By: Sharon Lurie
It’s Dreidel, donut, latke and oil time again.
I can’t help but think somebody must have overheard “oy the guilt” eating all this oily fried food and thought they said “oy the ‘gelt’ (money)” and started manufacturing foil covered chocolate coins which have now become common place at Chanukah time. All Jokes aside, we know the importance of Chanukah gelt which goes back generations, how can we forget, reminding our parents of this mitzvah!! We were all children once. Eight days of wonderful honey coloured fried foods, rich in flavour, delicious in taste, pleasing in texture, and leaving you feeling totally content!
COLD BEETROOT SOUP
The perfect cold summer soup with the added benefit of increasing blood flow to the muscles. The combination of beetroot and cucumber gives this soup a lovely refreshing taste. Served with boiled potatoes and a dash of extra cream makes for a lovely summer lunch.
1 x 750g grated pickled beetroot
1 English cucumber, peeled an roughly chopped
1 TBL honey
1 vegetable cube dissolved in ½ cup boiling water, set aside to cool
1 cup cream or non-dairy creamer (I used coconut cream)
6 – 8 mint leaves (optional, but lovely and fresh)
Couple of baby potatoes boiled until soft (serve with soup, hot or cold)
Blend all of the above ingredients (except potatoes) in a liquidiser, food processor, or hand blender. Blend until smooth or slightly textured.
We all know that salads are good for us, but they can get boring after a while. There are only so many times you want to eat the same old lettuce and veggies in your salad before it gets old. I hope these inspire you to create something a little different. However, let’s not forget that crunchy toppings add so much in the form of flavour and texture. Hopefully the Ying and Yang of these two salads will help you get those inspirational salad ideas back again.
RUBY ROSE SALAD
Before you start this salad, decide whether you’re going to chop or slice your fruit and veggies. Always keep the cabbage shredded (not chopped) and use it as the base of your salad.
300 – 400g shredded red cabbage
1 cup ruby grapefruit segments (pink flesh)
1 red plum finely sliced or chopped (optional)
½ red bell pepper, sliced or chopped
3 – 4 red radishes sliced or chopped
8 Strawberries sliced or chopped
1 Red onion, peeled, sliced or chopped
2 cups cubed watermelon (1cm x 1cm)
4 large strawberries blended with 1 cup Bobba Shar’s salad dressing.
Toasted almonds, sugared pecans, toasted pine nuts, dried cranberries, fried crispy onions, miniature bread croutons.
EDAMAME AND NECTAGREEN SALAD
Layer of fresh rocket
2 Israeli cucumbers (finely sliced)
Handful or two Edamame beans (shelled)
1 avocado pear – thinly sliced
couple of Snap peas
Nectarines (grilled to give them a sweet soft texture)
Handful of blueberries
1 packet ramen noodles crushed before cooking and sprinkled on top of salad raw or for that extra crunch you can brown them in a fat free pan. This is called dry frying. Sprinkle with 2 – 3 Tablespoons sesame seeds.
¼ cup Sesame oil
½ cup vegetable oil
2 TBLs Soy sauce
½ cup brown sugar
½ cup red wine vinegar
1 TBL vegetable soup mix
Combine all the above ingredients and shake in a glass jar.
CRISPY FRIED ONIONS
Of all the oily wonderful things I try to avoid during the year but indulge in on Chanukah has to be my fried onion rings! I can never make enough of these! As they come out of the frying pan, they’re already in somebody’s mouth. To keep them gluten free you can use potato flour instead of regular flour.
This recipe is for two large onions – you may have to quadruple the recipe they’re disappear so quickly !
2 large onions sliced into rings 1cm wide
½ cup cornflour
¼ cup all-purpose flour
¼ cup rice flour
1 tsp garlic salt
½ tsp paprika
½ cup ice cold water
Oil for frying
Combine flours with water, salt, and egg. The batter should have the consistency of thin pancake batter. Dip onion rings into flour and shake off excess flour and dip into batter. Heat oil over medium to high heat. Slowly immerse the onion rings into hot oil and deep fry until golden brown. They’re at their best when served immediately. You can keep them UNCOVERED in a preheated warm oven (60 -70°C) for about 30 minutes before serving. If you cover them they will use crunch and crispiness.
PULLED BEEF IN CRISPY TORTILLA
Chanukah , the festival where all things fried in oil are “good for you”. This tasty pulled beef, spooned into a crispy fried tortilla, filled with crunchy vegetables such as corn and cucumber, and covered with velvety smooth guacamole is a real texture experience.
1½ kg pickled brisket
1 bottle onion chutney
1 tsp crushed garlic
3 TBLs tomato PASTE
2 TBLs soft brown sugar
1 beef stock cube dissolved in 1 cup hot water
Wash the pickled brisket well and place into a crockpot. Combine the onion chutney, garlic and dissolved beef stock and pour over brisket. Cook on high for 4 hours then turn to low and cook for a further 4 hours. The meat should be soft enough to shred and pull apart with two forks. When ready to serve, fold the tortilla in half. Heat the oil and fry the tortilla in a deep frying pan on both sides until golden brown. Remove with a slotted spoon and drain on paper towel. Spoon meat into fried tortilla and serve with an assortment of corn, tomato, onion, fresh coriander, guacamole, and chilli.
SPICY BEEF, FLUFFY RICE AND CRISPY ONIONS
This combination of textures makes for a delicious meal. Heat level from the addition of chilli depends on your family’s taste. This recipe feeds four.
Little oil for frying
2 onions chopped
1 tsp crushed fresh garlic
1 tsp finely chopped chillies
1 sachet tomato paste
1 tsp sugar
1 beef stock cube dissolved in 1 cup boiling water
35g finely chopped fresh coriander
Salt and pepper to taste
Fry meat in oil over medium to high heat. When cooked through remove from heat and set aside. To the same pan add a little more oil and fry onions until lightly brown. Add garlic, chilli, tomato paste, sugar, and beef stock in water and mix until well combined. Add the mince back to the onion mix and cook through. Reduce the heat and simmer for 20 mins. Switch off heat the. Add the fresh coriander and stir well. Allow to sit and absorb all the flavours. Check for salt and pepper.
Serve with Fluffy Jasmine rice (cooked as per instructions on the packet) and crispy onions.
SWICY CHICKEN WINGS
So, what’s SWICY? It’s a combination of sweet and spicy.
18 chicken wings
3 hot red chillies – chopped
½ cup honey
1 tsp crushed garlic
3 TBLs sesame oil
2 TBLs soy sauce
¼ cup dhania chutney (Woolworths)
Pre heat oven to 200°C. Combine all the above sauce ingredients in a bowl and pour over the chicken wings. Mix well to ensure all then wings are coated. Place the wings onto a lined baking tray. Bake until golden brown and turn wings over to brown on the other side as well. Turn the oven temperature down to 140°C and continue to cook to ensure they are cooked through and dark golden brown in colour. Try to serve immediately or reduce heat to 60 – 70°C to keep them warm until serving. No too long, as you don’t want them to dry out.
SWEET IRREGULAR SHAPED DONUTS
When I make anything that’s meant to be perfectly round like a meatball or fish ball, I somehow make a point of not being too perfect, because too perfect doesn’t look homemade. Hence these delicious mouthfuls of irregular shaped donuts!
2½ cups flour
1 x 10g sachet yeast
1 TBL sugar
Pinch of salt
1 cup warm water
1 egg yolk
Oil for frying
Icing sugar for sifting on donuts.
Sift flour, add yeast, sugar, and salt. Make a well in the middle of the flour and add the lightly beaten egg yolk and warm water. Knead by hand until smooth. Allow to rise until double in size. Roll into balls ( a little smaller than a golf ball) and place onto a floured board. Cover and allow to rise for another about 30 – 40 minutes. Heat oil, over medium to high heat, in a medium sized deep pot. The oil should fill half way up the side of the pot as you want to deep fry the donuts. Fry until golden brown and remove with a slotted spoon. Drain on paper towel. Draw up 5ml of apricot jam and inject into the centre of the donut. Sprinkle with sifted icing sugar.
Cooking with the Kosher Butcher’s Wife
Celebrating with the Kosher Butcher’s Wife
A Taste of South Africa with the Kosher Butcher’s Wife
FOOD EDITOR – Jewish Life
RADIO PRESENTER – Chai FM
Bobba Shar’s Salad Dressing