Archive for the 'beets' Category

01
Jul
13

Hamburgers with Beets – Variation on a Theme


I always liked hamburgers, what carnivore doesn’t? I’m always on a quest to find new ways of making them, I was – therefore – pleasantly surprised with this delightful recipe (and photo) sent in by Ziva A. from Lakewood, NJ:

Hamburgers with Beets

hambger

Serves 4

Ingredients

  • 3 teaspoons canola oil
  • 1 onion, finely chopped
  • 1 pound 7 ounces ground beef
  • 1 medium egg, slightly beaten
  • 2 tablespoons wine vinegar
  • 1/2 teaspoon paprika
  • 1 tablespoon finely chopped capers
  • 1 tablespoon finely chopped cooked beets
  • 2 tablespoons pareve sour cream (I use Tofutti brand)
  • 4 tablespoons margarine
  • 4 eggs
  • salt and pepper

Directions

  1. Heat 1 teaspoon of the oil in a skillet. Add the onion and cook over low hea, stirring occasionally, for 5 minutes, until softened
  2. Transfer the onion to a large bowl and add the ground beef, egg, wine vinegar, paprika and capers. Mix well with your hands. Add the beet and parve sour cream, season to taste with salt and pepper, mix well again. Shape the mixture into 4 patties.
  3. Melt 2 tablespoons margarine with the remaining oil in the skillet. Add the hamburgers and cook over medium heat for 6 minutes on each side, or until well browned. Remove with a spatula and drain on paper towels.
  4. Melt the remaining margarine in a skillet. Break 2 eggs into separate cups and slide them into the skillet. Immediately collect the whites around the yolks with a spatula to keep them neat and separated. Cook until the whites have set but the yolks are still runny. Cook the remaining eggs the same way in the remaining margarine. Transfer the burgers to a warmed serving plate, top with the fried eggs and serve immediately.

Enjoy, gentle reader, enjoy!

CS

23
Jun
11

The Winning Recipe Is…


On May 12th, we announced this year’s Shavuos Contest, as a result we received 26 entries. Some were great, others mediocre. We agonized over which deserved to win, but in the end SYR and I agreed that Pessy Haskelevich‘s entry was the best.

Here is her prize:

The prize basket consisted of all cholov Yisroel N&K cheeses: Slices of Cheddar, Pepper Jack, Swiss, Horseradish Cheddar, Smoked Provolone, Part skim Mozzarella, Muenster, 8 oz chunks of Cheddar, Muenster, Pepper Jack and Mozzarella, 2 tubes each of Fresh Plain Goat cheese and Cranberry Pecan Goat cheese, shredded Pizza, Part Skim Mozzarella and Mexican Blend; sticks of Mozzarella Sticks and Variety Pack and 12 slice packs of White American and Yellow American (Photo by: Anderson International Foods)

Who is Ms. Haskelevich? She’s a food and wine specialist and private chef. She’s catered numerous wine pairing dinners, done Shabatot at hotels, she also does cooking demos for adults and cooking clubs for kids. While talking to Pessy through email I found her very creative, witty and knowledgeable about wine and the delicate nuances of food. You may contact her at: anatomyof taste@gmail.com.

Beet and Asparagus Crostatta

Whether sweet or savory a crostatta is less fussy than a traditional tart and offers a more crisp crust. Use your imagination to change it up throughout the year; butternut squash and red onions in winter, tomatoes and corn in summer and this can easily be dessert if you add ¼ cup sugar to the dough and fill it with fresh fruit.

Photo by: Pessy Haskelevich

Ingredients

Pastry:

  • 1 1/4 cups all-purpose flour
  • 1/2 teaspoon fine sea salt
  • 1 stick cold unsalted butter, cut into 1/2-inch cubes
  • 4-6 tablespoons ice-cold water
  • 1 large egg, lightly beaten

Filling:

  • 2 pounds beets, cut in half and thinly sliced
  •  1/3 cup apple cider vinegar
  •  3 tablespoons olive oil
  •  20 mint leaves chopped
  •  salt and pepper to taste
  •  4 stalks asparagus cut into 3 inch pieces
  •  4 oz ricotta or soft goat cheese (optional)
  •  ¼ cup walnuts, toasted and coarsely chopped

Directions

Dough

  1. Pulse flour and salt in the food processor. Add the butter and pulse 10 times or until mixture resembles a coarse meal. 
  2. Drizzle ice water evenly over mixture and pulse until it just forms a ball. (Do not overwork dough, or pastry will be tough.) 
  3. Gently press dough into a 5-inch disk and chill, wrapped in plastic wrap, until firm, at least 1 hour.
Filling
  1. Preheat oven to 400°F with rack in middle.
  2. Toss beets with vinegar, olive oil, salt, pepper and mint.  Set aside
Crostatta
  1. Roll out dough into a 13-inch round on a lightly floured surface with a lightly floured rolling pin. 
  2. Transfer to a baking sheet lined with slightly greased parchment paper.
Final Instructions
  1. Distribute the chopped walnuts in the center of the dough leaving a 2-3 inch border.  
  2. Leaving the juices behind arrange the beets with the asparagus on top of the walnuts.  If using cheese, dot the top of the crostatta with small pieces of ricotta or goat cheese.  
  3. Fold dough in on itself to cover outer rim of filling, pleating dough as necessary. 
  4. Drizzle a tiny bit of olive oil and freshly ground pepper all over top of the crostata.  
  5. Brush pastry with beaten egg and bake galette until crust is cooked through and golden on edges, 40-45 minutes. 
  6. Cool on baking sheet on a rack 10 minutes before serving.
Well, gentle folks, this recipe is more than just award winning delicious. So… enjoy!
(On the coming week, we  will feature the two runner up recipes)
CS
07
Sep
10

“May it be Your Will…” – Symbolic Foods


It is customary to eat symbolic foods on Rosh Hashana, these symbols represent the individual’s requests for a better life for one self, for one’s family, etc… How did the custom begin?  The Talmud in Tractate Krisus states on page 6a: “Now that you say that an omen means something, each person should accustom himself to eat gourds, fenugreek, leeks, beets and dates…” As a result, we partake of these and other foods, all representing good things and the individual’s hopes for more and better. The foods mentioned are of types that grow fast and/or are very sweet.

Why do we eat them on Rosh Hashana, specifically, as opposed to any other time of the year? When we ask the Almighty to grant us something, just as when we would ask a king to give us something, we must invoke some merit or reason why we feel we deserve it. Therefore, these foods serve as a reminder that we must do tshuvah – repentance. Rosh Hashana being the time when the Almighty looks at the past year’s deeds and when we ask to be inscribed in the Book of Life, it is – of course – a time of self examination and repentance. Thus, these foods serve to remind us of our pressing need to repent, to resolve to be better and stronger Jews for the coming New Year.

These symbols blend in with the spirit of Rosh Hashana, as as Rabbi Yehuda Prero says on torah.org:

…If one looks over the prayers on Rosh HaShana, one will find that the basic theme is one of proclaiming the kingship and greatness of Hashem. Although Rosh HaShana is the day on which we are being judged, we do not make requests for sustenance, health, long life, etc.. We instead demonstrate how we have accepted Hashem as our king, and that we will listen to Him and follow His dictates.

By asking Hashem for our needs we obviously acknowledge Him as our King, upon whom we depend as the source of life, as the source of everything on this plane (and every other) plane of existence. The omens are a way of covertly asking the Boreh Olam – Creator of the Universe for our needs without being too blatant about it.

Immediately preceding each of these  foods we say a “Yehi ratzon – may it be Your will…” Each food, whether through a pun on its name, or through its very nature, alludes to our request.

A holiday plate with traditional symbolic foods

The Yehi ratzons are as follows:

“Yehi Ratzon Milfanecha, Ad-noi El-heinu Vei’l-hai Avosainu…”

“May it be Your will, Hashem our G-d and the G-d of our forefathers…”

For fenugreek (most Ashkenazim use carrots, in yiddish Mehren – which can also mean “to increase,”):

“…Sheiyirbu zechuyosainu.”

“…that our merits increase.”

For leek or cabbage:

“…Sheiyikarsu sonainu.”

“…that our enemies be decimated.”

For beets:

“…Sheiyistalku oyvainu.”

“…that our adversaries disappear”

For dates:

“…Sheyitamu sonainu.”

“…that our enemies be consumed.”

For gourd:

“…Sheyikora gzar dinainu vyikaru lefanecha zechuyosainu.”

“…that the decree of our sentance be torn up and may our merits be proclaimed before you.”

For the apple in the honey:

“…shetichadesh aleinu shana tova umtuka.”

“…that you renew us for a good and sweet year.”

For pomegranate:

“…shenirbeh zechuyos kerimon”

“…that our merits increase like (the seeds of) a pomegranate.”

For fish:

“…Shenifreh vnirbeh kedagim.”

“…that we be fruitful and multiply like fish.”

For the head of a fish or sheep:

“…Shenihiyeh lerosh velo lezanav.”

“…that we be as the head and not as the tail.”

There are also many personal symbols that some people add, for example among some of my relatives it’s long been customary to have a lettuce leave, half a raisin and a piece of celery stalk… What is the pun and its meaning? “May it be Your will, Hashem our G-d and the G-d of our forefathers, to let us have a raise in salary.

Do you have any personal or family symbols you add on Rosh Hashana? Please share them with the rest of us, we’d like to see them!

May this be the year, when everyone of us is granted all of his/her needs, as we acknowledge Hashem’s kingship!

CS




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