Tuesday, April 22, 2008


No fasting recipe today--time to start getting ready for Pascha!!!!

recipe from Jenny:

I've never made "real" cooked Paskha cheese, but we all like this, and it's very quick and easy, so I'm not sure I ever will!

Cream Cheese Paskha
adapted from Food for Paradise

1/2 lb softened butter (2 sticks)
1 1/2 lbs softened cream cheese (3 pkgs)
1 tablespoon vanilla
1 cup powdered sugar
1 cup sour cream
golden raisins (or regular)
slivered almonds

Cream butter and cream cheese. Add powdered sugar and vanilla and continue to mix. Add sour cream and desired quantities of raisins and almonds. Spoon into a nice serving bowl, smooth, and decorate the top with additional raisins and almonds. Some ways to decorate: a border, a cross (3-bar or simple), XB (the initials of Christ is risen in Russian), the outline of an egg... Chill, covered, for several hours before eating. This is wonderful on kulich or tsourekia, or any sweet breads!

Wednesday, April 16, 2008

Sweet Potato and Onion Soup

From Cynthia, 1000 Recipes:

Sweet Potato and Onion Soup
Calories: 320 Protein 7g Carbohydrates: 62 g Sugars: 25g Fat 7g
15 minutes preparation, 30 minutes cooking time
Serves 4

2lb sweet potatoes, diced
1 carrot, diced
2 onions, sliced
2 garlic cloves, crushed
2 ½ c vegetable bouillon
1 ¼ c unsweetened orange juice
2t fresh chopped cilantro
salt and pepper
orange rind and cilantro to garnish

Grill or broil vegetables. Add to pot and add liquid ingredients. Bring to a boil, reduce to a simmer and cook 20 minutes. Strain, blend, or leave whole. Add cilantro and season with salt and pepper. Garnish. Serve hot or cold.

Glazed Tofu with Bok Choy

recipe from Christina:

This is one of our favorite fasting dishes. It makes a hearty meal served over rice. I've found super firm tofu is the key to it turning out well. Original recipe from RealSimple magazine.


Glazed Tofu with Bok Choy

1 14-ounce package firm tofu, cut into 1/2-inch-thick slices
2 tablespoons canola oil
2 heads bok choy, cleaned and cut into 1-inch pieces (about 6
3 garlic cloves (1 thinly sliced, 2 minced)
1 14-ounce can vegetable broth
1 1-inch piece fresh ginger, peeled and grated
2 teaspoons fish sauce or tamari
1/4 cup soy sauce
4 teaspoons dark brown sugar
2 teaspoons toasted sesame oil
2 tablespoons cornstarch

Drain the tofu on paper towels. Heat half the canola oil in a large skillet over medium-high heat. Add the bok choy and sliced garlic; cook, stirring, until wilted, about 4 minutes. Add 1 1/2 cups of the broth; simmer until reduced by half. Meanwhile, combine the minced garlic, ginger, fish and soy sauces, brown sugar, and sesame oil. Heat the remaining canola oil in another skillet over high heat. Add the tofu and brown, about 3 minutes per side. Add the soy mixture and coat the tofu with it. Simmer, uncovered, until the sauce is syrupy, about 4 minutes. Stir the cornstarch into the reserved broth; add to the bok choy. Stir gently until thickened, about 2 minutes. Divide the bok choy onto 4 plates and layer the glazed tofu on top.

Pomme Du Terre Vinaigrette--French Style Potato Salad

recipe from David Ross-Russo:


(The recipe of the French Style Potato Salad that I take to the church.)

5 lbs of medium to small potatoes un-pealed
1 tablespoon of salt
1 teaspoon of white pepper
3/4 cup of vinegar
1/2 cup of water
1 Tablespoon of powdered mustard
(Or 2 Tablespoons of Dijon mustard)
2/3 cup of Oil (Vegetable or Olive)
One bulb of garlic pealed and chopped fine.
One bunch of Parsley washed and chopped.

Make a FRENCH VINAIGRETTE sauce by combining all above ingredients except Potatoes and Parsley. Put the sauce into a large bowl.

Boil potatoes un-pealed until just done and slightly firm when pierced with a fork but not raw in the middle.

Drain and cover with cold water for a few minutes. When slightly cooled, peal and slice into 1/4 inch slices about 3/4 of an inch square and put into the container with the vinaigrette. (It is important that the potatoes are warm to absorb the oil.) Add the chopped parsley and mix well. Allow to set and marry a few hours or overnight.. Serve at room temperature.

Note: This recipe can be made in smaller quantities by reducing amount of ingredients. Also this authentic French vinaigrette sauce is excellent when poured over many other foods such as cooked or raw vegetables or sliced cold meats or cold fish. This sauce is also the authentic French dressing for salads. (It is very popular and necessary in French cooking.)

To make an excellent Carrot salad, grate raw carrots in the small holes of the grater and cover with the vinaigrette sauce and add chopped parsley.

The vinaigrette sauce is also an excellent marinade for meats or fish before cooking them.

Monday, April 14, 2008

Hummus and Pita

recipe from Jenny:

We had this for a picnic dinner at the park last night and it was so good! I've never made pita or humuus before, but both are surprisingly easy, and so much better than store-bought. These are not pocket pitas--more like flatbread. I'm going to try the humuus with no oil for during the week.


2 15oz cans chickpeas (garbanzo beans), drained and rinsed
3 TBS lemon juice (or juice of one lemon)
1 TBS tahini (ground sesame seed paste)
1 TBS olive oil
2-4 cloves garlic, minced
few TBS water

In a good blender, blend first five ingredients. Add water as necessary to achieve a smooth paste—slightly lumpy is fine. Add salt to taste. Chill. A variety of different seasonings can be added as desired.

Arabian Pita

1 tablespoon yeast
1 ½ cups warm water
6 tablespoons oil
1 teaspoon sugar
½ teaspoon salt
1 ½ cups whole wheat flour
1 ½ cups unbleached flour

In a large bowl, mix yeast, water and sugar; set aside for about 5 minutes, until frothy. Add oil and salt. Add flour and mix well to make a softish dough. Add more flour as needed. Knead dough briefly, then divide into 18 egg sized balls. Place on a floured surface, cover and let rest for 15-30 minutes.

Roll balls into 6 inch circles and cook in a skillet on med-high heat until large "bubbles" form and the bottom side is lightly browned. Flip pita over and cook for a few more minutes. Wrap in a towel to keep warm while cooking the rest of the pitas.

To make pita chips, roll thinner and cook slightly longer. Break into pieces when cooled.

Bell Pepper & Chili Soup

recipe from Cynthia:

Bell Pepper & Chili Soup
Calories : 55 Sugars 10g Protein 2g Carbohydrates 11g Fat 0g
10 minutes preparation, 25 minutes to cook
Serves 4

Ingredients :
½ lb bell peppers (any colour or combination), seeded & sliced
1 onion, sliced
2 garlic cloves, crushed
1 chile, chopped
1 ¼ c strained tomatoes or tomato sauce
2 ½ c vegetable bouillon
2 T chopped basil plus some for garnish

Put all ingredients in pan except basil. Bring to a boil, stirring well.
Reduce heat and simmer 20 minutes.

Alternative 1) strain off the liquid and reserve. Sieve or blend or put
vegetables in food processor.

Alternative 2) leave vegetables as they are.

Add everything back together, add basil and heat soup through. Garnish
with more basil. Serve hot or cold.

from 1000 Recipes

Friday, April 11, 2008

Monkey Bread

Recipe from Jenny:

One of our favorite and easiest fasting treats.

Monkey Bread

4 cans refrigerated biscuits (or 3 large cans)
1 tsp. cinnamon
2/3 cup sugar

1 cup chopped nuts

Stir sugar and cinnamon together. Cut biscuits into quarters. Roll each in cinnamon sugar. Layer nuts and biscuits in greased bundt pan, beginning with nuts. Top with monkey bread topping.


1 ½ sticks of butter/margarine (3/4 cup)
1 tsp. cinnamon
1 cup brown sugar

Bring butter, cinnamon and brown sugar to a boil; boil for two minutes. Pour over biscuits in pan. Bake at 350 degrees for 25 to 30 minutes, till biscuits are done. Cool for 10 minutes in pan, then flip over onto a plate and remove pan. Cool slightly. Can either slice or just pull off chunks.

Thursday, April 10, 2008

Indian Spiced Cauliflower and Potatoes

recipe from Jenny:

We have really been enjoying Indian-flavored food lately--and this is one of my favorite ways to make cauliflower. It takes a bit more time than some recipes, but it's really worth it.

Indian Spiced Cauliflower and Potatoes

1 (1 ¾-lb) head cauliflower, cut into ¾-inch-wide florets
1 ¼ lb potatoes, peeled and cut into ½-inch cubes
5 tablespoons vegetable oil
½ teaspoon cumin seeds
¾ teaspoon salt
1 medium onion, finely chopped
2 garlic cloves, finely chopped
2 teaspoons minced peeled fresh ginger
1 teaspoon ground cumin
½ teaspoon ground coriander
¼ teaspoon turmeric
¼ teaspoon cayenne
½ cup water

Put oven rack in upper third of oven and place a shallow baking pan on rack. Preheat oven to 475°F.

Toss cauliflower and potatoes together in a bowl with 3 tablespoons oil, cumin seeds, and ¼ teaspoon salt. Spread in hot baking pan and roast, stirring occasionally, until cauliflower is tender and browned in spots and potatoes are just tender, about 20 minutes.

While vegetables are roasting, cook onion, garlic, and ginger in remaining 2 tablespoons oil in a 12-inch heavy skillet over moderate heat, stirring frequently, until very soft and beginning to turn golden, 8 to 10 minutes. Add ground cumin, coriander, turmeric, cayenne, and remaining ½ teaspoon salt and cook, stirring constantly, 2 minutes. Stir in water, scraping up any brown bits from bottom of skillet, then stir in roasted vegetables. Cook, covered, stirring occasionally, 5 minutes.

Makes 4-6 side-dish servings.

from smittenkitchen.com

Wednesday, April 9, 2008

Barley, Black Bean and Avocado Salad

Recipe from Christina:

Barley, Black Bean and Avocado Salad

The recipe originally came from Reader's Digest - I know, what an unlikely place to find a recipe - but I am posting it with my adaptations. I always have adaptations and I never measure, so just tweak it to match your taste. This is very light and fresh, perfect on a warm spring day.

Combine the following in a small saucepan:
1 cup V8 juice
1 cup chicken bullion (vegetable to make vegan!)
crushed rosemary
pinch of salt
several dashes of hot sauce (I use Chipotle Tabasco)

Bring the liquid to a boil and add 1/2 a cup of barley. Cover, reduce the heat and simmer until the barley is tender (how long varies according to what type of barley you have, so keep an eye on it!)

Once the barley is cooked and cooled, add the following:
1 can black beans, rinsed and drained
chopped tomatoes
chopped avocado
chopped green onions
lots of cilantro
couple tablespoons of lemon juice
drizzle of olive oil

Stir it all together and serve either room-temperature or cold.

Monday, April 7, 2008

Roasted Spiced Sweet Potatoes

Recipe from Jenny:

This is what I made for trapeza this past weekend--the main dish variation at the bottom.

Roasted Spiced Sweet Potatoes

Active time: 10 min Start to finish: 45 min

Servings: Makes 4 to 6 servings.

1 teaspoon coriander seeds

½ teaspoon fennel seeds

½ teaspoon dried oregano

¼ teaspoon dried hot red pepper flakes

1 teaspoon kosher salt

2 pounds sweet potatoes (or half sweet, half regular)

3 tablespoons vegetable oil

Preheat oven to 425°F.

Coarsely grind coriander, fennel, oregano, and red pepper flakes in an electric coffee/spice grinder or with a mortar and pestle. Stir together spices and salt.

Cut potatoes lengthwise into 1-inch wedges.

Toss wedges with oil and spices in a large roasting pan and roast in middle of oven 20 minutes. Turn wedges over with a spatula and roast until tender and slightly golden, 15 to 20 minutes more.

Main Dish Variation:
Roasted Spiced Sweet Potatoes with Red Lentils

Prepare as above, but only roast potatoes until barely tender. If desired, you can chop the potatoes into smaller pieces. While they are roasting, in a large, heavy-bottomed pot over med-low heat, saute 1 minced onion and 2 minced cloves of garlic in 1 tbs oil until nicely golden and soft (around 10 minutes). When the sweet potatoes are done, add 3 cups water, 2 bouillon cubes, and 1 ½ cups red lentils to the pot. Bring to a boil and dump in sweet potatoes. When it returns to a boil, turn down to med-low and cook, stirring occasionally, 20-30 minutes or till lentils are done and desired state of "mushiness" is achieved. The sweet potatoes will break into smaller pieces and partially dissolve into the lentils. Add salt, if needed, and cilantro, if desired, and serve over rice.

(Adapted from a recipe on smittenkitchen.com)

Friday, April 4, 2008

Indonesian Sate

Recipe from Jenny:

Indonesian Sate

Mix well:
2 minced garlic cloves
½ teaspoon vinegar
¼ cup peanut butter
2 tablespoons oil
1 teaspoon grated ginger root (or dried ginger, about ½ teaspoon)
2 teaspoons honey
¼ cup soy sauce (or braggs amino acids)
¼ cup boiling water (this will help the peanut butter melt and blend well)
cayenne pepper to taste

I use this sauce in many ways: as a marinade/sauce for tofu (or chicken, though I’ve never done that), as a stir-fry sauce, over rice, over pasta…

To use as a stir-fry sauce: Drain a block of tofu and cut into smallish cubes (less than ½ inch square). In a bit of oil saute the cubes over medium heat for 5-8 minutes, turning as needed. Remove the tofu from the pan, add more oil, and stir-fry your veggies. We usually use some combination of cabbage, onion, carrots, zucchini, peppers, broccoli, cauliflower, or whatever I have in the fridge. A frozen stir-fry mix is easier. : ) Stir-fry on med-high to high until crisp-tender, then add the tofu back in. Pour the sauce in, cook and stir for another minute, and serve over rice or spaghetti.

To use as a sauce for tofu: Slice a block of tofu into about ½ inch thick slices. Drain or squeeze the water out. Oil a square pan, spread about a tablespoon of the sauce over the bottom, and arrange the tofu slices about ¼ inch apart in the pan. Spoon about half of the sauce over and between the slices. You can let it sit for a few hours or bake immediately for 20 minutes at 375 degrees. This is good served with rice and the Carrot Sesame Salad.

If you want, you can freeze the tofu and then defrost it first; it gives it a heftier texture. I usually forget. : )

Adapted from a recipe on heartkeepercommonroom.blogspot.com

Thursday, April 3, 2008

Quick Chickpea Curry

Recipe from Jenny:

I think this is probably our most asked-for recipe! Every time we have it at trapeza, everyone raves, and it's so easy.

Chickpea Curry

1 potato, peeled and diced
1 onion, chopped
1 can garbanzo beans
1 can diced tomatoes, undrained
1 can coconut milk
about 2 TBS Patak’s mild curry paste (available at Central Market and often Kroger--paste, not sauce)

In a large pan, saute the potato and onion in the oil until tender. Add garbanzo beans, tomatoes, coconut milk, and curry paste. Simmer together for about 15 minutes. Serve over rice.

Serves 4?

I've also sometimes added 1/2 a head of cauliflower, chopped up, to make a one-dish meal. Just add it with the potato and onion, and then after sauteing a few minutes, pour in 1/4 cup or so of water, cover, and steam until barely done. Uncover and let the water boil away, and continue as above.

If you double/triple/etc. the recipe, drain some of the cans of tomatoes, or else it'll be too soupy.

If you have trouble finding the curry paste, here's a link for it on Amazon: http://www.amazon.com/Pataks-Mild-Curry-Paste-10oz/dp/B000JMBE3Q/ref=sr_1_1?ie=UTF8&s=grocery&qid=1265419834&sr=8-1

Carrot Sesame Salad

Recipe from Jenny:

Carrot Sesame Salad

1 lb carrots, coarsely grated (5-6 medium)

1 clove garlic, minced

2 Tbs soy sauce or Bragg's Liquid Aminos

2 Tbs rice vinegar (or half rice, half white vinegar)

2 Tbs roasted sesame oil (or half vegetable, half sesame oil)

1 Tbs honey

1/4 tsp sriracha sauce or Asian chili paste

2 Tbs toasted sesame seeds

2 Tbs chopped cilantro

Mix together well and chill for 30 minutes.

Slightly adapted from a recipe on whatimcookingnow.blogspot.com


Quite a few of us have recently been looking for good fasting recipes, so we have decided to start a recipe blog for our sisterhood! We'll post our best recipes for easy access. If you have any you'd like to add, please email me and I'll get them up.