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Mexishuka (Mexican Quinoa Shakshuka)

Thursday, January 12th, 2017

If a food could be my spirit animal, that food would be shakshuka. It’s versatile. Colorful. Sweet. Spicy. Photogenic. And oh. so. delicious. Don’t we all just want to be like shakshuka?

Well I’ll tell you what. We all want to at least be like a decently cooked one. I was reminiscing about my seminary days in Israel recently, and I was telling my Shabbat guests about the foods they used to serve us. This dish of rubbery eggs cooked in tomato sauce came back to me, and I finally realized, so many years later, that that was my first shakshuka experience. And what a bad one it was!

I don’t know why our Israeli chef couldn’t make a decent pot of the stuff. Maybe it’s because he was making it on a larger scale. Or maybe he was afraid of giving us salmonella. But those eggs…man where they rubbery. I think it was everyone’s least favorite lunch. Whenever shakshuka was served, we’d fill our bowls with Israeli soup croutons and eat them like cereal and milk, with just a splash of soup. It’s no wonder I put on 15 pounds that year!

Fast forward many years (I won’t date myself!) and I was eating at some Israeli restaurant. I went for the shuka and I was hooked. I forgot all about my rubbery egg days and the rest is history! I’ve been putting my own twists on the classic Israeli dish ever since.

I’m not so sure the Israelis would back me up on my varied interpretations of shakshuka, they’re purists when it comes to their food. They like their hummus straight up with tahini, their falafel without the fanfare, and their lemonana with strictly lemon and mint. Of course I go and trash up all their traditions with things like chestnut hummus, falafel latkes and strawberry limonana but that’s just my thang.

I’ve done the shakshuka thing in so many different variations. I cooked it up with a matbucha base, always make my quick and easy marinara base, I even stuffed it into a portobello, and tried a lightened up version with spaghetti squash. There was also the chickpea one, the zoodle one, and that beet and goat cheese one that Amy guest posted after my baby was born. So yes, I’ve rode that shakshuka train to breakfast glory and back! But THIS. This is next-level shakshuka. This is the best. freakin. shakshuka. I. have. ever. eaten.

When I started cooking this dish, I was pleasantly surprised to see how easily adaptable the Israeli flavors were to Mexican cuisine, where cumin and chili peppers play a pivotal role. I threw in some chili powder, jalapenos and black beans, but the real star is the quinoa. It makes this dish so hearty, you don’t even need to eat it with pita (oh yes I said it. No pita. Please don’t come after me Israeli food police).

I was putting the finishing touches on this dish when my husband surprised me by coming home in between meetings. I was so happy I had what to feed him, and he just kept coming back for more because it’s just. that. good. We polished off this skillet in no time and I’m already dreaming about making it again.

As for the bygone shakshuka of my past, I’m happy to say I have mastered the art of the perfect runny-egg shakshuka. May those rubbery eggs rest in peace.

In the meantime, I’m already dreaming up another shakshuka variation. I’m thinking something picante with eggplant. What do you say?

Have you ever put a fun spin on shakshuka? What’s you favorite version? Share it with me in the comments below!

Have an eggscellent day!


Related Recipes:

quick and easy shakshuka
portobello shakshuka
spaghetti squash shakshuka
garbanzo bean shakshuka
zoodle shakshuka
beet, kale and goat cheese shakshuka

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How to Build a Fish Board

Monday, December 26th, 2016

Food boards are all the rage right now and I’ve been drooling all over them! You can find cheese boards that spread out for miles, charcuterie boards at restaurants and smoked fish boards at cafes.

I recently set up a charcuterie board for my husband’s birthday, and cheese boards are a regular appetizer at my Chanukah and Shavuot meals, so this year, I decided to do something a little different.

Thanks to the Jewish food trend, old world favorites are making a comeback, along with herring, smoked fish and of course, bagels.  I was inspired by some of the foodie posts I’ve seen, noshing at the newly opened Russ & Daughters at The Jewish Museum, as well as Lox at The Museum of Jewish Heritage. Who knew smoked fish would ever be in fashion?!

I’ve also been reading The Gefilte Manifesto by Jeffrey Yoskowitz and Liz Alern of The Gefilteria, who’s well-researched book highlights the history and process of so many old world Jewish foods. Their book is a mix of both classic recipes and modern interpretations, many of which I had never even heard of (Kvass, anyone?). The book is a real eye opener into Jewish food history and I highly recommend it!

Speaking of the trend towards Jewish food, I have to mention that, while it’s amazing to see all these books and restaurants popularizing Jewish foods, it’s painful to see that the “kosher” concept is all but ignored. Over the past several months, I was invited to two separate events which featured the history of Kosher food – one of which was a book talk and tasting discussing the journey of kosher food through the modern food system, and yet, ironically, the food served was not actually kosher. Another such event payed homage to Jewish culture and cuisine and yet was not either kosher. I get it, believe me, not everyone who is Jewish keeps kosher. But if an organization or a museum is putting together an event that is specifically about the history of KOSHER food, how can they serve food that is NONkosher??

This is something that bothers me to my core. And not because if I go to these events, I won’t have what to eat. It’s because the very act of serving nonkosher food dismisses one of the basic principles of Jewish food. As Michael Solomov, the Israeli chef, writes in his cookbook, Zahav, “Plenty of Israelis eat treyf these days….But at Zahav, and in this book, we choose to honor the spirit of a few fundamental rules of kosher cooking…..The reason is simple: Kosher rules help define the boundaries of Israeli cuisine.

Now I’m not judging anyone who doesn’t keep kosher. To each his own. But as we celebrate Chanukah, I’m reminded of the Hellenists, who stripped themselves of their Jewishness to become like their cultured Greek neighbors and friends. Jewish food is more than just a cultural thing. Kosher is part of it’s history and tradition. Dismissing the kosher aspect is both disrespectful and historically inaccurate. The very reason that many traditional Jewish foods exist today, is due to the need that our ancestors had to follow the kosher guidelines. I would love to see that acknowledged in the world of Jewish cuisine.

So, now that I finally got that off my chest, lets get back to the food, shall we? Nothing makes me think of old world Jewish food more than smoked fish. (Herring too, but I won’t go near that stuff!). In honor of Chanukah, I decided to share my take on an endless fish spread with some gourmet toppings. I hope it inspires you to put out a board of your own.

Happy Chanukah!


Products featured in this board:

Portlock smoked pink salmon (the large fish on the board in the center)
Ruby Bay smoked salmon in sriracha, lemon pepper and pastrami
Ruby Bay hot smoked keta salmon
Blue Hill Bay herb smoked salmon
Ruby Bay teriyaki salmon jerky
Milas oloves in chili oregano, basil garlic, chili garlic and lemon rosemary
Lucini Itali lemon flavored olive oil
Brooklyn Brine Pickles in spicy maple bourbon
Kozlowski Farms jalapeno jam
Eden stone ground brown mustard
Altius black sea salt
Baked in Brooklyn honey mustard breadsticks
Absolutely gluten free crackers


This post was sponsored by Crafted Kosher. Visit craftedkosher.com for a large selection of gourmet kosher products. Follow Crafted Kosher on Twitter, Facebook, Pinterest and Instagram.

Related Recipes:

fish tacos + 8 International menus
how to build a fried fish sandwich
gefilte fish, 3 ways
homemade fish sticks

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Please NOTE: This post contains affiliate links which means that a small percentage of every purchase made through the links above goes to help support the BIB blog!

Farro Grain Bowl

Thursday, November 10th, 2016

Life with five kids has thrown me for a loop. They always say #3 is hard, maybe #4 too. But #5? I’m ex.hau.sted. Baby girl is still 3 months old, so I know we’re still in that needy (ie. nursing every 3 hours) stage, but man, it’s tough! I still won’t give up blogging though, because after five years of creating and sharing, it’s become so much a part of me. You guys, are part of the family.

Thank G-d for some stored posts that never made it to blog like this farro grain bowl. I don’t know why it’s been sitting in my archived photos for so long because dang is it beautiful. And oh so tasty! I’m all about grain bowls right now. Ok I’m all about any food really (breastfeeding!!), but there’s something about being able to throw in a little of this and a little of that to create something so satisfying.

I’m a huge fan of grain bowls because there are endless options, and it’s basically just an excuse to throw a bunch of leftovers into a big dish and call it fancy! I’ve started to make them for lunch a lot, using whatever leftovers I have in the fridge. I can usually find some quinoa (I like to cook it up in the beginning of the week so I can add it to salads, yogurt and mains) or leftover rice and I pretty much always have some cooked chicken on hand. There’s also plenty of veggies to choose from, plus some hard boiled eggs, cheese, and roasted beets. So basically I’ve got my grain bowls made, I have to just make ’em!

So, how do you build a grain bowl? Well, you can try and stick to a specific cuisine (like this Middle Eastern inspired bowl) or you can keep things simple. Just follow this basic outline:

How to Build a Grain Bowl:

Grains (rice, farro, quinoa, couscous, barley, wheat berries, millet)
Raw or Cooked Veggies (carrots, mushrooms, cucumbers, beets, peppers, zucchini)
Raw or Sauteed Greens (spinach, arugula, kale, radicchio, cabbage)
Protein (tofu, edamame, chickpeas, surimi, chicken, poached egg, cheese)
Dressing (pesto, miso, tahini, salsa, peanut sauce, soy sauce)
Garnish (seaweed, avocado, nuts, pickled veggies, scallions, fresh herbs)

I probably would have added some sauteed beet greens to this bowl, if I had had them, but the flavors were amazing and went together really well. The chewy farro, sweet beets, smoky chicken, crispy chickpeas and crunchy pomegranate seeds really complemented each other – both in texture and flavor. Of course the tahini didn’t hurt either, and the pomegranate molasses just put it over the top.

Thinking about making your own grain bowl? Here are some other fun combinations!

// cauliflower rice + fajita spiced peppers + black beans + avocado + salsa dressing + fresh lime
// quinoa + roasted squash + sauteed kale + feta + pumpkin seeds + almond butter dressing
// couscous + roasted eggplant + tomato + red cabbage + hard boiled egg + harissa dressing
// sushi rice + carrots + cucumber + sushi grade tuna + edamame + fried egg + sriracha + soy sauce

Have you ever made a grain bowl, or seen one you like? Share the combo with me in the comments below! I love to get inspired with new combinations!


Related Recipes:

chicken shawarma
grilled chicken shawarma salad
za’atar roasted chickpeas

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Fish Tacos + 8 International Menus

Thursday, October 13th, 2016

Yom Kippur is thankfully behind us, and Thank God I survived the most brutal of all fasts, fasting while nursing. Just barely. But I’m here and I’m thinking about food. Again. We’ve got an 8-day holiday ahead, and I love the idea of serving up different cuisines throughout the Chag to break up the monotony of it all, and to give us something to look forward to! I served up these amazing fish tacos for my Mexican Fiesta meal last year and I’m happy to share the recipe with you, plus 8 International menus for the 8 days of the Chag, including kid food! Enjoy and Chag Sameach!

MEXICAN
appetizer: fish tacos, tropical guacamole with plantain chips
entree: chorizo chocolate chili with pareve cornbread
for the kids: tortilla crusted chicken fingers with creamy salsa dipping sauce
dessert: mexican hot chocolate brownies

ISRAELI
appetizer: hummus with pita chips, stuffed eggplant, falafel cauliflower poppers
entree: pomegranate roast or za’atar chicken with dried fruit with rice vermicelli
for the kids: shnitzel and potato bourekas (fill with mashed potatoes)
dessert: halva krembos

ITALIAN
Dairy:
appetizer: salmon cakes with lemon caper yogurt, panzanella salad
entree: spinach pappardelle with feta or linguini lasagna and zucchini parmesan chips
for the kids: roasted tomato soup with muenster breadsticks (or grilled cheese)
dessert: torah cannoli

Meat:
appetizer: pesto salmon or corn beef arancini, spinach matzo ball minestrone soup
entree: chicken cacciatore or veal marsala bolognese or short rib ravioli
for the kids: lazy meatballs
dessert: tartufo (any colors work!)

ASIAN
appetizer: sushi salad or sushi burritos or sweet chili salmon, asian big bowl soup
entree: pepper steak with plum sauce, fried rice, teriyaki portobello mushrooms
for the kids: sweet and sour pineapple chicken
dessert: nutella banana wontons

AMERICAN
appetizer: gefilte crab cakes and BBQ potato salad
entree: burger bar or beer braised brisket with mashed potatoes and green beans or brussel sprouts
for the kids: hot dog eggrolls or corndog hamantaschen
dessert: oreo cheesecake

INDIAN
appetizer: tandoori fishmulligatawny soup with naan
entree: peanut chicken curry with coconut rice
for the kids: potato pea samosas
dessert: chai chocolate pots de creme

FRENCH
appetizer: salad nicoise, french onion soup
entree: boeuf Bourguignon or coq au vin, herb-roasted potatoes
for the kids: salami quiche
dessert: fig tarte tatin or apple tart

MOROCCAN
appetizer: Morrocan gefilte fish, carrot saladmatbucha, marinated olives, charmoula eggplant
entree: harrisa chicken or lamb chops and 6 spice morrocan stew with couscous
for the kids: lamb kebobs
dessert: apricot baklava or makroud

I’m not native to all these countries so feel free to share some of your favorites in the comments below!

Shout out to some of my family favorite Sukkot recipes not included above:

Bubby’s cabbage soup with flanken
mushroom barley stoup
cream of chicken soup in bread bowls
smoky split pea soup with thyme dumplings
pumpkin pot pie
meat and rice stuffed vegetables 
zucchini mechshie with tamarind and prunes
meat and rice stuffed baby eggplants
Levana’s chocolate espresso mousse (freezes great!)

Related Recipes:

red snapper fish tacos with broccoli slaw
coconut crusted fish tacos with savory plantain tortillas

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Simanim Fritto Misto
with Honey Roasted Garlic Aioli

Wednesday, September 28th, 2016

I’m baaaaack!!!! After 2 months of maternity leave, some amazing bonding time with my delicious baby, and lets face it, plenty of adjusting to my new life with five kids (!!!), I’m so happy to tap back in to my creative energy and BRING IT!

Of course I must thank all my dear friends who filled in for me these past couple of weeks: Amy from WhatJewWannaEat, Sina from TheKosherSpoon,  Melissa from LilMissCakes, Miriam from OvertimeCook, Eitan from CookwithChefEitan, Melinda from KitchenTested and Whitney from Jewhungry! I hope you all enjoyed their recipes and guest posts as much as I did!

Now with Rosh Hashanah just a few days away, I really wanted to highlight the symbolic foods of the holiday, which include carrots, gourd (pumpkin), beets, leeks, green beans (or black eyed peas) and dates. It’s also customary to eat apple dipped in honey, a sheep or fish head, as well as pomegranate seeds. Many people of sephardic decent have a custom to hold a seder, where special blessings are recited over the simanim (symbolic foods) before they are eaten. It is not unusual for all or some of the ingredients to be cooked into separate appetizers, so I thought it would be fun to create one simple, yet sophisticated, dish that would incorporate most of these foods.

I was wracking my brain trying to think of something other than another boring “simanim salad” (you can watch me make an amazing one in this old post) when it came to me in the dead of night (while nursing my babes!); Fritto Misto! Fritto misto is Italian for “mixed fry” and is an assortment of lightly fried foods, often served as an appetizer. I know lots of people get scared off by the idea of frying, but if you do it right, this tempura batter is so light and elegant, and it’s not greasy at all.

The biggest trick to avoid having your food turn out greasy is to make sure it doesn’t soak up the oil. You MUST, MUST, MUST use a deep fry thermometer. It’s imperative to keep your oil at 350 degrees so that when the cold batter touches the hot oil, it immediately begins to fry and crisp up. If the oil isn’t hot enough, the thin tempura batter won’t hold on to the veggies.

Another trick to making perfectly crisp tempura fried veggies is to use seltzer in the batter. The air bubbles in the seltzer help to lighten up the batter. The cornstarch also contributes to a crispy coating.

The last, and equally important thing that contributes to a light, crispy tempura is to use ice cold seltzer and mix the batter in a cold bowl, set over a bowl of ice water. If you’re batter is nice and cold, it will work it’s magic when it hits the hot oil and you’ll get yourself a non-greasy addictive appetizer.

Of course I couldn’t just make a mix of fried simanim, it’s got to have a dip! So I indulged in some amazingly sweet and caramelized honey roasted garlic. How gorgeous??? I mix that all up with some mayo, meyer lemon zest and juice and voila – sweet, light and delicious aioli that pairs perfectly with the fritto misto.

But I couldn’t stop there. Because I had a vision. A vision of the most elegantly set holiday table, complete with individual boxes of Simanim Fritto Misto at each place setting! It’s been a while since I posted table setting ideas (these apple napkins were fun!), and I really wanted to indulge.

Since I left the apple and honey out of the fritto misto, I put out some beautiful farm-fresh apples with an assortment of honeys. I love to serve different flavored honeys, it makes things so exciting and fun! I also skipped the pomegranates in my fritto misto (because I can’t fry teeny tiny little seeds!) so I put out some Vintage pomegranate seltzer instead. We’ve pretty much got everything covered besides for the Sheep’s head. I’ll let you figure that one out ;)

To set your own tables like this, lay a long strip of burlap down the center of the table. Place a cake stand over a large matching platter. Fill the platter with apples and place an assortment of honeys on the stand. Use milk glass or mason jar cups and set out boxes of simanim over coordinating napkins. Tape some neutral colored gift tags onto the boxes, write the name of each guest on their corresponding box and finish with a twine bow. Don’t forget the Vintage seltzer!

I hope you’ve enjoyed my comeback post, there’s a little something for everyone. If you like to be try new things in the kitchen, go for the fritto misto. Hate frying? Make my honey roasted garlic aioli for dipping your Rosh Hashanah challah. Love to set a beautiful table? Take some inspiration from my tablescape. And most of all, have a healthy and happy SWEET NEW YEAR.

Shanah Tova!



This post was sponsored by Vintage seltzer. All opinions are my own. 

Related Posts:

apple stamp napkins
holiday salad with apple and honey vinaigrette
simanim roundup
angel hair simanim pasta salad

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Beet, Kale & Goat Cheese Shakshuka

Thursday, August 4th, 2016

I’m super excited to start off my guest posts with a recipe by the talented, creative and adorable Amy from WhatJewWannaEat! Amy and I met through the close-knit kosher blogging community and we share a love of creating fun twists on traditional Jewish foods. Amy is all about putting the JEW in everything, and her bagel posts on Insta always make me hungry! The girl knows the way to my heart (or should I say, my stomach?) ‘cuz she put her own spin on one of my all time favorite dishes, shakshuka! I can’t wait to cook up this dish, and with the Nine Days upon us, there’s no better time to Jew it. (see what I did there Amy?!)

For more great recipes for The Nine Days, check out my Nine Days category, browse my Pinterest board, or scan through the dairy and fish categories in the index!

If you want to win a copy of Amy’s soon-to-be-released cookbook, Sweet Noshings, plus a bonus gift from ModernTribe, don’t forget to enter my GUEST BLOGGER CONTEST! More details here.

Shalom, y’all! I’m Amy from What Jew Wanna Eat, and I’m pumped to share a recipe over on Busy in Brooklyn today. On WJWE, I blog about modern takes on classic Jewish recipes, like Sumac Roasted Salmon or Chocolate Cardamom Halvah, and my first cookbook Sweet Noshings comes out in just a few weeks! I am also the owner of ModernTribe, an online shop for fun Jewish gifts. So I’m busy, but not as busy as Chanie. I’m impressed how she cares for five children all while running her popular blog and doing numerous cooking demos. So I was thrilled to help out when she asked me to guest post on BIB.

I’ve loved following Chanie for years for creative, sophisticated kosher recipes (like Cauliflower Nachos with Harissa Cheddar Sauce or Drunken Hasselback Salami) and daily eats/impressive Shabbat prep on her Instagram. Because I live in Austin, TX, I was online friends with Chanie before finally meeting her when I was in NYC last year. Now we are Internet and real life friends!

Chanie is an expert at using ingredients in surprising ways (Corndog Hamantaschen anyone?), and I love how she incorporates healthy elements into so many of her recipes. With it being the Nine Days, I wanted to create a healthy, hearty and dairy dish to share with y’all. Chanie has made a few versions of shakshuka over the years, so I thought I would offer my own! I love taking classic favorites, and putting my own twist in them, so I added earthy beets, kale and tangy goat cheese for lots of added color and nutrients to your basic shakshuka (which I also love). If you try this recipe, I’d love to see it over on Instagram!

Related Recipes:

zoodle shakshuka
garbanzo bean shakshuka
spaghetti squash shakshuka
portobello shakshuka
quick and easy shakshuka

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Grilled Chicken Salad with
Jalapeno Honey Mustard Dressing

Thursday, July 14th, 2016

It was one of those nights, after many days of eating the wrong foods (read: fried, takeout, you-name-it), when I decided I needed to eat a salad for dinner. Luckily, we always have a stash of oven grilled chicken in the fridge (see my super easy recipe below!), so I just threw together whatever I had in the fridge and pantry and this salad was born. I’ve been making this dressing forever, so that wasn’t exactly an afterthought, but it turned out to be the perfect compliment to the composed salad dish.

If you’re an avid follower of mine, you already know that I post almost everything I eat on Instagram (whenever people stop me in the street to ask me what I’m up to foodwise, I just tell them to follow me there, ‘cuz I post just about everything that goes into my mouth!!), so when I whip together a healthy salad for dinner, I try to plate it up nice and pretty, you know, #eatingfortheinsta. So I fanned out my avocado all  fancy and stuff, and the recipe requests poured in. Next thing I know, my inbox is filled with pics of this salad – all composed and perfect, and this recipe-afterthought became an instant sensation.

The dressing is a hit in it’s own right, and lots of readers have told me it’s become a family favorite. So…I finally decided it was time to blog about it! As a recent text message from a reader reminded me, not everyone uses Facebook or Instagram, so I gotta think about the readers that just come here for the good stuff. Rikal, this is for you ;) !

If you’re not a fan of composed salads (salads that have been neatly arranged on a platter, like this), then just go ahead and and mix everything up in a big ‘ole bowl. I promise it’s just as delicious!

Happy Grilling you guys! Check out the links below for lots of other grilled chicken salad recipes that are perfect for summer or when you get that healthy-eating-binge!

#eatingfortheinsta!

Related Recipes:

grilled chicken shawarma salad
grilled marinated chicken
Asian chicken salad
sesame linguini with marinated chicken breasts

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Caramelized Peach & Gouda Quesadillas

Thursday, July 7th, 2016

When I told you guys that I hate cooking in the summer, I meant it. I don’t know if it’s the heat or the long days, but I just can’t stand to be in the kitchen. Or, at the very least, turn on the oven.

Case in point: this was our menu this week:

Sunday: 4th of July BBQ at friends
Monday: pulled chicken sammies with leftover chicken
Tuesday: burgers and grilled veggies on the BBQ
Wednesday: grilled cheese sandwiches
Thursday (tonight):  I’m thinkin’ pesto zoodles with tomato feta salad

So – quick and easy stove-top dinners or no-mess outdoor grilling is where it’s at. And the oven? I’ll save that for holiday cooking in a couple of months!

Stove-top cooking can get repetitive. I mean I love grilled cheese and all, but how much of it can I eat? (I plead the fifth)! I definitely try to think outside the box for some satisfying seasonal dishes that make the most of summer bounty. There’s only one thing better than juicy summer peaches and that’s caramelizing them in butter and brown sugar. And when you add the spicy, crunchy jalapenos + the bitter arugula and cheesy gouda, it’s like a quesadilla made in heaven!

Gouda is actually one of my favorite cheeses. It’s so gooey (is that why they call it goo-da? ;) jk!) with great meltability (yeah, that’s now a word). I love it with fruit so it works wonders in this cheesy quesadilla.

Gouda is also great cut into chunks so if you’re going for no-carb meals this summer, try my salad variation! And if carbs are your thing year-round (why you looking at me?!), try this as a pizza, flatbread or grilled cheese with artisan bread!

OK this post has me seriously craving this combo, so I’m off to the store to pick up some more peaches and gouda! Have a “goud” day!!



This post was sponsored by Natural & Kosher Cheese. Follow them on FacebookTwitter, Pinterest, Instagram, YouTube, Google+, or via their Blog

Related Recipes:

quesadillas 5 ways
spinach peach salad

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Falafel Cauliflower Poppers (Baked!)

Thursday, June 23rd, 2016

You guysssss!!! This post makes me so excited, I have no words! OK, I always have words, many of them. But where shall I begin?

If you’re a dedicated follower of my blog, you know how much I love

  1. trendy recipes
  2. hybrid recipes
  3. ISRAELI recipes
  4. healthy makeover recipes

Am I right? Does that just about sum up my food blogger style or what?!

Well this here genius idea just about incorporates all of those passions! Cauliflower trend – check! Falafel/breaded cauliflower hybrid – check! Israeli recipes – Oh my god yes, check!! And healthy makeover recipes – definitely check, check!!

Ever since my crazy cauliflower nacho hack went ridiculously viral, I’ve been wanting to come up with an equally amazing cauliflower idea, and when Knorr sent me over some of their falafel mix, I knew I had it in the bag. And then I tasted them, and I was all “why hasn’t the whole world made these like every single day of their lives?!?!” Yup. You’re welcome.

Breaded cauliflower has always been a favorite snack of mine, but since they’re usually fried, I don’t have them too often. I also avoid using fresh cauliflower, since it’s such a pain to check for bugs (kosher law forbids the consumption of insects), so I came up with a recipe that solves all those problems! You’re welcome.

So, not only are these cauliflower poppers supremely delicious, they’re made with thawed frozen cauliflower (no checking necessary) and they’re baked, not fried! You wouldn’t believe it from the insanely crunching coating, but oh yes, they are practically guilt free. Did I say you’re welcome yet?

Speaking of which, I want to thank Knorr for making these semi-homemade poppers so easy to put together using their prepared falafel mix. I’ve not usually a fan of prepared mixes but falafel is an extremely time consuming effort – between soaking the beans, processing the mixture and frying the balls… I’m all for convenience in this case!

Convenience is the name of the game these days. With school out for most of the kids, I’ve got summer prep on my mind and lots to do. Plus the NYC heat is totally draining me and getting dinner on the table every night is not as easy as it used to be. I’m thankful for kid-friendly foods that might use some store bought ingredients to help me out – like bottled BBQ sauces for quick and easy pulled chicken/beef, frozen ravioli that I can just heat up with some marinara, and even pancake batter that makes breakfast a cinch. I may be a do-it-yourself, made-from-scratch gal at heart, but I’m a very practical mom IRL (in real life!). Summer conveniences, here we come!

Speaking of summer, make sure you put these on your NINE DAYS menu, will you? You can thank me later.

You’re welcome!

This post was sponsored by Knorr Falafel. All opinions are my own. 

Related Recipes:

falafel latkes with harissa tahini
spinach falafel burger
smoked paprika popcorn cauliflower
cauliflower nachos

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Sushi Burrito

Thursday, June 2nd, 2016

If you ever thought sushi would just be a passing trend, you’re as shocked as the rest of us. And it’s not just the kosher world either (although we might be the only ones with sushi counters in pizza stores!).

The world is awash with sushi rice bowl recipes, make-your-own-sushi parties and now, THE SUSHI BURRITO, or as some like to call it, the SUSHIRRITO.

A sushi burrito is basically an excuse to eat an entire overstuffed sushi roll in one sitting and call it lunch :) And I got no problem with that! Especially since Michel de France introduced these flavored sushi wrappers which I just love. I’m not a big fan of the fishy taste and chewy texture of nori (otherwise known as seaweed), so these gluten free wraps are a welcome surprise! I love that they come in chili, poppy seed and sesame seed flavors, and now my kids (who aren’t fans of nori either) are happy to eat homemade sushi wraps as well. Can you say “Winner, winner sushi dinner?”!

Turns out, these inexpensive gluten-free wraps make a great alternative to traditional wheat wraps for sandwiches too. Quick and easy turkey wraps are my go-to Friday afternoon lunch for the kids, and I’ll definitely be trying all the Norigami flavors with that!

Now if you’re intimidated by the whole thinly sliced julienned vegetable thing, do yourself and a favor and pick up my must-have kitchen tool of all time, the JULIENNE PEELER. It looks like a traditional peeler, except instead of peeling off a single strip, small blades along the edge of the peeler slice the peel into thin julienne strips. It’s basically the best invention ever made.

With that said, the only thing left to intimidate you about these wraps is maybe the raw tuna. I wasn’t always a fan of raw fish myself, but I recently bit the bullet (or I should say, the protein) and went for it. I find that raw fish doesn’t really have much of a flavor at all, which is why I like to lightly marinate the fish in Myron’s ponzu sauce, which is also gluten free. Ponzu sauce is basically a light and refreshing lime, ginger and sesame sauce that’s great for marinating or dipping, and it infuses the fish with great flavor. Of course topping everything off with some spicy mayo doesn’t hurt either right? I mean, sriracha makes everything better.

Now sushi everything has been around on my site for a long time. In fact, I made sushi salad famous before it was ever a thing! I went through a bit of a crazy sushi phase where I made candy sushi, sushi snowmen, sushi hamantaschen and even a 3-tier sushi cake. I’m a sushi nerd, what can I say?

But getting back to traditional sushi eating…. the salad is definitely getting boring, and sushi rolls just seem like too much of a job. Which is why I’m totally loving the new sushi burrito craze and I hope you will too. With Shabbat going into Shavuot this year, six back to back meals call for light and refreshing lunch ideas – which is why these are absolutely perfect. You can even set up a bar and have people make their own. How fun?

Don’t forget to load on all the toppings because an extra dose of sweet sauce and spicy mayo are every sushi lovers dream. Are you drooling yet?

Signing off with a little shoutout to my kids, who served as my hand models in these pics when no one else was around! They were also more than happy to eat the leftovers (no raw fish for this pregnant mama!) so no waste is a win-win for this blogger mom!

This post was sponsored by Crafted Kosher. Visit craftedkosher.com for a large selection of gourmet kosher products. Follow Crafted Kosher on Twitter, Facebook, Pinterest and Instagram.

Related Recipes:

sushi salad
sushi salad II
kani salad
kani Caesar salad with nori croutons
tuna sashimi

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