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Matzo-apple pudding

(Sheryl Julian/Globe Staff)

Tova Yarmush of Tova’s Catering Inc. in Norton, in business since 1997, makes this sweet pudding at Passover. It resembles a noodle kugel, but uses matzo farfel or broken-up sheets of matzo.

Butter (for the dish)
2cups farfel (or matzo sheets broken into ½-inch pieces)
2eggs
1large apple, cored, seeded, and finely chopped
½cup sugar
½cup raisins
3tablespoons butter, melted and cool but still liquid
½teaspoon salt
1small container (8 ounces) sour cream
Cinnamon-sugar made with 1 tablespoon sugar mixed with ½ teaspoon ground cinnamon

1. Set the oven at 400 degrees. Butter a 9-inch baking dish.

2. In a heatproof bowl, combine the matzo with enough boiling water to cover it. Let it sit for 1 minute. Drain into a colander. Return the matzo to the bowl and let it cool.

3. Add the eggs, apples, sugar, raisins, butter, salt, and sour cream. Pour into the baking dish. Sprinkle with cinnamon-sugar.

4. Bake for 25 to 30 minutes or until just set in the middle when pressed with a fingertip.
Adapted from Tova’s Catering

Recipe for roast chicken with fennel and orange

(Sang An)

Serves 6

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If you don’t want to use fresh fennel, substitute half a green cabbage and shred it, or 3 medium carrots and 3 stalks celery (each cut into 2-inch lengths).

2navel oranges
6tablespoons olive oil
1tablespoon dried thyme
3medium fennel bulbs, trimmed, halved, and cored, each half cut into 4 wedges
2medium onions, halved through the root, each half cut into 3 or 4 wedges
Salt and pepper, to taste
4pounds skin-on, bone-in chicken legs and/or thighs, trimmed of excess fat

1. Set the oven at 425 degrees. Have on hand a large roasting pan (at least 15-by-10 inches).

2. Grate the rind of 1 orange and place in a bowl. Halve the orange and squeeze all the juice into the bowl. Cut the second orange into thin slices and set the slices aside.

3. To the orange rind and juice add 2 tablespoons of oil and the thyme. Whisk well.

4. In the roasting pan, scatter the fennel and onions. Top with the orange slices. Drizzle with the remaining 4 tablespoons olive oil, salt, and
pepper.

5. Dip the chicken pieces into the orange-thyme mixture, turning to coat them, and set skin side up on top of the vegetables. Pour any remaining orange mixture over the chicken. Sprinkle the chicken with salt and pepper.

6. Roast the chicken for 30 minutes. Remove the pan from the oven. Tilt the pan to one side and use a spoon to baste the chicken with the pan juices. Continue roasting for 20 to 25 minutes, or until a meat thermometer inserted in the thickest part of the thighs registers 165 degrees. (Total roasting time is 50 to 55 minutes.) Serve the chicken and vegetables with cooking juices spooned over it. Adapted from “Modern Jewish Cooking”

Recipe for matzo granola with walnuts, coconut, and raisins

Serves 6

When bread and cereals are cleared from the house during the extended Passover holiday, breakfast becomes a more challenging meal. Cookbook author Leah Koenig suggests this crunchy matzo granola with walnuts, coconut, and raisins.

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¼cup vegetable oil
cup honey
3tablespoons maple syrup
1tablespoon ground cinnamon
½teaspoon kosher salt
5sheets matzo, crumbled into ½-inch
pieces
1cup walnuts, coarsely chopped
½cup unsweetened shredded (desiccated) coconut
cup raisins

1. Set the oven at 350 degrees. Line a large rimmed baking sheet with parchment paper.

2. In a bowl, whisk together the oil, honey, maple syrup, cinnamon, and salt. Add the matzo and stir well.

3. Spread the matzo mixture on the baking sheet. Bake for 10 minutes. Stir in the walnuts and
coconut. Continue baking, stirring once halfway through, for 10 to 12 minutes more, or until the matzo browns and the walnuts and coconut are toasted. The mixture will look wet, but will crisp up as it cools. (Total baking time is 20 to 22 minutes.)

4. Remove from the oven and stir in the raisins. Cool completely, stirring occasionally, to break up any large chunks. Adapted from “Modern Jewish Cooking”

Recipe for Passover triple-chocolate biscotti

(Paula Shoyer for the boston globe)

Makes 24 to 36

4ounces bittersweet chocolate, chopped
cups sugar
½cup vegetable oil
2eggs
½cup unsweetened cocoa powder
1tablespoon potato starch
cups ground almonds or almond meal
¼teaspoon salt
1cup semi-sweet chocolate chips

1. Set the oven at 350 degrees. Line a large rimmed baking sheet with parchment paper.

2. In a heatproof bowl large enough to hold all the batter, place the bittersweet chocolate. Set the bowl over a saucepan that has about 1 inch of water in it. Over medium heat, bring the water to a gentle simmer. Stir the chocolate as it melts. As soon as it has melted, remove the bowl from the saucepan. Dry the bottom of the bowl.

3. To the melted chocolate, whisk in the sugar and oil. Add the eggs and mix well. Stir in the cocoa powder, potato starch, ground almonds or meal, and salt. Mix until thoroughly blended. Stir in the chocolate chips.

4. Divide the dough in half. Working with one half at a time, place it on the baking sheet and shape into a narrow loaf about 9-by-3-inches, wetting your hands with water to keep the dough from sticking.. Position the loaves 3 inches apart; they spread during baking.

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5. Bake for 30 minutes. Remove the pan from the oven (leave it on) and cool the loaves on the sheet for 10 minutes. Carefully transfer the loaves to a cutting board. Using a chef’s knife, cut each loaf into 3/4- to 1-inch-thick slices.

6. Return the biscotti, cut side up, to the baking sheet. Continue baking for 12 to 14 minutes, or until the cookies feel mostly firm on the outside but soft on the inside. (Check them after 10 to 12 minutes so they don’t overbake.)

7. Cool for about 5 minutes, then carefully transfer the biscotti to a wire rack to cool completely.

Adapted from “The New Passover Menu”

Recipe for matzo balls

Simmering matzo balls in rich chicken stock gives them a great flavor; the stock used to cook the matzo balls will be too cloudy to serve. You can also simmer the balls in salted water.

3/4 cup matzo meal

1/2 teaspoon kosher salt

3 eggs, separated

3 tablespoons schmaltz (chicken fat) or vegetable oil

3 tablespoons club soda or hot chicken broth

1 1/2 tablespoons grated raw onion

1 small clove garlic, crushed

2 quarts rich chicken stock (not the soup for serving)

1. In a bowl, combine the matzo meal and salt.

2. In another bowl, beat the egg yolks until thick and light colored. Beat in the schmaltz or vegetable oil, club soda or hot chicken broth, onion, and garlic until well mixed.

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3. In a separate bowl, beat the egg whites until stiff but not dry peaks form. Fold the whites gently into the yolk mixture.

4. Fold the egg mixture into the matzo meal mixture, stirring just to combine it (handle the batter as little as possible). Cover tightly with plastic wrap and refrigerate several hours or overnight until very cold.

5. Bring the chicken stock to a simmer. With moist hands, roll the batter into walnut-sized balls. Drop matzo balls into the simmering stock. The matzo balls should rise to the surface almost instantly. Cover and simmer very gently for 15 minutes or until just cooked through. The liquid should barely bubble.

6. With a slotted spoon, transfer the matzo balls from the pot into bowls. Ladle chicken soup (not the stock from cooking the matzo balls) on top.

Adapted from Dawn LaRochelle

Recipe for Passover walnut-wine cake

(Sally Pasley Vargas for The Boston Globe)

Makes one 10-inch cake

Framingham resident Janice Gould sent a Passover wine cake to The Recipe Box Project (recipebox@globe.com), a collection of readers’ dishes. Her confection uses a combination of cake meal (finely ground matzo) and potato starch.Gould, who grew up in Mattapan, writes that her mother, Ethel Berger, who married in 1939 and learned to cook from a kindly neighbor, made walnut-wine cake at Passover. “My dad and I loved this dessert,” she writes.

1cup Passover cake meal
½cup potato starch
½teaspoon ground cinnamon
8extra-large eggs, separated, at room
temperature
cups sugar
1teaspoon lemon juice
1cup walnuts, finely chopped
½cup red Passover wine

1. Set a rack in the lower third of the oven. Set the oven at 350 degrees. Have on hand a 10-inch tube pan (do not grease).

2. In a bowl, whisk together the cake meal, potato starch, and cinnamon.

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3. In an electric mixer on medium speed, beat the egg whites for about 2 minutes, or until they are foamy. Add the lemon juice. Increase the speed to medium-high. Gradually add ½ cup of the sugar, 1 tablespoon at a time, and beat about 45 seconds. Continue beating for 30 seconds longer, until they form soft peaks. Remove the whites from the mixer bowl.

4. Without rinsing the mixer bowl, add the egg yolks. Beat well for 2 minutes. Gradually add the remaining 1 cup sugar, 1 tablespoon at a time, and continue beating about 2 more minutes, or until the eggs are thick and light colored.

5. With the mixer set on its lowest speed, gradually blend in the wine. When it is incorporated, gradually add the cake meal mixture just until combined.

6. Remove the bowl from the mixer stand and use a large metal spoon to fold in ⅓ of the egg whites. Repeat two more times until no white patches show in the batter. Fold in the nuts.

7. Bake the cake on the lower shelf of the oven for 45 to 50 minutes, or until the top springs back when pressed lightly with a fingertip. Turn the cake upside down onto a cooling rack and leave until cold.

8. Slide a knife between the cake and the pan to release it around the edges and the center tube. Turn out onto a cake plate and serve with fresh berries. Janice Gould. Adapted from Ethel Berger

Recipe for Passover walnut torte with mocha cream

(Sally Pasley Vargas for The Boston Globe)

Serves 12

A two-layer cake made with ground walnuts and covered with whipped cream flavored with coffee and chocolate, this torte has no leavening agent, which makes it ideal for the Passover table. Beating air into the yolks and whites is the key to this confection. The somewhat unusual technique of folding three layers together — the yolks, the whites, and a ground walnut-orange mixture — with the lightest (the whites) on top, is a way of retaining as much air as possible. It is worth the extra touch of coating walnuts with chocolate for the garnish. It turns an ordinary cake into a festive dessert. To pipe whipped cream rosettes, you need a pastry bag and star tip.

TORTE

Butter (for the pans)
cups walnuts
6tablespoons potato starch
1tablespoon unsweetened cocoa powder
1tablespoon ground cinnamon
Grated rind of 1 large orange
5eggs, separated, plus 1 extra white
½teaspoon salt
¾cup sugar

1. Place a rack in the middle of the oven; set the temperature at 375 degrees. Butter two 9-by-1½-inch cake pans. Line the bottoms with parchment paper cut to fit them and butter the paper.

2. In a food processor, combine the walnuts, potato starch, cocoa powder, cinnamon, and orange rind. Pulse the mixture until the walnuts are coarsely chopped. Transfer to a bowl large enough to hold all the batter.

3. In an electric mixer, beat the whites until foamy. Add the salt and gradually add ¼ cup of the sugar. Beat at medium-high speed for 4 to 5 minutes, or until the whites hold soft peaks. With a rubber spatula, scrape them into another bowl.

4. In the mixer bowl, beat the yolks and remaining ½ cup sugar at medium high speed for 4 minutes, or until the mixture is thick and light in color. Place it on the walnut mixture. Place the whites on top and gently fold the three layers together.

5. Divide the batter between the pans, smoothing the top. Transfer to the oven and bake for 20 to 25 minutes, or until the tops spring back when touched with a fingertip and the cake pulls away from the sides of the pans.

6. Set the pans on wire racks to cool for 20 minutes. Turn them out and set them right side up on the racks to cool completely.

CREAM

2cups heavy cream
3tablespoons sugar
2ounces bittersweet chocolate, coarsely chopped
2teaspoons instant espresso coffee

1. In a saucepan, bring ½ cup of the heavy cream and the sugar to a boil, stirring to dissolve the sugar. Remove from the heat.

2. Add the chocolate and coffee; use a whisk to stir thoroughly. Transfer the mixture to a bowl, cover, and refrigerate until cool.

3. In an electric mixer, beat the cool chocolate mixture with the remaining 1½ cups cream until it holds stiff peaks.

4. In a pastry bag fitted with a star tip, put 1 cup of the mocha cream; refrigerate.

5. Remove the parchment paper from the cake rounds. Place 1 round right side up on a serving platter. Spread mocha cream evenly over the top. Place the other layer upside down on the cream and press down lightly. Cover the top and the sides of the cake with the remaining cream. Dip a metal spatula into very hot water. Wipe it dry and very quickly smooth the top and sides of the cake.

6. Use the cream in the pastry bag to pipe 12 evenly spaced rosettes along the top edge. Refrigerate the torte for 2 hours.

GARNISH

2ounces bittersweet chocolate, coarsely chopped
12walnut halves

1. In a small bowl over a pan of hot, but not boiling, water, melt the chocolate. Dip the ends of the walnuts into the chocolate so they are coated ¾ of the way. Place them on parchment paper and refrigerate to set the chocolate.

2. Before serving, place a walnut half on each
rosette. Ingrid Lysgaard

Recipe for Chinese charoset

(Joanne Rathe/Globe Staff)

Makes 4 cups

Andy Goldfarb drew on his travels in Asia to create this charoset to honor Chinese Jews.

4apples, chopped with skin intact
½pound pitted dates (about 1½ cups), chopped
½cup pine nuts
3tablespoons soy sauce
4tablespoons honey
Juice of 1 orange


1.
In a large saucepan over medium heat, combine the apples, dates, pine nuts, soy sauce, honey, and orange. Cook, stirring occasionally, for 5 minutes, or until apples and dates are soft and liquid has nearly evaporated.

2. Cool to room temperature before serving. Adapted from Breaking
Matzo.com