Category: Shabbos

Arayes: Kofta Pita Pockets


I love how today’s food trends have made Middle Eastern food so popular. Otherwise, I probably never would have heard of sabich, or hawaij, or arayes.

So what are they? Arayes are native to Lebanon, where they stuff kofta, a spiced beef or lamb mixture, into pita pockets and grill them. Yes, it’s as good as it’s sounds.

What I love even more than traditional arayes, is that chef’s have been creating their own adaptation of the classic for a fun twist. A local restaurant had fish arayes on the menu last week, and I’ve been seeing lots of other variations of the traditional filling as well.

While I’m usually one for turning tradition on it’s head, I loved my classic recipe so much that I went with it. But I did spare you the annoying blogger habit of calling anything with 3 corners hamantaschen, because frankly, they are not. Although in the festive Purim spirit, they are triangular, and they really do make the perfect Purim party appetizer.

Speaking of Purim party appetizers, I love to put out of bunch of finger food for my Purim feast every year because everyone is so busy coming and going, there’s hyper kids all over the place and probably a bunch of adult drunks too – so no one really wants a formal meal. Finger food makes the perfect spread and arayes are just the thing.

Some other great party appetizers that I’ve done in the past include:

drunken hasselback salami
pulled beef tacos
hummus bassar
breaded honey drumsticks
hot dog eggrolls
potato borekas
franks in blanks
chicken wings
charcuterie board
roasted sweet potatoes with gooey pecans (recipe in Millennial Kosher)
lachmagine pizza (recipe  in Millennial Kosher)

Enjoy!

Related Recipes:

Jerusalem hummus in jars
mechshie
herbed pita chips
grilled chicken fattoush

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Salami Tarte Tatin

OMG OMG OMG OMG OMG OMG OMG OMG!!!!
S-A-L-A-M-I  T-A-R-T-E  T-A-T-I-N!!!!!!!

OK I can’t remember the last time I’ve been so excited about a recipe!!! Salami time AKA Purim, AKA the Busy In Brooklyn yearly salami tradition is here and YAYYYYYY!!


I love that the young girl who used to throw her weekly salami sandwiches down the incinerator chute is now known for her salami trash-ups! My friend recently said to me, “You know Chanie, no one is every going to look at salami without thinking of you”, and I’m OK with it. In fact I’m all over it. Because becoming known for a particular ingredient means I’m doing a good job as a blogger and that my friends, is my jam (also job, but yes, jam!).

So… why in the world am I so excited? Well I’ll tell you. If you’re not well versed in French pastry, you might not be familiar with the classic dessert, TARTE TATIN, an upside-down pastry in which fruit is caramelized in butter and sugar as it bakes under a blanket of puff pastry. Fancy pastry chef’s make their own, but most recipes call for the store-bought variety which means only one thing – QUICK & EASY.

But still, WHY am I so excited??? Well traditional tarte tatin uses fruit as it’s base, and you even might find some unique recipes for vegetable-based tarts, but you have never found a SALAMI tarte tatin and I, my friends, think it’s pretty genius. And I’m a pretty hard sell.

Whats more than the salami is the bourbon caramel that the salami bathes in as it cooks down. Yes, you got that right. Bourbon. Caramel. And although I abhor margarine, there was no winning here because coconut oil + salami is a no go, so I caved. And I’m ok with it. I mean the puff pastry is virtually all margarine anyway, so whats another few tablespoons, amiright?

It’s hard to keep up with myself with this salami thing and I was worried about how I’d one-up my previous recipes. The now infamous drunken hasselback salami is sold at virtually every kosher deli stand, and salami babka has made it around the world, so coming up with something new was quite daunting. But I’d said I hashtag #nailedit on this one.

I’m also crushing on the photos of this recipe, which is why I’m doing a lot of salami rambling aka filler content :) But in case you’re still scratching your head on this whole salami thing – it’s a BUSY IN BROOKLYN Purim tradition that I started a couple of years ago on the blog, after reading about a custom to eat salami on Purim, since it’s hung, like HAMAN. Cute, right??

I hope you love this recipe as much as I do!  Happy almost-Purim!

This post is sponsored by Abeles & Heymann.

Other Salami Recipes:

last year: salami potato latkes
two years ago: salami babka
three years ago: salami quiche
four years ago: beer battered salami chips with beer mustard
five years ago: drunken hasselback salami
six years ago: salami chips

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ChimiChicken

Chimichurri is my latest obsession. The herbaceous sauce originates from Argentina, where they serve it with grilled meat., but I’ve been putting it on everything and it is GOOD! I’ve always been a pesto person (my spinach pistachio pesto is LIFE!), but because we try to keep my house nut free, I prefer to have a green sauce on hand that doesn’t make me worry. Of course pesto without nuts is not pesto (no matter that your local market labels it as such!), so I moved on to the next best thing.

Now while chimichurri is delicious on it’s own – a perfect dipping sauce for london broil or grilled chicken – I’ve been mixing it into mayo for a lipsmacking aioli that’s delicious on burgers, or as a dressing for a fresh chicken salad – so so good!

One thing I hadn’t done was actually cooked with it (since it’s traditionally served raw), but when I had a container left over at the end of the week, I decided to throw it over some chicken with some tomatoes and the results were absolutely delicious. This one is a winner!

Related Recipes:

pulled pesto chicken burger with fire roasted tomato jam
grilled chicken fattoush with za’atar ranch
spice crusted chicken

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Everything Bagel Keto Crackers

I’ve been dieting ever since I can remember, and if you’ve been with BIB since the early days, you probably remember when I posted about the South Beach Diet which I went on religiously after every baby. But then I started a career in food and diets that eliminated entire food groups became difficult to stick to. I also had a 90 day stint with Whole30, which I still firmly believe in as a nutritional reset, but not really as a way of life. It’s far too restrictive and there was so much prep involved which became near impossible with my busy lifestyle.

So, when I finally decided I was done with my yo-yo habits recently, I wanted to commit to a plan, if only for a few months – but a strict regimen that would help me lose the cookbook + baby + stress weight of the past few years – and with lots of people I know losing weight on keto, I decided to jump in blindly.

I thought keto would be easier to manage – that is, no major food planning – and I have to admit that that part is totally manageable. Since I cook pretty healthy for the most part, I find that adapting my regular dinners is pretty easy. I have no problem with grabbing a quick lunch, and I mostly skip breakfast, which isn’t a bad thing on keto since 16 hours of intermittent fasting is encouraged. The problem then, is the counting.


I legit hate diets where I have to weigh my food or count my calories. Maybe it’s the flashbacks of being on Weight Watchers in high school, when my scale became my best friend, but it’s legit the worst part about this diet. In this case, you’re not quite counting calories or weighing your food – you’re counting MACROS = grams of protein, carbs and fat throughout the day.


For optimum results on keto, it’s important to stay within your macros if you want to stay in ketosis. Keeping carbs under roughly 20 grams is HARD because every. single. thing. has carbs. And I’m not talking about pizza or pastries here. I’m talking about not overdoing the veggies. I’m also finding it hard to reach my fat macros, and for the first few weeks, I religiously entered my entire food diary into the Carb Manager app to keep track- and I saw a big difference. The weight came off easily. But now as I’ve settled into the diet, I’m getting sick of counting and while I haven’t gained any weight, the scale (and my inches) are extremely slow moving.

I’m still not ready to quit though, I just want to find the right balance for myself because I know this plan can really work if you do it right. In the meantime, these super easy keto crackers (which I adapted from this Pesach recipe by the genius challah/babka queen @naomi_tgis, Naomi Elberg), have been getting me through Shabbos meals because we all need some crunch to eat with our salads/dips when everyone else is eating fluffy Challah.

I’ve been trying them all different ways, and the everything bagel version wins hands down, but give the variations a try as well when you get bored of them!

Related Recipes:

how to build a fish board
artisan toast, 6 ways
tuna with anchovy panko crumbs

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Mushroom Cauli Soup

So it’s been nearly 3 weeks since I started keto and I have to admit – I’m bored. How much cheese/eggs/steak/broccoli, cauliflower/cabbage and nuts can you eat? I’m all about variety in my diet and I get bored so easily!


One thing I promised myself when I started this diet was that I was not going to spend my day in the kitchen preparing special foods for myself. I was going to adapt my regular family recipes and make them work for me, and so far it’s been working. When I wanted to make this soup, I just substituted the bread crumbs with almond flour and removed some of the soup for myself before adding the orzo. I added some cauliflower rice to my portion and it was such a nice change from my typical steak and roasted veggie dinner!

Coming up with soups that aren’t tomato or bean based is a little difficult (tomatoes are not encouraged on keto because they are high in sugar). In general I’m a big fan of legumes in soup, and I love grains like barley and farro too, so it’s a challenge. I decided I wanted to do a keto-approved riff on mushroom barley soup, since everyone in the house loves it, but I knew I couldn’t use barley. I decided to use cauliflower to give the soup some creaminess and body, and it was a huge hit. I didn’t tell my cauliflower-hating kid that it had her least favorite veggie in there and she thought it was delicious (until she watched my Instagram story and was suddenly nauseous – ha!)

So alas, this Mushroom Cauli Soup – a play on Mushroom Barley Soup – so long as you say CAULI with the same enunciation as BARLEY :)


Related Recipes:

zucchini basil soup
spinach white bean minestrone with zoodles
cream of leek soup

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