Friday, September 14, 2007

Rosh Hashanah Dinner

My Dinner Menu
Matza Ball Soup
Roasted Chicken
Sephardic Spinach Patties
Honey-Glazed Carrots
Cinnamon-Apple Cake



I roasted two chickens at 375 degrees F for approx. 1 hour and 40 minutes (20 min/lb), basting every 20 minutes. I stuffed them with lemon halves, onion halves, rosemary, bay leaves and salt and pepper. I used a combo of butter and olive oil on the outside and salt and pepper.

These carrots were really delicious, tender and just slightly sweet. They even worked well in leftover matza ball soup for lunch the next day along with shredded chicken. This recipe is originally from Faye Levy's International Jewish Cookbook, but I found it in a family cookbook.
Honey-Glazed Carrots
1 lb carrots
1 cup of water
pinch of salt
1 Tbsp sugar
1 Tbsp honey
2 Tbsp vegetable oil
1/2 tsp grated lemon rind

Combine carrots, water and salt in a medium saucepan. Bring to a boil and simmer, uncovered, for 10 minutes. Add sugar, honey and oil and continue cooking over medium-low heat, stirring occasionally, until carrots are very tender and liquid is absorbed, about 15 minutes. Watch so mixture doesn't burn. Add grated lemon rind and remove from heat. Serve hot or at room temperature.

Unfortunately, the pic of the spinach patties didn't turn out so you will just have to take my word for it that they were really good :) I think next time I will use regular bread crumbs as the matza meal had a bit of a funny taste! I used the optional nutmeg and garlic and also added 1/4 cup of parmesan cheese into the mixture, but of course, you can leave that out depending on your adherence to kosher guidelines. Here is a link to the recipe on http://www.epicurious.com/ ( a great recipe website!). http://www.epicurious.com/recipes/food/views/233358

Sephardic Spinach Patties (Originally published in: Olive Trees and Honey, 2005 By Gil Marks)
3 tablespoons olive oil or vegetable oil
1 large onion, chopped
2 to 4 cloves garlic, minced (optional)
2 pounds fresh spinach, stemmed, cooked, chopped, and squeezed dry, or 20 ounces thawed frozen chopped spinach, squeezed dry
About 1 cup matza meal or fine dried bread crumbs
About 3/4 teaspoon table salt or 1 1/2 teaspoons kosher salt
Ground black pepper to taste
1/2 teaspoon freshly grated nutmeg or 1/2 teaspoon cayenne (optional)
3 large eggs, lightly beaten
Vegetable oil for frying
Lemon wedges for serving

1. In a large skillet, heat the olive oil over medium heat. Add the onion and, if using, the garlic and sauté until soft and translucent, about 5 minutes. Remove from the heat and add the spinach, matza meal, salt, pepper, and, if using, the nutmeg. Stir in the eggs. If the mixture is too loose, add a little more matza meal. The mixture can be stored in the refrigerator for a day.
2. Shape the spinach mixture into patties 3 inches long and 1 1/2 inches wide, with tapered ends. In a large skillet, heat a thin layer of oil over medium heat. In batches, fry the patties, turning, until golden brown, about 3 minutes per side. Drain on paper towels. Serve warm, accompanied with lemon wedges.

Variations
Sephardic Spinach Patties with Cheese (Keftes de Espinaca con Queso): Add 1 cup (4 ounces) shredded Muenster, Swiss, Gouda, or Cheddar cheese; or 1/4 cup grated kefalotyri or Parmesan cheese.
Sephardic Spinach Patties with Walnuts (Keftes de Espinaca con Muez): Substitute 1/2 to 1 cup finely chopped walnuts for the matza meal.
Italian Spinach Patties (Polpettine di Spinaci): Add 3/4 cup raisins soaked in white wine for 30 minutes, then drained, and 3/4 cup toasted pine nuts.


The dessert I made is a cinnamon-apple cake that I used to make in grad school. It is a cooking light recipe that is really delicious. It is very moist and has great flavor. I always reduce the cooking time to about an hour and used slightly less sugar.
http://find.myrecipes.com/recipes/recipefinder.dyn?action=displayRecipe&recipe_id=1571493

Cinnamon Apple Cake
1 3/4 cups sugar, divided
3/4 cup (6 ounces) block-style fat-free cream cheese, softened
1/2 cup butter, softened
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
2 large eggs
1 1/2 cups all-purpose flour (about 6 3/4 ounces)
1 1/2 teaspoons baking powder
1/4 teaspoon salt
1 teaspoon ground cinnamon
3 cups chopped peeled Braeburn apple (about 2 large)
Cooking spray

Preheat oven to 350°.
Place 1 1/2 cups sugar, cream cheese, butter, and vanilla in a large bowl; beat with a mixer at medium speed until well blended (about 4 minutes). Add eggs, 1 at a time, beating well after each addition. Lightly spoon flour into dry measuring cups; level with a knife. Combine flour, baking powder, and salt, stirring with a whisk. Add flour mixture to cream cheese mixture, beating at low speed until well blended.

Combine remaining 1/4 cup sugar and 1 teaspoon cinnamon. Combine 2 tablespoons cinnamon mixture and chopped apple in a bowl, and stir apple mixture into batter. Pour the batter into an 9-inch springform pan coated with cooking spray. Sprinkle with the remaining cinnamon mixture. Bake at 350° for 1 hour or until cake pulls away from the sides of the pan. Cool cake completely on a wire rack.
Cut into 12 wedges, using a serrated knife.

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