Recipe Ideas For The Nine Days

This time of year I get many requests for recipe ideas for the Nine Days. People seem tired of their teriyaki salmon. I’m excited about all the international food trends and using them as inspiration for my Nine Days menus. From fish to vegetarian options, these recipes are infused with wonderful herbs and spices that will make you feel like you’ve experienced international street food from all over the world.

Salmon Schwarma with Peppers, Onions, and a Tahini Sauce
Simple Za’atar Salmon
Red Lentil and Chickpea Stew
Tuna Poke Bowl
Fish Tacos with Mexican-Slaw
Mexican Cabbage Slaw

Mexican Cabbage Slaw

Serves 6

2/3 cup mayonnaise
1 teaspoon kosher salt
2 teaspoons honey or 1 teaspoon light agave
1 teaspoon ground cumin
½ teaspoon chili powder
Zest of 1 lime
Juice of 2 limes
½ teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
1 bag shredded purple cabbage
1 ½ cups shredded green cabbage
1 ½ cups shredded carrots
¼ cup finely diced red onion
1 red bell pepper, stemmed, seeded and julienned

In a small bowl, mix the mayonnaise, the salt, honey, cumin, chili powder, lime juice, zest and pepper.
In a medium bowl, toss the purple cabbage, green cabbage, carrots, red onion and bell pepper. Pour the dressing over the vegetables and mix to combine. Serve immediately or cover and refrigerate until ready to use.

Fish Tacos with Mexican-Slaw


Serves 6

2 pounds sole, flounder, tilapia, red snapper
1 teaspoon chile powder
½ teaspoon cumin
¼ teaspoon smoked paprika
¾ teaspoon kosher salt
½ teaspoon ground black pepper
Juice of 1 lime
1 tablespoon plus 2 teaspoons extra-virgin olive oil, plus more for brushing
8 corn tortillas
1 avocado, sliced
Salsa, homemade or store bought
Guacamole, homemade or store bought

In a small bowl, mix chili powder, cumin, paprika, salt and pepper.
Preheat a grill to high. Sprinkle the fish on both sides with the spice mixture. Drizzle with lime juice and oil. Grease grill racks very well (alternatively, cook fish in a very hot skillet about 3 minutes each side). Add fish to the grill and grill until marked and cooked through, 4 minutes per side. Transfer the fish to a plate and break into bite-size pieces.
To serve: Warm the tortillas on the grill and fill with the fish, salsa, avocado and Mexi-slaw. Serve with lime wedges.

Tuna Poke Bowl

(It’s all the rage, jump on board and try it!)
Serves 6, can be made with sushi grade salmon too
Add any mix-ins that you like to this. I like arugula and kale, but many readers like the Hawaiian tradition of adding mango or papaya.

1/2 cup extra-virgin olive oil
3 tablespoons toasted sesame oil
1/2 cup soy sauce
½ teaspoon sriracha sauce, optional
1/2 teaspoon minced fresh ginger
1/2 teaspoon minced scallion
1 teaspoon finely grated lime zest
1-1/2 lb. sushi-grade tuna (or salmon), cut into 3/4-inch dice (see note below)
2/3 cup shaved cucumber
1/2 cup thinly sliced radish, sugar snap peas, mango, avocado, or other desired fruit
1/4 cup sliced scallions
Toasted sesame seeds, optional

In a large bowl, whisk the oils, soy sauce, sriracha sauce, ginger, scallion, and zest. In a medium bowl, gently combine the tuna, cucumber, radish (or other mix-in), and scallions. Toss gently with 1/4 cup of the marinade. Serve immediately over white or brown rice, quinoa or farro. Top with toasted sesame seeds.

Note: Before you begin making the poke, put the raw fish in the freezer for about an hour to partially freeze it. You want the fish to be firm, but still soft enough to slice. The firmer texture allows for more sharply defined cuts.

Red Lentil and Chickpea Stew


Serves 6

2 tablespoons olive oil
1 teaspoon ground cumin
1/2 teaspoon crushed red pepper flakes
1 medium yellow onion, chopped
2 medium cloves garlic, minced
1 (15.5-ounce) can chickpeas, drained and rinsed
1 cup red lentils, rinsed
4 cups vegetable broth
Kosher salt and freshly ground black pepper
1/2 cup plain Greek yogurt
1 teaspoon finely grated lemon zest
2 tablespoons fresh lemon juice

Chopped fresh flat-leaf parsley, optional
Heat the oil in a 4-quart saucepan over medium-high heat. Add the cumin and pepper flakes and cook, stirring, for 1 minute. Add the onion and garlic, and cook, stirring often, until starting to soften, about 3 minutes. Add the chickpeas and lentils, and stir to coat. Add the broth, bring to a boil, reduce to a simmer, and cook until the lentils are tender and falling apart, 10 to 15 minutes. Season to taste with salt and pepper.
Meanwhile, combine the yogurt and lemon zest and juice in a small bowl. Season to taste with salt and pepper.
Serve the stew topped with a dollop of the yogurt and garnished with the parsley

Simple Za’atar Salmon


Serves 6
Can be cooked in the oven or over a hot grill on a cedar plant, as pictured.

2-½ – 3 pounds salmon (I like the tail end), skin removed
Juice of two lemons
3 tablespoons olive oil
1 tablespoon Za’atar spice (available at most grocery stores and Persian markets)
1 teaspoon kosher salt
¼ teaspoon ground black pepper
1 lemon sliced very thin

Rinse salmon and pat dry. Place salmon skin down on a low-sided pan, lined with foil. Preheat oven to 400°F. Drizzle olive oil and lemon juice over the salmon. Sprinkle Za’atar spice, salt and pepper over the salmon. Lay the lemon slices on top of the salmon. Bake for 20 minutes.

Salmon Schwarma with Peppers, Onions, and a Tahini Sauce


Serves 6

1 tablespoon ground coriander
1 tablespoon ground cumin
1 tablespoon chili powder
1 teaspoon smoked paprika
2 teaspoons grill seasoning, recommended brand Montreal OR sumac
Juice of 1 lemon
1 large cloves garlic, minced
6 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil, divided
2 lbs. salmon, cut into pieces of your choice or a whole side
1 large onion, sliced
1 red bell pepper, sliced
1 yellow bell pepper, sliced
Zest of 1 lemon
¼ teaspoon cumin
½ teaspoon kosher salt
¼ teaspoon black pepper

Sauce:
Juice from ½ lemon
1/4 cup tahini
1 1/2 cups Greek yogurt
Parsley or dill, optional
olive oil, kosher salt and pepper
Toasted pita, optional

In a bowl, combine the coriander, cumin, chili powder, paprika and grill seasoning. And the lemon juice, the garlic and 4 tablespoons oil and stir until it is paste-like. Place salmon on a large baking sheet. Slather the mixture all over the salmon until it is well-coated. Set aside for 15 minutes and up to 1 hour.

Preheat oven to 400°F. Bake for 20 minutes.

In a large skillet heat remaining 2 tablespoons oil over medium heat. Add the onions and peppers. Cook for 5 minutes until soft and slightly browned. Add lemon zest, cumin and season with salt and pepper. Cook for an additional 3 minutes.

Make the sauce: In a bowl, combine the juice of the remaining half lemon, the tahini, yogurt, some salt and pepper and a small drizzle of olive oil. Add parsley, if using. Mix to combine.

To assemble, atop a toasted pita, place some of the salmon. Top with some of the pepper and onion mixture, and a good dollop of the yogurt-tahini sauce

“Cook with Confidence” FREE Online Event

Pull up a chair. Take a taste. Come join us.
Life is so endlessly delicious.

– Ruth Reichl, food writer, editor “Gourmet Magazine”

I’m obsessed with cooking shows! My photo library and Instagram are filled with photos of exciting dishes that I’ve bookmarked to test and try? And I love learning from other chefs, readers, and experts in various fields. I’m so excited to share a project that will bring some of those experts right into your home.

Please join me for a FREE online event called “Cook with Confidence”. Tips, tricks and secrets from expert chefs, food bloggers, cooking teachers, and more to help you find inspiration, passion and success in the kitchen, created by my friend Lisa King. I’m the kosher expert, Click here to see the full array of experts.

My friend and colleague, Lisa King, has put together a delicious blend of chefs, food bloggers, bakers and nutritionists to share some of their best secrets. Armed with their tips, I guarantee you will quickly gain confidence in the kitchen!

I’m inviting you to participate as my guest in the entire Cook with Confidence event for FREE!
Register here

We will encourage you learn to love the process of cooking. Peeling, chopping, stirring, smelling, tasting and feeling – it’s an experience that is not only personally satisfying, but one that will fill your table with friends, family, light and love.

You will learn how to:

• Stock your pantry, depending on your eating style, for quick and easy meals;
• Make adjustments to a recipe when you don’t have all the ingredients
• Create healthy meal plans for your family to save time and money;
• Make amazing raw, vegan and paleo dishes
• Get inspired to create your own recipes

And so much more…

Click here to access “Cook with Confidence”

By the end of this event, you will have many of the tools you need to jump in, start dicing and chopping and Cook with confidence!

Send me feedback! Let me know your favorite shows and most of all, get inspired and feel the confidence that I know you possess!
Xoxo
Elizabeth

Roasted Carrot Hummos


Serves 8

1 pound carrots, peeled and cut into 1/2-inch pieces
2 cloves garlic, unpeeled
Extra-virgin olive oil
1 teaspoon ground cumin
1/2 teaspoon kosher salt
1/4 teaspoon ground black pepper
3 tablespoons tahini
1 tablespoon chopped fresh cilantro, plus 1 teaspoon for garnish
1 lemon, juiced

Preheat the oven to 400 degrees F.
On a baking sheet, toss the carrots and garlic cloves with 1 tablespoon olive oil and the cumin, salt and pepper. Roast until the carrots are tender and lightly caramelized, stirring halfway through, 20 to 25 minutes. Remove from the oven and let cool until warm. Peel the garlic cloves.
In a food processor, combine the roasted carrots and garlic with the tahini, cilantro, lemon juice and 5 tablespoons water. Pulse until smooth. With the processor running, slowly add 2 to 3 tablespoons olive oil. Transfer to a serving bowl. Make a small well in the center of the hummus and fill with olive oil. Sprinkle the remaining 1 teaspoon cilantro over the top. Serve with crudites and pita chips.

Tomato Dip


Makes 1 ½ cups

7 vine-ripe or plum tomatoes, about 2 lbs (quartered, stems removed)
5 cloves garlic, minced
1 ½ teaspoons Dijon mustard
¼ teaspoon black pepper
1 teaspoon kosher salt
1/4 cup canola oil
2 tablespoons sugar

In a food processor, blend all ingredients until smooth. Refrigerate until ready to serve.

Edamame Dip

Serves 10

4 large cloves garlic, un-peeled
16 ounces shelled edamame beans (about 2 cups)
1/2 teaspoon cayenne pepper
1/4 teaspoon ground cumin
Pinch salt and pepper
4 tablespoons olive oil
1/4 cup fresh lime juice (about 2 limes)
Zest of ½ lemon
1/4 cup finely chopped fresh cilantro
Pita chips, for dipping

In a medium skillet over medium heat, roast the garlic, turning frequently, until light brown, about 15 minutes. Remove from the heat, cool, and then slip off the skins. Set aside.

Bring about 8 cups of water to a boil in a saucepan and drop in the beans. Bring back to a boil and cook for 5 minutes. Reserve 3/4 cup of the cooking water before draining. Drain the beans and cool.

Transfer the garlic into a food processor and chop coarsely. Add the beans, cayenne pepper, cumin, salt, pepper and process in the food processor. Add the olive oil, lime juice, lemon zest and cilantro and pulse to combine. Add the reserved water a little at a time while processing until smooth (you may not need to add all of the water). Use pita chips for dipping.

Dips for BBQ Season

I’m getting started with summer entertaining. I always put out some chips, salsa, guacamole, and assorted dips for guests to enjoy. I have a plethora of choices and love getting feedback from my guests on which dips they like. My new favorite thing is to change up something old and make it tastier or healthier. The Roasted Carrot Hummus is a great example of that. Alter traditional hummus with roasted carrots and cumin. Edamame Dip is packed with soy protein and flavor. And Tomato Dip is just a family favorite! Happy Summer.

Edamame Dip
Tomato Dip
Roasted Carrot Hummos

Salmon With Orange Pistachio Sauce and Apricot Glaze

Serves 6

6 (5 – 6 ounces) salmon fillets
2 tablespoons chopped flat-leaf parsley
1 tablespoon plus 2 teaspoons fresh thyme leaves
1 tablespoon plus 1 teaspoon grated orange zest
1 cup shelled toasted and salted pistachios
3/4 cup extra-virgin olive oil
1 small clove garlic, peeled
1 tablespoon plus 1 cups fresh orange juice
2 tablespoons fresh lemon juice
1/4 cup sugar
2 tablespoons honey
1 cinnamon stick
9 small fresh apricots, halved and pitted or 18 canned apricot halves
1/2 cup plain Greek yogurt, optional for serving

Sprinkle the salmon with the parsley, 1 tablespoon of the thyme and 1 tablespoon of the orange zest. Wrap in plastic and refrigerate for at least 4 hours or overnight. Bring to room temperate before grilling.

Preheat the oven to 375°F.

In a food processor, pulse the nuts, 1/4 cup of the oil and the garlic until coarsely chopped. Transfer to a medium bowl. Stir in 1/4 cup of the oil, 1 tablespoon of the orange juice, the remaining 1 teaspoon orange zest and 1 tablespoon of the lemon juice. Season with salt.

In a medium saucepan, cook the remaining 1 cup orange juice and 1 tablespoon lemon juice, the sugar, honey and cinnamon over medium heat, stirring often, until syrupy, 15 minutes (reduce until slightly thicker, about 2 minutes more, if using canned apricots). Discard the cinnamon.

In a large ovenproof skillet, heat 2 tablespoons oil over medium-high. Cook the apricots, cut side down, until beginning to brown, 2 to 3 minutes. Sprinkle with thyme, salt and pepper. Remove from the heat; drizzle with the syrup. Transfer to the oven; bake until the apricots are tender and glazed, 10 to 15 minutes.

Preheat oven to 375°F. Brush the fish with the remaining 2 tablespoons oil. Season with salt and pepper. Bake until opaque in the center, about 12-15 minutes.

Top with the salmon, apricots and syrup, yogurt and pistachio sauce.

Shavuos Cooking

Tons of recipes perfect for Shavuos! Shavuos index here
Cheesecakes – SOOOO many to choose from.

Salmon With Orange Pistachio Sauce and Apricot Glaze
Salmon with Pistachio Pesto
Tuna and Fruit Ceviche
Salmon Baked in the Oven
Poached Salmon
Green Goddess Dressing
Tzatziki Sauce

I’m booking events for summer and fall. Email me to book a cooking demo, a Chopped Party, personal chef time, or private cooking lessons.

Tuna and Fruit Ceviche

Ceviche
⅔ cup finely diced watermelon
⅔ cup finely diced pear or apple
⅔ cup finely diced cherry tomatoes
¼ cup fresh mint, chopped
1 large shallot, finely diced
¼ lb. sushi grade tuna or salmon (or imitation crab), diced into small pieces
Edible flowers, optional

Dressing
1 lemon, juiced, about 2 tablespoons
1 teaspoon soy sauce
2 teaspoons honey
1 tablespoon canola oil
Kosher salt and pepper to taste
Spicy mayo to garnish, optional

In a medium sized bowl, gently toss the ceviche ingredients. In a separate bowl, whisk together dressing ingredients. Pour over ceviche and toss gently.

Serve ceviche with dressing in small dishes. If desired top with a drizzle of spicy mayo and an edible flower.

Serve in decorative small dishes or atop a gazpacho or chilled soup.

Salmon with Pistachio Pesto


Serves 4, can be doubled

Salmon can also be broiled, roasted, grilled or poached in this recipe.

1 large bunch flat-leaf parsley, stems removed
1/2 cup grated Parmesan cheese, optional
1/4 cup shelled pistachios, lightly toasted
5 – 6 tablespoons fresh lemon juice, divided
2 cloves garlic, crushed
½ teaspoon kosher salt
¼ teaspoon ground black pepper
¼ –1/3 cup extra-virgin olive oil
2 tablespoons butter or oil
4 (7 ounce) pieces salmon fillet

In a food processor, pulse the parsley, cheese, pistachios, 4 tablespoons lemon juice, garlic, salt and pepper until finely chopped. With the machine running, stream in the olive oil and process until a finely ground pesto forms.

Season the fish with a little salt and pepper. In a large nonstick skillet, heat butter/oil until hot. Add the fish and cook until browned on both sides and almost opaque but still a bit pink at the center, about 6 minutes. Drizzle with remaining 2 tablespoons lemon juice.

Serve salmon with pesto.

Getting Ready for Shavuos

Getting ready for Shavuos, some make-ahead salmon basics with sauces. I like both poached or baked salmon with flavorful sauces because they are easy to prepare and can and should be made ahead of time. They are great cold or at room temperature or even re-warmed properly (slowly and not for long).

Want to get a little more formal with what you serve? Try these Shavuos recipes or any of these fish specialties. And have course these Cheesecakes.

Salmon Baked in the Oven
Poached Salmon
Green Goddess Dressing
Tzatziki Sauce

Tzatziki Sauce

Makes 1 ½ cups

1 cup Greek yogurt
1 English cucumber, seeded, finely grated and drained
2 cloves garlic, finely minced
1 teaspoon lemon zest plus 1 ½ tablespoons fresh lemon juice
2 tablespoons chopped fresh dill
3 tablespoons chopped fresh mint
1 ½ tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil
Kosher salt and freshly cracked black pepper
Sprinkle with Z’aatar, optional

In a medium bowl, whisk together the yogurt, cucumber, garlic, lemon zest, lemon juice dill, mint, and olive oil. Season with salt and pepper and Z’aatar spice, if using. Chill. Make hours or a day or two ahead of time for flavors to blend. Store in the refrigerator.

Serve with poached salmon or baked salmon.

Green Goddess Dressing

Makes 2 cups

1 cup good mayonnaise
1 cup chopped scallions, white and green parts (6 to 7 scallions)
1 cup chopped basil leaves (18 to 20 leaves)
½ cup Italian parsley
1/4 cup freshly squeezed lemon juice
2 cloves garlic
2 teaspoons anchovy paste or 1 teaspoon Worcestshire sauce
2 teaspoons kosher salt (if using Worcestshire sauce, use 1 teaspoon salt)
1 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
1 cup sour cream
2 stalks celery, cut into sticks

For the dressing, place the mayonnaise, scallions, basil, parsley, lemon juice, garlic, anchovy paste or Worcestshire sauce, salt, and pepper in a blender and blend until smooth. Add the sour cream and process just until blended. Serve as a sauce for poached or cooked fish or as a dip. Best made a day or two ahead of time. Store in refrigerator.

Salmon Baked in the Oven

Ingredients:
1 to 3 pounds skin-on salmon fillets (8 ounces per person)
Olive oil
Salt
Pepper
Lemon wedges, to serve

Preheat oven to 425°F: Place a rack in the middle of oven. Line a roasting pan or baking sheet with foil.

Pat the salmon dry with a paper towel. Drizzle some oil over the top of each salmon — just enough to coat the salmon — and rub it over the salmon with your fingers. Sprinkle the salmon generously with salt and pepper.

Place the salmon in the roasting pan, skin-side down.

Roast for 4 to 6 minutes per half-inch thickness of salmon: Roasting time depends on the thickness of your salmon, as determined by the thickest part of the salmon fillet. For every half-inch of salmon, roast 4 to 6 minutes — 4 minutes will give you salmon that is still a touch rare, 6 – 8 minutes will thoroughly cook it.

Salmon is done when easily flaked.
Serve immediately with sauce or keep refrigerated for about 5 days, and can be gently reheated in the microwave or used cold.

Happy Mother’s Day


Happy Mother’s Day to the Best Mom’s in the World! I love my mom readers. You are terrific in every way. You not only work at being the best moms, wives, friends, sisters, daughters, aunts….but you also work so hard to prepare healthy, wholesome and delicious meals for everyone you love. Thank you for making my work meaningful.

A few of my favorite Mother’s Day posts. Enjoy!
Mom’s Day recipes from friends and bloggers
My Mom’s Rugelach – YUM! Great for Shavuos
My Mom’s Pancakes – Serious kids favorite any day
Salt and Herb Crusted Standing Rib Roast – Lots of moms voted its their favorite
Fruit Filled Ice

BBQ Season

My BBQ is finally open, two propane tanks are ready to go and I’m testing new recipes every night to get ready for an exciting summer teaching season. This week I’m mastering chicken cutlets with wonderful marinades, sides and sauces. I had to share these two winner recipes! (and of course more to come, like Kale Pesto BBQ’d Chicken, Roasted Garlic Marinade Grilled Chicken and more)

Traditional Mexican and California flavors come together in Mexi-Cali Grilled Chicken and Mexican Cabbage Slaw. Both are perfect bright and delicious spring dishes that are packed with flavor. Buy lots of in season avocados, tomatoes, and corn (if available in your area this early in the season) to serve alongside this terrific flavor profile. BBQ season is officially open 🙂

Recipes:
Mexican Cabbage Slaw
Mexi-Cali Grilled Chicken