A few more Passover recipes that meet my criteria for this year, nothing fussy, ingredients that are easy to find, make-ahead friendly, and of course full of flavor. Wishing you all a meaningful Seder and some healthy time with family.

Braised Short Ribs with Tomatoes and Mushrooms

Photo by Dash of Savory

Serves 8

Make this in the crockpot or on the stove top, it's super simple, make-ahead friendly and full of flavor. I actually make it all year round. For the crock pot method, just place everything in the crock-pot and cook on high for 7 - 8 hours. Skim off the fat before serving. I do miss the browning of the meat and all the flavor that adds but you cannot beat the ease of making it in the crock-pot. Feel free to add carrots or parsnips to this too.

  • ¼ cup extra-virgin olive oil (use 2 tablespoons if making in crock-pot)
  • 1 onion, chopped
  • 2 tablespoons fresh chopped garlic
  • 5 lbs. bone-in short ribs (silver tip roast or french roast)
  • 1 lb button mushrooms, sliced thick
  • 1 (29 ounce) can diced tomatoes, with juice
  • 1 cup red wine
  • 1 cup beef broth
  • ½ teaspoon dried thyme
  • 1 teaspoon kosher salt
  • ½ teaspoon ground black pepper
  • Garnish: fresh parsley, optional

Heat oil in a large stockpot over medium-high heat. Add onion and garlic and cook until softened, about 4 minutes. Add meat and brown on both sides, about 6 minutes total. Remove meat.

Add mushrooms, tomatoes with juice, wine, broth, thyme, salt and pepper, and stir, scraping up browned bits from the bottom of the pan. Bring to boil and add meat back to pot, reduce heat to simmer and cook, partially covered 3 to 3 ½ hours, until meat is very tender. Serve warm with pan juices.

Best made a day or two ahead of time. Scrape off fat, before reheating and serving.

Flounder with Fresh Tomato Caper Sauce

Photo by cucina grandinetti

Serves 6

This is adapted from an Ina Garten recipe. I make it all year round. Don’t be afraid of the fennel (even non-fennel lovers), it adds a wonderful flavor and is mellow in the recipe.

The sauce is extra good if made a day or two ahead of time. Fish should be prepared as close to serving time as possible but can be purchased a day ahead of preparing. Keep fresh fish very cold in the refrigerator. Meatier fish, like the cod pictured, require longer cooking times, about 14 - 16 minutes.

  • 1 chopped yellow onion
  • 1 cup chopped fennel (this mellows in cooking and is flavorful, don’t omit)
  • 3 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil plus more for brushing fish
  • 3 cloves minced garlic
  • 28 ounces canned plum tomatoes, drained
  • 1 teaspoon kosher salt
  • 3/4 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
  • 2 tablespoons vegetable stock or water
  • 2 tablespoons dry white wine
  • 1/2 cup chopped fresh basil leaves
  • 2 tablespoons capers, drained
  • 6 flounder fillets (about 2 1/2 pounds), or red snapper, sole, tilapia, cod or other white fish

For the sauce, cook the onions and fennel in the oil in a large saute pan on medium-low heat for 10 minutes, until the vegetables are soft. Add the garlic and cook for 30 seconds. Add the drained tomatoes, smashing them in the pan with a fork, then add salt and pepper. Simmer on low heat for 15 minutes. Add the stock and white wine and simmer for 10 more minutes to reduce the liquid. Add the basil, and capers and cook for 1 minute to heat through.

Preheat the oven to 350°F. Line a baking sheet with parchment paper and spray with non-stick cooking spray. Place fish in a single layer on a baking sheet and brush with olive oil, and sprinkle with salt and pepper. Bake for 11- 13 minutes (longer for meatier fish) until fish is opaque and cooked through.

To serve: Serve fish with tomato sauce poured on top. Sprinkle with additional basil. Can be served warm or at room temperature.

Lemon Garlic Roast Potatoes

Photo by Cravings of a lunatic

Serves 8

The lemon juice, zest and garlic are an extra zing of flavor to traditional roasted potatoes.

  • 4 lbs fingerling potatoes or baby potatoes, sliced or whole depending on personal preference and size
  • ½ - ¾ cup extra-virgin olive oil, divided
  • 2 teaspoons kosher salt
  • ½ teaspoon ground black pepper
  • ½ cup fresh lemon juice
  • 4 teaspoons lemon zest (zest from 2 lemons)
  • 6 tablespoons fresh chopped dill
  • 20 garlic cloves, sliced

Preheat the oven to 375°F. Line two large baking sheets with aluminum foil and grease with non-stick cooking spray.

In a large bowl, toss potatoes with ¼ cup olive oil, salt and pepper. Spread potatoes on baking sheets in a single layer and roast for 30 minutes.

In a small bowl, whisk remaining ¼ (or a bit more) cup olive oil, lemon juice and zest, dill, and garlic. Pour over potatoes and toss. Roast an additional, 20 - 30 minutes, until lightly browned and soft in the middle. Season with additional salt and pepper.

Simple Red Leaf Salad with Red Peppers and Candied Nuts

Serves 6

The dressing is both sweet and zesty. Reducing the balsamic vinegar concentrates the flavors and gives it a bold finish. Use any salad ingredients you like, but combine crunchy, savory, and sweet for a well-rounded umami dish.

Dressing

  • ¼ cup balsamic vinegar
  • 2 tablespoons brown sugar
  • 3 tablespoons lemon juice
  • ½ cup olive oil
  • 1 teaspoon kosher salt
  • ¼ teaspoon ground black pepper

Salad

  • 7 cups mixed red and green leaf lettuce or any lettuce of your choice
  • 1 cup sliced red pepper
  • ¼ cup thinly sliced red onion
  • 1 cup candied nuts, chopped

For the dressing:

In a small saucepan, whisk balsamic vinegar, brown sugar, and lemon juice until slightly thickened, about 5 minutes. Turn off heat and whisk in olive oil, salt and pepper. Cool before serving.

For the salad:

In a large bowl, place lettuce, peppers, onions and candied nuts. Pour dressing over salad, toss and serve immediately.

Lemon Mousse with Berries

Serves 8

This can also be placed into a store-bought Passover pie crust. It would also be good with crumbled macaroon topping or a potato starch crumble. If you can find Meyer lemons, which are in season, just them for this recipe.

  • 1 tablespoon finely grated lemon zest
  • ½ cup fresh lemon juice (Meyer lemons if you can find them)
  • ½ cup (1 stick) chilled unsalted margarine, cut into pieces, divided
  • ½ cup sugar, divided
  • 4 large egg yolks
  • 1 large egg
  • ½ cup chilled non-dairy cream
  • 1 cup strawberries
  • 1 cup blueberries
  • 2 tablespoons sugar
  • 1 tablespoon balsamic vinegar

Lemon Mousse

Bring lemon zest and juice, ¼ cup margarine, and ¼ cup sugar to a simmer over medium heat in a medium saucepan, stirring to dissolve sugar. Remove from heat.

Whisk egg yolks, egg, and remaining ¼ cup sugar in a small bowl until pale and thick, about 2 minutes. Whisking constantly, slowly pour hot lemon mixture into egg mixture. Transfer back to the saucepan and cook over medium-low heat, whisking constantly, until mixture is thickened and coats the back of a spoon, about 5 minutes. Remove from heat and add remaining ¼ cup margarine, whisking until melted and smooth.

Transfer lemon curd to a bowl and cover with plastic wrap, pressing plastic directly onto the surface. Chill until cold, at least 2 hours.

When ready to serve, whip cream in a small bowl to soft peaks and gently fold into lemon curd.

In a medium bowl, stir strawberries and blueberries with sugar and balsamic vinegar. Let it sit for about 10 minutes.

To serve: Place lemon curd in decorative bowls. Spoon berries and sauce over mousse.

Do Ahead: Lemon curd can be made 3 days ahead. Cover and chill.