Category Archives: Passover

Gefilte Fish Terrine

Please remember that the Jeffalites were one of the lost tribes.
Serves about 16 people
Shopping List

1 whole pike (about 3 pounds before cleaning)

1 whole whitefish (about 3 pounds before cleaning)

Vegetable oil (for greasing a mold)

4 large onions, divided

4 large carrots, divided

6 TBL matzo meal

4 large eggs

1 lemon

1 bunch parsley

1 bunch chives

1 cup fish stock (if not purchasing whole fish)


p>white pepper


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ATTNYou can purchase other kinds of fish, but the mixture of pike, whitefish and carp is very common. If you like ocean fish, halibut-salmon (in the ratio of 2:1) can be found in Joan Nathan’s recipe, which is the inspiration for this one. You should end up with about 3 pounds of fish fillets.

Ask the fish monger to gut and fillet the fish for you. They should remove the skin from the fillets. ATTN Be sure they give you the head, tail, skin and bones back, wrapped separately from the fish. Wash the skin, bones, etc with cold water until the blood has been removed and place them in a stock pot. Add

  • 2 onions, peeled and cut in half
  • 2 large carrots, cut in thirds
  • 2 tsp salt
  • ground pepper

Add just enough cold water to cover and bring to a boil and lower immediately to a simmer. After 20 minutes of simmering gently, remove from heat. Strain stock and reserve. Discard everything left in the strainer. Chill the stock until needed. This recipe only uses a small amount, so you will probably want to freeze the rest and use it to make a nice fish soup or risotto.

Preheat the oven to 350º F. Find a roasting or baking pan large enough to hold the mold you will be using. The mold should be about 10 cups capacity, like a bundt cake or spring-form pan with a center column. (I dislike silicone molds, but that’s what Joan Nathan used.) Grease the mold with a small amount of

  • vegetable oil (spray oil works well)

Fill the roasting pan with 1″ to 1½” of water, heat it on the stovetop to almost the boiling point and then ATTNcarefully transfer it to the heating oven.

Combine in a small bowl and set aside

  • 6 TBL matzo meal
  • 1 cup fish stock, at room temperature

Using a meat grinder, grind

  • 3 pounds fish fillets
  • 3 onions

Rinse and pluck

  • ½ cup parsley leaves (you only want the leaves, no stems)

Rinse and add

  • 1 bunch chives

And chop the herbs finely.

In food processor, chop

  • 2 carrots, peeled and cut into 1-inch chunks

You may add the herbs if you don’t think you chopped them finely by hand, but I have to say that the herbs tend to be chopped better by hand, especially the chives.

In the bowl of an elecric mixer, combine the ground fish-onion mixture, chopped carrots, herbs, matzo meal/fish stock mixture and

  • 4 eggs
  • 1 TBL lemon juice
  • 2½ tsp salt
  • 2 tsp ground white pepper

Run the mixture with a paddle in the mixer for 10 minutes, stopping once or twice to stir down the mixture and clean the paddle. At the end, place 1 spoonful of the mixture in the microwave oven for 40-60 seconds . When it’s cooked, taste it, and adjust the seasonings as needed.

The mold, about to go into the oven.

Fill the greased mold with the mixture, smoothing the top. Transfer the mold into the roasting pan in the oven. The water only needs to come up about 1″ to 2″ on the side of the mold.  Bake for about one hour: it will be firm to the touch. ATTN If your mold has center opening (like a Bundt cake pan), one hour should be enough, but without the center opening it will probably take a bit longer to finish cooking.


The cooked terrine, with freshly-grated horseradish.

Remove from pan and allow to cool for 15-20 minutes. If your mold has straight sides, cut around the edges. Place a plate on top of the mold and inver the whole thing ATTN using caution as some water is definitely going to pour out of the mold when you do this. It may need a shake to loosen it from the mold. Drain away any excess liquid and chill several hours or overnight. Garnish with dill sprigs and serve with horseradish.


Inspired by Joan Nathan’s Alaskan Halibut and Salmon Gefilte Fish Terrine


Orange Date-Nut Diamonds

A Passover dessert that’s good enough to make year-round.

Makes 12 servings

1¾ cups sugar

¾ cup frozen orange juice concentrate, thawed

½ cup plus 1 tablespoon matzo cake meal

6 tablespoons potato starch

1 teaspoon ground cinnamon

6 ounces pitted dates (about 1¼ cups)

1 cup walnuts (about 4 ounces), toasted, coarsely chopped

6 tablespoons (¾ stick) unsalted margarine

6 large eggs

1½ tablespoons grated orange peel


1½ cups sugar

¾ cup frozen orange juice concentrate, thawed

6 tablespoons water

in a heavy medium saucepan. Stir over medium heat until sugar dissolves; bring to rolling boil. Pour syrup into small bowl. Refrigerate uncovered until cold and thickened, about three hours. (Can be prepared three days ahead. Cover and keep refrigerated.)

Preheat oven to 350°. Grease bottom of 9- by 9- by 2-inch baking pan. Combine

½ cup cake meal

6 tablespoons potato starch

1 teaspoon ground cinnamon

in small bowl; whisk to blend. Combine

6 ounces pitted dates (about 1¼ cups), chopped

1 tablespoon cake meal

in medium bowl. Toss to coat and separate pieces. Mix

1 cup walnuts (about 4 ounces), toasted, coarsely chopped

into dates. Separate

6 eggs


6 tablespoons (¾ stick) unsalted margarine, melted, cooled

and 1 cup orange syrup. Add egg yolks, two at a time, beating well after each addition. Beat in

1½ tablespoons grated orange peel

then dry ingredients. Stir in date mixture.

Using clean beaters beat egg whites with

½ teaspoon salt

until soft peaks form. Gradually add

¼ cup sugar

beating until stiff but not dry. Fold large spoonful of whites into batter to lighten. Fold in remaining whites in three additions.

Transfer batter to prepared pan. Bake until tester inserted into center comes out clean, about 35 minutes. Cool cake in pan on rack. (Can be made one day ahead. Cover and let stand at room temperature.)

Brush some of remaining orange syrup over cake. Cut cake lengthwise into four equal strips. Cut each strip into three diamonds, reserving remaining cake for nibbling.

Adapted from Bon Appétit magazine

Date-Almond Truffles

Makes 28 pieces

1¼ cups slivered almonds

1 cup pitted dates

1 tablespoon orange blossom water

1 tablespoon honey

½ teaspoon ground cinnamon

½ cup sweetened shredded coconut

In food processor, whirl until finely chopped

1¼ cups slivered almonds

1 cup pitted dates

1 tablespoon orange blossom water

1 tablespoon honey

½ teaspoon ground cinnamon

Form into 1-inch balls, roll in

½ cup sweetened shredded coconut

pressing to coat lightly.

Adapted from Sunset Recipe Annual, 1996 Edition

Yemenite Charoses

Traditionally served at the Passover Seder, this Middle Eastern version makes a nice snack served on matzo or your favorite cracker.

Makes about 2 cups

1 cup dates

½ cup figs

½ cup raisins

½ cup walnuts

½ cup almonds

1 teaspoon ground ginger

1 teaspoon cinnamon

¾ teaspoon cloves

½ teaspoon cayenne

½ teaspoon cardamom

2 to 3 tablespoons Passover wine

Chop dates, figs, walnuts and almonds by hand. Combine all ingredients. Adjust seasonings to taste.

This may end up taking more wine than the recipe says. If you don’t have the Passover wine (that’s sweet Concord Grape wine), substitute a mixture of honey and Marsala.

Adapted from an advertising supplement to The New York Times

Potato Kugel for a Crowd

Peel 8 pounds of russet potatoes and keep under water until you are ready to use them. You can peel them the night before with no ill effect.

Preheat oven to 350 degrees F. Peel and quarter 4 large onions. Place onions, 2 at a time in of the food processor or leave running until it’s a fine puree. Repeat with other onions. Using fine shredding disc (I did mine with the KitchenAid mixer attachment), process all the potatoes into a strainer sitting in a large mixing bowl. Press the potatoes with your hands to release any extra water; dump the potato water into a small bowl and reserve.

Beat 10 eggs in the same large mixing bowl. Add in potatoes, pureed onions, 2 TBL vegetable oil, 2 TBL kosher or sea salt, freshly ground black pepper (1+ TBL) and about a cup of matzo meal. Carefully pour off the water from the small bowl and recover the potato starch from the bottom: add that to the mixture as well. Mix thoroughly.

Place in large oiled baking dish (low, flat: I have a large oval dish that’s a bit bigger than 13×9 inches) and bake until golden on top. It will cook 60 minutes.