Why is it that so many people have leftover cranberry sauce after Thanksgiving. I LOVE cranberry sauce. I can eat it by the spoonful. Is it just me?
Not really a fan of the traditional cranberry sauce recipes with a cup of sugar though. They’re too sweet for my taste, and I don’t want to mask the amazing tartness of the cranberries!
So I cook my cranberry sauce down in red wine, or pomegranate juice, or even apple cider, and I sweeten it with maple syrup or honey, to taste, and THAT, my friends, is how you make cranberry sauce that doesn’t get relegated to the back of the fridge with the tzimmes. IfyouknowwhatImean!
But IF, if you make bomb cranberry sauce and you still have some leftover – well then cranberry oat bars it is. And the pecans add just the perfect amount of buttery nuttiness to top it off for the perfect post-Thanksgiving breakfast.
I mean, how. GOOD. does. that. look?
You know you want it.
Happy Thanksgiving y’all!!
Cranberry Oat Bars
2 c all purpose flour
1 c almond flour (see note)
1 ½ c quick oats
1 c granulated sugar
1/4 c dark brown sugar
1 tsp baking powder
½ tsp kosher salt
1 cup flavorless oil
1 tsp pure vanilla extract
1/3 c chopped pecans
1 recipe maple cider cranberry sauce or mulled wine cranberry sauce
1. Preheat oven to 350°F.
2. In a mixing bowl, combine the flours, oats, sugars, baking powder and salt; whisk to incorporate. In a small bowl, combine egg, oil, and vanilla. Add the wet ingredients to the dry
ingredients, mixing until a dough forms.
3. Remove half of the mixture into a bowl and add the pecans. Reserve for topping. a
4. Press the remaining batter into a parchment lined quarter baking sheet or a 9×13 pan.
5. Spread cranberry sauce over the bars (if the sauce is watery, cook in a pot until thickened); top with pecan crumble.
6. Bake for 30 minutes or until browned. Cool completely; cut into squares.
VARIATION: use canned jellied cranberry sauce in place of homemade, or any jam of your choice.
NOTE: if you don’t have almond flour, you may use an additional cup of all purpose flour.
Thanksgiving 2020 is upon us and it’s looking different than usual. Many aren’t able to celebrate with family and the traditional Thanksgiving feast seems excessive for small groups and gatherings.
But it’s still Thanksgiving. And as hard as this year has been, just being here means there is what to be thankful for. Even if that means we don’t get to feast with family. Or we’re feasting over Zoom with a turkey sandwich.
So we adapt. And if 2020 has taught us anything, it’s how to do that. We do the best we can. One day at a time. We do with what we have. And who we have.
This year Thanksgiving might mean putting out a snacking board and playing a game of Kahoot over Zoom. And that is more than ok. We can all celebrate something. Somehow.
This board was inspired by Abeles & Heymann all new cabanossi that come in natural kosher casings in both regular and spicy flavors! The mini’s are super fun, just warm them up for a few minutes at 350 degrees to give that casing some extra snap!
Wishing you and yours a very festive and Happy Thanksgiving!
1.5 lbs. green beans
2 tbsp olive oil
Trader Joes everything but the leftovers seasoning, to taste
kosher salt, to taste
freshly ground black pepper, to taste
Preheat oven to 425 degrees. Spread green beans on a baking sheet and mix with olive oil and seasoning. Roast for 15 minutes.
Variation: use herbs de provence or dried herbs in place of Trader Joes spice.
Maple Cider Cranberry Sauce
1 12oz. bag fresh cranberries, rinsed
3 cinnamon sticks
3 strips orange zest
1 cup apple cider
1/2 cup maple syrup
Add cinnamon sticks, orange zest, peppercorns and cloves to a spice bag, or create your own using a piece of cheesecloth (just tie the corners together).
Place spice bag, cider and maple syrup in a saucepan and bring to a boil over medium heat. Remove spice bag. Add cranberries and return to a boil. Reduce heat and simmer for 10 minutes, until cranberries burst and the sauce thickens. Remove from heat and rest until completely cooled. Refrigerate until ready to serve.
Oh. Em. Gee. It’s been forever!!!! I can’t remember the last time I took such a long blogging break – I have missed you all!
Of course I haven’t disappeared entirely. If you follow me on Instagram, you’ve seen me traveling around the country on my book tour, and it’s been quite a journey. I’ve been fortunate enough to meet so many of you in person, to share my love of food, family and tradition to a range of audiences, and to be going into the third printing of Millennial Kosher with almost 20,000 copies sold! Pinch me!!
Thanksgiving is all about showing thanks and boy am I grateful. Grateful for this platform. Grateful to see my dreams come true and grateful that somethow, someway, in between all this running around, I still love what I do SO. VERY. MUCH.
Truth be told I hit a bit of a creative slump but I am back and I couldn’t be more excited about it!! This baklava pumpkin pie came to me along with a bunch of other exciting ideas that I can’t wait to share, and I am so glad I was able to get into the kitchen and behind the camera to share it with you all. I thought it might be too complicated to execute but I got so much amazing feedback on it and I’m so pleasantly surprised that y’all are ready to tackle layers and layers of buttered fillo dough – not the easiest feat!
I actually tested this recipe with melted coconut oil and I was so happy to see that I could avoid the dreaded margarine route while still keeping it pareve. Just make sure to go for refined coconut oil otherwise you’ll be left with baklava COCONUT pumpkin pie and no one wants that, amiright?!
The diagonal slits are probably the hardest part about this – and I watched a whole lot of YouTube videos until I figured it out – but you can feel free to make this a la the traditional route in a rectangular dish and forgo the difficulty.
Wishing you a delicious and Happy Thanksgiving. We truly have so much to be thankful for!
Baklava Pumpkin Pie
1 box fillo dough, thawed
1 cup melted butter, margarine or refined coconut oil
1 14.5oz can pumpkin (not pumpkin pie filling)
1/2 c brown sugar
1 tsp cinnamon
1/2 tsp salt
1/8 tsp cardamom
1/8 tsp nutmeg
1/8 tsp cloves
7 oz. pecans, chopped
1/4 c brown sugar
1/2 tsp cinnamon
1/2 tsp salt
1/2 cup maple syrup
1/4 c water
2 tbsp brown sugar
pinch of salt
Preheat oven to 350 degrees.
In a small bowl, combine the pumpkin filling. In a second bowl, combine the pecan filling.
Remove the fillo dough from the package and cut the stack into a square, the same width as your pie dish. Place a damp paper towel over the stack of dough as you assemble the baklava.
Grease the pie dish. Place the first sheet of fillo dough into the pie dish. Brush with butter. Repeat with 9 more layers, placing each one at a bit of an angle from the previous one. Top the 10th layer with half of the pumpkin mixture and top with half of the chopped pecan mixture.
Place another 6 sheets of fillo dough on top of the first layer of filling, buttering it between each layer. Spread another layer of pumpkin and pecans on top and repeat with 10 more layers of fillo, buttering between each sheet and placing each one at a bit of angle from the previous one (see photo).
Using a sharp knife, slice the baklava into diamonds shapes. Fold the fillo dough over itself around the pie, creating a crust.
Bake for 30-40 minutes, until browned and crisp.
While the baklava is baking, mix the maple syrup, brown sugar, water and salt in a small saucepan. Heat until the sugar dissolves and the mixture is thickened. Cool completely.
When the baklava comes out of the oven, drizzle the maple syrup over the pie.
For easier assembly, use a rectangular shaped dish instead of a pie dish.
I’ve been loving playing around with Instagram stories these days. It lets me post a step by step cooking tutorial and it’s just. so. fun! Last night I made Asian soup bowls with a richly flavored broth and a variety of vegetables for a make-you-own bowl dinner. I posted a play by play on my stories and the feedback was amazing!
I made these stuffed acorn squashes last Friday, using some of my leftover bacon-wrapped turkey from Thanksgiving. I posted a story as I made them and I got lots of requests for a formal written recipe. I managed a quick photoshoot, even though it was a hectic Friday and do I even need an explanation? I mean just look at these?!
I really love the idea of making this after Thanksgiving with some leftover turkey, but if you don’t have any, just leave it out and keep it vegan. With or without the turkey, this is a beautiful side dish that’s perfect for the fall, winter, holidays or just a weeknight cozy dinner. I put a poached egg over some leftover rice and lemme tell you….sooooo good!
Acorn Squash with Wild Rice Stuffing
3 acorn squashes
2 tbsp brown sugar
3 tbsp olive oil, divided
kosher salt and freshly ground pepper, to taste
1 medium red onion, peeled and diced small
2 stalks celery, diced small
10oz. cremini mushrooms, stems trimmed and sliced
1 box Near East long grain and wild rice pilaf, cooked according to package directions
1 3.5oz bag roasted chestnuts, roughly chopped
1 cup leftover diced turkey (optional)
1/2 cup vegetable stock (increase to 1 cup if using turkey)
1/3 cup dried cranberries
Heat the oven to 425 degrees. Cut the acorn squash in half lengthwise and remove the seeds. Place cut-side up on a baking sheet and drizzle with 2 tbsp of olive oil. Sprinkle brown sugar over the squash halves and season with salt and pepper. Roast until tender and caramelized around the edges, about 40 minutes.
Add the remaining olive oil to a saute pan and saute the onion and celery until deeply caramelized, about 10 minutes. Add the mushrooms, salt and pepper, and continue to saute until all the water evaporates and mushrooms caramelize. Add the rice, roasted chestnuts and diced turkey (if using) and stir to combine. Add the stock and cook the mixture until all the liquid is absorbed, stirring every few minutes. Add the dried cranberries.
Divide the rice stuffing among the roasted squash halves and serve.
VARIATION: I made this using some of my leftover kosher beef bacon-wrapped turkey, and I added some of the bacon to the dish as well. If you wish to do do so (it adds a nice smoky and crispy element), just crisp up your favorite variety and stir in the stuffing before serving (don’t add it during cooking or it will get soggy).
I’m proud to be an American. Really I am. (Politics aside!) But truth be told, I don’t celebrate Thanksgiving. Maybe it’s because, being Jewish, we’ve got our fill of holidays, and every Shabbat is practically a Thanksgiving meal in itself. The most we ever did growing up was make some deli turkey sandwiches and maybe pumpkin pie, but no feast and no big bird.
If I’m feeling festive, I’ll usually cook up some Thanksgiving-inspired recipes for the Shabbat before or after Thanksgiving. I make turkey London broil (half of a skinless boneless turkey breast), pumpkin pie, cranberry sauce and stuffing and call it a day. I love all the flavors of the holiday and each year, I try to put my own spin on a classic Thanksgiving recipe.
Last year, I had my very first Thanksgiving dinner experience, when my friend Melinda of kitchen-tested) invited my family over for the most lavish spread I’ve ever seen. And I’m Jewish. So when I say lavish. I mean LAVISH. Mel made the most adorable place settings with homemade tea biscuit cookie butter in personalized jars and a crazy good pie bar for dessert (I brought my Mexican hot chocolate pecan pie). This year, she invited us again (I’ve got my stretchy pants ready!) and when I was thinking about what to bring, I decided it had to involve the latest kosher obsession – speculoos, or Lotus caramelize biscuits and cookie butter spread.
You see, Mel had her first taste of the stuff at my house, and I think her eyes rolled back in her head when she licked the gingersnap-flavored butter off the spoon. Of course cookie butter had been around for years, but it’s been hard to get with kosher certification, so I had to resort to begging my friends and family to smuggle some in from Israel. (Just joking of course, it’s perfectly legal. Although maybe it shouldn’t be!).
But the kosher speculoos Gods heard our pleas, and pallets of the stuff have finally arrived at our shores and onto kosher supermarket shelves. No need to stock up on ten jars at a time anymore, they’ve become a staple! Three stores in my hood alone now carry the cookies and butter, as well as numerous stores around Brooklyn. I hope kosher supermarkets everywhere get in on the cookie butter dream too.
So! To celebrate the newly available jars of bliss, I’ve developed this super fun recipe for cookie butter pumpkin pie. Except it’s really a butternut squash pie, but pumpkin just sounds better. And isn’t butternut a pumpkin anyway?
Plus, haven’t you read the news that canned pumpkin isn’t actually pumpkin??!! I know, shocking right? So if they can call canned squash pumpkin, I sure as hell can too. At least I’m being honest, right?
So pumpkin, squash, whatever you decide to use, marries so beautifully with the cookie butter because it’s got that amazingly warm flavor that’s reminiscent of gingersnaps (my all time favorite) and cinnamon. Surprisingly, I’m not that into pumpkin spice flavors, so this is a great alternative. I love to eat it cold, with a dollop of coconut cream, for a decadent dessert. If only I had a fireplace to pair with it!
Don’t be intimidated by the fancy swirls, they’re super simple to make. Just spoon dollops of the cookie butter into your mouth…um…I mean…onto the pie, and then use a knife to swirl the dollops around. Don’t mix too much and don’t stick that knife too deep or you’ll mess with the crust. Ask me how I know.
So whether you celebrate Thanksgiving or not – give this decadent and original pumpkin pie a try. If you’re a fan of cookie butter, you’ll be sure to love it! (and If you’re not, who are you and what in the world is wrong with you?!)
Cookie Butter Pumpkin Pie
2 1/2 cups butternut squash or pumpkin purée (see note)
1/3 c brown sugar
2 tbsp maple syrup
1/4 cup full fat canned coconut milk
1/2 tsp cinnamon
1/8 tsp kosher salt
1/2 cup Lotus smooth cookie butter
1 pkg Lotus Biscoff cookies (250 grams)
1/2 c (1 stick) butter or margarine, melted and cooled
pinch of sea salt coconut whipped cream, for serving (optional)
Preheat oven to 350 degrees.
In a food processor or blender, blend the cookie biscuits to form crumbs. Pour in the melted butter, add the sea salt and blend until it starts to come together in clumps. Press the crust into the base and up the sides of a pie dish (it helps to smooth it out with the bottom of a measuring cup). Bake the crust for 10 minutes and set aside.
In a medium sized bowl, mix the squash puree, brown sugar, maple syrup, eggs, coconut milk, cinnamon and salt and whisk until smooth. If desired, puree with a hand blender to make it extra silky. Pour the mixture into the pie crust.
In a small pot, warm the cookie butter so it’s easier to work with (see tip). Place dollops of cookie butter around the pie and swirl with a knife. Bake for 30-40 minutes, until the pie is set and starting to brown around the edges. Cool and serve with coconut whipped cream and some melted cookie butter and/or crushed cookies. Alternatively, you may refrigerate the pie and serve cold (my preference).
NOTE: I’m not a big fan of pumpkin so I prefer to use squash in my pumpkin pie. Butternut and kabocha are my favorites. I roast my butternut squash to concentrate the flavors and make it even sweeter and more delicious, no peeling necessary!. To roast (you can do this with any squash), cut the squash in half lengthwise and place cut side down on a parchment lined baking sheet. Bake at 400 degrees until soft (it should pierce easily with a fork), about 30-45 minutes, depending on size. Remove the seeds and scoop the flesh out with a spoon. If you prefer to use frozen winter squash or canned pumpkin, add 1/4 cup of flour to the mixture.
TIP: To get the most cookie butter flavor, you’ll want dollops of cookie butter that don’t mix too much into the pumpkin. Heat the butter to make it easier to work with, but let it cool so that it’s not completely runny or else it will spread too much. Try not to overmix when swirling.
VARIATION: For a quick and easy version, bake the butternut squash without a crust, or use a frozen pie crust or graham cracker crust and drizzle with melted Lotus cookie butter.