In the Kitchen with Christina

Battle of the Blintzes: Sweet vs. Savory (A Shavuot Story)

(Left Sweet Blintz: mascarpone and cream cheese filling topped with raspberry pomegranate reduction sauce. Right Savory Blintz: spiced goat and ricotta cheese topped with spicy onion jam.)

Ingredients:

Batter (8-12 crepes)
4 eggs
2 cups milk
2 cups sifted flour
1 tsp vanilla extract
1/2 tsp salt
2 tbsp melted butter or ghee for frying

Sweet Filling (4-6 fillings)                      Sweet Topping (Pomegranate Raspberry Reduction)
12 oz mascarpone cheese                      4 cups pomegranate juice
4 oz cream cheese, softened                  1 cup pomegranate seeds
(or ricotta cheese if you prefer)                2 (12oz) bags frozen (unthawed)
1/3 cup sugar                                          1/4 cup sugar
1 tsp lemon juice                                     1/2 cup honey (optional)
1 tsp vanilla extract
1 egg yolk
Pinch of salt

Savory filling (4-6 fillings)                     Savory Topping (Spicy Onion Jam)
12 oz goat cheese, softened                   2-3 medium yellow onions, thinly sliced (about 3 cups)
4 oz ricotta cheese                                  1/2 stick butter (4tbsp)
1 tsp lemon juice                                     1 tbsp olive oil
1 egg yolk                                                1/2 tsp sea salt
1/4 tsp of salt                                           2 tbsp light brown sugar
1/2 tsp black pepper                                 3 tbsp red wine vinegar
1/4 tsp garlic powder                               1/2 tbsp crushed red pepper flakes
1/2 tsp crushed red pepper flakes             1/2 tsp garlic powder

Batter Prep

1. Prepare the batter: Sift the flour, salt and sugar and set aside.

2. Whisk the eggs and slowly add the milk and melted butter, mixing until smooth.

3. Add the flour and whisk it in. Cover and set aside to rest for 10-15 minutes. The batter should have the consistency of pouring cream – if it’s too thin add a little more flour – about 2 tablespoons.

4. Heat a teaspoon of butter in a non stick pan until just foaming. Pour some batter into the pan and swirl it around so it coats the whole bottom of the pan. Cook until bubbles form on top and the edges start to brown and curl. Put the crepe on a plate lined with kitchen towel.

5. Repeat until you use up all the batter adding extra butter on the pan if needed (I found that once was enough).

Two Fillings (Sweet and Savory)

1. Making two separate batches (one sweet and one savory) by combining all the ingredients and mixing them until smooth. Use a hand mixer on medium speed for a minute or two to get the desired consistency.  

2. Put in the fridge while you prepare the batter.

Raspberry Pomegranate Reduction Sauce for Sweet Blintz (pictured left)

  1. Bring juice to boil in heavy large saucepan. 
  2. Reduce heat; simmer until reduced to 1 cup, about 35 minutes. 
  3. Mix in raspberries and sugar. Simmer until reduced to 3 cups, stirring frequently, about 20 minutes. 
  4. Mix in honey; bring to simmer. Cool slightly. Cover; chill until cold. Can be made 1 day ahead; keep refrigerated.

Spicy Onion Jam for Savory Blintz (pictured right)

  1. Add butter and olive oil to a large skillet and heat over a low flame. 
  2. Add onions and salt and cook, stirring occasionally, until softened and translucent, 15-20 minutes. If onions begin to dry out, add a tablespoon of water.
  3. Add sugar, stir to dissolve, and add vinegar, salt, pepper, & crushed pepper flakes.
  4. Continue cooking over low heat, stirring occasionally, until onions are pasty and caramelized, about 15 min.
  5. Onion jam can be stored in the fridge in an airtight container for up to one week.

How to make the blintz!

  1. To make the blintze, take a crêpe, cooked side up, and place a 2 tablespoons of filling near the edge closest to you.
  2. Fold the bottom edge over to cover the filling then fold the sides in. 
  3. Roll the bottom of the blintze over and set aside. 
  4. Repeat with rest of the crêpes.
  5. Heat a teaspoon of butter or ghee in the pan. 
  6. Once it’s hot, place 4 blintzes, seam side down, on the pan and cook a couple a minutes on each side until golden.
  7. Serve warm, drizzled with either the pomegranate raspberry sauce or the onion jam.

Tell us which one you loved best by sharing a photo of your blintz-periment on Facebook or Instagram. #tamidnyc #tamidlovesyou

 

Multi-Colored Matzo Ball Mania – A Soup for Passover

Ingredients (Makes 12-16 servings)

3 cups matzo meal (separated into 1 cup portions)       12 eggs
12 tbsp vegetable oil                                                      12 tbsp water
3 tsp salt                                                                          3 tsp black pepper
3 large chicken breast cut into small cubes/pieces        12 cups of chicken stock (bought or
2 small cooked beets pureed                                           homemade however you want to do it)
2 cups baby spinach pureed                                             2 tsp turmeric
1 tbsp garlic powder                                                         1 tbsp onion powder
1 tbsp kosher salt                                                              Fresh dill (optional)

Instructions

  1. Using three medium sized bowls – combine 1 cup matzo meal, 4 eggs, 4 tbsp vegetable oil, 4 tbsp water, 1 tsp salt, 1 tsp black pepper to create the matzo ball mixture.

2.  Add pureed beets to one bowl, pureed spinach to the second bowl, and 2 tsp turmeric to the third bowl.

3.  Thoroughly mix ingredients to make sure matzo meal and coloring ingredient are evenly incorporated into the batter.

4.  Cover each bowl with plastic wrap (with the plastic wrap touching the top of the batter) and place in the refrigerator for 20 minutes.

5.  While matzo batter is in the refrigerator, put a large stock pot on the stove, add 12 cups of chicken stock to pot, 1 tbsp kosher salt, 1 tbsp garlic powder, 1 tbsp onion powder, and bouquet of fresh dill (optional).

6.  Bring chicken stock to a boil.

7.  Add cubes of chicken breast to stock and allow to cook for 10-20 minutes. Once chicken is cooked through keep the stock pot on low heat until the matzo balls are ready to be cooked.

8.  Take the matzo batter out of the refrigerator. Using a soup spoon, take a portion of the mixture and make a small ball (about the size of a pingpong ball – which will get larger when cooked).

9.  Make all of the matzo balls before putting them in the chicken stock.

10.  Bring the stock pot back up to a rolling boil and carefully add the matzo balls to the chicken stock.

11.  The matzo balls should cook in a low rolling boil for 10-15 minutes with the lid on the pot. If the liquid begins to boil over, lower the heat and keep the lid on the pot.

12.  Once the matzo balls have all risen to the top of the pot and cooked for 10-15 minutes, serve your multi-colored matzo ball mania soup! Enjoy!

 


Tu B’Shevat Seven Species Spiced Chicken & Couscous

Ingredients (Makes 6-8 servings)
2 onions, chopped                        2 tbsp olive oil
1 tsp cinnamon                             1 tsp paprika
1 tsp ground ginger                       12 drum sticks or 2 whole chickens, cut into eighths
½ cup flour                                    1 cup kalamata olives
1 cup dried whole figs                    1 cup dried whole dates (pitted)
½ cup white wine vinegar               1 cup pomegranate juice
1 cup barley                                    2.5 cups chicken stock
½ cup almond slivers (optional)      Salt & pepper to taste

Couscous (to serve with chicken)

Instructions
1. In a large pot sauté onions in olive oil until translucent.

2. Stir in cinnamon, ground ginger, and paprika.

3. In a separate bowl, toss chicken in flour until lightly coated, then add chicken to pot and brown on all sides.
(This may need to be done in shifts, depending on the size of your pot.)

4. Return all chicken pieces to the pot and add the remaining ingredients: kalamata olives, figs, dates, white wine vinegar, pomegranate juice, barley, chicken stock, almond slivers (optional), salt and pepper to taste.

5. Make sure that the chicken pieces are covered with liquid to ensure they cook through.

6. Cover pot and cook on a medium-high flame for 45-60 minutes, until chicken pieces are cooked through, stirring occasionally to loosen barley from bottom of the pot.

7. Make couscous according to package instructions and serve Seven Species Spiced Chicken on a bed of couscous. Enjoy!

 


Hanukkah Latkes


Ingredients (Makes 20-25 Latkes)

5 pounds of golden potatoes (peeled, grated,
soaked in ice water bath until ready to mix)
1.5 cups vegetable oil
5 eggs (lightly beaten)
2 tsp Black pepper
1 tbsp Kosher salt
2 small onions (finely chopped)
2 tsp garlic powder
2 tsp onion powder
½ tsp paprika

Instructions

  1. Wash, peel, and grate all potatoes (put in an ice cold water bath in the large mixing bowl as you grate them to keep them from turning brown).
  2. Finely chop the two onions and add to the ice bath with the potatoes.
  3. Let the potatoes and onions sit in the cold bath for 10 minutes after the last potato is peeled.
  4. Drain potatoes of the water, by squeezing handfuls of grated potatoes and putting them on the pan lined with a kitchen towel and paper towels.
  5. Spread the grated potatoes evenly over the paper towels and roll like a jelly roll, to pull as much liquid out of the potatoes as possible.

6. While potatoes are wrapped in the towel/paper towels, lightly beat together eggs, pepper, salt, paprika, salt, garlic powder, and onion powder in the large mixing bowl.

7. Unroll the potatoes and carefully put them into the mixing bowl with the egg mixture, making sure to mix everything together fully so that all the potatoes are covered in the egg mixture.

8. On the stove, put vegetable oil (at least 1.5 inches of vegetable oil) into the skillet and turn the heat on high to fully heat the oil. Wait a few minutes until the oil is hot to put the first latke in to fry.

9. Take a ¼ cup of potato mixture and press into a patty, squeezing extra liquid out of the patty. The patty should be about the size of your palm and about ½ inch thick.

10. Carefully place latkes into hot oil (I usually only put about 5 in the skillet at a time so that they have room to cook and can be flipped easily)

11. Lower the heat to medium to have an even cooking temperature

12. Let latkes cook for about 3 minutes (or until they start to turn golden brown on the bottom). Carefully flip each latke to the other side and cook for 2-3 minutes (or until golden brown).

13. Remove latkes from skillet and place on a layer of paper towels to drain some of the oil.

14. Once all of the latkes are cooked, serve with sour cream and applesauce! Enjoy!