Experiment with nut f lours, gluten-free starches

The Buffalo News - - TASTE - 8 serv­ings (makes about 14 small mat­zoh balls) 1 ¼ 2 1 2 1 1 2¼ 1 pound ground chicken cup no-salt-added chicken broth ta­ble­spoons ground al­monds ta­ble­spoon co­conut flour cloves gar­lic, crushed large egg ta­ble­spoon co­conut oil tea­spoons kosher salt, plus

ate your own top­pings with fresh and dried spices, toma­toes or cit­rus. Sim­ple is of­ten more fla­vor­ful.

Fo­cus on what you can eat

This hol­i­day could be the time when you start eat­ing more straight­for­ward food – grilled meats, chicken or fish, omelets and sal­ads.

In­stead of us­ing mat­zoh and cake meal to create crusts so we can have pizza and rolls dur­ing Passover, try nut flours, co­conut flour and gluten­free starches to make the foods you miss. The fla­vors are bet­ter with­out dry mat­zoh in­gre­di­ents.

Not-Quite Mat­zoh Ball Soup

Th­ese “mat­zoh” balls are gluten­free, made with ground chicken and almond flour. While it’s awk­ward to call them mat­zoh balls when they have no mat­zoh in them, they look just like the real deal, plus they are tasty and bet­ter for you.

Make ahead: The “mat­zoh” balls can be made ahead of time and re­frig­er­ated in an air­tight con­tainer, for up to one day.

From cook­book au­thor Paula Shoyer.

For the mat­zoh balls For the soup

For the “mat­zoh” balls: With your hands, mix to­gether the ground chicken, broth, ground al­monds, co­conut flour, gar­lic, egg, oil, salt and pep­per in a medium bowl. Cover with plas­tic wrap, and re­frig­er­ate for 2 hours and up to one day.

Wet your hands in cold wa­ter and shape the cold bat­ter into 1½-inch balls. Place the balls on a plate, cover and re­frig­er­ate un­til ready to serve.

For the soup: Put the chicken pieces in a large pot. Add the onion, car­rots, cel­ery, gar­lic, parsnip, turnip, fen­nel, mush­rooms, if us­ing, bay leaves and salt. Add the wa­ter and bring to a boil. (Add more wa­ter, if needed, to make sure the chicken and vegeta­bles are fully sub­merged.) Use a large spoon to skim the scum off the top of the soup. Add the pep­per­corns; then cover the pot. Re­duce the heat to low, and let the soup barely bub­ble at the edges, check­ing after 5 min­utes and skim­ming off any ad­di­tional scum. Add the pars­ley and dill, cover and let the soup barely bub­ble at the edges, about 2 hours.

Let cool; then strain the soup through a large sieve, press­ing on solids. Dis­card the vegeta­bles and shred the chicken to add to the soup or use else­where. Taste and sea­son with more salt and pep­per, as needed.

When ready to serve, bring a large pot of salted wa­ter to a boil. Add the “mat­zoh” balls and re­duce the heat, so the wa­ter is barely bub­bling at the edges. Cook for about 8 min­utes un­til the balls are no longer pink in the cen­ter (cut one in half to make sure). La­dle the soup into bowls; then fol­low with the “mat­zoh” balls and the chicken, if us­ing.

Nu­tri­tion | Per serv­ing: 130 calo­ries, 13 g pro­tein, 2 g car­bo­hy­drates, 8 g fat, 3 g sat­u­rated fat, 80 mg choles­terol, 380 mg sodium, 0 g di­etary fiber, 1 g sugar

Cook­book au­thor Paula Shoyer likes to use a sec­ond cut brisket (also known as “point”), be­cause she says the first cut (also known as “flat”) does not get soft enough while cook­ing.

You may use veg­etable oil in­stead of co­conut oil, which makes this brisket more Keto-friendly. Note that this recipe calls for co­conut flour (in­stead of potato starch), and that is not kosher for Passover.

Make ahead: The brisket tastes even bet­ter after a day’s re­frig­er­a­tion. It may be made up to 2 days in ad­vance and re­frig­er­ated; or frozen for up to 3 months. If frozen, de­frost in the re­frig­er­a­tor overnight; re­heat, cov­ered, with its sauce in a 300-de­gree oven un­til warmed through. From cook­book au­thor Paula Shoyer. Pre­heat the oven to 350 de­grees. Heat the 2 ta­ble­spoons of co­conut oil in a large skil­let over medi­umhigh heat.

Sprin­kle the co­conut flour on both sides of the meat, shak­ing off the ex­cess, then place the brisket in the pan; sear for 3 to 4 min­utes per side, un­til you see crispy bits on the meat. Trans­fer to a roast­ing pan to cool a bit. (If you are work­ing with two brisket pieces, add 1 to 2 tea­spoons co­conut oil to the pan be­fore you brown the sec­ond piece.)

Stir the pa­prika, gar­lic pow­der, onion pow­der, salt and pep­per in a small bowl un­til well in­cor­po­rated. This is your spice mix.

Re­duce the heat to medium-low; add the re­main­ing ½ tea­spoon of oil to the skil­let. Once it is hot, add the toma­toes and cook for 3 min­utes, un­til they break down a bit, stir­ring of­ten. Add a heap­ing ta­ble­spoon of the spice mix and all the wa­ter; in­crease the heat to medium-high and cook for 3 min­utes, stir­ring oc­ca­sion­ally, un­til ev­ery­thing is well in­cor­po­rated.

Mean­while, rub the re­main­ing spice mix­ture all over the seared brisket; then pour the tomato mix­ture over the meat. Cover the roast­ing pan with heavy-duty alu­minum foil (with­out let­ting it touch the sauce or meat); roast (mid­dle rack) for about 1 hour.

Re­move the pan from the oven and trans­fer the meat to a cut­ting board. Trim any fat that has not ren­dered, if de­sired. Cut the brisket against the grain into ∑-inch thick slices. Re­turn them to the roast­ing pan, tuck­ing them in so they are cov­ered with the sauce as much as pos­si­ble. Re-cover with foil and roast for about 1 hour, or un­til the meat is fork-ten­der.

Sprin­kle the pars­ley, if us­ing, on top of the brisket and serve.

Nu­tri­tion | Per serv­ing: 470 calo­ries, 69 g pro­tein, 5 g car­bo­hy­drates, 17 g fat, 8 g sat­u­rated fat, 200 mg choles­terol, 170 mg sodium, 2 g di­etary fiber, 1 g sugar 6 serv­ings

This sim­ple salad en­hances the taste of roasted mush­rooms with fresh herbs and the acid­ity of juicy toma­toes.

Make ahead: The mush­rooms and gar­lic can be roasted sev­eral hours in ad­vance. As­sem­ble the salad just be­fore serv­ing.

Adapted from “Per­fect Fla­vors: Cre­ative, Easy-to-Pre­pare Recipes In­spired by My Fam­ily and Trav­els,” by Naomi Nachman (Me­so­rah Pub­li­ca­tions, 2018).

For the mush­rooms For the salad

For the mush­rooms: Pre­heat the oven to 400 de­grees. Line a rimmed bak­ing sheet with parch­ment pa­per.

Com­bine the mush­rooms, gar­lic, salt and the 2 ta­ble­spoons of ex­travir­gin olive oil in a mix­ing bowl, toss­ing to coat evenly. Spread in a sin­gle layer on the bak­ing sheet; roast (mid­dle rack) for 15 min­utes, or just un­til siz­zling and browned. Let cool; wipe out your mix­ing bowl.

For the salad: Re­turn the roasted, cooled mush­rooms and gar­lic to the mix­ing bowl. Add the halved cherry toma­toes, cilantro, basil, dill, pars­ley, lemon zest and juice and the ¼ cup of ex­tra-vir­gin olive oil. Sea­son lightly with salt and pep­per. Toss gen­tly to in­cor­po­rate.

Taste, and add more salt and/or pep­per, as needed.

Nu­tri­tion | Per serv­ing: 160 calo­ries, 2 g pro­tein, 7 g car­bo­hy­drates, 15 g fat, 2 g sat­u­rated fat, 0 mg choles­terol, 430 mg sodium, 2 g di­etary fiber, 4 g sugar 12 serv­ings

This cake is the cousin of the Choco­late Quinoa Cake from “The Healthy Jewish Kitchen” cook­book, made fa­mous by Food52, and is also based on the lemon pound cake in Paula Shoyer’s “The Kosher Baker” cook­book. Quinoa pro­vides the “flour” that holds this cake to­gether.

Make ahead: The quinoa may be made 2 days in ad­vance and stored, cov­ered, in the re­frig­er­a­tor. The cake can be made 1 day in ad­vance.

From cook­book au­thor Paula Shoyer.

For the cake For the glaze

Place the quinoa and wa­ter in a small saucepan and bring it to a boil over medium heat. Re­duce the heat to low, cover the saucepan, and cook the quinoa for 15 to 18 min­utes, or un­til all the liq­uid has been ab­sorbed. Let sit for 5 min­utes off the stove top.

Pre­heat the oven to 350 de­grees. Use cook­ing spray or canola oil to gen­er­ously grease a 12-cup Bundt pan. Sprin­kle 1 to 2 ta­ble­spoons co­conut flour, or more if needed, over the en­tire greased pan; then shake the pan to cover, and tap out any ex­cess.

Place the quinoa in the bowl of a food pro­ces­sor fit­ted with a blade. Add the lemon zest and juice, eggs, vanilla, co­conut oil, sugar, almond flour, the ¼ cup co­conut flour, bak­ing pow­der, bak­ing soda and salt and process for about 2 min­utes, un­til the mix­ture is very smooth.

Pour the bat­ter into the pre­pared Bundt pan and bake (mid­dle rack) for 55 min­utes to 1 hour, or un­til a skewer in­serted into the cake comes out clean. Let the cake cool for 30 min­utes; then gen­tly trans­fer it to a wire rack.

While the cake cools, make the glaze: Place the con­fec­tion­ers’ sugar in a medium bowl. Add 1 ta­ble­spoon of lemon juice and whisk to in­cor­po­rate. Add more juice, 1 tea­spoon at a time, un­til a thick glaze forms. Driz­zle or pour the glaze over the warm cake; let cool then serve.

Nu­tri­tion | Per serv­ing: 390 calo­ries, 6 g pro­tein, 45 g car­bo­hy­drates, 23 g fat, 13 g sat­u­rated fat, 70 mg choles­terol, 270 mg sodium, 3 g di­etary fiber, 33 g sugar

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