Spiked Chocolate Truffles

gf-truffles

Recipe by Orly Gottesman, BlendsByOrly.com

I learned how to make chocolate truffles during my studies at Le Cordon Bleu and made some modifications to make it a more user-friendly recipe. Deliciously dark chocolate truffles with a hint of liqueur make this a fun no-bake New Year’s dessert. The chocolate truffles are naturally gluten free and can be made either dairy or parve. Once the chocolate truffles are ready, have fun garnishing them with desiccated coconut, chopped nuts or cocoa powder.
 
Recipe yields 4 dozen truffles
Ingredients
1/3 heaping cup (100ml) Grand Marnier or Kahlua
1 2/3 cups (300g) good quality dark chocolate, roughly chopped (I like schmerling)
1 ¼ cups (300ml) heavy cream or non-dairy whipping cream like Rich’s Whip
4 ¼ Tbsp (60g) unsalted butter or margarine
Garnish
1/3 cup (40g) desiccated coconut or coconut flour
1/3 cup (40g) nuts, finely chopped or nut meal
4 Tbsp (30g) cocoa powder

Place the chopped chocolate in a large heatproof mixing bowl. Add 100ml liquor of choice. Place the cream and butter in a saucepan and bring to a simmer over a medium heat. Once the butter has fully melted and the mixture is simmering, remove from the flame and pour over the chocolate. Whisk until you have a smooth mixture. Cover the bowl and chill for 4 hours in the fridge.
Make the Truffles: Line a sheet pan with baking paper. Cover 1/3 of the pan with desiccated coconut, 1/3 chopped nuts and 1/3 coco powder. The flat surface will make it easier to roll the balls into than using 3 separate bowls. Use a melon baller to take out evenly sized scoops of the truffle mixture. Using lightly oiled hands or gloves, roll into truffle balls, then roll the truffles in the desiccated coconut, chopped nuts or coco powder. Leave to set in the fridge on a baking tray lined with nonstick baking paper. Leave truffles in the fridge until ready to serve.

Recipe by Orly Gottesman, BlendsByOrly.com

orlyOrly Gottesman discovered her passion for baking while living in Paris. She apprenticed for a French pastry chef at a patisserie in the 5th Arrondissement. Orly received her formal training at Le Cordon Bleu in Sydney, Australia. She pioneered an independent study on gluten free product development and her research was published in the student curriculum. She was then hired to develop a line of gluten free favorite pastries and breads under the brand "Orly the Baker" for Chompies, an iconic restaurant chain in Phoenix, Arizona. Orly spent over three years developing and perfecting a range of gluten free flour blends and recipes. Her innovation is motivated by her culinary discoveries during her travels around the globe.

Orly's mission is to allow people on a gluten free diet to make any recipe without sacrificing taste, texture and quality. Blends by Orly, her line of five uniquely formulated gluten-free flours has been received with enthusiasm as a long-sought solution for the gluten-free consumer. Her drive to make delicious gluten free products is inspired by her husband, a wold class foodie, who was diagnosed with celiac disease. Orly has a B.S from NYU and is a trained vocalist and pianist.

Pomegranate Chili Glazed Corned Beef

corned-beef

Serves 10

Also sweet and savory. Pomegranate juice is both sweet and tart but the sugar adds sweetness and the chili powder gives it zesty flavor. Ancho chili powder has minimal spice so don’t worry this is not spicy at all. In fact I like to add a little more heat, and add in a teaspoon of sriracha sauce.

3 - 5 pounds corned beef
1 8-ounce bottle pomegranate juice
1 cup sugar
2 teaspoons ancho chili powder
1 teaspoon allspice

Preheat oven to 325F.

Remove corned beef from plastic packing and place on a large sheet of heavy duty aluminum foil. Retain seasonings and as much liquid as there is and include with the meat. Wrap the corned beef tightly with heavy duty aluminum foil so no steam can escape, and the meat is fully enclosed. Put wrapped meat on a shallow baking sheet (like a jelly roll pan) and place on the middle rack of an oven.

Bake for approx. 2-1/2 hours.

While corned beef is cooking, make the glaze. Place the pomegranate juice and sugar into a saucepan and cook over high heat until reduced by half. Lower heat and add in chili powder and allspice. Bring to a bubble and remove from heat.

Remove meat from foil and place in a large roasting pan, reserving a little of the cooking juice to keep it moist. With a sharp knife make diagonal slits on top of the meat. Pour the glaze over the corned beef and brush over the top to cover icorned bee with glaze.

Increase oven to 350F and roast uncovered for approximately 20-30 minutes. Remove from oven and let rest for 10-15 min. Then slice against the grain. This is best sliced very thin.

Sweet and Savory Root Beer Glazed Corned Beef

glazed-corned-beef

Serves 10

3 - 5 pounds corned beef
1 16-ounce bottle root beer
1 cinnamon stick
1 2-inch piece ginger, peeled and sliced
1/2 cup molasses
1/2 cup brown sugar
1 teaspoon salt

Preheat oven to 325F.

Remove corned beef from plastic packing and place on a large sheet of heavy duty aluminum foil. Retain seasonings and as much liquid as there is and include with the meat. Wrap the corned beef tightly with heavy duty aluminum foil so no steam can escape, and the meat is fully enclosed. Put wrapped meat on a shallow baking sheet (like a jelly roll pan) and place on the middle rack of an oven.

Bake for approx. 2 1/2 hrs.

While the meat is cooking, make the glaze. Place the root beer, cinnamon stick and ginger into a small sauce pan and cook over high heat until root beer is reduced by half, about 10 minutes. Lower the heat and add molasses and brown sugar. Cook a few minutes more until thick and syrupy. Remove ginger.

Remove meat from foil and place in a large roasting pan, reserving a little of the cooking juice to keep it moist. With a sharp knife make diagonal slits on top of the meat. Pour the glaze over the corned beef and brush over the top to cover icorned bee with glaze.

Increase oven to 350F and roast uncovered for approximately 20-30 minutes. Remove from oven and let rest for 10-15 min. Then slice against the grain. This is best sliced very thin.

Preserved Lemons

6 – 7 lemons or meyer lemons, scrubbed
¼ cup kosher salt
Optional additional flavor enhancers: bay leaf, crushed red pepper, black peppercorns, sugar, oregano, thyme, cinnamon stick, star anise, rosemary

Run a pint-size glass jar through the dishwasher or place in pot of boiling water to sterilize.

Cut 4 of the lemons lengthwise into 6 wedges and remove the seeds. Put about 1 tablespoon salt in the jar and put 6 of the wedges on top. Press down on the wedges with a muddler or the handle of a wooden spoon to release some of the juices and compact them. Repeat in layers with remaining lemon wedges and salt. If using additional flavor enhancers use a little bit with each layer. Squeeze enough juice from the remaining lemons to cover the lemons in the jar. Close the jar tightly with lid.

Keep at room temperature for 4 weeks, inverting the jar about once a day to mix the salt and juice, and adding more fresh lemon juice as necessary to keep the lemons covered. After 4 weeks, they are ready to use but may need a slightly rinsing before use. They keep up to one year in the refrigerator.

Roasted Fingerling Potatoes With Preserved Lemon

preserved-lemon0
Preserved lemons add a wonderful salty-sweet hit to these simple potatoes, but if you don’t have them on hand, you can use regular lemons instead. Thinly slice the peel of one lemon, then toss with the potatoes before roasting.

SERVINGS: 4
2 pounds fingerling potatoes, halved lengthwise
3 tablespoons olive oil
2 teaspoons chopped fresh rosemary
Kosher salt and freshly ground black pepper
3 tablespoons thinly sliced preserved lemon peel

Preheat oven to 450°. Toss potatoes, oil, and rosemary on a large rimmed baking sheet; season with salt and pepper. Roast, tossing halfway through, until soft and golden brown, 25–30 minutes. Toss warm potatoes with preserved lemon peel.

Pretzel Crusted Chicken Cutlets

crispy
Serves 6

4 cups apple cider
1 tablespoon light brown sugar
1 tablespoon kosher salt, plus more
6 chicken cutlets, pounded to ⅛” thickness
6 ounces pretzels
4 large eggs, beaten to blend
⅓ cup whole grain mustard
¾ cup all-purpose flour
Freshly ground black pepper
Vegetable oil (for frying; about 3 cups)

Flat-leaf parsley leaves with tender stems and lemon wedges (for serving)

Bring apple cider, brown sugar, and 1 tablespoon kosher salt to a boil in a medium saucepan and cook until reduced by half, 10–15 minutes. Transfer to a shallow dish and let cool. Add chicken, cover, and chill at least 6 hours.

Pulse pretzels in a food processor to coarse crumbs; transfer to a shallow bowl.

Whisk eggs, mustard, and 2 tablespoons water in another shallow bowl. Place flour in a third shallow bowl. Remove chicken from brine, pat dry, and season with kosher salt and pepper. Working one at a time, dredge in flour, shaking off excess. Dip into egg mixture, letting excess drip back into bowl, then coat with pretzel crumbs, pressing firmly to adhere.

Meanwhile, pour oil into a large skillet to a depth of ½” and heat over medium-high heat until it bubbles immediately when a pinch of flour is added.

Working in batches, fry chicken until golden brown and cooked through, about 2 minutes per side. Drain on paper towels; season with kosher salt. Serve schnitzel topped with parsley, with lemon wedges for squeezing over.

Smoky Slow Cooker Brisket

sweet-and-sour-brisket

Serves 8

2 tablespoon packed dark brown sugar
2 tablespoon smoked paprika
2 teaspoon ground cumin
Kosher salt and freshly ground black pepper
1 5-lb. brisket
6 tablespoons tomato sauce
2 tablespoons apple cider vinegar
2 tablespoons honey
2 tablespoons molasses, preferably unsulfured
2 canned chipotles in adobo sauce, stemmed, seeded, and minced (about 2 Tbs.)
1 medium sweet onion, halved and sliced into thin half-moons

Mix the sugar, paprika, cumin, 1-1/2 teaspoon salt, and 1/2 teaspoon pepper in a small bowl. Rub onto both sides of the brisket.
Whisk the tomato sauce, vinegar, honey, molasses, and chipotles until smooth. Spread over both sides of the brisket.
Set the brisket in a 5- or 6-quart slow cooker. (The whole brisket should fit in an oval slow cooker; for a round model, cut the brisket in half and overlap the thinner sections.) Scatter the onion on top of the meat. Cover and cook until fork-tender, 8 to 9 hours on low or 5 to 6 hours on high. Uncover and transfer the brisket and onion to a cutting board; let rest while you finish the sauce.
Pour the sauce into a fat separator and set aside for a few minutes. Pour the defatted sauce into a 3-quart saucepan and bring to a simmer over medium-high heat, stirring occasionally. Cook until reduced by half, about 8 minutes.
Cut the brisket against the grain into 1/2-inch-thick slices and sprinkle with salt. Serve with the onion and some of the sauce

Potato Latke Waffles

latke-waffles
My friend Helen from Family-Friends-Food.com made Hanukah Menorah Latkes and inspired me to get creative with my new waffle maker.

Makes 4 large waffles

2 pounds baking potatoes—peeled, shredded and squeezed dry
2 large eggs, lightly beaten
½ cup shredded onion
3 tablespoons all-purpose flour
1-1/2 teaspoons kosher salt
1 teaspoon baking powder
¾ cup shredded cheese, optional
3 tablespoons margarine or butter, plus additional for greasing waffle iron

Applesauce, Sour cream, shredded cheese and chives for topping

Heat an 8-inch waffle iron and preheat the oven to 200°. In a large bowl, mix the potatoes with the onion, eggs, flour, salt, baking powder, 3/4 cup of cheese (if using) and 3 tablespoons of margarine/butter.

Brush the waffle iron with melted margarine/butter and spread one-fourth of the potato mixture onto it. Close and cook on high until the waffle is golden and crisp, 5 to 7 minutes. Transfer to a rack in the oven to keep warm. Repeat with the remaining potato mixture. Serve the waffles topped with applesauce or sour cream, more cheddar and chopped chives.

NOTES
These waffles can be made in a Belgian waffle maker to serve 3: Spoon one-third of the mixture onto the iron instead of one-fourth.

Gluten Free Sufganiyot (Jelly Doughnuts)

doughnutjelly
Recipe yields 10 doughnuts

1/3 cup plus 4 tsp luke-warm milk (about 90 degrees F)
1 teaspoon dry yeast yeast
2 tablespoons plus 1 tsp water
1 tablespoon butter, melted
1 large egg
¼ cup granulated white sugar
1 ½ cups Blends by Orly Manhattan Blend
½ teaspoon salt
½ cup raspberry or strawberry jam
2 ½ cups canola oil for frying
Powdered sugar for dusting

Mix:
Combine milk and yeast in the bowl of a stand mixer and let sit for 5 minutes. In a large bowl, combine Manhattan Blend, sugar and salt.
Heat water and butter in the microwave until butter melts. Combine egg, water mixture flour mixture and yeast mixture in the mixer with paddle attachment and mix on medium speed until incorporated, about 5 minutes.

Shape:
Turn the dough onto a surface dusted with Manhattan Blend and kneed into a ball. Flatten the ball slightly with your hands and sprinkle flour on the surface of your dough. Using a non-stock rolling pin, roll the dough out to a 1/4-inch thickness. With a round cookie cutter or rim of a glass, cut into 2 1/2-inch rounds. Place 1/2 teaspoon jam or jelly in center of half of the rounds. Moisten edges with cold water; top with the remaining rounds, pinching edges together firmly. Re-roll the dough scraps and repeat the process. Place the sealed doughnuts on a greased baking sheet. Cover and let rise in a warm place, about 45 minutes.

Heat:
oil in a heavy pot filled 3-inches high with oil set to 350 degrees F. Use a candy thermometer to measure the temperature of the oil. If the oil is too hot, the doughnuts will burn. Fry one layer of doughnuts at a time. Using tongs, carefully turn doughnuts as they rise to the surface until golden brown and puffed, about 2 to 3 minutes on each side. Remove from oil and drain onto paper towels. Dust with powdered sugar before serving. Doughnuts are best enjoyed crispy and fresh out of the fryer.

** For doughnut holes (munchkins) shape dough into 1-inch balls. Sprinkle fingers and hands with gluten free flour if they get sticky. Carefully drop balls, 4 or 5 at a time, into hot oil. Fry 1 to 2 minutes or until golden brown all around and drain on paper towels.

Recipe by Orly Gottesman, BlendsByOrly.com

Orly Gottesman discovered her passion for baking while living in Paris. She apprenticed for a French pastry chef at a patisserie in the 5th Arrondissement. Orly received her formal training at Le Cordon Bleu in Sydney, Australia. She pioneered an independent study on gluten free product development and her research was published in the student curriculum. She was then hired to develop a line of gluten free favorite pastries and breads under the brand "Orly the Baker" for Chompies, an iconic restaurant chain in Phoenix, Arizona. Orly spent over three years developing and perfecting a range of gluten free flour blends and recipes. Her innovation is motivated by her culinary discoveries during her travels around the globe.

Orly's mission is to allow people on a gluten free diet to make any recipe without sacrificing taste, texture and quality. Blends by Orly, her line of five uniquely formulated gluten-free flours has been received with enthusiasm as a long-sought solution for the gluten-free consumer. Her drive to make delicious gluten free products is inspired by her husband, a wold class foodie, who was diagnosed with celiac disease. Orly has a B.S from NYU and is a trained vocalist and pianist.

Hanukah Marshmallow Dreidels

From ToriAvey.com

What you need
Jumbo marshmallows
Stick pretzels
Nutella hazelnut spread or Pareve hazelnut chocolate spread
Chocolate candy kisses

Optional Toppings
Cake decorating gel
Chocolate or vanilla candy coating
Vegetable shortening
Candy sprinkles

Extra Equipment
Parchment paper, cookie sheet (for candy coated dreidels)

First, push a pretzel into the flat side of the marshmallow, sticking it in as far as you can without puncturing the opposite side. Next, spread a small amount of Nutella onto the base of a chocolate kiss. Use the Nutella as “glue” to attach the kiss to the flat end of the marshmallow. At this point, you can use cake decorating gel to write one of the four Hebrew dreidel letters onto the surface of the marshmallow… Nun, Hey, Gimel, Shin Here are the Hebrew letters if you need a guide: These letters stand for the Hebrew phrase, Nes Gadol Haya Sham– which means “A great miracle happened there.” Cake decorating gel takes a long time to dry, so give your letters a few hours to set… if your kids can wait that long! If you want to add a candy coating to your dreidel instead of the letters, make sure your marshmallow dreidels are prepped and ready to go before you start working with the chocolate. You will need to work quickly while the chocolate is soft. Place the dreidels on a cookie sheet lined with parchment paper, with at least an inch or two in between each dreidel. Melt your chocolate or vanilla candy coating according to the package directions at the lowest temperature setting possible. Ideally the consistency of the melted coating should be like chocolate syrup—not overly thick. If your candy coating seems too thick after melting it, you can thin it out using a tablespoon or two of vegetable shortening. Once it’s melted, transfer the melted candy coating to a cool bowl. Working quickly, dip your dreidels one-at-a-time into the coating and roll them until the surface is evenly covered. As you dip the dreidels, make sure you don’t leave them in the hot candy coating for longer than a few seconds at a time. If you leave it longer, the Hershey kiss will melt and you’ll have a flat-bottomed dreidel. Pull the dreidel out of the coating and hold it over the bowl, point side facing downward, for a few seconds to get rid of excess drips. Place it on the parchment-lined cookie sheet and coat immediately with sprinkles. Once all of your dreidels are coated, let them dry for 15-20 minutes until the candy coating has set. A slight “puddle” will form underneath each dreidel, so it won’t look perfect—but that’s not the point. It will still look dreidel-ish, and it will taste yummy! Have fun!

Easy Pumpkin Pie by Sweetie Pie

easypumpkinpie
Serves 10

1/2 recipe Basic Pie Crust (recipe below) or 1 store-bought pie crust
1 cup canned pumpkin
1/2 cup (1 stick) unsalted butter or margarine, melted
1/2 cup sugar
1/2 teaspoon nutmeg
3/4 teaspoon ground cinnamon
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
1/2 teaspoon lemon extract
1/2 teaspoon almond extract
1/3 cup pareve whipping cream or soymilk or coconut milk
3 large eggs
2 tablespoons all-purpose flour
½ teaspoon salt
1/2 tablespoon baking powder

For the Basic Pie Crust (makes enough for 2 shells)
2 1/2 cups all-purpose flour
1 teaspoon salt
1 cup (2 sticks) unsalted margarine or shortening, cut into small cubes 1/4 cup ice water, or more as needed

Preheat oven to 350°F.
Flour a work surface well and press the dough into a disk. Roll evenly in all directions with a rolling pin until you have a round crust that is 10-inches in diameter.

Line a 9-inch pie plate with a piecrust and crimp the edges. Prick the bottom of the crust in a few places with a fork then bake the shell for 15 minutes, or until it is lightly golden. Remove from the oven to a wire rack and cool completely. Turn off oven.

In in a large bowl mash pumpkin, melted margarine, sugar, nutmeg, cinnamon, vanilla, lemon and almond extracts. Stir in the pareve whipping cream and eggs one at a time, beating well after adding each. Stir in the flour and salt and baking powder, and beat well.

Pour the filling into the prebaked piecrust and refrigerate for 1 hour, this will allow the pie to puff higher when you bake it.

Preheat the oven to 350°F. Bake the pie for 40-45 minutes, until the pie is firm when jiggled and lightly browned on top.

For the Basic Pie Crust:
In a large bowl, whisk together the flour and salt. Add the margarine with a pastry cutter or fork until the mixture is crumbly with pea-size pieces. (Or pulse in a food processor.) Gradually add the ice water, mixing gently until you can form the dough into a ball. The ball should stick together but still be crumbly. Do not knead the dough! Cut the ball in half and wrap up each half in plastic. Chill for 30 minutes or freeze up to three months.

Roasted Sweet and Savory Sweet Potatoes

sweetpotato-drizzle

Serves 6

6 medium-size sweet potatoes
8 tablespoons margarine or ¼ cup coconut oil
2 shallots, chopped
1-1/2 cup chopped hazelnuts
Kosher salt
Fresh ground black pepper
¼ cup orange juice
½ teaspoon dried rosemary crumbled
For the Creamy Topping:
4 tablespoons margarine
3 tablespoons orange jucie
1/2 pound Tofutti cream cheese
1 teaspoon cinnamon

Preheat oven to 375F.
Wash sweet potatoes then cut slices into them about 2/3 down (not all the way through so it slices off). Place potatoes into baking pan and set aside.  

In a sauté pan, melt margarine and add shallots, hazelnuts, salt and pepper to taste. Sauté until shallots are translucent then add orange juice and rosemary and sauté for about 2 minutes, allowing everything to blend.   Remove from heat and pour over potatoes.

Cover tightly with tin foil and bake until potatoes are soft (when a fork is inserted easily, about 40-65 minutes, depending on the size of the potatoes). Take potatoes out of oven and set aside.

To the same pan that you sautéed the nuts, add margarine and melt over medium heat. Add orange juice and allow it to blend. Slowly add in cream cheese and stir it gently into the mixture. Add cinnamon to taste and cook for about 1 minute. Remove from heat and pour mixture evenly over potatoes. Serve warm

Roasted Potatoes Infused with Rosemary and Oregano

roasted-herb-potatoes-recipe_xlg
Serves 4

1-1/2 pounds baby potatoes, halved
4 cloves garlic, chopped
3 large sprigs fresh oregano
2 large sprigs fresh rosemary
1-1/2 tablespoons olive oil
Kosher salt and freshly ground black pepper

Position a rack in the center of the oven and heat to the oven 450°F. On a large rimmed baking sheet, toss the potatoes with the garlic, oregano, rosemary, olive oil, 1/2 tsp. salt, and 1/4 tsp. pepper, and spread them out on the baking sheet so they're evenly spaced. Roast, tossing halfway through, until the potatoes are deep golden brown and tender, about 20 minutes. Let cool slightly and season to taste with more salt and pepper before serving.

Romaine, Arugula, Fennel, and Avocado Salad

Serves 6

5 cups chopped romaine
2 cups arugula
½ fennel bulb, sliced thin
¼ cup fresh mint, diced
1 avocado, cut in 1-inch pieces
¼ cup pomegranate seeds
¼ cup toasted hazelnuts

Dressing
2 teaspoons Dijon mustard
2 teaspoons honey
3 tablespoons fresh lemon juice
½ teaspoon garlic powder
1 teaspoon kosher salt
¼ teaspoon black pepper
1/3 cup extra-virgin olive oil

For the salad: On a large platter scatter the lettuce. Top with fennel, mint, avocado chunks, pomegranate seeds, and toasted nuts.

For the dressing: In a small bowl, whisk Dijon, honey, lemon juice, garlic powder, salt and pepper. While whisking, slowly drizzle in olive oil until emulsified and incorporated.

Pour desired amount of dressing over salad. Toss and serve.

Hanukah Standing Rib Roast

ribs
Serves 10

Use vegetables or root vegetables or potatoes on the bottom of the roast in this recipe. I often use baby potatoes and cipollini onions.

1 (7 – 8 pound) standing rib roast
2 cups chopped onions
1 cup chopped carrots
1 cup chopped celery
1 cup beef stock
1 cup red wine
¼ cup olive oil
2 teaspoons garlic powder
2 teaspoons onion powder
2 teaspoons paprika
2 teaspoons black pepper
2 tablespoons kosher salt
2 tablespoons fresh chopped parsley
1 tablespoons fresh chopped rosemary
2 teaspoons fresh, chopped thyme
6 cloves garlic, thinly sliced

Preheat oven to 425F.
On a roasting pan, place onions, carrots, and celery. Cover with beef stock and wine. Place beef on top of vegetables, bone-side down.

In a small dish, mix olive oil, garlic and onion powder, paprika, pepper, salt, parsley, rosemary, thyme and thinly sliced garlic. With your hands, evenly coat the meat with the spices

Place roast in oven for 25 minutes. Do not open the oven, but turn down the heat to 300F. Cook for approximately 2 ½ hours for rare (130F). Remove from oven, cover and allow meat to rest for 15 minutes.

Remove vegetables from roasting pan and skim fat. Place liquid in a small saucepan over medium heat, season with salt and pepper, and simmer for 5 minutes.

Serve meat with vegetables and sauce poured on top.

Green Beans with Cipollini Onions and Wild Mushrooms

green-beans-chanterelles-cipollini
Serves 8 – 10

4 tablespoons olive oil, divided
1 pound cipollini onions, peeled (halved if large)
2 pounds green beans, stem ends trimmed
6 tablespoons unsalted margarine, divided
8 ounces wild mushrooms chopped
1/3 cup minced shallots
2 tablespoons chopped fresh thyme leaves
1 teaspoon kosher salt
1/4 teaspoon pepper
1/3 cup reduced-sodium vegetable broth

Heat 2 tablespoons oil in a large frying pan over medium heat. Add onions and cook, without moving, until golden brown (reduce heat if they get too dark too fast). Care­fully turn onions over and let cook until dark golden on both sides and softened inside, about 30 minutes total. Set aside.
Meanwhile, bring a pot of generously salted water to a boil. Cook beans until bright green and tender, 6 to 10 minutes. Drain and return to pot. Add 2 tbsp. margarine, stirring just until melted.
Heat remaining 2 tablespoons oil in a medium frying pan over high heat. Add mushrooms; reduce heat to medium and cook, stirring occasionally, until mushrooms release all their liquid and start to brown and crisp, about 10 minutes. Add remaining 4 tbsp. margarine to pan. When margarine has melted and begins to sizzle, add shallots, thyme, salt, pepper, and reserved caramelized onions. Cook, stirring gently, until shallots have softened. Add broth and bring to a simmer.
Meanwhile, rewarm beans and transfer to a large platter. Pour mushroom mixture over center of beans.

Maple Mashed Sweet Potatoes

mashed-sweet-potatoes
Serves 12

6 pounds orange-fleshed sweet potatoes
1/4 cup melted margarine plus 3 tablespoons cut into pieces and more for greasing dish
1/2 cup pareve whipping cream
About 1 teaspoon kosher salt
About 1/2 teaspoon pepper
1 cup chopped pecans
3 tablespoons maple syrup

Preheat oven to 375°F. Bake sweet potatoes on a rimmed baking sheet until very tender when pierced, 1 1/4 hours.
Cut sweet potatoes in half and let cool a bit. Scoop out flesh and beat half of them at a time in a stand mixer, using paddle attachment on medium speed, until very smooth, about 3 minutes.
In a large bowl, stir together sweet potatoes, melted margarine, pareve cream, 1 tsp. salt, and 1/2 tsp. pepper. Taste and add more salt and pepper if you like. Grease a 3-qt. baking dish. Add sweet potatoes and smooth surface. Top with pecans, maple syrup, and butter pieces. Cover dish with parchment paper cut to fit, then foil.
Bake for 20 to 30 minutes. Uncover and bake until pecans are crunchy, 20 minutes more.

Pumpkin Parfaits

pumpkinparfait
Serves 12

Two 15-ounce cans pumpkin puree
1 teaspoon pumpkin pie spice
1/4 teaspoon kosher salt
4 cups tofutti cream cheese
2-1/2 cups confectioners’ sugar
2 cups pareve (non-dairy) whipping cream
1-1/2 cups crushed chocolate wafer cookies (6 ounces)

In a large bowl, using a hand mixer, beat the pumpkin puree with the pumpkin pie spice, salt, 2 cups of the tofutti cream cheese and 1 1/2 cups of the confectioners’ sugar until thick.

In another large bowl, beat the non-dairy cream with the remaining 2 cups of Tofutti cream cheese and 1 cup of confectioners’ sugar until soft peaks form.
Spoon half of the pumpkin mixture into 12 glasses and top with half of the cream mixture and half of the crushed wafers. Repeat the layering once more. Refrigerate the parfaits until well-chilled, at least 1 hour, before serving.

Shredded Brussels Sprouts with Lemon, Thyme and Pistachios

shredded-brussel-sprout

Serves 6

1-1/4 pound Brussels sprouts
2 tablespoons margarine
1/3 cup finely chopped shallot (from 1 large shallot)
Kosher salt
1 teaspoon finely grated lemon zest
2 teaspoons finely chopped fresh thyme
1/2 cup pareve sour cream
Freshly ground black pepper
1/2 cup shelled salted pistachios, lightly toasted and coarsely chopped

Trim the bases and separate the leaves of the Brussels sprouts by hand. Melt the margarine in a 12-inch skillet over medium heat. Add the Brussels sprouts and shallots, stirring occasionally until just tender and browned in spots, 5 to 8 minutes.
Stir in the lemon zest and thyme. Add the sour cream and stir to coat. Season to taste with salt and pepper, and serve garnished with the pistachios.

Roasted Fall Vegetables with Lentils and Fall Spices

Photo: Iain Bagwell; Styling: Emma Star Jensen

Photo: Iain Bagwell; Styling: Emma Star Jensen


Serves 6

Warm Indian flavors make this an ideal nice recipe that is comforting, filling and full of flavor.

7 tablespoons olive oil, divided
1 jalapeno, optional, seeded and chopped
1 large celery stalk, diced
2 small carrots, diced
1 large onion, half finely chopped, half cut into 1-in. chunks
4 1/2 teaspoons garam masala, divided
1 teaspoon chopped fresh thyme leaves
2 teaspoons Dijon mustard, divided
1 cup green lentils, rinsed
About 3 cups vegetable broth
About 1 teaspoon salt, divided
1 tablespoon honey
1 butternut squash (about 2 lbs.), peeled, seeded, and cut into 1- to 1 1/2-in. chunks
1/2 pound small brussels sprouts, sliced or shredded
1/4 cup orange juice

Preheat oven to 425°. In a 5- to 6-qt. pot, heat 3 tbsp. oil over medium-high heat. Add chile, celery, carrots, and chopped onion and cook, stirring often, until vegetables soften, about 5 minutes. Add 2 tsp. garam masala and cook, stirring, about 30 seconds. Add thyme and 1 tsp. mustard; cook 1 minute.

Stir in lentils, 3 cups broth, and 1/2 tsp. salt. Cover and bring to a boil, then reduce heat and simmer until lentils are just tender, about 40 minutes, checking occasionally and adding more broth if needed so they're covered in liquid.

Meanwhile, in a 9- by 13-in. baking dish, whisk together honey; 1/2 tsp. salt; and remaining 4 tbsp. oil, 2 1/2 tsp. garam masala, and 1 tsp. mustard. Add squash and toss until well coated. Roast squash 15 minutes. Stir in onion chunks and brussel sprouts and cook until vegetables are tender when pierced with the tip of a knife, 15 to 20 more minutes.

Drain any excess liquid from lentils. Stir in orange juice and transfer lentils to a shallow bowl. Spoon roasted vegetables on top, and season to taste with more salt.

Creamy Fall Squash Soup with Crunchy Topping

Photo: Iain Bagwell; Styling: Emma Star Jensen

Photo: Iain Bagwell; Styling: Emma Star Jensen


Serves 6
Almond milk adds depth of flavor to a standard squash soup. The toppings give it great crunch. It can be pareve or dairy.

1/4 cup olive oil
5 cups butternut squash chunks (1-in. pieces; use a 2 3/4-lb. squash or 1 1/2 lbs. chunks)
1 medium yellow onion, chopped
1 1/2 cups chopped ripe Bartlett pear
About 1 teaspoon kosher salt
1/2 teaspoon pepper
1 qt. vegetable broth
½ cup soymilk
½ cup non-dairy creamer, pareve whipping cream or almond milk (or for dairy version, use whole milk)
1/3 cup almond butter
2 tablespoons lime juice
2 tablespoons packed light brown sugar
Crunchy Toppings:
3 radishes, sliced and cut into matchsticks
3 green onions, cut into 1 1/2-in. slivers
1/3 cup roasted, salted hulled pumpkin seeds (pepitas)
1/3 cup crumbled feta cheese, dairy version only
1/2 jalapeño chile, seeded (if you like) and diced

Make soup: Heat oil in a wide 5- to 6-qt. pot over medium-high heat. Add squash, yellow onion, pear, salt, and pepper. Sauté until squash starts to brown, 15 to 20 minutes.

Add broth, cover, and bring to a boil. Reduce heat to a simmer and cook until squash is tender, 10 to 15 minutes. Remove from heat.
Add soymilk, creamer and almond butter to broth mixture. With an immersion blender, puree until smooth. Return soup to pot and cover.

Make topping: In a medium bowl, gently toss together radishes, green onions, pumpkin seeds, feta (dairy version only), and chile.

Reheat soup just to a simmer, if needed. Stir in lime juice and brown sugar, and add more salt to taste if you like. Ladle into bowls and serve with topping.

Fall Salad with Vinaigrette

Credit: Tyler Florence

Credit: Tyler Florence

Serves 10

Tyler Florence one of my favorite celebrity chefs is all the rage in Northern California. He lives in Marin county and runs two restaurants and his recipes are featured everywhere. Having just spent a few days in Sonoma Wine Country, I was inspired to recreate one of his great salads. His version calls for sherry vinegar and a few different artisan lettuce varieties but my GKC spin makes it a bit more accessible. Please forgive me Tyler, I love your recipes!

3/4 cup pecans, toasted and coarsely chopped
1/2 cup red wine vinegar
1/4 cup Dijon mustard
2 tablespoons honey
1 teaspoon thyme leaves
1 1/2 cups extra-virgin olive oil
Sea salt
Black pepper
1 head of red leaf lettuce, leaves torn
2 heads of Treviso or radicchio, cored and leaves torn
2 cups arugula
2 Fuyu persimmons, cored and very thinly sliced crosswise on a mandoline
1 Pink Lady apple, cored and very thinly sliced on a mandoline
1 medium fennel bulb, cored and very thinly sliced on a mandoline
Edible flowers

In a medium bowl, whisk the vinegar with the mustard, honey and thyme. Gradually whisk in the olive oil and season the dressing with kosher salt and pepper.
In a very large serving bowl, toss the lettuce, radicchio and arugula. Scatter the persimmons, apple, fennel and pecans on top and garnish with edible flowers. Pour some dressing on salad, not all of it, and toss. Serve the salad, passing more dressing at the table.

Salad can be prepared on a platter for a nice presentation.