Parshat Emor Inspiration:
“And you shall count for yourselves, from the morrow of the rest day (first day of Passover) from the day you bring the Omer as a wave offering, seven weeks; they shall be complete. Until the morrow of the seventh week (Shavuot) you shall count, fifty days; and you shall offer a new meal-offering to Hashem. From your dwelling you shall bring bread that shall be waved…”
It’s about counting the Omer. And then the Kohen waves the Omer offering and offers a burnt offering. And what else gets waved over a fire, and is a frequent treat on the 33rd day of the Omer, which occurs later in the coming week? In appreciation of the confluence of Parsha Emor and Lag B’Omer, I am making S’mores brownies.
Feel free to use your favorite brownies recipe or mix for this. Just make it according to the directions, begin baking it without any toppings, then remove from the oven with 6 minutes remaining on the timer and put the S’mores toppings on before returning it to the oven for the last few minutes.
- 6 oz semi-sweet or bittersweet chocolate, roughly chopped (sometimes I use chocolate chunks)
- 1 cup sugar
- ⅓ cup vegetable or avocado oil
- ¼ cup oat milk (or milk substitute of your choice)
- 2 eggs
- 1 tsp vanilla extract
- ¼ tsp salt
- ½ tsp baking powder
- ¼ cup cocoa powder, unsweetened
- 1 cup all-purpose flour
- 4-6 graham cracker sheets, broken into ½-1” pieces
- 1 cup mini marshmallows
- ½ cup chocolate chips
Heat the oven to 350° F. Prepare your favorite brownie baking pan (I use 9 x 3 but 9” square works too, just add about 8 minutes to the first baking time) by spraying with oil.
In a medium saucepan over medium-low heat, melt the chocolate. When the chocolate is beginning to melt, stir frequently to avoid burning.
When the chocolate is melted smooth, remove from the heat. Whisk in the sugar and oil. Then whisk in the oat milk, eggs, and vanilla. Then add the salt, baking powder and cocoa and whisk again. Finally add the flour and whisk well.
Pour into the prepared pan and spread evenly. Bake for about 16 minutes (or 23 minutes if using a 9” square pan), and remove the pan from the oven while not fully cooked.
While still hot, evenly distribute the graham cracker pieces over the brownies, gently pushing them upright into the brownies just slightly. Then distribute the mini marshmallows, and finally the chocolate chips. Gently push some marshmallows partially into the brownie batter so it sticks.
Return the still hot pan (use oven mitts!) to the oven for the final 5-6 minutes, until the marshmallows are brown on top and starting to puff. Remove from the oven to a cooling rack.
Parshat Behar inspiration:
“And you shall sanctify the fiftieth year and proclaim freedom throughout the land for all who live on it. It shall be a Jubilee for you, and you shall return, each man to his property, and you shall return, each man to his family.”
Cherries Jubilee seems the obvious classic recipe choice. The first time I attempted this I started with cherry pie filling and served it (after flambé, of course) over Trader Joe’s pareve vanilla ice cream. This time, however, I decided to make everything from scratch (almost), including the ice cream. But pareve vanilla ice cream is really difficult to make taste and feel good, and even harder without an ice cream churn … and I don’t have an ice cream churn. I finally decided on making an almond butter ice cream that can be made in a food processor, and it turned out to be incredibly easy and delicious. It is no wonder that almonds and cherries are a classic food pairing.
Start the ice cream in advance because it needs to freeze for at least 5 hours. This ice cream recipe makes 4-6 servings and is easy to double as necessary. The Cherries Jubilee recipe will easily top 8-12 ice creams.
no-churn ice cream
- 1½ cup almond milk
- 1 cup sugar
- 1 cup creamy almond butter (mixed well)
- 1 tsp salt (omit if your almond butter is salted)
- 2 tsp almond extract
- 1 tsp vanilla extract
Prepare a freezer-safe container. A glass bowl or a metal tin work well.
Place all ingredients in a food processor or blender and blend until the mixture is smooth and uniform.
Pour into your freezer-safe container, cover with plastic wrap or container lid, and freeze for at least 5 hours.
When ready to serve, remove from the freezer and let it sit for a couple minutes before scooping.
- ½ cup sugar
- 2 Tbsp cornstarch
- ¼ cup cold water
- ¼ cup orange juice
- 1 lbs. pitted sweet cherries (I used frozen)
- ¼ cup brandy (if you can get it … I used Benedictine this time, and rum last time)
Optional: sliced almonds, cocoa nibs, etc.
In a medium-size, wide saucepan, whisk together the sugar and cornstarch.
Add and stir in the water and orange juice and bring the mixture to a boil over medium-high heat, whisking until the mixture thickens.
Add in the cherries and gently stir as it returns to a boil. It may take several minutes if you are using frozen cherries, but once it finally returns to a complete boil, reduce the heat and simmer for 10 minutes, stirring occasionally.
Get ready to flambé safely (nothing flammable right above your space). Gather everyone around who wants to see this—but you need some elbow room, so not too close. Turn off the kitchen lights for ideal viewing conditions.
Remove the cherries from the heat. Gently pour in the liqueur on the cherries and ignite it with a long-handled lighter. There will be a large flame for a few seconds, and then a smaller blue flame will continue to burn for about 1-2 minutes. While the blue flame is burning, gently tip or shake the saucepan around slightly, exposing more of the cherries to the flame. The goal is to have the small blue flame burn for as long as possible, thereby reducing the raw alcohol flavor and caramelizing the sugars.
When ready to serve, scoop some cherries over bowls of almond butter ice cream, and top with almonds or cocoa nibs if desired. It is amazing warm, but still delicious after being stored in the refrigerator.
Follow me @EdibleParsha on Facebook to see each recipe on the Monday of each parsha week for plenty of time to prepare it for Shabbat!