I know, it’s still Pesach, but there are some good things you can eat!

Well, it is the 5th of 8 nights of Passover, and you are saying to yourself, “when I am not going to have the unleavened bread restriction.”  Well, cheer up.  I’ve got some great news for you.  I’ve found a new and wonderful dessert, and I’ve brought new life to an old favorite of a side dish.

First, Passover Spinach Casserole.  I think this recipe started its life in an ORT cookbook, and we have been making it for years.  This year, I made it with fresh spinach, not frozen, and what a difference!

The ways and means:

2 pounds fresh spinach

4 tablespoons butter (or if you must, pareve margarine)

2 cloves garlic, minced

2 tablespoons potato starch

1 cup kosher for passover onion soup (don’t bother to use the whole packet, which makes a quart of soup, use 1/4 of the packet {1 tablespoon} dissolved in 1 cup of hot water).

2 large eggs, beaten

½ cup matzo meal

salt and pepper to taste (use salt minimally, as the onion soup will be salty)

Blanche the spinach in water at a rolling boil for just 1 minute, then shock in ice water to stop cooking.  Drain the spinach well.  You will end up with just about 20 ounces of spinach (the same amount of frozen spinach from 2 10 ounces packages).  Chop finely with a chef’s knife (a food processor will be overkill).

Melt the ½ stick of butter in a saucepan, add the garlic and saute for 30 to 60 seconds, remove from heat and add the onion soup and then the potato starch.  Whisk to combine well.

Preheat the oven to 350 degrees F.

Beat the eggs and add them to the chopped spinach.  Add the matzo meal to the spinach, mix well, and then add the butter/garlic/soup mixture.  Mix thoroughly.  Add salt and pepper to taste, and spread into an 8 X 8 inch greased pan.  Bake for 25 minutes.  Remove, cut into squares, and serve.  Makes about 12 servings.


Now, the new dessert:

I saw this recipe on Epicurious and it sounded good.  However, it called for an Orange-Champagne Sabayon with Strawberries.  I thought “Hey, here’s a chance to be more 21st century”, so I get out my ISI whipper and get to work.

1st, the pie recipe:

Truffle pie:

  • 1/4 cup almond meal or very finely ground almonds
  • 1/4 cup matzo cake meal
  • 1/4 teaspoon salt
  • 1 pound plus 1 ounce bittersweet chocolate (do not exceed 61% cacao), chopped
  • 6 tablespoons (3/4 stick) plus 1 tablespoon unsalted pareve margarine
  • 3 large eggs
  • 3/4 cup sugar
  • 1 tablespoon vanilla extract
  • 1 tablespoon finely grated orange peel
  • Sliced almonds, lightly toasted

Unless you must use margarine to make the dessert pareve, forget about it and use unsalted butter instead.

For truffle pie:
Preheat oven to 350°F. Coat 9-inch glass pie dish with margarine. Whisk first 3 ingredients in small bowl. Combine 1 pound chocolate and 6 tablespoons margarine in large microwave-safe bowl.

Microwave in 20-to 30-second intervals until smooth, stirring often. Set aside to cool.

Beat eggs in large bowl 1 minute. Add sugar and vanilla. Beat until thick and pale yellow, 3 to 4 minutes. Beat in orange peel, then chocolate mixture. Reduce speed to low; beat in dry ingredients. Transfer batter to pie dish; place on rimmed baking sheet.

Place baking sheet with pie in oven. Bake pie until cracked on top and tester inserted into center comes out with moist crumbs attached, 45 to 50 minutes. Cool to room temperature (center will fall).

Combine 1 ounce chopped chocolate and 1 tablespoon margarine in microwave-safe bowl. Microwave in 15-second intervals until glaze is smooth, stirring often.

Drizzle glaze over pie. Sprinkle with almonds. DO AHEAD: Can be made 1 day ahead. Chill until cold. Tent with foil; chill.

Read More http://www.epicurious.com/recipes/food/views/Chocolate-Truffle-Pie-with-Orange-Champagne-Sabayon-and-Strawberries-364650#ixzz2OyrnjY2Z

Ok, so the pie ends up looking like this:


Using a paper cornetIMG_0284 makes it easy to distribute the chocolate/butter mixture on the top of the pie.IMG_0283  I used a little too much sliced almonds, but it came out like this:IMG_0285

Now, instead of the sabayon, I made of strawberry foam with the cream whipper.

12 ounces strawberries, hulled and sliced

Juice of one orange

1 ½ tablespoons Agave Nectar

Heavy cream

Place the strawberries, orange juice and agave nectar in a saucepan and reduce the liquids by 2/3rds.  Process the mixture in a blender or food processor.

Strain the mixture through a fine sieve, reserving the mixture still in the sieve.  The thick liquid puree (now free of strawberry seeds) is placed in a measuring cup and heavy cream is added to the 500 milliliter mark.  I used a 0.5 liter whipper, so I filled the whipper to the ½ liter mark, and charged the whipper with 1 N2O cartridge, shaking vigorously 5 to 6 times.  Into the refrigerator for at least 4 hours, or overnight.


Take a smear of the reserved seeded puree on the plate.  Place a large sliced strawberry on the puree.  Add a slice of the pie, a squirt of foam and presto:IMG_0292

Ok, you don’t have the molecular gastronomy kit.  Just make a flavored whipped cream with the puree (don’t bother removing the seeds) and heavy cream, beaten together.  The pie itself is very rich, so a small slice goes well with the side of cream/foam.

It sounds like a lot of work, but it is worth it.  Happy Pesach!


About trustforce

A well trained amateur chef, I have learned by taking some master classes and doing a lot of reading and experimentation. I cook and enjoy many different cuisines. The fun is getting it right, with great taste and presentation. The smells and appearance add to the pleasure of eating well. I can enjoy a great Chicago style hot dog or an Italian beef sandwich, or have equal pleasure from haut cuisine. All my recipe postings are extensively tested by me unless I state otherwise. I will sometimes post a recipe that sounds like it should be good before I actually make it myself, but I will always come back and revise the "untested" recipe after I've made it, with valid comments to keep old posts accurate and current. If I am not the originator of a recipe I will always correctly attribute the source author, even if I have modified the recipe. I will occasionally post reviews of local restaurants on the site. The big problem that I have with eating out is that I know too much about restaurants and I find it hard to ignore or forgive sloppy technique or bad ingredients. I pull no punches in my restaurant reviews!
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One Response to I know, it’s still Pesach, but there are some good things you can eat!

  1. Erin Kelly says:

    Wow looks amazing! Very impressive.

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