I never like to break my fast on meat or chicken, but I still like something comforting and filling after a whole day without food. Potatoes - particularly mashed potatoes - are the ultimate comfort food, and this version, dressed up with caramelized leeks and a hint of garlic, are a perfect choice. Make sure to cook the leeks low and slow over gentle heat, so they caramelize instead of just browning. Only add the garlic in the last couple minutes since it burns quickly and only needs a quick time to cook.
This year as most years, the days before Rosh HaShanah found Kim Kushner, the cookbook author, private chef and recipe developer, perched in the kitchen of the Montreal home where she grew up. Her mother still reigns there, turning out the seemingly endless lunches and dinners of a multi-day holiday and yet somehow, still finding time to tutor a neighbor on the intricacies of a holiday dish.
Pomegranates are both a beautiful, symbolic food for the upcoming Rosh HaShanah holiday, the Jewish New Year, and a traditional Persian ingredient. So I thought they would be a perfect pairing in a rice dish - a staple in Persian households - spiced with classic Persian seasonings. Turmeric, cumin and cinnamon are all ingredients in adwiya, the classic Persian spice mix.
In the world of food trends, this has always been true: just like your mom’s bellbottom jeans, which once seemed so dated but which experienced a resurgence in popularity in the ‘90s, dishes once considered passé have come back with a vengeance: think of fondue (currently on the menu at the popular Manhattan restaurant ABC Cocina); the classic cocktail craze that’s sweeping the entire nation and pickles.
Throughout history, entire communities of Jews became "lost" through forced conversions or gradual assimilation. However, in many cases their descendants passed down (more or less secretly) special rules, rituals, names or, most deliciously, recipes, that distinguished them from the surrounding populations.
Ras el Hanout is not new – but the kosher versions are. A spice blend that is one of the culinary treasures of North Africa, its very name invites you to try it -- translated from Arabic, the words literally mean “top of the shelf.”
People have weird associations with cauliflower. I was at a Shabbat dinner a few weeks ago when a man was trying to remember the name for cauliflower, and he turned to his wife and said: "you know, white broccoli?" Of course, cauliflower tastes nothing like broccoli, and is actually one of my favorite vegetables for its heartiness and versatility.