Gooey, Hot Chocolate Pudding

— by Margo Sugarman

When rain is crashing down outside and the temperatures plummet, nothing can make one forget about the weather like a hot, gooey chocolate pudding.

2014-11-27-22-12-46This recipe is a real oldie, and very easy to make. It gets into the oven with the batter at the bottom and a whole lot of liquid on top, and comes out with a cake-like top and a lush, fudgey base.

The recipe, in its various forms, has many different theories for its inception. Some say that its very basic ingredients point to the post-WWII era, when ingredients were scarce. My late mother-in-law, who spent many years in Atlanta and gave me the recipe, always attributed it to the South African expats who lived there in the 1970s.

You can make the recipe parve by using soy milk instead of regular milk. It will have no discernible taste difference.

Ingredients for 6 Servings

  • 1 cup flour
  • 1/2 cup sugar
  • 2 tablespoons cocoa powder
  • 2 teaspoons baking powder
  • a pinch of salt
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla essence
  • 3 tablespoons melted butter/margarine
  • 1/2 cup milk (or soy milk)
  • 3/4 cup brown sugar
  • 1/4 cup cocoa powder
  • 1 cup hot water

Preparation

  1. Preheat an oven to 350ºF.
  2. Mix all dry ingredients together in a medium-sized bowl. Stir in the milk, melted butter/margarine and vanilla.
  3. Pour the batter into a greased medium-sized baking dish.
  4. Mix together all other ingredients for the topping and carefully pour over the batter.
  5. Bake for 30-35 minutes.
  6. Serve hot or warm. If you want to add to the decadence, serve with a scoop of vanilla ice cream.

Margo Sugarman is the creator of The Kosher Blogger.

Zucchini Cake for Thanksgiving

— by Margo Sugarman

When you hear “zucchini” you are not likely to think about cakes, but zucchini’s winter spicy taste goes perfectly with a Thanksgiving meal, and most importantly for a post-Turkey dessert, zucchini cakes are parve.

Zucchini CakeA zucchini cake may not look gorgeous, but it is moist and tastes wonderful. Another advantage: It freezes well, so you can make it a few days before and save time on your Thursday cooking.

This recipe makes one large cake or two loaves that serve about 16. You can also halve it and bake it in a 24-centimeter round pan if you do not need to feed lots of guests, or even prepare them as muffins.

Ingredients:

  • 4 eggs
  • 1 cup vegetable oil
  • 1 3/4 cups sugar
  • 2 cups grated zucchini
  • 2 teaspoons vanilla extract
  • 3 cups all-purpose flour
  • 3 teaspoons cinnamon powder
  • 1/8 teaspoon ground nutmeg
  • 1 teaspoon baking soda
  • 1/2 teaspoon baking powder
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • 1/2 cup chopped walnuts or pecans (optional)
  • 1 cup dried cranberries, raisins or chocolate chips or a combination thereof (optional)

Preparation:

  1. Preheat the oven to 350ºF
  2. Grease two 8×4-inch loaf pans or one 11-inch spring-form pan, or line 24 muffin cups with paper liners.
  3. In a mixer, beat the eggs and add the oil and sugar, then zucchini and vanilla.
  4. Combine flour, cinnamon, nutmeg, baking soda, baking powder and salt, as well as nuts, chocolate chips or dried fruit, if using, and stir into the egg mixture.
  5. Divide the batter into prepared loaf pans or muffin cups, or pour into the baking pan.
  6. Bake loaves for between 45 and 55 minutes, or until a tester inserted into the center comes out clean. Muffins will bake much more quickly: between 15 and 20 minutes.

Margo Sugarman is the creator of The Kosher Blogger.

Passover Maakouda: Potato Frittata From The Maghreb

— by Ronit Treatman

One of the most popular street foods in North Africa is called Maakouda. It is a type of fritter, made from potatoes or eggplants, sometimes with fish, or cheese.  

Maakouda is the perfect snack for Passover. The basic potato maakouda is parve. It can be served hot, at room temperature or cold.

A verdant sauce, such as the South American chimichurri or Moroccan chermoula enhances the flavor of the Maakouda .

Recipes follow the jump.
Maakouda Batata (Potato Frittata)
Adapted from Christine Benlafquih

Preheat the oven to 400°F.

  • 4 large potatoes
  • 1 large onion
  • 4 garlic cloves
  • 1/2 cup minced cilantro
  • 2 eggs
  • olive oil
  • 1 teaspoon ground turmeric
  • 3 teaspoons ground cumin
  • 2 teaspoons sea salt
  • 1/2 teaspoon ground black pepper
  1. Cube the potatoes.
  2. Boil them in salted water until they are pierced easily with a fork.
  3. Drain the potatoes, mash them, and set aside.
  4. Cut up the onions.
  5. Heat one tablespoon of olive oil in a heavy skillet.
  6. Add the onions.
  7. Sauté the onions for 10 minutes, until translucent.
  8. Mince the garlic and add to the onions.
  9. Sauté for one minute.
  10. Remove the skillet from the heat and add the spices.
  11. Pour the onion mixture into the mashed potatoes.
  12. Add the minced cilantro.
  13. Mix well.
  14. Add the eggs, incorporating them into the batter.
  15. Heat 2 tablespoons of olive oil in a heavy skillet.
  16. Pour the batter into the oil.
  17. Cook over medium heat for 5 minutes.
  18. Place the skillet in the oven for about 20 minutes.

While the maakouda is baking, prepare the chimichurri sauce.

Chimichurri Sauce
Adapted from  Marian Blazes

  • 2 cups cilantro
  • 6 garlic cloves
  • 1/4 cup chopped onion
  • Salt and black pepper to taste
  • 3 tablespoons lemon juice
  • 1/2 cup extra virgin, unfiltered olive oil
  1. Place all the ingredients in a food processor.
  2. Pulse until a paste forms.
  3. Process for a couple of minutes.
  4. Taste the chimichurri, and if necessary, correct the seasoning to your taste.

For a Moroccan twist, add 2 teaspoons of paprika, 1 teaspoon of ground ginger, 1/4 teaspoon of saffron, and some cayenne pepper to the chimichurri.  This will transform it into a Moroccan sauce called chermoula.

Remove the maakouda from the oven, cut into squares, and serve with chimichurri sauce on the side.

Very Easy Parve Ice Cream


— by Margo Sugarman

Years ago, not long after I got married, my late mother arrived on a visit to Israel with a pile of yellow A4 pages on which she had hand written some of her favorite recipes. The truth is that not all her favorites were my favorites, but I kept them anyway. Some I used and referred to; others I ignored. Needless to say, after she passed away, these aging pieces of paper with my mother’s distinctive handwriting are priceless to me and even if I wasn’t going to use all the recipes, I certainly wasn’t planning on disposing them.

The full recipe after the jump.
So while I had resigned myself to the fact that some of these recipes weren’t going to be made, one day not long ago I did take a quick glance at one that looked like, in spite of my initial misgiving, could be OK. It was a recipe for a parev coffee ice cream. I always remember the parev desserts of my childhood tasting like the parev cream they were made of — in other words, fake. In South Africa it was Orley Whip that gave parev desserts their artificial taste. Nevertheless, in need of a new parev dessert for my repertoire, I decided to give this one a go. Not only did it turn out well, but when I had finished serving dessert, the teenagers at my Shabbat dinner table grabbed the bowl and licked last remnants of the ice cream. Now that’s what I call success.

This recipe makes a large amount of ice cream, so I split the basic mixture in half and made one half with the coffee ingredients and the other half with grated dark chocolate. Both were wonderful, and the non-adults loved the chocolate chip version the best. You can also opt for just one flavor (if you’re having kids, go for the chocolate chip).

This can be made several days ahead of time and kept in the freezer.

PAREV COFFEE AND CHOCOLATE CHIP ICE CREAM

Ingredients

  • 500 ml (1 pint) non-dairy cream
  • 1 1/2 cups sugar
  • 5 eggs separated
  • 2 teaspoons vanilla
  • 2 tablespoons coffee liqueur
  • 3 tablespoon instant coffee granules
  • 50g (2 oz) grated dark or semi-sweet chocolate (parev)

How to do it

  1. In a large bowl, beat the non-dairy cream until it’s stiff.
  2. Add the egg yolks, vanilla and sugar and beat well.
  3. Divide the mixture in two (if you decided to only make one flavor, then don’t divide the mixture, and double the quantities of the flavoring in step 4 below that you choose)
  4. In one bowl, add the coffee liqueur and the coffee granules and mix well till combined. In the other bowl, add the grated chocolate and mix well.
  5. In a mixer, beat the egg whites until they are very stiff. Fold into each of the flavors (half and half) until the whites are combined and you have a creamy consistency.
  6. Pour each flavor into a serving bowl, cover with plastic wrap and freeze.

Margo Sugarman is the creator of The Kosher Blogger, a celebration of keeping kosher and loving good food.