Thursday, May 1, 2008

Cooking for the last days of Passover

We had a few more guests for the last days of Pesach, which was nice. Of course, this required a lot more cooking, but I had help from my sister and nieces who were visiting. Nice to not be cooking alone in the kitchen!

Part of the purpose of this blog is to keep track of various menus and recipes. The menu was a little restricted due to a visiting pregnant sister who is on a strict diet. So here's what is what was on the menu for the last days of the holiday (Saturday last week, and Sunday this week):

Night Seuda I – 5 adults + 3 children
Appetizer: Gefilte Fish
Soup: *Chicken soup w/*knaidlach (matzo balls)
Main: Primavera Chicken, p 109 PBD - people loved it, but I'm never a fan of italian dressing on chicken. Made it because my sister nixed recipes with fruit in them.
Side 1: Potato knishes (paper) - grand success. Doubled the recipe, which was way too much.
Side 2: *Zucchini-Kishke Kugel (paper) - This was horrible. No repeat!
Dessert: Brownies (made by my sister, pretty good for Pesach brownies)

Lunch I – 7 adults + 3 children
Appetizer: Salmon Gefilte Fish
Main: Chicken Cutlets with ground nuts (my sister winged this recipe, making a combination of ground nuts, matzo meal and various spices. They were pretty good.)
Side 1: Cold cuts
Side 2: Beef Bourguignon, p. 154 PBD - WOW. I didn't know that something that is just basically a beef soup could be so amazing. I'm sure that the 2 cups of wine had something to do with it (I doubled the liquids to stretch the soup for 10 people). It was a little too "adult" for some people, but those with more sophisticated palates liked it. Mmmmm. Plus, I'm proud that I made a good recipe with a title that I can't even pronounce ;). Side 3: Green Salad
Side 4: Cucumber Salad
Side 5: Leftover potato knishes
Dessert: Cake (I can't remember what I actually served for dessert. I know I didn't bake a

Night Seuda II – 6 adults + 3 children
Appetizer: The store was sold out of the fish I wanted. In fact, all I could get was a box of frozen tilapia, and a box of frozen flounder. I made a "fish in lemon sauce" recipe that was ok, not great. I prefer the recipe from The New York Times Passover Cookbook.Soup: Butternut Squash Soup, p. 103 S&S - Good, but as usual, my husband was making comments about "baby food". Pfft. I like it!
Main: Braised Beef and Onions, paper
Side 1: *Vegetable Puree, p. 118 PBD
Side 2: Tzimmes x2, paper
Dessert: *Apple Sauce - homemade, delicious.

Lunch II – 5 adults + 3 children
Appetizer: Grapefruit
Main: Balsamic-Glazed Salmon Fillets (paper) - I got lots of compliments, but I personally did not like them.
Side 1: Cheese Latkes, p. 225 S&S The recipe seemed really thick, so my sister and I went to town. We added milk, then more sugar and honey after the first batch seemed bland. Once we finished messing with it the latkes were amazing.
Side 2: Roasted Garlic Asparagus, p. 203 PBD
Side 3: Salad
Dessert: Chocolate Pudding (Yes, from a mix. Shut up.)

And then, after all this cooking, I said goodbye to my family members who left immediately after the holiday, and then was up until 4:00 am, washing and putting away all my Pesach dishes, and putting my kitchen back together.

I also spent 3 hours playing Star Wars Monopoly with my nephew in the afternoon. Am I a wonderful aunt, or what? Just trying to build some good memories with the nieces and nephews. He's already 11, so he won't be interested in doing this for too much longer.

I lost.

On purpose.

3 hours is waaaayyyy too long.