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Smoky Kale & Farro Salad with Balsamic Fig Dressing

Thursday, March 8th, 2018

I’ve been trying to eat healthy lately – less snacking, more wholesome meals with lots of greens. It hasn’t been easy!

Maybe it’s because I get bored of salads. How many times can you eat lettuce with cucumbers and tomatoes, you know? I mean of course there are a million directions you can go in with salad, but who has the time? Most days I’m lucky if I get to scarf down anything while I’m running from here to there – so I come home famished and eat whatever I can find. I haven’t been making the best choices.

With my manuscript deadline just a few weeks away, I’ve been so stressed, barely sleeping and not taking care of myself. It all came to a head when I came down with the worst case of the flu the other week, that literally had me wanting to check into a hospital. I never knew the flu could be so bad, but I also knew that my body wasn’t doing the best job at getting better because I hadn’t been taking care of myself. It was a real wake up call for me to start taking my vitamins, getting more sleep, and eating better. I lost 10 lbs. over those two grueling weeks, but I gained a fresh start. It was like a clean slate for me, a chance to start over and live with intention.

I may not have done a Whole30, but I definitely felt a mind shift and I’ve been going with the flow. Working more salad into my meals, moving more and drinking more water. I feel so much better and as crazy as it is – I’m so thankful that I had such a bad case of the flu, because it put me in a better place.

Now lets talk about this salad. Salads like these make me want to eat all the greens! I love the balance of smoky, salty, chewy, tart, and sweet! And the balsamic fig dressing is such a winner, you’ll want to start stocking your fridge with it all the time.

A salad that actually makes you want to eat salad – so much yes!!!

Related Recipes:

kale, pear and kabocha squash salad with maple dijon dressing
kale persimmon salad
farro grain bowl

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Falafeltaschen Board

Sunday, February 25th, 2018

I can’t honestly believe that Purim is just a couple of days away! Which means Pesach is just a month away. And then Shavuos is just a couple of weeks after that. And do you know what happens then? By that time I should be holding my own. actual. cookbook. in. my. hands. Ahhhhh!!!!!

Cookbook, cookbook, cookbook. It is the air that I breathe these days! It is my breakfast, lunch and supper. The thing I think of when I get up in the morning and when I go to bed at night (and all the hours in between). It’s what has me crying from stress and happiness at the same time. It. is. real. and it. is. happening.

I have a newfound appreciation for cookbook authors the world over. I think they all deserve a gold medal for the tedious process of developing, testing, retesting and retesting recipe after recipe until they all start to look the same. I think they deserve the biggest honor for the amount of hours poured over every word and the amount of thought that goes into every page.

I have the greatest respect for food stylists and photographers and photo editors who make the perfect crease in a napkin, get the lighting and shadows just so, and finish the photos with the perfect finesse.

And as I wind down to the finish line and wrap up my recipes, my photos, my very heart and soul that I put into this book….I’m forced to stop. Take a deep breath. Because life around me is still living, and the kids need costumes, and shalach manos and….PURIM. I celebrate you with honor and this fabulous FALAFELTASCHEN BOARD that doesn’t need much introduction. I’ll let the photos do the talking.

Happy Purim!

Related Recipes:

corndog hamantaschen
sushi hamantaschen
baklava hamantaschen
date and almond hamantaschen
healthy thumbprint hamantaschen

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Poke Bowls

Thursday, January 25th, 2018

Move over sushi salad, poke bowls are in the house! The Hawaiian raw fish dish has become a popular food trend and poke’ bars are popping over all over the place! I recently had a delicious make-your-own-bowl at Bravo Kosher Pizza in New York City and I’ve been wanting to recreate it ever since.

There’s nothing not to love about this light, fresh, quick and easy bowl of goodness, unless of course you don’t like raw fish! In that case, go ahead and use some mock crab (kani), or add some flaked cooked salmon. The possibilities are endless, so make it your own.

Related Recipes:

sushi burrito
sushi salad
tuna sashimi with herbed crema
kani salad

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Salami Potato Latkes

Thursday, December 7th, 2017

If there’s anything my blog is known for, it’s probably my drunken hasselback salami. Clearly people like the stuff. They like to hang it, they like to dry it, and man do they like to eat it!

If I’m ever in need of a fun recipe idea, I can just stick salami in there somewhere and chances are, it will go viral. My salami babka from last year was such a hit that Abeles & Heymann decided to print it on their actual packaging and, come on, how many of you have NOT tried the hasselback version, even the stores are selling it now! What is it with Jews and salami?

Well, I don’t know, but I’ll tell you this – I’m knee deep in cookbook editing and when I realized that Chanukah was just a few days away, I knew I had to come up with a latke recipe, and pronto. I’ve always got A&H salami in the fridge, and when I opened the door for some inspiration, it hit me. Why not add it to my potato latkes for some seriously salty delicious flavor? I decided to try grating it in my food processor so I could incorporate the salami in fully, and it processed really well! The result is a super fun take on a traditional latke that you will truly enjoy.

Unlike other traditional Jewish foods, I find that people are really purists about their latkes. They don’t want to sub sweet potatoes for potatoes, they’re not interested in the healthier baked versions, no. They want crispy, fried potato latkes that leave your fingers all greasy and your house and clothes smelling like Chanukah.

So here’s the thing: these latkes are a fun twist on the traditional, but they still respect the humble potato latke and they taste pretty classic too, except for some hints of salami.

And if you’re wondering why there’s a carrot in my frying pan, it’s the most brilliant frying hack ever! Somehow the carrot soaks up all the gunk in the oil and it keeps your oil clean throughout frying. You must give it a try!

Happy Chanukah and of course, happy frying!

This post is sponsored by Abeles & Heymann.
Follow them on Facebook, Instagram or Twitter

Other Latke Recipes:

sabich latkes
falafel latkes
poutine latkes
confetti latkes with harissa sour cream
butternut squash latkes
cheese latkes with raspberry sauce

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Greek Salad with Feta Croutons

Wednesday, November 29th, 2017

Well hello there everyone! It seems like forever since I’ve actually blogged a new recipe here on BIB! I’ve been in full on cookbook mode these passed few weeks and I couldn’t be more excited about how things are moving along!

I was so nervous about how I’d be able to juggle the cookbook, social media posting, messages and blogging but somehow it’s been working. Blogging has definitely taken a back seat, and for the first time in six years of blogging, I’ve starting skipping a week or two here and there. There was a time I thought everything would come crashing down if I didn’t post every. single. week. but lo and behold, the blog is still here and everyone is alive and well.

The truth is, it was hard getting back into it but I couldn’t let Chanukah go by without a few special recipes. I mean, it really is my favorite holiday and as many of you now, it’s both my birthday and Anniversary as well! Chanukah is my favorite time to fry up something crazy, make something Greek and go all out in the dairy department, and I’ve combined all three in this awesome salad!

Most of you have eaten Greek salad about a million times in your life, but you’ve probably never tried tried frying the feta into croutons. Yes! I said FRYING THE FETA INTO CROUTONS! How awesome, right?? At first I wasn’t even sure if it would work but a Chanukah miracle happened (early) and the feta fried up beautifully! It was also my first time using Trader Joes cholov yisroel feta which apparently has been a hidden treasure for the past several years, and OMG is it decadent. It’s crazy salty (which I kinda love), but oh so smooth and it also slices so, so nicely without crumbling. The breadcrumbs really help cut through all that saltiness, and with a forkful of veggies, it’s the perfect little bite.

It’s funny because I was never really much of a feta person, probably because I never had really good feta, so Greek salad wasn’t really on my list of faves. It might also have to do with the fact that I’m not a fan of goat or sheep milk products, and most feta is made with sheep milk. I’m so crazy sensitive to the taste, that I can tell if my butcher used the meat grinder to grind lamb before he ground the beef, because I can taste even the slightest hint of it. And it’s so, so sheepy. I mean, I’m no picky eater but I just. can’t. swallow it.

What’s crazy is, I decided to give the Trader Joe’s sheep’s milk feta a try because so many people told me it was the best feta they ever ate (it’s imported from Israel after all), and even though it had the absolute, most slightest hint of sheep, I was able to tolerate – and even enjoy – it.

So, if you can find Trader Joes best kept secret, go grab a package for this awesome recipe, or use your favorite brand. This post is not sponsored by TJ’s, although how amazing would that be, right?

Related Recipes:

spinach pappardelle with feta and fried poached egg
harissa whipped feta with za’atar eggplant chips
summer tomato feta salad
roasted eggplant parmesan with feta

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Salmon En Croute with Creamed Leeks

Wednesday, September 13th, 2017

Salmon en croute is one of my favorite dishes to serve for the holidays. It plates up beautifully, it’s so festive and it’s a winning dish all around! I mean who doesn’t love anything wrapped in buttery, flaky dough, amiright?

I usually go with a simple mustard and brown sugar mixture over the salmon, but I decided to take things up a notch using some of the traditional symbolic foods of the holiday, like honey and leeks. I love that you can incorporate more of those foods into the plated dish as well, and I went with pomegranate seeds and chioggia beets, ‘cuz could you just look at them?

Just call this Simanim Salmon En Croute ‘cuz it’s not only tasty, but so fitting in every way. And if you need a recap on the symoblic foods of the holiday, read this. I’ve also got a handy simanim recipe roundup from a couple of years back and then of course there are my other great simanim dishes like this couscous, this angel hair pasta, this beautiful appetizer and this holiday salad.

Growing up, Rosh Hashanah was a serious holiday and we always kept things intimate with just the family and a simple, traditional holiday meal. It’s that one time of the year to really focus on self introspection and prayer and I like to follow suite without complicating my menu. I don’t go all out with a bunch of different salads and desserts – I just keep my meal well-rounded with an appetizer (round challah with honey, fish and salad), entree (meat or chicken, tzimmes and roasted vegetables, beautifully plated) and a slice of honey cake with caramelized apples to finish the meal. Then I wrap things up and open my tehillim, because there is oh so much to pray for.

I find that there’s no need to overdo your menu when you learn to serve composed dishes that complement each other. Sometimes, when you make too much food, the beauty and flavor gets lost because there is just too much to go around. When I was in culinary school, my teacher gave the example of a woman wearing a simple pearl necklace versus someone who in dripping in lots of (too much) jewelry. Which one makes a better statement? Sometimes clean and simple is the better way to go.

Related Recipes:

smashed potatoes with leeks
simanim fritto misto
honey fig roasted salmon
honey mustard salmon

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Asian Lettuce Wraps

Thursday, June 29th, 2017

Summer has officially begun! Last week, we made the 3  hour trek to the Catskills in Upstate New York where we spend our summer. I’m more of a city gal myself, but the city heat is unbearable, so I welcome the cool mountain air, rolling hills, grass and trees (something we majorly lack in Brooklyn)! The ten weeks we spend here fill my kids with vitality like a tank fills with gas. The long summer days spent carefree in the the outdoors are life’s best medicine, and I’m so thankful I get to give it to them.

As for me, some of my best memories are the ones I spent in the bungalow colony as a child. I love waking up to the smell of the mountains, and when I sit outside sipping my coffee and listening to the birds sing their song, it’s like pure heaven. But I can do without the endless laundry (they change like four times a day!), constant meals (all the swimming and biking makes them ravenous), and not seeing my husband the whole week (someone’s got to pay for all the food and laundry detergent we go through lol!).

I’m not really sure how much I’ll be able to keep up my blogging from here. I didn’t bring any props with me and I’m keeping things simple in the kitchen. But I did bring my camera and I loved the challenge of putting together a summer recipe without all of my fancy ingredients and food styling stuff. It’s also a learning experience working with different natural light, so I was happy to prepare these simple summer wraps and blog about them. Otherwise, I’ll be keeping things light around here, and probably blogging a lot less than usual. But I hope you’ll all be taking a break too!

Wishing you a light, healthy and refreshing summer!

Related Recipes:

quinoa pad thai
curried chicken lettuce wraps

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Lasagna Roll-Up Blintzes

Thursday, May 18th, 2017

I don’t know about you, but the only thing that keeps me from making blintzes on Shavuot is the crepe-making. The rest of the process is fairly easy, and I don’t even mind the light frying. But those crepes, man they are hard to nail down.

My mom so hates the crepe-making process that she’s been ordering her crepes ready-made from a caterer for years. Instead, she puts her attention on delicious homemade fillings – creamy potato with deeply caramelized onions and sweet cheese with an apricot sauce for dipping. I’m getting hungry just thinking about it!

I’m all for finding the easier way around dishes and this lasagna roll-up blintz hack is no exception! I love me some savory lasagna roll-ups, filled with spinach-flecked creamy ricotta and oozing with cheesy mozzarella, so why not go sweet, amIright? Dredging the sweet-filled pasta sheets in Corn Flake crumbs and frying them really takes it over the top, and I’m one happy crepe-free Momma.

What I really love about these decadent Shavuot treats is that they truly resemble blintzes, and if you want to stay away from the fryer, just go ahead and serve them up without the breading. You can add some chopped nuts for texture, and of course the requisite sour cream and strawberry sauce. Cuz blintzes without sour cream are a sad, sad thing.

Those of you that have been following my diet journey over on Instagram know that I’ve been staying away from delicious carby treats like these for the past couple of weeks, so I had to send them straight out of the house as soon as I was done making them. I don’t have the willpower to say no to a piping hot plate of sweet, crunchy, cheesy pasta rolls, do you? If your answer is yes, please tell me your secret ‘cuz I’m gonna need it come the cheesecake holiday.

We’re pretty low key when it comes to dairy in my house – I only serve it once a week, and it’s usually pizza, mac ‘n cheese or baked ziti. But Shavuot? Shavuot is the time for cheesy French onion soup, 4-cheese lasagna, a cheese board of your dreams, and of course plenty of cheesecake and blintzes. And lets not forget the dairy ice cream either. G-d help me survive this decadent holiday!

I’m thinking I’ll have to have some healthy options at the table too. Like these cheesy stuffed mini peppers, this three-cheese rollatini rose pie, the most amazing kid-friendly broccoli poppers, plus these cutesy roasted eggplant parmesan starters.

Now if we’re talking the decadent part of the meal, obv we have these insane roll-ups, which will be an amazing side to my caramelized peach and gouda quesadillas and 3-cheese broccoli pull-apart buns for the kids.  I’m thinking goat cheese ice cream for dessert, and definitely my Torah cannoli, ‘cuz that’s what the holiday is all about – stuffing our face with cheese and the giving of the Torah.

I’m pretty stoked to be hosting my mom for the first time this year – she’s usually the one who hosts, so I better get my menu planned. Stay tuned, I’ll share it with you soon. In the meantime, have a look at the Index for some inspiration!

Lets get rollin’!

Related Recipes:

spinach lasagna roll-ups
how to build a crepe bar
parmesan lasagna chips with pizza hummus
quick and easy lasagna

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Fruit Salad with Basil Honey Lime Dressing

Thursday, April 6th, 2017

To me, Passover, or Pesach, is all about tradition. I’ve never actually hosted the holiday in my own home, but I imagine that when I do, I’ll be making the same foods that my mother always made.

I have fond memories of my mom’s Passover ratatouille, mock chopped liver, beet salad and cucumber salad all neatly arranged in mason jars on the door of the fridge. She always had big jars of simple syrup on the counter, which she used to sweeten everything from chicken to fish, meat and nuts. Towards the second days, when everyone had enough of the heavy meals, she always diced up a huge fruit salad in our giant glass Pyrex. And she doused it in simple syrup too.

The simple syrup didn’t bother me, especially as a kid, because the fruit tasted like candy. But the bananas – they just threw the whole thing off. There were never really rules to what went into the fruit salad – it was whatever was leftover around the house – but it almost always had melon, kiwi, sliced bananas, walnuts, and oranges.

There was always someone in the house who was walking around scratching their throat from one of the fruits – probably the kiwi, and I think it was usually my sister. But we still ate it – bananas, oranges and all – and we sipped up all those sweet drippings from the bottom of the bowl like they were liquid gold. Ah, Passover memories.

While everyone is busy preparing trays of Passover brownies, whipping up macaroons and fancy pavlovas – I’m here to say that it’s really just about the tradition. Fruit salad may be simple, but it’s what my Momma always made, and it’s what I plan to make when I host Passover in my home in the coming years.

For this recipe, I’ve done away with all the fruits that I picked out of my Mom’s fruit salad – the awful mushy bananas, pithy oranges, and throat-scratching kiwi’s. Instead, I used melons, mangos, plums and nectarines, and fancied it up with a basil honey lime dressing (a lot healthier and more flavorful than the simple syrup of my youth!). Feel free to adjust this salad to your liking – adding more lime juice for extra tartness, or more honey for extra sweetness. And you can also switch up the herbs with some fresh mint instead of basil, if you so desire. Don’t forget to top it off with some coconut whipped cream and chopped nuts to really take it over the top!

Wishing you and your loved ones a very fruitful and happy Passover!

Other Passover Desserts:

marzipan apple crisp
nutella banana ice cream
chocolate ganache tart with macaroon crust
raspberry sorbet

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Perfect for Pesach Giveaway

Thursday, March 30th, 2017

It’s different when you see a new cookbook on the shelf that you’ve never heard of before, and when you’ve actually watch that baby grow from the very beginning. You see, Naomi Nachman is a good friend, and with her friendly and outgoing personality, anyone that meets her (or follows her on social media @naominachman!) feels the same. Naomi has been open about her cookbook journey from the very beginning, and I was lucky enough to spend a day getting a behind-the-scenes look at some of the recipe development and food photography for this book. I even tested some of the recipes in the book for Naomi so it’s hard to be biased! Instead, I’m just going to share about the book, rather than reviewing it, because honestly, do you all really need my critique here?

Perfect for Pesach is exactly what it sounds like – perfect. for. Pesach. Except the recipes really work for all year round – especially for those of us who eat mostly gluten free, and those who honor strict Pesach customs that don’t allow us to use any store bought processed ingredients. I love that the book has a range of healthy and indulgent recipes, from how to make zoodles and cauliflower fried rice, to pastrami meatballs (recipe below) and fudgy chocolate bundt cake. Looking at the beautiful photography (thanks to the talented Miriam Pascal of overtimecook) it’s hard to believe that these recipes are truly kosher for Passover (hello lemon curd trifles)!

If you’re going to want to buy a Pesach cookbook, it should probably be from someone who spent two decades catering Pesach meals for clients with individual needs and requirements. Naomi shares make-ahead tips and well as freezer suggestions that are super helpful as well as cooks tip and year-round notes on most of the recipes. The cookbook has a really nice range of flavors – from Syrian inspired cauliflower crust lachmagine (you know I’m making that!) to Hawaiian poke (recipe below) and tequila lime chicken to herb crusted lamb shops. Of course you’ll also find traditional favorites like matbucha, salad nicoise, gravlax, Pesach cholent, chocolate mousse and so much more.

As for me, I’ve got the quinoa hummus, chimichurri coleslaw, maple glazed rack of ribs and frozen red wine strawberry mousse bookmarked.

Of course I’m giving away a copy of Perfect for Passover, so see the details below to enter!

As part of this Pesach giveaway, I’m also giving away a copy of Duby’s Pesach Lists which includes:

• Tips on making Pesach for the first time
• Cleaning checklists
• Shopping Lists
• Budgeting Tips
• Menu and calendar templates
• Last minute reminders
• Printable labels for your Passover cabinets
• Games / Activities / Discussion ideas to make your Seder more fun

You can read more about it on


To enter the giveaway to win a copy of Perfect for Pesach + a copy of Dobys Pesach Lists:

1. Leave a comment below letting me know your favorite Pesach dish.
2. For an extra entry, leave a comment on the giveaway post on Facebook or Instagram sharing what you love most about Pesach.

Giveaway is open to U.S. residents (for international entries, prize can only be shipped in the U.S.). Winner will be chosen at random at 10:00 AM EST on Monday, April 3rd, 2017.


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