High Holidays Feature (2): Light Dishes, Prepared Ahead, Help Ease Breaking of the Fast
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High Holidays Feature (2): Light Dishes, Prepared Ahead, Help Ease Breaking of the Fast

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By tradition all preparation for the break the fast meal is completed on the preceding day.

Any of these main dish salads, light but filling, can be prepared one day ahead and can be enjoyed with left over slices of honey cake.

Grapes Delight

2 pounds seedless red and green grapes, stems removed

1 1/2 cups honey

3/4 cup brandy

2 tablespoons fresh lemon juice

Mix honey, brandy and lemon juice in a small bowl. Pour over grapes in a large bowl and toss. Refrigerate covered overnight.

Whipped topping can be dolloped over each serving if desired.

Hummus with Toasted Pita Crisps

4 garlic cloves

1 teaspoon salt

2 cans chick peas, drained and rinsed

2/3 cup tahini, well stirred

1/4 cup fresh lemon juice

1/2 cup olive oil, or less, to taste

1/4 cup fresh parsley leaves

2 tablespoons pine nuts, toasted lightly (optional)

1/2 cup water toasted pita thins (see recipe below)

In a processor puree garlic, salt, chick peas, tahini, lemon juice, 1/4 cup of the oil and 1/2 cup water. Scrape down the sides, until the hummus is smooth.

Add salt to taste, and additional water for the desired consistency. Place in bowl or container and refrigerate.

In a clean bowl, process 1/4 cup oil with the parsley until the oil is bright green and the parsley is minced. Transfer the parsley oil to a small jar, cover and chill. Prepare 2 to 3 days before needed.

To serve, spread hummus on shallow dishes and smooth the tops. Drizzle with parsley oil and sprinkle with pine nuts. Spoon hummus on toasted pita thins.

Toasted Pita Thins

pita breads, cut in halves with tops separated from bottoms

2/3 cup olive oil

Brush the rough side of each round lightly with some of the oil. Cut into triangles.

Bake in one layer in jelly-roll pans in a 375-degree oven for 10 minutes or until golden brown. When cool, store in airtight container for 1 to 2 weeks.

Cantonese Chicken and Noodle Salad

1 2 1/2 pound roasted chicken, skinned, boned and shredded

1 pound linguine

2 bunches green onions, sliced fresh cilantro (optional)

3/4 pound snow peas, stringed, thinly sliced lengthwise

1 head of cabbage

Salad Dressing

1/2 cup soy sauce

1/4 cup peanut butter

1/4 cup rice vinegar

1/4 cup oriental sesame oil

1 tablespoon sugar

Combine dressing ingredients in processor; blend until smooth.

In a saucepan cook snow peas in boiling salt water for one minute until just tender. Rinse with cold water and drain.

Cook linguine in large pot of salted water until just tender but still firm to bite. Rinse with cold water. Drain well. Transfer to large bowl.

Add sesame oil. Toss to blend. Stir in chicken and onions, and cilantro if desired. Pour dressing over the salad and mix to blend well.

Can be prepared one day ahead. Cover and refrigerate.

Line a large platter with Napa cabbage leaves. Mound salad over and serve. Makes 8 to 10 servings.

Tabbouleh and Lamb Salad

1 1/2 cups bulgur

2 cups boiling water

1 15-16 oz. can chick peas, drained and rinsed

3 large tomatoes, seeded, chopped

1 1/2 cups fresh parsley

1 bunch green onions, chopped

3/4 cup fresh lemon juice

1/4 cup chopped fresh mint (or 1 to 2 teaspoons dried)

1/2 cup olive oil

1 1/2-2 pounds round bone shoulder lamb chops salt and pepper to taste

1 large head romaine lettuce, leaves separated

Place bulgur in a large bowl. Add boiling water. Let stand for one hour. Drain well. Transfer to another large bowl. Stir chick peas, tomatoes, parsley, green onions, lemon juice, mint and oil into bulgur. Season to taste with salt and pepper.

Brush lamb chops with a little olive oil and sprinkle with salt and pepper. Broil until medium (pink), about 7 to 8 minutes on each side. Transfer to dish and cool.

Cut lamb into 1/3-inch squares. Discard bones. Stir lamb into salad.

Line large bowl with romaine lettuce. Fill with salad and serve. Makes 8 to 10 servings.

Honey Coconut Bars

1 cup sifted cake flour

1/8 teaspoon salt

1/8 teaspoon baking soda

scant 3/4 cup sugar

1/2 teaspoon ground nutmeg

1/4 cup melted margarine or butter (1/2 stick)

1/4 cup honey

2 large egg whites

1 tablespoon milk

In a mixing bowl, combine flour, salt, soda, sugar and nutmeg.

In another smaller bowl, stir together margarine, honey, egg whites and milk. Mix well, but do not overbeat. Stir in coconut.

Pour into an 8 x 8-inch square pan that is well oiled, waxpaper lined and lightly oiled again.

Bake in a 350-degree oven for 35 minutes or until top is firm when pressed lightly with fingers.

Turn out onto a rack and immediately remove waxed paper.

Cut into squares or bars. Cool. Store airtight.

If cake flour is not available, remove 2 tablespoons from the cup of flour and add 2 tablespoons cornstarch.

The flavor of these bars improves with age.

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