Passover Mondel Bread

Alternately spelled “mandel,” this recipe is for a traditional cookie also called Mandelbrot. Mandel bread is a Jewish baked good similar to biscotti in its crunchy consistency. They were popular with Askenazi Jews and rabbis in Eastern Europe due to it being durable and long lasting. There are variations including cinnamon, chocolate chips and nuts. Apparently in America there are more variations given the many culinary influences present. According to Wikipedia, it literally translates as “almond bread.”

The secret to this and biscotti is that they are baked twice to achieve the dry and crispy crunch.

Passover Mondel Bread

3/4 c oil

3/4 cup sugar (scant)

Beat well

Add 3 eggs

Add

2 tbsp potato starch

1/2 tsp salt

3/4 c cake flour

1/3 c matzo meal

1 tsp cinnamon

3/4 c chopped nuts

Vanilla

Refrigerate

375° 1/2 hoir

250°

(I really don’t know how long to bake them the second time)

Baked Matzo Rolls

Kicking off a series of recipes that were filed as either Passover or Jewish in one of the collections I acquired, here is a recipe for Baked Matzo Rolls. I’m going to be learning about these traditional foods because I am not Jewish and I didn’t have a lot of exposure to Jewish foods before this. One thing I learned right off the bat is that matzo meal – which this recipe calls for – is made from crispy matzo ground into a flour-like consistency. Matzo flour is specially made from wheat, spelt, barley, rye or oat and follows specific rules in processing. Crispy matzo is made from matzo flour; matzo meal is made from crispy matzo. From what I can tell, these will be a rounded roll. Many photos show an X-shaped cut across the top of the rolls but I don’t know if that is required.

Baked Matzo Rolls

Stir 1/2 c oil into 2 c Matzo meal. Add 2 c boiling water, 1 tsp salt.

Beat 5 eggs – add

Drop heaping tablespoon on cookie sheet. Bake about 30 minutes or until light brown

375º 30 min

Zucchini Platter

I don’t know how I feel about this salad recipe. I don’t love zucchini, but I don’t dislike it either. Usually it’s not what I think of when I picture a salad, but it could be good mixed with all the other ingredients. It’s a maybe for me. I feel more like it should be put in a jar and pickled first.

Zucchini Platter (salad)

Cut 5 or 6 zucchini lengthwise

Cook in small amount of salted water 3 min. Drain. Chill.

Combine 1/4 c sauterne wine, 1 envelope Italian dressing (mix) in a jar. Add 1/2 c oil, 1/4 c wine vinegar, 1/4 c sliced green onions, 3 Tbls sweet pickle relish, 2 Tbls parsley, cover & shake well.

Arrange Romaine leaves on platter. Alternate zucchini bundles, tomato slices and onion rings or green pepper rings. Pour dressing over.

Tostada Salad a la Idella

This reminds me a lot of a dinner I make at least once a month. We call it taco salad, and I omit the cheese, use impossible meat, and ranch dressing instead of French. It’s a favorite in my family. I’ll put my method below Idella’s. Whoever Idella was, people liked her recipe enough to ask for it. Must be good!

Tostada Salad a la Idella

Chop 1 onion, 4 tomatoes & 1 head of lettuce. Toss with 4 oz grated cheddar cheese & 8 oz French dressing. Hot sauce to taste. Crunch in 6 oz tortilla chips. Put in avocado slices. Brown 1 lb ground beef then add 1 can (15 oz) kidney beans drained & 1/4 t salt. Simmer 10 minutes & mix with cold salad.

 

Taco Salad a la Mrs Marvel

1 lb ground beef (or 12 oz impossible meat)

15 oz can refried beans

1 head iceberg lettuce chopped (or 2 bags of salad mix)

Small can black olives

1 small tomato quartered

1/4 c red onion, diced

Taco seasoning (or, 1 t each: paprika, cumin, garlic, chili powder, cilantro, onion)

Tortilla chips

4 T ranch dressing

Hot sauce

Cook the meat with the taco seasoning. While that is simmering, prepare the salad – mix together lettuce, black olives, onion & dressing. Microwave refried beans for 2 minutes. On plates or in shallow bowls, layer 6-10 tortilla chips, 1/3 cup refried beans, salad, then some meat. You can top with cheese if you eat that. Serve immediately with taco sauce/cholula/tapatio/whatever you like available. Makes 3 large or 4 medium servings

Caprese Salad

Hi there! I took a short break, hope you didn’t miss me too much. :-)

While this recipe has a long name – tomato, onion, fresh mozzarella and three-basil salad – this is a Caprese salad. Most recipes have variations – onions, capers, avocado… You can customize how you like it. Everything I have read says to use the freshest, most juicy tomatoes and fresh mozzarella – not the dry kind for shredding, but the wet kind for slicing. You can choose grape tomatoes, roma, whatever you like. Also, while the salad is prepared as a presentation in layers, you can easily toss it to make sure everyone gets a bit of everything.

Caprese Salad

3 pounds ripe tomatoes, room temperature, thickly sliced

1 medium red onion, very thinly sliced

1 cup fres basil leaves of any combination of sweet green, purple, lemon, cinnamon, Asian or chocolate, coarsely chopped, plus several sprigs for garnish

6 to 7 ounces fresh mozzarella, thickly sliced

1/4 to 1/3 cup extra-virgin olive oil

4 to 6 tablespoons balsamic or red wine vinegar

Salt

Freshly ground black pepper

Layer tomatoes, onion and chopped basil on a large platter. Top with mozzarella slices. Drizzle with oil and sprinkle with vinegar. Season to tase with salt & pepper. Garnish with sprigs of fresh basil. Makes 4 servings.