Thursday, March 15, 2012

Pavlova - Dreamy, Delicious. Perfect for Shavuot and Kosher for Passover!!!

 I like it with berries - The fruit in the recipe will make the one below.

 If you are using this recipe for Passover, ensure all ingredients are labelled Kosher for Passover                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                        Meringue:
    6  eggs, checked and separated - You will be using the whites only for this recipe.
    1 1/4 cups (270g) caster/granulated sugar
    1 tsp white vinegar

    1/2 tsp vanilla extract
    300ml/11-12 oz Pure whipping cream
    2 tbs icing sugar, sifted - ensure this is pure powdered sugar and is marked Kosher for Passover!

I prefer a combination of berries and peaches on my Pavlova.  However, tastes vary.  Use what is in season and looks pretty.

    Fine zest and juice of 2 limes
    2 Lady finger bananas, thinly sliced diagonally
    3 golden kiwifruit, peeled, thinly sliced
    2 starfruit, thinly sliced
    Pulp of 2-3 passionfruit


Preheat oven to 120°C/250°F. Line an oven tray with foil. Next, line it with baking paper.  Brush baking paper with melted butter or margarine. Mark a 24cm/9 inch-diameter circle on baking paper.

In order for the egg whites to whip, all equipment must be spotless and free of any grease.  Wash everything in hot soapy water, dry, and then proceed.  When separating the eggs, if any yolk gets into the white of the egg, use a clean eggshell to scoop it out.  This is an important trick for whipping meringue.

 Use an electric mixer to whisk egg whites in a clean dry bowl until soft peaks form. Gradually add sugar, 1 tablespoon at a time, beating well after each addition, until meringue is thick and glossy and sugar dissolved. Rub a little meringue between fingers. If still "gritty" with sugar, continue to whisk until sugar dissolves. Add vinegar and vanilla and whisk until just combined.

Cone made from parchment paper

 Spoon meringue onto the foil, using the marked circle as a guide.  I find using  a rolled piece of baking paper, made into a cone works best for me.  That way the meringue goes on lightly and evenly - more control this way.
Smooth sides and top of pavlova meringue. Use a small spatula to forms little peaks around edge of pavlova. What you will have will appear to be a 24cm/9-inch dish made out of meringue.  If you are worried that your pavlova will cave in, then you *can* make it in a springform pan - as long as it is very clean and lined with a sleeve of parchment paper.  But really - this dessert is spectacular no matter how your base looks.

Bake in oven for 1-1/2 hours or until pavlova meringue is dry to the touch. Turn off oven. Leave pavlova in oven with the door ajar to cool completely. When completely cold, transfer to serving plate or store in an airtight container until required.

Use an electric mixer to beat the cream and powdered sugar in a medium bowl until firm peaks form.  Refrigerate until just before serving.

Spoon cream into and on the top of pavlova.  Add your choice of fruit to the top of the pavlova in a decorative way.  Or, use the fruit guide above in the manner below:

Pour lime juice into a ceramic or glass bowl. Add banana slices and toss to coat with juice. Drain. This will keep the bananas from turning brown.
Decorate pavlova with banana, kiwifruit, starfruit, passionfruit and lime zest.

Serves 6-8 for dessert
K (D) Kosher for Passover

If you know of a non-dairy whipped topping that is marked Kosher for Passover, this dessert can also be Parve/Pareve
                                    Pavlova below was made using a spring-form pan lined with parchment paper

Wednesday, March 7, 2012

Homemade Stuffing - Tastes like Stovetop!

Here in Australia, we only have one brand of stuffing mix available - and it is not to my liking.  Therefore, I now have a recipe for stuffing that tastes a lot like stove-top, is less salty, and you can either make it on top of the stove and serve or you can mix it up, allow it to cool and stuff a chicken or turkey using it.  Enjoy.

Makes 3 cups


3 cups dried bread cubes and crumbs*  I use leftover challah! 
1/4 teaspoon lemon pepper
1/2 teaspoon garlic powder
2 teaspoons dried parsley
1/2 teaspoon dried chives
1/4 teaspoon paprika
1/2 teaspoon poultry seasoning
dash celery seed
2 teaspoons dried onions
1/2 teaspoon seasoned salt
1/8 teaspoon turmeric
1 teaspoon powdered pareve chicken bouillon or crumble up a pareve chicken bouillon cube


1. Cut bread into 1/2-inch cubes, or simply break apart and crumble into large crumbs.

2. Spread bread pieces on an un-greased baking sheet and bake at 300 degrees for 20 minutes.

3. Reduce oven temperature to 200 degrees and continue baking until bread is completely dry.  Watch it so it doesn't burn.  My oven is fan-forced so this part of the process goes quickly.

4. Remove dried bread from oven and place baking sheet on cooling rack until cool.

5. Add seasoning, stirring to mix. Store in a tightly sealed container or zipper freezer bag until needed.

To make the stuffing:
Note:  You can reduce the amount of stuffing you make by halving this part of the recipe

I love the crunch of some celery if I am stuffing a chicken or turkey.  I use about 1/2 cup diced celery for this complete recipe.  This is optional, of course.

In a saucepan, heat 1-3/4 - 2 cups of water to boiling. (Use less water if you are stuffing a chicken or like your stuffing a bit drier, use more if you like it moist.) Add diced celery (optional)  and 4 tablespoons (1/2 stick) margarine and stir until melted. Remove from heat, stir in 3 cups of stuffing mix (1 batch), cover, and let sit for 6-8 minutes. .  Fluff with a fork and serve, or use in a recipe.  It is important that you fluff with a fork - otherwise it will get all smashed down.

I often use mine as stuffing for chicken or turkey.

If you wish to lower the fat content, use only half of the margarine and add about 2 T more margarine.  It still tastes just as nice.