Month: April 2014

Dairy free Gluten free Creamed Spinach (not Paleo)

Wheat free * Dairy free * Gluten free * Vegetarian * Vegan * Parve


So many of my recipes are from childhood memories. My mom was a fantastic cook but not above using prepared foods (the potato pancakes I get the most compliments on are “my mother’s recipe” which meant buying a box of potato pancake with onions mix and then thinning them out with a little extra water so they cook up thin and crisp). “Her” creamed spinach was Seabrook Farms doctored up with plenty of garlic powder. Alas, Seabrook Farms went out the window when I discovered my “dairy problem” and I have been trying to get a good replacement for it for ages. My breakthrough moment came when I was feeling that my recipe tasted fine but was not creamy enough and so I stirred in the tofutti – voila – perfection! (more…)

Hidden Treasure Meatballs

Paleo* Gluten free *

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Sorry about not posting on Friday – I had a really hectic week, but these meatballs are so easy to make and taste so great I’m sure you’ll forgive me for slipping up.  This is one of the recipes I made for the 2nd seder last week (oh my goodness, has a whole week flown by already?).  When I was told the theme for the seder would be converso (Jews who converted to Christianity but continued to follow Jewish customs) I was determined to create a “hidden” element in the menu as well.  This was the recipe I came up with; it was inspired by a recipe in “A Drizzle of Honey: The Life and Recipes of Spain’s Secret Jews” by David M Gitlitz and Linda Kay Davidson.  I served them as written as an appetizer (1 meatball per serving) with a salad but you can serve 3 or 4 as an entree.  You can also make them smaller and serve them as cocktail meatballs.  In that case I would use only 1/2 date or 1/4 apricot in the center.  I used dates as my filling for the seder, but when I retested and tried the apricots I liked them even better.  You could probably use any variety of dried fruits or a whole assortment for the center surprise.

Oh yes, in addition to making 2 seders and a kosher for Passover meal for the lunch program I have been a little tied up with this or should I say him:


This is my newest family member the day I first saw him at the adoption event.  He was found in an abandoned building in Harlem.  He’s 10 weeks old and his name is…that’s a good question.  I always give my pets food names and the current front runner is Remy Martin, but still in the running is  Benjy Hana, Eggs Bennydict,  Harrycot Verte, CamenBert, Schnapps.  I’m accepting all suggestions.

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This is his first day in his new home.  And what does Bella think of all this?

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She thinks this is the best toy EVER!!!  He thinks she’s just kind of annoying.  He knows no fear considering she weighs 10 times as much as he does. (more…)

Passover Dinner

Circa 1980's

Circa 1980’s

Happy Passover.  No recipes today.  I am too bushed from last night’s seder (Passover dinner) and so busy with 2nd seder that I’m just giving you a recap of what I served at the 1st seder – you have all these recipes already.  My guests said it was the best meal they ever had ; )

Date and Pear Charoset


Chicken Soup with Matzoh Balls instead of Noodles (sorry no photo with matzoh balls)

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Roast Chicken


Wilted Cucumber Salad





Asparagus with Homemade Hollandaise Sauce


Chocolate Torte

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Best Ever Chocolate Torte: Gluten and Dairy Free (not Paleo)

Wheat free * Dairy free * Gluten free * Vegetarian * Parve * Passover

  chocolate torte 106

This is my to-die-for Passover dessert.  It is dense and rich with a close-your-eyes-when-you-eat-it deliciousness.  So rich that when I have leftover cake (which is rarely) I cut it into small pieces and roll the pieces in unsweetened cocoa or chocolate sprinkles and serve them as truffles.

I got this recipe (sort of) as the result of a good deed, so it’s appropriate that it is the best chocolate torte I ever tasted.  Here’s what happened.  Every year I host a break fast for friends and family.  I found out there were 3 people I didn’t know, who had nowhere to go, so I invited them to join us.  In walked one of the unknowns and he brought a chocolate torte he had baked.  When I tasted it first I swooned and then I begged for the recipe.  It was a flourless chocolate torte (making it gluten-free) that he found in Gourmet Magazine (Nov. 1999) and then played with.  I have played with it even more to convert it to dairy-free.  I should let you know that this cake is soooo rich that I’ve had one of these small cakes serve 20 people, but I usually do serve multiple desserts.  I think you can easily serve 12 or 8 real chocoholics. (more…)