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PASSOVER FEATURE (1) Adjusting daily recipes to create tasty seder meals

BAYSIDE, Wis., March 8 (JTA) — Passover marks the exodus of the Jews from Egypt more than 3,000 years ago. Celebrated for eight days, it always begins at sundown followed by a seder dinner. Your seder menu can have a balanced mix of traditional as well as contemporary selections.
Adapting a recipe for Passover use:

INSTEAD OF: SUBSTITUTE:
bread crumbs Matzah meal
graham cracker pie shell Passover cookie or cake crumbs; matzah meal, coconut
flour or cornstarch
for thickening gravy use half the amount of potato starch
1 cup flour 5/8 cup potato starch, matzah cake meal or combination of both
1 teaspoon baking powder Passover baking powder
1-ounce square baking chocolate 2 tablespoons cocoa plus 1 tablespoon vegetable oil; Passover chocolate
flavoring extracts Passover extracts, lemon and orange juice Passover brandy
1 cup confectioners” sugar 1 cup granulated sugar, pulverized in a blender and sifted together with 1/2 teaspoon potato starch
1 cup light cream 7/8 cup milk plus 2 tablespoons melted butter — for cooking only
1 cup heavy cream 3/4 cup milk plus 1/3 cup melted butter — for cooking only, not whipping
alcoholic beverages comparable Passover variety, fruit juices or bullion, depending on type of recipe

STUFFED BRISKET

1 lb. brisket
2-3 tablespoons vegetable oil
2 garlic cloves, minced
6 scallions, sliced thin
1 10-oz. pkg. frozen chopped spinach, thawed; pour boiling water over spinach in colander, then squeeze dry
1 egg
1 cup matzah farfel
8 oz. mushrooms, sliced
6 carrots; dice 2 into 1/4-inch dice; slice 4 into 1/4-inch slices
2 large onions, sliced
1 cup dry red wine
1 cup beef or chicken stock
« teaspoon thyme
1 bay leaf
salt and pepper to taste Ask the butcher to cut a pocket horizontally along one side of brisket, (fat side up) leaving 1/2-inch border around three sides. Ask also for some butcher twine. Saute garlic in vegetable oil. Add scallions and saute 2 more minutes. Remove from pan and place in a bowl. Add spinach, egg, farfel, salt and pepper and mix well. Add oil to pan; saute mushrooms over moderate heat until all liquid has evaporated. Spread half the spinach inside the pocket of the brisket. Add half the diced carrots. Then add cooled mushrooms and remaining carrots and finish with spinach. Tie up brisket in all directions. Broil brisket on both sides until nicely browned, about 5 minutes. Remove meat from broiler pan rack and pour off all fat. Spread bottom of pan with sliced round carrots and onions. Pour wine, stock, thyme, bay leaf over vegetables. Place brisket on top. Cover tightly with heavy foil and place in a 325-degree oven. Roast for 3-3 1/2 hours or until fork tender. Allow meat to rest 20 minutes before slicing. Strain vegetables out of cooking liquid, reserving liquid. Puree the vegetables in a processor or blender until gets thick. Add 3/4 of the cooking liquid to it and whisk together. Place in a saucepan, adding salt and pepper to taste, and more stock if a thinner sauce is desired. Reheat; serve sauce separately. Slice meat across the grain.

ZUCCHINI CREOLE

10 medium zucchini, sliced in 1/2-inch chunks
1/3 cup vegetable oil
2 large onions, minced
2 green peppers, chopped
1/2 lb. fresh mushrooms, sliced
1 clove garlic, minced
2 green onions, snipped
1 1/2 cups canned tomatoes, drained
salt and pepper to taste
1/2 cup sugar
3 drops Worcestershire sauce Saute the first 7 ingredients in a frying pan for 15 minutes, stirring. Add remaining ingredients; cook 10 minutes more. Prepare ahead of time and reheat if desired. Serves eight.

SALMON PASTA

12 oz. Passover noodles, cooked
1 14.5-oz can salmon (or see note below)
1 medium onion, chopped
1 small green, red or yellow pepper, chopped
1 clove minced garlic
2 tablespoons olive oil
2 14-oz. cans whole peeled tomatoes
1 teaspoon oregano
salt and pepper to taste; pinch of salt
grated cheese of choice
In skillet, combine oil, onion, pepper and garlic. Saute until vegetables are tender. Add tomatoes, oregano, sugar, salt and pepper; bring to a boil for 1 minute. Reduce heat and simmer for 10 minutes. Add drained and chunked salmon to sauce and heat through. Serve warm over the noodles. Top with grated cheese. Note: If using fresh salmon (4 oz. fillets), bring 1 quart water and 1/4 cup white wine to boil in a skillet. Add salmon; cover and simmer about 5 minutes until done. Using slotted spatula, remove fillets and place on top of noodles. Garnish with sprigs of fresh parsley.

VEGETABLE QUICHE

2 tablespoons vegetable oil
1 onion, chopped
1 red pepper, cored, seeded and chopped
3/4 lb. mushrooms, sliced
2 large eggs and 2 large egg whites
1 1/2 cups nonfat cottage cheese
1/2 cup plain yogurt
1/4 cup potato starch
1/2 cup grated Parmesan cheese
1/4 teaspoon cayenne pepper
1/2 teaspoon salt; 1/4 cup freshly ground pepper
1/2 lb. broccoli florets cut very small (about 1 cup)
« cup grated sharp cheese of choice
1/4 cup snipped scallions
Spray a 10-inch pie plate with non-stick spray. In a large skillet, heat 1 teaspoon of oil over medium-high heat. Add onions and pepper; cook until softened, about 5 minutes. Transfer to a mixing bowl. Add remaining oil to the skillet and heat over high heat, adding mushrooms, cooking until most of their liquid has evaporated. Add to onion mixture. In a food processor or blender, blend eggs, egg whites, cottage cheese, yogurt, potato starch, Parmesan, peppers and salt; mix into vegetables. Stir in broccoli, sharp cheese and scallions. Pour into pie plate and bake in a 350-degree oven for 40-50 minutes or until a knife inserted in center comes out clean. Let stand for 5 minutes before serving. Makes six servings.

PASSOVER SACHER TORTE

6 ounces semisweet chocolate, grated
1/2 cup sugar
1/2 cup butter
6 egg yolks
3/4 cup matzah meal or finely grated matzah
1/4 cup finely ground almonds
1/4 teaspoon salt
7 egg whites
1 cup apricot jam or preserves
In a large mixing bowl cream butter and sugar. Beat in 1 egg yolk at a time until mixture is light and fluffy. Add the grated chocolate, matzah meal, almonds and salt. In another bowl, beat egg whites until stiff but not dry. Fold into the chocolate mixture. Spoon into an ungreased removable rim or spring-form pan. Bake in a 325-degree oven for 50-60 minutes. Cool on a rack. Remove from pan and slice torte horizontally through the middle. Make sure the top has a flat surface. Place jam or preserves between the layers. Cover the cake with chocolate glaze.

CHOCOLATE GLAZE

6-7 oz. semisweet chocolate
1 tablespoon margarine or butter
1 cup sugar
1/3 cup water
Place chocolate and margarine in a double boiler over boiling water and melt. Cook sugar and water to the thread stage (230 degrees). Pour this syrup slowly into chocolate, stirring constantly until mixture coats the back of the spoon. Pour the glaze over the torte.

CHOCOLATE DELIGHTS
1 1/4 cups powdered sugar (pulverized regular sugar in a blender as a substitute, if neccessary)
1/4 cup unsweetened cocoa powder
2 level teaspoons potato starch
1/8 teaspoon salt
2 egg whites (at room temperature)
1/2 teaspoon flavoring of choice
1/2 cup pecans, toasted and chopped
1/2 cup chocolate chips
Line a large baking sheet with aluminum foil and lightly coat with non-stick cooking spray. In a bowl, sift 3/4 cup sugar, cocoa, potato starch and salt. With an electric mixer, beat egg whites until foamy. Add remaining sugar and flavoring; beat until soft peaks form. Add cocoa mixture; beat 1 minute or until blended. Stir in pecans and chocolate chips. Let stand 30 minutes. Wtih a tablespoon drop mixture onto prepared cookie sheet, spacing 18 cookies 1-inch apart. Bake in a 325-degree oven for 15 minutes. Remove to rack and let cool 10 minutes. Remove cookies from sheet to rack to cool. Cookies are fragile but delicious.

NUT TORTE

8 large eggs, separated
1 1/4 cups sugar
2 cups ground hazelnuts or walnuts
1/2 teaspoon instant coffee granules
1 tablespoon matzah meal
2 tablespoons orange juice
In a bowl, using an electric beater, beat egg yolks until thick. Add sugar gradually and beat until light in color. Stir in the nuts, coffee granules, matzah meal and orange juice. Mix well. In a separate bowl, beat the egg whites until stiff, but not dry. Fold 1/4 of the egg whites into the nut mixture to lighten, then stir in the remaining egg whites carefully, but thoroughly. Spray the bottom of a 9-inch springform pan with non-stick spray and dust lightly with a teaspoon of matzah meal — or use parchment paper and spray again. Spoon the batter into the pan. Bake in a 350-degree oven for 40 minutes or until a tester comes out clean. Cool and then carefully remove the side of the springform pan. If desired cake may be split in half and filled and covered with non-dairy whipped cream.

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