Passover Side Dish

Celery Root Fries

Celery+Root+Fries.jpg

Makes 4 cocktail servings .

Makes 2 side dish servings. 

This recipe is a nice change from the usual vegetables.  The fries are so tasty you will not be aware that they are baked not fried.

INGREDIENTS:

  • 1 celery root about 1 pound (See Note)

  • 2 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil

  • Kosher salt

  • Freshly ground black pepper

PREPARATION:

  1. Preheat oven to 500F.

  2. Line a cookie sheet with foil.  

  3. Peel the celery root and slice into ¼ inch rounds. Cut the rounds into ¼ inch strips

  4. Place on the cookie sheet. Toss with the olive oil, salt and pepper.  

  5. Arrange the fries on the cookie sheet and bake for 8 minutes, or until almost soft.

NOTE:

Celery root is not easy to peel, take your time.

 
 

 

Cauliflower Rice

Cauliflower Rice.jpg

Makes 4 servings. 

Simple, nutritious and tasty.

INGREDIENTS:

  • 1 medium head cauliflower, about 2 pounds

  • 2 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil

  • 2 cloves garlic, finely chopped

  • 1 tablespoon capers

  • 1 cup loosely packed flat leaf parsley, finely chopped

  • 1 tablespoon lemon juice,

  • Kosher salt

  • Freshly ground black pepper

PREPARATION:

  1. Cut away the stem and separate the cauliflower into small pieces. Chop finely, in 2 BATCHES, in a food processor fitted with the steel blade. The consistency of the cauliflower should resemble couscous. 

  2. Heat the olive oil in a wok or a skillet, add the garlic, sauté for a minute. Add the cauliflower and stir for about 3 minutes. The cauliflower rice should be soft and fluffy. Add the remaining ingredients and season to taste with lemon juice, salt and pepper. 

 
 

Versatile Couscous

Versatile Couscous.jpg

Makes 4-6 servings. 

In this dish the couscous is not steamed or cooked; it is hydrated with boiling water and combined with nutritious ingredients.

It pairs very well with most meat dishes and is particularly good with salmon. It even improves with time.

INGREDIENTS:

  • 1 cup couscous

  • 4 tablespoons dried currants

  • 1 teaspoon ground cumin

  • Kosher salt

  • Freshly ground black pepper

  • 5 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil.

  • 1 cup boiling water

  • 1 cup loosely packed flat leaf parsley, finely chopped

  • 2 cups loosely packed baby arugula (about 2 ounces) some stems discarded

  • 1/3 cup pignolia nuts, toasted

  • 1 tablespoon lime juice, approx

PREPARATION:

  1. In a large bowl place the couscous, currants, cumin, ¼ teaspoon salt, ¼ teaspoon pepper and 1 tablespoon oil.  

  2. Pour 1 cup boiling water over the couscous. Cover with foil and let stand for 10 minutes.

  3. Fluff the couscous with a fork. 

  4. Add the parsley, arugula, 4 tablespoons oil, pignolia nuts and lime juice. Toss well and season to taste with lime juice salt and pepper.

 
 

Roasted Carrots, Parsnips and Beets

Roasted Root Vegetables with Sage.jpg

Makes 4 generous servings.

Easy to make, nutritious and versatile, this dish is for all seasons and can be paired with fish, meat or poultry. 

INGREDIENTS:

  • 2 medium carrots
  • 2 medium parsnip
  • 2 medium golden beets
  • 3 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil
  • 5 sprigs of sage, plus a few leaves for garnish
  • 1½ tablespoons maple syrup
  • 1 Tablespoon Balsamic vinegar
  • 1 teaspoon Kosher salt
  • Freshly ground black pepper

PREPARATION:

  1. Preheat the oven to 425 F.
  2. Peel the vegetables, cut to the size that fits into the feed tube of a food processor fitted with a medium slicing attachment and slice.
  3. In a large bowl combine olive oil, maple syrup and vinegar. Add the vegetables and the sage. Mix very well and season with salt and pepper. 
  4. Line a large cookie sheet with aluminum foil and spread the vegetables on it.  Roast for about 20 minutes. The vegetables should be soft.
  5. Discard the sage sprigs.
  6. Slice the sage leaves thinly and garnish.
 
 

Braised Leeks

Braised Leeks.jpg

Makes 4 servings.

Leeks are relatives of onions, but sweeter with a firm bite. This vegetable compliments any dish, and it is so simple to prepare.

INGREDIENTS:

  • 4 leeks
  • 2 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil
  • 10 sage leaves torn into small pieces
  • Kosher salt
  • Freshly ground black pepper

PREPARATION:

  1. Cut off and discard dangling roots and most of the green part of the leeks. Discard one or two of the tough outer leaves.
  2. Cut the white and light green parts of the leeks into thin slices. Place in a sieve and rinse thoroughly under cold running water to remove any sand.  Drain well.
  3. Heat the olive oil in a small saucepan until hot. Add the leeks and sage. Braise, covered, over low heat, stirring from time to time, for about 15 minutes, or until the leeks are almost soft.
  4. Season with salt and pepper.
 
 

Roasted Root Vegetables with Sage

Makes 8 servings.

I like to roast these vegetables at a low heat, to ensure that they cook evenly and keep their distinct flavor. This method allows the root vegetables to exude their natural sweetness. Sage leaves compliment these vegetables.

INGREDIENTS:

  • 1 small butternut squash, about 1 pound
  • 1 small celery root, about 1½ pounds
  • 2 carrots
  • 2 parsnips
  • 2 small red onions or 1 large one
  • 1/3 cup extra-virgin olive oil
  • 30 sage leaves
  • Kosher salt
  • Freshly ground black pepper

PREPARATION:

  1. Preheat the oven to 300 F
  2. Line 3 baking sheets with aluminum foil.
  3. Peel the butternut squash, remove the seeds, cut into quarters lengthwise and slice thinly in a food processor fitted with a medium slicing attachment. Transfer to a large bowl.
  4. Peel the celery root, quarter and slice as well. Add to the squash.
  5. Toss with 5 tablespoons olive oil and 15 sage leaves. Season with salt and pepper. Distribute evenly on the lined baking sheet.
  6. Peel the carrots and the parsnip, cut lengthwise, if necessary, to fit into the feed tube of a food processor and slice.
  7. Transfer to a bowl and toss with 2 tablespoons olive oil and 5 of the sage leaves.
  8. Distribute on the baking sheet.  
  9. Peel the onions, cut into quarters and slice as well. Transfer to a bowl, toss with 2 tablespoons of oil, and season with salt.  
  10. Distribute on the baking sheet as well.  
  11. Roast the vegetables for about 1½ hours, stirring every 15 to 20 minutes.    
  12. The onions will be ready earlier than the other vegetables. The other vegetables should be soft.  
  13. Combine all the vegetables and season to taste.

 

 
 

Roasted Whole Cauliflower

Makes 4 first course servings or 4-6 side dish servings.

This vegetable is so adaptable to variations in seasoning and cooking and is available all year round.   Roasting and steaming at the same time brings out the delicate flavor of the cauliflower.  It is quite impressive to bring this dish whole to the table. If you are serving a crowd, you can always roast two at the same time.

I am a purist, and I like the cauliflower served without any dressing, although when I serve it as a first course I do like it with the dressing.

This is a wonderful dish to serve on Passover. 

INGREDIENTS

  • 1 medium to large cauliflower, about 2 pounds
  • 2 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil
  • Kosher salt
  • Freshly ground black pepper

PREPARATION

  1. Preheat the oven to 400F.
  2. Place a heavy cast iron skillet in the oven.
  3. Place a small pan of cold water on the lowest rack of the oven to create steam.
  4. Cut off the outer leaves of cauliflower. Cut off the bottom of the stem, and cut out the hard core.
  5. Rinse the cauliflower. Rub with olive oil and season lightly with salt and pepper. Place the cauliflower core side down in the hot skillet and cook until very tender, about 1 hour.  Check if soft by piercing with the point of a knife.
  6. The cauliflower should be lightly golden and very soft.

INGREDIENTS FOR VINAIGRETTE DRESSING

  • 2 tablespoons light Balsamic vinegar
  • 1 teaspoon Dijon mustard (Omit on Passover)
  • ½ teaspoon honey
  • ¼ cup extra-virgin olive oil
  • Kosher salt
  • Freshly ground black pepper
  • 1 tablespoons capers, coarsely chopped
  • ¼ cup loosely packed flat leaf parsley, finely chopped

PREPARATION OF DRESSING

  1. You can either place the vinegar, mustard, and honey in a small bowl, and whisk in the olive oil at a very slow stream, then add the remaining ingredients and season to taste with salt and pepper.
  2. Or place the vinegar, mustard and honey in a blender. With the motor running, pour the oil slowly through the opening in the lid and blend well. Add the reaming ingredients and season with salt and pepper. 
 
 

Red Quinoa with Roasted Acorn Squash

Makes 4 servings as a first course and 6 servings as a side dish.

According to the National Academy of Sciences, quinoa is “one of the best sources of protein in the vegetable kingdom.” It is also gluten free. 

You can serve quinoa with a variety of roasted, steamed or stir fried vegetables, but I like this combination the best. It is also permissible to eat on Passover. 

INGREDIENTS

  • 1 tablespoon unsalted margarine
  • ½ teaspoon kosher salt
  • 1 ¼ cups water
  • 1 cup red quinoa
  • 1 pound acorn squash
  • 1 tablespoon olive oil
  • ½ cup loosely packed flat leaf parsley, coarsely chopped 

PREPARATION

  1. In a small saucepan bring to a boil, over high heat, the margarine, salt and water. Sprinkle over the quinoa, lower the heat, and cook covered for 20-25 minutes. The water should be absorbed and the grains tender. If the grains are not tender add a tablespoon of hot water and continue cooking.
  2. Stir with a fork to fluff the grains.
  3. Preheat oven to 400F.
  4. Trim the squash ends and discard.
  5. Peel the squash, cut in half horizontally, discard seeds and cut into small cubes. Place on a foil lined pan and combine with olive oil.
  6. Bake for 25-30 minutes, the squash should be al dente.
  7. Combine the squash with quinoa and parsley. Season to taste with salt.