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Shavuot Feature: Kugel and Blintzes Customary on Holiday Commemorating Torah

Shavuot, which is celebrated seven weeks after Passover, commemorates the receiving of the Torah by Moses on Mount Sinai.

It is customary to serve dairy foods, such as kugel and blintzes, during Shavuot.

But fat-conscious dieters need not fret, because favorite recipes can be modified to meet today’s nutritional standards without significantly affecting the basic recipe.

Eggless noodles, egg substitutes or egg whites, low or non-fat sour cream and cheeses, skim milk, cinnamon and vanilla as flavor enhancers and sugar substitutes can be used in the following recipes.

Noodle Kugel Bundt

1/4 cup melted butter or margarine

3/4 cup firmly packed brown sugar

1/2 cup coarsely chopped walnuts

4 eggs, beaten, or 1 cup egg substitute

1 tsp. cinnamon

1/2 cup sugar

1 cup non-fat yogurt

3/4 cup unsweetened applesauce

12 ozs. yolk-free noodles, cooked and drained

Pour melted butter into the bottom of a 12-cup bundt or tube pan. Sprinkle with brown sugar and nuts. In a large bowl, blend all ingredients, except noodles. Add drained noodles and mix well. Pour into pan, spreading evenly. Bake in a 350-degree oven for 1 hour or until lightly browned. Remove from oven, turn upside down on platter and serve.

Traditional Kugel

1 16-oz. package broad egg noodles

1/4 lb. butter or margarine, melted

1 cup sour cream

1 cup small curd cottage cheese, drained

4-6 eggs, lightly beaten, or 1 cup egg substitute

1/2 tsp. salt

1/4 tsp. white pepper

Cook noodles uncovered in boiling water for 7 minutes or until tender. Place in a colander and rinse with cold water to stop cooking action; drain well. Combine all ingredients until well-blended; do not overbeat. Add noodles and place in a well-oiled 9-inch x 13-inch casserole dish. Bake in a 350-degree oven for 45 minutes or until it feels firm and top is lightly browned.

Pineapple Upside-Down Kugel

1/4 cup margarine

canned sliced pineapple

maraschino cherries

brown sugar

walnut halves

2 eggs

1/4 cup vegetable oil

1/4 cup sugar

8 ozs. wide noodles, cooked and drained

Melt margarine in a cast iron or heavy 10-inch skillet. Place 1 slice of pineapple in the center with a cherry in the middle. Cut rest of slices in half and arrange these in a circle around the center slice like the spokes of a wheel, with the rounded edges facing the same way. Fill spaces with cherries and walnuts. Sprinkle with brown sugar. In a large bowl, beat eggs, sugar and oil. Stir in noodles. Pour into skillet and bake in a 350-degree oven for 40 to 50 minutes. Let stand for 5 minutes. Loosen sides and invert over serving dish.

Blintzes

3 eggs

1 1/2 cups water

1 cup flour

Beat all ingredients together with a rotary beater, blender or processor until smooth. Let rest several hours in the refrigerator or while making the filling.

Filling:

1 lb. dry cottage cheese or low-fat ricotta cheese

8 ozs. low-fat cream cheese

2 eggs

1 tsp. vanilla

1 Tbsp. sugar (more or less to taste)

low-fat sour cream or yogurt for serving

In mixing bowl, combine all ingredients except sour cream, beating until smooth.

Lightly oil or spray a 6- or 7-inch skillet and heat. Pour in just enough batter to coat thinly, tilting pan from side to side and pouring out excess. Cook on one side until batter loosens around sides of pan. Turn out, browned side up, on a tea towel. Repeat until all batter is used; add a bit more water if batter thickens. Place 1 Tbsp. filling on each pancake and fold up envelope style.

Refrigerate or freeze until ready to use. Just before serving, saute blintzes in butter, margarine or vegetable oil until brown on both sides, or bake in a well-oiled oven dish in a 375-degree oven for 35 minutes or until brown. Serve with sour cream or yogurt.

Blueberry Sauce for Blintzes

1 can blueberries, drained; reserve liquid

1 Tbsp. cornstarch

2 Tbsp. sugar

1 Tbsp. fresh lemon juice

Blend cornstarch and sugar in a small saucepan. Pour in blueberry liquid; stir and cook over low heat until clear. Add lemon juice and berries and heat through. Serve warm over hot blintzes and sour cream.

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