Spiced Chickpea Soup

Spiced Chickpea SoupServes 8 – 10

Don’t let the name scare you. I remember when Jeff Nathan of Abigael’s Restaurant shared this recipe with me years ago; I was also hesitant to try it. Now, it’s part of my regular repertoire. It’s got tons of savory flavors, a bit Indian and Mediterranean, and is just altogether delicious. Trust me!

  • 3 tablespoons canola oil
  • ½ cup diced onion
  • 4 cloves garlic, chopped
  • 1 teaspoon garam masala (spice mixture available in major markets)
  • 1 teaspoon dried ground ginger
  • 2 (15 ounce) cans chickpeas, drained and rinsed
  • 1 cup canned crushed tomatoes
  • ½ cup apple juice
  • 1 (13.5 ounce) can coconut milk
  • 1 quart chicken or vegetable stock
  • ½ cup cilantro
  • ½ teaspoon kosher salt
  • ¼ teaspoon ground black pepper

Garnish, if desired drizzle with chili oil or S’rirachi sauce

Heat an 8 – 10 quart soup pot over medium heat. Add oil, then onions and cook until onions are translucent. Add garlic, garam masala and ginger, and stir for 1 – 2 minutes. Add chickpeas, tomatoes, apple juice, coconut milk and stock. Bring soup to a boil, then lower to simmer and cook, uncovered for 8 – 10 minutes.

Remove from heat. Add cilantro. With an immersion blender, puree soup until smooth. Add salt and pepper. If too thick, add some additional stock.

Serve warm. Drizzle with garnish, if desired.

Classic Pot Roast

Classic Pot RoastServes 8 – 10

This is as the title says classic, and also, rich, delicious, and perfect for Hanukkah. Make it a few days ahead of time, it gets better and better.


  • One 3 to 5-pound chuck roast or pot roast

  • 2 or 3 tablespoons olive oil

  • 2 whole onions, peeled and halved

  • 6 to 8 whole carrots, unpeeled, cut into 2-inch pieces

  • 1 cup red wine

  • 3 cups beef broth

  • 2 or 3 sprigs fresh rosemary

  • 2 or 3 sprigs fresh thyme
  • Salt and freshly ground black pepper

Preheat the oven to 275 degrees.

Generously salt and pepper the roast.

Heat olive oil in a large pot or Dutch oven over medium-high heat. Add the halved onions to the pot, browning them on both sides. Remove the onions to a plate.

Throw the carrots into the same very hot pot and toss them around a bit until slightly browned, about a minute or so. Reserve the carrots with the onions. If needed, add a bit more olive oil to the pot. Place the meat in the pot and sear it for about a minute on all sides until it is nice and brown all over. Remove the roast to a plate.

With the burner still on high, add red wine to deglaze the pot, scraping the bottom with a whisk. Place the roast back into the pot and add beef stock to cover the meat halfway. Return the onions, carrots and fresh herbs to liquid.

Cover, then roast for 3 hours for a 3-pound roast and 4 hours for 4- 5 pound roast. Cool and chill overnight. Scrape fat off the top of the meat. Rewarm and serve with carrots and onions.

Savory Green Beans with Almonds

Savory Green Beans with AlmondsServes 8

  • Kosher salt
  • 2 lb. green beans, trimmed
  • 1 tablespoon olive oil
  • 1/2 cup sliced almonds
  • 5 medium cloves garlic, minced
  • 2 tablespoon margarine
  • 1 tablespoon fresh lemon juice
  • Freshly ground black pepper

Bring a large pot of salted water to a boil. Add the beans and cook, stirring once, until crisp-tender, about 5 minutes. Drain.

Heat oil in a 12-inch skillet over low heat. Add almonds and cook, stirring, until golden, 3 minutes. Add garlic and cook until fragrant, 10 seconds; transfer to a plate.

Add margarine and cook, stirring, until it begins to brown, 3 minutes. Add the beans and toss to coat. Cook, stirring often, until tender, 4 minutes. Add the lemon juice; season to taste with salt and pepper. Serve the beans topped with the almonds.

Olive Oil and Garlic Whipped Potatoes

Olive Oil and Garlic Whipped Potatoes

Makes 8 servings

Roasted Garlic:

  • 1 large head garlic
  • 1 tablespoon olive oil
  • Potatoes:
  • 3 pounds potatoes, peeled or unpeeled, and cut into 2-inch pieces
  • ½ cup – 2/3 cup olive oil, divided
  • ½ cup soymilk
  • 1 ½ teaspoons kosher salt
  • ¼ teaspoon ground nutmeg (freshly grated if possible)
  • ¼ teaspoon black pepper
  • 3 tablespoons chopped fresh chives

To prepare the garlic: Preheat oven to 400°F. Slice the top off the head of the garlic, exposing the cloves. Place a large piece of aluminum foil under and around the garlic head. Drizzle olive oil over the garlic, allowing the oil to cover the garlic completely. Wrap tightly with the foil. Bake 45 minutes. Remove from oven to cool. When cool enough to handle, squeeze garlic out of skins and mash into a pulp. Set aside.

To prepare the potatoes: Place potatoes in a large stockpot; add enough water to cover and salt well. Bring to a boil over high heat; reduce to a simmer and cook until potatoes are very tender, about 30 minutes. Drain potatoes; transfer to a large bowl. Using a potato masher, mash potatoes until chunky.

Add reserved roasted garlic, ½ cup of the olive oil, soymilk, salt, nutmeg, and pepper to mashed potatoes; mix until chunky or smooth (whatever consistency you like).  Drizzle with olive oil, if desired; stir in chopped chives.

Serve warm.

Note: I like to use Yukon Gold potatoes or red potatoes for this dish. They are the best ones for mashed potatoes.

Babka Bread Pudding

Babka Bread PuddingServes 10

I originally saw this recipe in the New York Times and thought the idea sounded so rich and decadent that I had to try and make it pareve for a special occasion. The results are fantastic and you won’t need any excuse to make this or to eat the leftovers for breakfast.

  • ½ loaf challah, at least 1 day old
  • ½ loaf chocolate or cinnamon babka, at least 1 day old
  • 8 eggs
  • ¾ cup sugar
  • 2 cups non-dairy milk or soymilk
  • 1 cup pareve whipping cream
  • ⅛ teaspoon cinnamon
  • Pinch of salt
  • Serve with additional pareve whipped cream or pareve ice cream

Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Grease a deep 9-by-13-inch baking dish or oven-table pan. Cut the challah and babka into cubes, about 1 inch square.

In a very large bowl, whisk together eggs, sugar, non-dairy milk, pareve cream, cinnamon and salt. Add the cubed bread and gently mix together, using your hands or a rubber spatula, until the egg mixture is absorbed. Transfer to the prepared pan and distribute evenly, pressing gently to level the top. Bake for 45 minutes, or until firm and crusty on top.

Let rest at least 15 minutes before serving. Cut into squares or scoop with a large spoon. Serve with additional whipped cream or pareve ice cream.