Posts Tagged ‘brunch’

Top 5 Jewish High Holiday Recipes

The High Holidays are soon upon us, when Jews around the world will welcome the New Year 5773. If you’re cooking dinner for Rosh Hashanah or whipping up something to break the fast on Yom Kippur, I’ve got a few ideas to share.

Rosh Hashanah Barefoot Contessa Matzo Balls: Want to know my three secrets for light, tender, tasty matzo balls? Check out this recipe and dazzle your guests with delightful matzo balls that are easy to make and will please a crowd.


Barefoot Contessa Brisket: I’m not a brisket fan, but if you are, I hear this recipe gets rave reviews. It’s got a flavorful tomato juice-based sauce, and the brisket cooks with…

Oh my. I have gone and spoiled myself forever. I have stumbled upon the most perfect breakfast/brunch dish and now I want to eat it every day. And I don’t even like eggs!

I don’t remember where I first saw a version of this recipe, but for some reason it stuck in my head. Ratatouille. Yum. Eggs. Not-so-yum, but Iacono chicken farm is right near us in East Hampton, and the farm-fresh eggs continually beckon to me. I eat them occasionally because I think they’re good for ya and I just should-always poached-but there’s nothing enjoyable about it for me.

But the idea of masking an egg with ratatouille? Brill. I looked at a bunch of recipes…

Growing up, french toast was our Saturday night dinner treat. My folks usually had evening plans, and while mom was getting beautified with her handy-dandy bonnet hair dryer with the hose, dad would handle the rowdy, hungry supper crowd. His go-to dish ““ and our fave ““ was Daddy’s French Toast. (Of course since the next generation has come along, it’s been re-monikered “Papa’s French Toast.”) My dad’s secret ingredient, which set his french toast apart from that of mere mortal chefs, was yummy vanilla extract.

Vanilla extract aside, french toast is really only as good as the bread you make it with. Given its name, this recipe obviously calls for challah, but suggests that you…

Noodle Kugel

Kugel is like any other Jewish dish — you swear by the style that your bubbe made, and any variation of that is farkakte (literally “becrapped”). For me, raisins in kugel is farkakte. Cottage cheese, ricotta cheese or anything other than Philly cream cheese? Farkakte. No crunchy corn flake topping? Farkakte. Barefoot Contessa kugel? Farkakte!

The biggest variation between my mom’s and Nana’s versions of our family recipe was the use of vanilla extract in the batter. Nana insisted it should be in there; Mom, not so much. I happen to like vanilla so I use it, and I also sometimes use brown sugar in the crunchy topping. Other than that, our original recipe is unchanged.

I got kugel-ed…

Mmmmmm! Cake!

What do you do when you wake up early on a gloomy Saturday morning, while all the little Muppets are still sleeping peacefully? If you’re the Muppet Mom, you bake a Sour Cream Coffee Cake, and then watch them all smile when they wake up and smell that cinnamony sweetness wafting up the staircase.

Ina’s intro note mentions that this cake is her take on a Drake’s coffee cake — but this one is a million times yummier. The sour cream makes it incredibly moist, and the flavor is all butter and vanilla. The walnuts are optional in the crumb filling/topping, and I included them this time. I remember making it in the past without the nuts,…

It’s a cool, rainy day here on the East End and to me there’s nothing cozier than sitting down at our long farmhouse dining table and enjoying a splendid mid-afternoon family lunch. Inspired by the French influence of the tarts, I picked up some of those glamorous glass bottles of sparkling French lemonade and even made a special Hotel Costes playlist to add to the ambience. I don’t want to make you jealous or anything, but this was, quite simply, the finest lunch of the summer!

It was also the most time-consuming Barefoot recipe I’ve made all summer. Nothing remotely complicated, but a bunch of steps. But let me be quick to add: it was more than worth…

Oh, how I wish I loved eggs. I so admire folks for whom breakfast has such glamorous options ““ fancy omelets, sunnysides, poached, Benedict. But about the only way I’ll venture a taste is to scramble them into virtually unrecognizable form. My sister, one of the other tasters today, concurs.

Nothing worse than dried-out, overcooked scrambles, and Ina’s slow-cooking method is so appealing because it pretty much ensures you avoid that danger. Medium-low heat + continuous stirring = nice creamy eggs. And in reality, that’s just what happened. It’s just that they didn’t taste all that good. They were ultra-rich, and one taster deemed them inedibly salty.

Hmmm, too salty. Let’s see what might account for that….

Barefoot Contessa Provencal Tomatoes

Two nights ago I had an unfortunate tomato incident. Seduced by all the gorgeous heirloom varieties popping up at roadside farmstands, Dave took the plunge and bought a dazzling variety: green zebras, brandywines, purple cherokees, some yellow babies too. With the early corn tiny, sweet and tender, we had our hearts set on whipping up our debut Corn and Tomato Salad of the season.

If Chocolate Chunk is my signature cookie, Corn and Tomato is my signature salad. The recipe is from “Cucina Simpatica,” the cookbook by Johanne Killeen and George Germon of AlForno in my old hometown, Providence, and we eagerly await the dog days of August when the corn is…

Jake had a lot of happy brothers when this Croissant Bread Pudding came out of the oven. He had been wanting to make this recipe all week, but with the hour-and-a-half baking time, we couldn’t seem to pull it off for dessert. We finally got to it for brunch, since it’s just croissants baked in a sweet custard. The flavor was reminiscent of my family’s sweet, vanilla-y kugel recipe, although the texture of this, baked in a water bath, was smoother and creamier.

The recipe is deceptively easy, until you get to that bain marie. I had nothing in this house other than a half sheet pan for the water bath, and it’s not like the…

Part of the fun of making these recipes out here in East Hampton is that we get to use authentic local ingredients. And by authentic, I mean Eli’s Health Bread, as called for in the recipe…and smoked salmon hand-sliced by Eli Zabar himself! Ben and his minions hit the Amagansett Farmers Market (a/k/a Eli’s East) on foot to shop for these Smoked Salmon Tea Sandwiches, and introduced themselves to Eli, who keeps himself busy most of the summer at this great outpost at the top of our street. As the boys were trying to calculate how much salmon they’d need, Eli overheard the conversation and asked the boys what they were going to be making….