Friday, April 25, 2014

Fun Playing With Passover Food With Family

And so we come to the reason for the trip east in the first place - preparing Seder delectibles to share with my family! My nephew came home from school and the game was on.

First order of business for Saturday: a 20 quart pot of chicken soup. 

While the soup bubbled, and before starting on the Gefilte Fish, we paused for an amazing lunch treat. My parents have new neighbors in the house behind theirs. The neighbors have chickens, which are allowed to free range all over their properties. This morning, the doorbell rang and we were presented with a half-dozen just-collected eggs by the two adorable children of the neighbors, with a delightful hand drawn card that made Mom's day. Those eggs did not last long:

Soft Boiled Fresh Egg
On Sunday, we turned our attention to the brisket, matzoh balls, and hard boiled eggs. Cleveland's own Mister Brisket provided the beef:

Here, the meat has cooked a bit over half way, and we sliced it then chilled it, to finish cooking before the first Seder. This is the first cut or flat. I also brought some of the deckle, or point, just to be sure we'd have enough (we had plenty, so I brought that back home with me).

Here's a look at the finished matzoh ball in soup; I took this after I got back to Cleveland:

And finally, the eggs. Yoda, um, Mom took charge of those; even she marveled at how hard it is to peel farm fresh eggs even if you cook them perfectly (Mom's Passover claim to fame was hard cooking and peeling over 500 eggs at a time for the Hebrew School Model Seders when I was kid):

And so, it was time for the first Seder in my parents' house in . . . I don't know how many years.

Mom, Justin, Andrea, Jeff, Stan, Daniel, Bob
The only family member missing is my sister Chaya. She couldn't make it up from Florida. But it was great to see my two nephews!

Seder Plate


Dad made the salad

Baked Cauliflower with Scape Pesto (no cheese)
Unfortunately, here is where I got too busy serving to take pictures.

Potato Kugel
This leftovers photo came after I got home; I never did take a picture of the Farfel Pudding, which is one of my Passover staples. Because I couldn't get apricots at the two stores I looked in (who knew apricots in natural juice were so rare?) I used a can of mango instead - and liked it a lot better; mango and coconut oil (in place of margarine) will now be de rigueur in my Farfel Pudding.

We enjoyed two holiday breakfasts with my parents before we left. First, Dad made Matzoh Brei; note the coconut oil taking the place of the traditional onion Nyafat that is no longer made.

Perhaps Bain Capital, who's Sankaty Advisors Unit just bought Manischewitz (which had bought up Rokeach, maker of Nyafat, several years ago), will bring Nyafat back. Who needs Nyafat? I sweated some onions in the coconut oil to simulate the Nyafat, and it wasn't a bad knock off.

At Dad's request, I scooped the onion pieces before out of the pan before he put the raw food into the fat, and then served them on the side. Delicious!

For our last meal Wednesday morning, Dad asked me to make Matzoh Pancakes. We served these with berry jam and strawberries, neither of which wound up in the photos.

Matzoh Meal Pancakes

And then we left.

Fun Playing With Food and Family - I could not ask for anything more. Wishing you the best of this spring and holiday season!

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