April 20, 2024
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Linking Northern and Central NJ, Bronx, Manhattan, Westchester and CT

Great Recipes from “Temptations – The Keter Torah Cookbook”

I love to cook, I also love to read about food. I am constantly surfing the web for new recipe ideas, reading food blogs on-line, and skimming magazines that feature food and recipes. But I most enjoy reading cookbooks, often enjoying them as my nighttime reading. But not all my reading leads to actual cooking. Many times the recipes seem too complicated, too familiar, or just unappealing! So when Chana Potash, one of the editors of the cookbook Temptations, the Keter Torah cookbook, asked me to review it, I was hesitant. What if I didn’t like any of the recipes?!  What would I write then? However, immediately upon glancing through the cookbook, I was sure I would find many recipes to enjoy.

I love the elegant, clear type, and the clear, detailed directions. The recipes offer unique and appealing twists on familiar foods, and use common ingredients that I have on hand in my pantry. I was excited to try out some dairy ideas to liven up the upcoming nine days, when we do not eat any meat products. The recipes I tried were easy to make and enjoyed by my family. I am sure I will be making them frequently! Of course, like all seasoned cooks, I did tweak each recipe to match my family’s style. I will note my tweaks in parenthesis.

Refreshing Mango Soup

1 chopped mango

1 cup plain yogurt

3 cups orange juice (I used 1 cup orange juice and 2 cups pineapple juice)

2 Tablespoons honey

1 ripe banana

1 teaspoon vanilla

Puree all ingredients to desired consistency using an immersion or standard blender.

Baked Salmon With Mustard Crumb Sauce

2 tablespoons and 1 teaspoon white vinegar

2 tablespoons sugar

2 tablespoons Dijon mustard

1½ teaspoons dry mustard

1/3 cup oil

4 salmon fillets

Thyme, salt and pepper to taste

1 cup panko

Preheat oven to 375, lightly grease a 9 x 13 baking pan.

Place vinegar, sugar and mustards in blender. With machine running, slowly pour in oil and blend until medium-thick sauce forms.

Arrange salmon in dish, skin side down. Season with thyme, salt and pepper.Spread 1 tablespoon mustard sauce over each fillet, covering completely.  Press panko onto fish.

Bake about 15 to 18 minutes until cooked through and crumb topping is crisp and golden brown. Serve with remaining mustard sauce on the side. (We like our fish well done; I cooked it about 25 minutes.)

Spinach Lasagna

1 pound lasagna noodles

10 ounces frozen chopped spinach

24 to 36 ounces marinara sauce

10 ounces shredded mozzarella cheese, divided

1 pound ricotta cheese

Nutmeg, oregano, garlic powder and salt and pepper to taste

¾ cup water

Preheat oven to 425 F

Defrost frozen spinach, drain and squeeze dry.

Combine spinach, ricotta cheese, 8 ounces of the mozzarella cheese and spices in a large bowl.

Spread a thin layer of marinara sauce in the bottom of a 9 x 13 inch pan. Place uncooked lasagna noodles in a single layer, overlapping if necessary, on the sauce. Top noodles with one third of the cheese mixture. Spread sauce over cheese. Repeat layering cheese and sauce for a total of three noodle layers. Sprinkle remaining mozzarella cheese on top. (I had about ¼ box of lasagna noodles leftover!)

Pour water around the edges of the lasagna noodles. Cover pan tightly with aluminum foil and bake for 1 hour and 15 minutes. Remove lasagna from the oven and keep covered an additional 15 minutes before unwrapping and serving.

By Chavie Hagler

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