Passover Dessert

Pine Nut Cookies

Pine Nut Cookies.jpg

Makes about 5 dozen bite size cookies.

These cookies are pareve, gluten free, bite size and ideal on Passover. They keep very well, refrigerated and stored in a tight fitting container with wax paper between the layers. 

INGREDIENTS:

  • ¾ cup pine nuts
  •  1 ¾ finely ground almond flour with skin (See Note)
  •  2/3 cups sugar
  •  1 ½ to 1¾ large egg whites, at room temperature, well whisked

PREPARATION:

  1. Preheat the oven to 325 F.
  2. Line an 18 x13 inches cookie sheet with parchment paper.
  3. Place the pine nuts on a piece of wax paper.
  4. In a medium bowl combine the almond flour with the sugar.   
  5. Add 1 ½ egg white to the almond flour. Combine with a wooden spoon until the mixture becomes a paste (it may take a few minutes. If it is still too dry to roll into a ball add some more egg white).
  6. Roll the dough into cherry size balls. They will expand when baking.
  7. Roll the balls in the pine nuts, pressing gently.   
  8. Place on the parchment paper and bake for 25 minutes. The underside should be lightly golden.
  9. Cool on a wire rack.

NOTE:

I use Bob’s Red Mill ground almonds flour with the skin. Once opened, I freeze it.

If you find it difficult to roll the cookies, do it with wet hands.

 
 

Chocolate Almond Mini-Macaroons

Makes about 5 dozen cookies.

Not only are these mini cookies easy to make but they are also delicious.  They are great   on Passover and any other time of year. They are also a fun activity for children .They keep crisp and fresh refrigerated.

INGREDIENTS:

  • 1 tablespoon vegetable oil
  • 1 ounce semi-sweet imported chocolate, broken into small pieces
  • 3 ounces blanched almonds
  • 1 large egg white, at room temperature
  • ¼ cup sugar

PREPARATION:

  1. Preheat the oven to 350F.
  2. Grease 12x18 baking sheet with oil.
  3. Place chocolate and almonds in a food processor fitted with the steel blade and chop semi- finely.
  4. Beat the egg white at a high speed till soft peaks show, then add sugar gradually until the whites are very stiff.               
  5. With a rubber spatula fold the chocolate-nut mixture with the whites, combining well.
  6. Drop flat teaspoonfuls of batter unto the baking sheet. The best way to do this is to slide the batter with another teaspoonful to form mini balls.
  7. Bake for about 13 minutes, or until the tops feel firm to the touch. Let rest for a few seconds and release carefully with a metal spatula. Transfer to a wire rack to cool completely.
  8. Refrigerate in an air tight container with wax paper between the layers.

Note:

It is best to beat the egg white in a metal bowl.

 
 

Almond Macaroons

Makes about 4 dozen cookies.

These, delicious, dainty cookies keep for a long time, refrigerated.  They are perfect for Passover or all year round.

INGREDIENTS:

  • 11 ounces blanched almonds
  • 2/3 scant cup sugar
  • 1 teaspoon ground cinnamon
  • Zest from 1 lemon
  • 2 egg whites, at room temperature, lightly beaten with a fork

PREPARATION:

  1. Preheat the oven to 350F.
  2. Line a 12x18 baking sheet with parchment paper.
  3. Place 9 ounces of the almonds in a food processor fitted with the steel blade and chop until medium fine, do it in two batches. Keep the rest for the tops.
  4. Transfer to a bowl and add sugar, cinnamon and lemon zest. Fold in the egg whites and combine well (a wooden spoon helps). Let rest for a few minutes to allow the egg whites to absorb.
  5. With wet hands roll flat teaspoons of the mixture unto smooth balls. Place on the prepared baking sheet and top each cookie with reserved whole almond (from time to time, rinse your hands).
  6. Bake for about 16 minutes or until the tops feel lightly firm to the touch.    
  7. Right away gently release the macaroons (a metal spatula helps) and place on a wire rack to cool.
  8. Refrigerate in an airtight container with wax paper between the layers.  
 
 

Prunes Poached in Red Wine

Makes 4 servings.

Prunes are really dried plums that have enormous health benefits.  This is a delicious, versatile dessert that I like to serve warm, either as is or with a dollop of chocolate sorbet and biscotti.

INGREDIENTS

  • 1 ½ cups good quality dry red wine
  • 2 tablespoons honey
  • 1 vanilla bean, cut into very thin slices
  • 1 cinnamon stick
  • 7 ounces pitted prunes (See Note)
  • Zest from one orange, cut into thin strips, optional

PREPARATION

  1. In a small saucepan with a cover, combine wine, honey, vanilla bean and cinnamon.
  2. Bring to a boil, reduce the heat and simmer covered for 5 minutes.
  3. Add prunes, bring to a boil and simmer covered for 10 minutes. Discard the cinnamon stick and add the zest.

NOTE:

Prunes come in 7 ounce packages. 

 
 

Apple Tart With Walnut Crust

Makes 12 servings.

I like the texture and taste of this crust. It is easy to roll out and easy to patch as needed. I also like to serve it warm with ice cream or sorbet.

INGREDIENTS

CRUST

  • 1½ cups unbleached all- purpose flour
  • 4 tablespoons sugar
  • ½ cup walnuts
  • 8 tablespoons unsalted margarine, chilled and cut into small pieces
  • 1 large egg yolk
  • ½ teaspoon vanilla extract
  • 1 tablespoon ice water
  • 1 egg white, lightly beaten with a fork

FILLING

  • 5 medium Golden Delicious apples, peeled, cored, quartered. Cut each quarter into 4 wedges
  • 3 tablespoons unsalted margarine
  • ½ tablespoons dark brown sugar
  • ½ teaspoon ground cinnamon.
  • ¼ cup apricot preserves

PREPARATION

TO MAKE THE CRUST

  1. Place the flour, sugar and walnuts in a food processor and pulse until finely ground. Add the margarine and the egg yolk. Pulse until the dough resembles corn meal. Add vanilla extract and water and pulse until the dough clings to the blade.
  2. Turn out dough into a lightly floured surface or board and knead into a smooth ball. Flatten the ball, wrap in wax paper and refrigerate for about an hour.
  3. Place the dough between 2 lightly floured sheets of wax paper and roll it out to a 12-13 inch round. 
  4. The dough will spread more easily if you occasionally turn it over, lift the top wax paper and flour the dough lightly.
  5. Peel off the wax paper and wrap the dough very loosely over the rolling pin. Unroll over an ungreased 11-inch fluted tart pan with a removable rim.
  6. Pat the dough gently into the sides of the pan and up the sides (do not be afraid if the dough cracks; you can easily patch it). Roll the rolling pin over the top to trim off the excess dough. Refrigerate the shell for 30 minutes or longer.
  7. Preheat oven to 350F
  8. Prick the dough lightly with a fork (to prevent puffiness and air pockets) and brush with the egg white. Place on a cookie sheet (it is easier to handle).
  9. Bake for about 20 minutes, or until lightly colored.
  10. While the crust is baking prepare the apples and the glaze.

TO MAKE THE GLAZE

  1. Place the margarine, sugar, cinnamon and apricot preserves in a small pan and heat gently.

ASSEMBLE THE TART

  1. Cool the shell a bit. Arrange the apples attractively in overlapping slices in the shell and brush the glaze over the apples.
  2. Bake for about 40 minutes, or until the apples are tender but not falling apart.

TO SERVE

Place the tart on a round object, such as a can and remove the rim. Loosen the bottom with a thin metal spatula and slide onto a serving platter.  Serve warm or at room temperature.