Two folks asked for recipes from this week's shabbos menu: my broccoli kugel and apple & cranberry tart. I don't really use a recipe for either, but I'll tell you what I do.
I'm a bit embarrassed about how low-tech and low-in-culinary-value this "recipe" is, but there you have it.... I searched high and low for a good broccoli kugel recipe and I was hugely disappointed in all of them until I tried the Spice and Spirit Cookbook's Creamy Broccoli Kugel. It's delicious, but a bit high maintenance. I'm willing to do the work for something that is really worth it, and I did use that recipe for a long time, until I went to a friend's house for Shabbos lunch and she served a delicious, very similar, broccoli kugel, so I asked her how she makes it. I'm very, very approximate in proportions and I really just mix it until it "looks right", but it's pretty hard to mess up.
Two packages frozen broccoli florets (you can use fresh, but I hate checking broccoli, so for kugel, I don't bother)
3 Tablespoons mayonnaise
3 Tablespoons onion soup mix.
Cook the broccoli until it's tender and then mash it with a potato masher. Mix in remaining ingredients. Spray a casserole dish with nonstick spray and coat with cornflake crumbs or seasoned bread crumbs (I actually prefer cornflake crumbs on the bottom and seasoned breadcrumbs on top if I'm not being completely lazy). Pour in the broccoli mixture and sprinkle cornflake crumbs or breadcrumbs over the top. Bake at whatever temperature (seriously, I do it at whatever temperature the oven is for whatever else I'm cooking... so it averages around 375) until it's done. How do you know it's done? Well, it "looks right" and it won't jiggle when you shake the pan. That's it.
Cranberry Apple Tart
I don't always use a recipe for this, but the recipe for "cranberry-apple torte" in Kosher by Design (by Susie Fishbein, p. 215) is pretty close to what I usually do, so I'll post that recipe.
2 cups all purpose flour, sifted (yeah, right, I never sift it)
2 cups dark brown sugar (I use whatever kind of brown sugar I have)
1 1/2 cups oatmeal (quick-cooking of 1 minute type, according to the recipe... I use whatever I have)
1 cup melted margarine (give or take)
2 teaspoons cinnamon (seriously, does anyone measure this stuff?)
4 Cortland Apples, peeled and cut into small chunks (I use whatever kind of apples I have and I use anywhere from 3-5 depending on how apple-y I want it to be)
1 (16 oz) can whole berry cranberry sauce (or use fresh cranberries... for me this is preferable because fresh whole cranberries aren't sweetened... so I vary back and forth between canned and fresh depending on what I have in the house... I usually have both)
2 Tablespoons all purpose flour, sifted (yeah, right. Seriously? This woman needs to give it up on the sifting!)
Preheat oven to 375 degrees. (or, you know, whatever, this isn't "real" baking that has to be exact)
Heavily coat a 9-inch springform pan with nonstick spray; set aside (and you know, if you don't have a springform pan, use whatever)
In a large bowl mix the crust ingredients (easiest to mix with your hands, not a spoon). Reserve 1 1/2 cups of this mixture. Press the remainder into the prepared pan and halfway up the sides of the pan with the palm of your hand. (Yeah, so, um, I don't measure how much I'm reserving and I just press in however much it takes and have whatever is leftover leftover).
In a medium bowl, combine the filling ingredients. Mix with a spoon. Pour the apple mixture into the crust. Sprinkle the remaining crust mixture over the top. Use the back of a spoon to gently press the crust coating so that it evenly coats the top and meets the crust that is coming up the sides. This is what will enclose the filling. (Seriously, it's easier to press down with the palm of your hands, but whatever works for you is fine)
Bake for forty minutes. (or, you know, however long it takes)
Yield: 10-12 servings. If you use a springform pan, pop the side panel off the pan before you serve it and it will be stunning, but it's just as yummy made in a regular casserole dish as well. I alternate how I do it depending on whether S is willing to wash the springform pan (he does the shabbos dishes, bless him).
Amazing that I managed to write a whole post with no mention of my unmentionables! Will update tomorrow after I get my third beta results back .