In a Nutshell:
Basic Lettuce Salad with Enchilada Chips
I have a few relatively easy salads, but none that everyone eats, because of my family’s pickiness! Here’s the basic salad we serve with our fish course every Friday night. It can be customized per person — leave out tomatoes for one, peppers for another, and the dressing for the third.
2/3 bag lettuce, any type (we use half romaine and half iceberg); 2 large (or 3 small) kirbies, diced; 2–3 large dill pickles, diced; 2 peppers, any color, diced; 1 large or 2 medium tomatoes, diced; 1 tsp each lemon juice and oil (I just pour in a bit of each); a generous sprinkling ground black pepper; salt, to taste.
That’s all — as plain Jane as can be! We like it topped with crushed enchilada chips or Chinese noodles.
FT, help me!!
What do you put out as a snack on Yom Tov afternoons when everyone is looking for something salty (think chips)?
I like to serve salted trail mix. Nuts on their own are fine, but I love to make my own trail mixes with nuts, seeds, and dried chickpeas. Then I’ll add some dried fruit or dried seaweed or kale chips. If you really want it to be outstanding, you can season and toast the nuts, seeds, and chickpeas yourself.
Any tips for hanging or storing succah ceiling decorations?
Screw little hooks into ceiling beams and hang the decorations onto the hooks. (The ones we use look like an upside-down question mark.) This takes time the first year, but it works after you do it once.
To store the decorations, we slide all the hanging decorations onto a slat of wood and then screw it into a ceiling beam in an unfinished area of the basement. This way we don’t have to rethread everything each year.
Which foods should not be made in disposable aluminum pans?
I’m really not a fan of disposable pans in general, especially for foods like roasted vegetables where you’re looking for that crispiness. The issue is that disposables have almost no heat conduction (think about how they’re cool enough to touch after just a minute or two out of the oven!), so you don’t get that hot surface to crisp things up.
Note that in almost any recipe, using a disposable pan will mean that you’ll need to increase the baking time. My chocolate cupcake recipe, for example, needs 17–18 minutes in a metal pan but over 20 in a disposable.
—Miriam (Pascal) Cohen
My worst course to make for a meal is dessert. Somehow, I always forget about it. What can I serve to kind of wing it? Like, not a full, proper elaborate pie but something that pretends to fill that hole on my menu?
Ha ha — this is me!
I recommend always having a tub of pareve ice cream in the freezer.
If I have enough time before Shabbos, I mix in anything I can find in the pantry — cookie bits, chocolate chips, crushed cereal, etc. — and pour it into a graham cracker crust or a round disposable pan. There you have it: Razzle pie! If I don’t have time, I serve a scoop in pretty glassware and top it with flavored syrup and crushed pantry items. That also looks quite nice.
Or, if you have store-bought sorbet, serve a scoop with diced fruit in a matching color, and you’ve taken it up a level.
Time-saving kitchen gadget
I really don’t have any gadgets that save me time — I use the usual: my favorite paring knife, a Microplane, and occasionally a manual citrus juicer.
One little thing I do use is a melon baller to scoop out the seeded center of apples or pear halves before baking them.
—Sarah Faygie Berkowitz
(Originally featured in Family Table, Issue 861)
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