This week, I’m sharing my son’s favorite lamb chop recipe, an easy chicken that’s part of every repertoire, a beautiful carrot dish, and a show-stopper, fan favorite dessert. We might not be cooking yet, but planning makes the cooking so much easier so I’m making my menus and my ingredient lists as I test and perfect each of these recipes. Happy Prepping.

Caramelized Onion and Garlic Chicken

Serves 5

This is just classic and delicious. Make ahead friendly and pleasing to all guests.

  • 2 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil
  • 2 onions, sliced
  • 6 cloves garlic, sliced thinly
  • ⅓ cup brown sugar
  • 2 tablespoons white wine vinegar
  • 1 chicken cut into pieces
  • 1 teaspoon kosher salt
  • ½ teaspoon ground black pepper

Heat 1 tablespoon olive oil in a large skillet over medium-low heat. Add the onion and garlic. Cook, stirring, for 10 minutes, or until soft. Stir in sugar and vinegar and cook for 6 to 7 minutes. Remove from heat.

Preheat the oven to 425°F. Oil a baking dish with 1 tablespoon of olive oil and place the chicken, bone side down, in the dish and season with salt and pepper. Spread the onion and garlic mixture over the top of the chicken. Bake for 20 to 25 minutes, or until the chicken reaches an internal temperature of 170°F. Cover loosely with foil if the onions are getting too dark toward the end of the cooking time.

Spiced and Rubbed Rack of Lamb with Passover Gremolata

Israeli couscous in the corner of the picture is NOT kosher for Passover

Serves 4, can be doubled

One passover gremolata recipe to use in two recipes in this post, the lamb and the skillet roasted carrots. I use this gremolata to add flavor and crunch all year round. It’s easy to make with passover panko crumbs or crumbled matzo farfel and adds that texture and taste that is sometimes missing in Passover dishes. It keeps for weeks in a zip-lock bag or in a covered container.

  • 1 rack of lamb (8 bones), trimmed
  • 2 teaspoons kosher salt
  • 1 tablespoon cocoa powder
  • 1 tablespoon light brown sugar
  • 2 teaspoons smoked paprika or paprika
  • 1 teaspoon ground cumin
  • ¼ teaspoon cinnamon
  • ⅛ teaspoon nutmeg
  • ½ teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
  • 2 tablespoon cottonseed oil
  • 2 tablespoons finely chopped fresh flat-leaf parsley
  • 1 tablespoon finely minced lemon zest
  • 1 clove garlic, finely grated

Gremolata:

  • 2 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil
  • 3 tablespoons PASSOVER panko crumbs
  • 2 teaspoons maple syrup
  • ¼ teaspoon kosher salt
  • ¼ teaspoon ground black pepper
  • 2 tablespoons chopped fresh parsley

Position a rack in the center of the oven, and heat the oven to 400°F. Pat the lamb dry with paper towels. Season all over with kosher salt, and let sit for 5 minutes. Meanwhile, in a small bowl, combine the cocoa powder, sugar, paprika, cumin, cinnamon, nutmeg, and pepper. Sprinkle the spice mixture all over the meat, lightly patting onto the meat to adhere.

Heat the oil in a large skillet over medium-high heat. Add the lamb, and lightly sear on all sides, adjusting the heat as needed to prevent the spices from burning, about 3 minutes total. Transfer the lamb to a large rimmed baking sheet, and roast until an instant-read thermometer registers 120°F when inserted into the thickest part of the meat, about 15 to 20 minutes.

Meanwhile, prepare the gremolata. Meanwhile, make gremolata: In a large skillet heat oil over medium heat. Add Passover panko, maple syrup, salt and pepper and cook until panko is lightly browned. Turn off heat. Add parsley and stir.

Transfer lamb to a cutting board and let rest for 10 minutes. Slice into chops. Place warm on a platter and sprinkle with warm gremolata. Serve immediately.

Skillet Seared Carrots with Honey & Gremolata

Photo by Bojon Gourmet

Serves 6

Carrots become sweeter when skillet roasted and cooked. The honey adds extra sweetness and the gremolata has that extra amazing crunch.

  • ½ cup water
  • 1 teaspoon kosher salt
  • 1 ½ lbs large carrots, colored carrots or baby colored carrots, peeled and if using large carrots, cut into 4 inch lengths in even pieces
  • 2 tablespoons canola oil
  • 1 tablespoon honey

Gremolata:

  • 2 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil
  • 3 tablespoons PASSOVER panko crumbs or coarsely chopped nuts
  • 2 teaspoons maple syrup
  • ¼ teaspoon kosher salt
  • ¼ teaspoon ground black pepper
  • 2 tablespoons chopped fresh parsley

Mix water and salt in a 12-inch skillet and dissolve salt. Place carrots in a skillet arranging carrots with cut side down and as many in a single layer as possible. Drizzle with oil. Bring to a boil over medium-high heat. Add cover and cook without moving carrots, until carrots are crisp-tender and water has mostly evaporated, 8 – 10 minutes.

Uncover and gently mix so they fit onto a single layer. Drizzle with honey, then continue to cook, uncovered, and undisturbed, until water evaporates and carrots are nicely browned, about 4 minutes. Flip carrots gently and cook for another 2 minutes for second side to brown a little.

Meanwhile, make gremolata: In a large skillet heat oil over medium heat. Add Passover panko, maple syrup, salt and pepper and cook until panko is lightly browned. Turn off heat. Add parsley and stir.

Transfer carrots to serving platter and top with gremolata

No-Bake Chocolate Mousse – a showstopper

Photo by Scott Phillips

Servings: 10 to 12

Make ahead, no bake, and extra delicious, this is a winner for Passover or all year round. This impressive and insanely delicious dessert requires only six ingredients, but that can be your little secret. The ingredients are simple enough that you may have the on hand. I use chocolate macaroons for the crust but feel free to use Passover wafer cookies or any other crumbled cookie. I know this is not a healthy dessert, and check back for those options in the coming weeks, but it’s an extra special treat.

  • 2 tablespoons unsalted margarine or butter, melted
  • 1 ½ – 2 cups chocolate macaroons, or store-bought Passover wafer or cookie
  • 9 ounces semisweet chocolate, chopped (about 1-1/2 cups); more for garnish
  • 1 ½ teaspoons Passover vanilla extract
  • Pinch kosher salt
  • 3 ¾ cups Pareve whipping cream
  • Grease a 9-inch springform pan.

Pulse the macaroons/cookies in a food processor until they resemble wet sand, 20 to 30 seconds; you will have about 1-3/4 cups. Transfer to a small bowl and mix in the margarine. Spread the crumbs in the pan, cover with plastic wrap, and press evenly into the bottom. Refrigerate.

Combine the chocolate, 1/2 teaspoon of the vanilla, and the salt in a large bowl. In a small saucepan, bring 3/4 cup of the cream to a bare simmer. Pour the cream over the chocolate, let sit for 1 minute, then whisk until smooth. Cover and refrigerate for about 30 minutes to cool.

Beat 1 1/2 cups of the pareve whipping cream in a medium bowl with an electric mixer on medium-high speed to stiff peaks, about 2 minutes. Whisk the chocolate mixture to loosen it, and fold it into the whipped cream with a large silicone spatula until no streaks remain.

Carefully peel the plastic wrap off the crust and scrape the mousse into the pan, gently spreading it to the edges. Cover and refrigerate for at least 6 hours.

Just before serving, beat the remaining 1 1/2 cups pareve whipping cream and 1 teaspoon vanilla in a medium bowl to medium-stiff peaks. Run a knife around the pie to loosen its edges and then remove the side of the pan. Slide a spatula under the crust and transfer the pie to a serving plate. Mound the whipped cream over the mousse and top with chocolate curls, shards, or shavings. To serve, dip a knife into hot water and dry it before slicing.