phyllo dough. This recipe is perfect for either a light appetizer or main course and can be baked and frozen.

Prep time: 20 minutes Baking time: 25 minutes


1 large onion

1/3 cup + 2 tablespoons olive oil

one 10 ounce package frozen chopped spinach-thawed and squeezed dry

8 ounces cottage cheese ( 2% or 4%)

½ pound Feta cheese

2 eggs-beaten

freshly ground black pepper

½ teaspoon nutmeg (to taste)

10 sheets phyllo dough-defrosted


Medium mixing bowl

Jelly roll pan

Baking parchment

Pastry brush

Waxed paper

Medium skillet


  1. Peel onion and chop finely.
  2. Heat 2 tablespoons olive oil in skillet over medium flame. Add onion and sauté until soft and translucent. Add spinach and stir until onion and spinach are thoroughly mixed and any remaining moisture in the spinach has evaporated. Cool slightly.
  3. While spinach and onion are cooling, crumble feta cheese in mixing bowl. Add cottage cheese and eggs. Stir well. Add spinach and onion and mix all ingredients together. Taste. Add four or five turns of the pepper grinder and ¼ teaspoon nutmeg. Stir well. Taste again and adjust seasoning adding more pepper and remaining ¼ teaspoon nutmeg if desired. Set aside.
  4. Line jelly roll pan with parchment. Preheat oven to: 375 F.
  5. Cut off a piece of waxed paper about 16 inches long. Place on a flat surface. Unwrap phyllo dough. Place one sheet phyllo on waxed paper. (keep remaining dough under damp towel) Brush lightly with olive oil. Repeat this process until you have five sheets layered.
  6. Take half the spinach-cheese mixture and spread it down the center of the phyllo- leaving about 2 inches at each end. Spread mixture evenly across the width of the dough.
  7. To roll: Fold in each short end of the roll and them using the waxed paper as a helper, roll the phyllo and spinach together in the shape of a jelly roll. Brush olive oil over the top and sides of the roll and carefully slip it onto the parchment covered jelly roll pan. Repeat this process with remaining phyllo dough and spinach mixture.
  8. Bake rolls for 30 minutes. Cool five minutes before slicing and serving. This spinach roll makes a great light lunch with a big salad and great bread.
  9. To freeze: Cool spinach rolls completely. Wrap well in waxed paper and foil and freeze. To serve after freezing: Slip frozen rolls onto cookie sheet and bake in 400 F oven for about 20 minutes. Watch carefully to be sure phyllo doesn’t burn.
Optional: Cut 16 ounces of mushrooms into quarters and sauté in olive oil and 2 cloves of chopped garlic. Spoon sautéed mushrooms over the spinach roll.

Thursday, May 13, 2010

A Dairy Shabbat Luncheon Menu from Kosher Cookbook

This menu could also certainly be used as a light Shavuot menu as well!

Broccoli/Spinach Quiche
Mushroom Quiche
Sliced Multi-colored Tomatoes
Fruit Salad
Pecan Dreams

**All recipes available on the Kosher Cookbook App for iPhone**

Monday, May 10, 2010

Gloria's Shavuot Lunch Menus

Shavuot is traditionally a dairy holiday, because the Israelites who were waiting to receive the Torah had not yet received the laws that govern the ritual slaughter and kosher preparation of meat. (For more information about why Shavuot is a dairy holiday check out the article Why Dairy on Shavuot?)
As usual, I have a whole host of dietary restrictions that come along with my guests--some are lactose intolerant, some are allergic to fish,some are vegetarian and one in particular can't digest any vegetables that are not red or white. I try to cover all the bases so that everyone is happy while still making the yearly Shavuot treats that I look forward to eating.
Here are two lunch menus with alternatives that should fit any bill:

Cream of Tomato & Vegetable Soup
Baked Poached Salmon (add spinach-feta in filo dough if someone doesn't eat fish).
Green Sauce
Cucumber Salad
Corn Salad
Chocolate Cheesecake
Chocolate Chip Cookies
Mixed Berries

Gazpacho (Watermelon Gazpacho if melons are good)
Halibut Salad
French String Bean Salad
Cream Cheese Cake
Oatmeal-currant cookies
Mixed Berries

Friday, May 7, 2010

Gloria's French Toast--A Perfect Mother's Day Treat!

This recipe is simple enough for kids to help make for mom on Mother's Day morning. Make sure that all children (and adults) wash their hands thoroughly after handling raw eggs!

French Toast

The orange juice in the eggs makes this French Toast taste lighter than others.


  • 8 large slices plain/raisin challah- about ½ “ thick
  • 5 eggs
  • 1/3 cup orange juice
  • 6 tablespoons sweet butter
  • 2 large navel oranges-sliced or 2 cups mixed berries
  • ½ cup sugar mixed with 1 tablespoon cinnamon
  • optional: pure maple syrup


1. Beat eggs until foamy in a mixing bowl. Add orange juice and beat again.

2. Arrange challah slices in pan and pour beaten eggs over them. Shift pan back and forth until all slices are soaked on one side. Turn over challah slices and allow to soak in eggs 20 minutes longer.

3. Preheat oven to: 300 F.

4. Melt two tablespoons butter in skillet. Add two or three slices to skillet and cook until browned on one side. Turn slices over and brown them on the other side. Remove slices from skillet and place on serving platter. Keep warm in oven until all the French Toast has been prepared.

5. Pour out butter if it has begun to burn and add new butter to skillet. Cook remaining slices of challah and add to serving platter.

6. Serve French Toast with sliced oranges (or mixed berries) and cinnamon sugar.

Thursday, May 6, 2010

The Earth's Balance Experiments Continue: Pie Crust

I keep hearing more and more buzz about the versatility of Earth's Balance. Pam Reiss, author of Soup--A Kosher Collection and Passover--A Kosher Collection, shared with me that she has experience using the sticks and natural and whipped tubs of the margarine for a variety of recipes and points out that one should adjust salt accordingly to account for the salt in some of the products.
Not wanting to take anyone else's word for it, I am continuing on with my own experiments. Next stop: Blueberry Pie! I knew that I was fated that I make a blueberry pie for dinner when I saw my usual brand of blueberries being sold by the fruit man on the street for 1/2 the price I usually pay!
My Earth Balance crust was so easy to roll out that I made a lattice top over the pie. The vegan buttery sticks are more yellow in color and make a more pliable dough than the Earth Balance vegan shortening sticks.
The crust of the pie was truly amazing--light, flaky...and, best yet, it stayed crisp without even a hint of sogginess!

Wednesday, May 5, 2010

A May Shabbat Dinner from Kosher Cookbook

Leek and Potato Soup
Veal chops with Arugula and Tomato
Whipped Yukon Golds
Glazed Roasted Pears
Lace Cookies

**All recipes available on the Kosher Cookbook App for iPhone**

Monday, May 3, 2010

Gloria Takes on Ramps

I'm not sure what the whole fuss is about regarding ramps except for the fact that they are only available about 3 weeks of the year starting at the end of April. Most recipes I researched included bacon and many used the ramps with eggs. I don't go for replacing bacon with Bacos or pastrami etc. to achieve that smoky salty taste so I just sauteed some of the ramps (a mixture of the bulbs and leaves) with mushrooms and tossed the mixture with roasted potatoes--resulting in an earthy-tasting vegetarian dish. The sharp flavor of the ramp bulbs mellows out with the potatoes and the green leaves make you feel that Spring is here. I am definitely not an expert on ramps as this is my first effort to cook with them.
I'm happy to accept any and all suggestions on how to better utilize this strange vegetable!