Flaky Pie or Tart Dough

pie crust

If you have a food processor, making pie crust is very easy. If not, it’s a little more difficult (but still not so hard). I have tried many different recipes, but prefer the ones that don’t use shortening (or lard, of course!), so when I found an all butter crust in The Art and Soul of Baking, I became hooked. I don’t use it all the time, but it’s definitely a page that I turn to often.

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I’ve been wanting to make this soup for a really long time, so when I saw that kale was showing up at the market, I added it to my menu. It takes a pretty long time to make, so I decided to make it on a Sunday and serve in on Monday. On Sunday morning I woke up early, soaked the beans, and went to work. When I came home a little before six, I went shopping for all the produce needed: celery, carrots, onions, garlic, basil, and kale. There was no kale at the fruit store, they ran out and are getting more tomorrow. There was no kale at the supermarket, either. They also ran out. I already soaked the beans, so I had to improvise on the soup. It came out delicious, anyway.

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Guest Post: Vegetarian Empanadas

These were a team effort by me and Ricky Dweck. While he makes empanadas all the time, it was my first time, and his first time making vegetarian ones; usually there is chicken involved, but since we were serving these with pizza, we had to skip it.

These are very satisfying and delicious, and we made things easier by using store-bought empanada dough. It takes some time to dice up all of the vegetables and crimp all of the edges, so make a lot at a time and freeze what you’re not eating – they freeze very well.

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Rolling Yebra

Update: after you read this post and roll your yebra, go ahead and cook it!

Yebra, or stuffed grape leaves, is a traditional Syrian food that can be prepared in a few different ways. But before you can eat it, you have to actually stuff and roll the grape leaves with hashu (there’s a pareve version, too). To make a whole 16-oz. jar of grape leaves, you need to double the hashu recipe.

I actually used a slightly different recipe for hashu. This one is from a cookbook called Deal Delights, a pretty old book with traditional Syrian recipes.



grape leaves

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Pumpkin Ravioli with Sage Brown Butter Sauce

pumpkin ravioli with sage brown butter sauce

I like to cook with real pumpkin when it’s in season. About once every year I get my hands on a pumpkin, and after roasting the seeds, I cook with the flesh. Usually I make chocolate-chip pumpkin bread. This year, I decided to try a recipe I saw a lot of online: pumpkin ravioli with sage brown butter sauce.

Does anyone serve dairy for Thanksgiving? Instead of (or in addition to) a traditional pumpkin pie, this would be a great seasonal recipe for anyone whose menu wasn’t filled with turkey and meat. Try this for a vegetarian (or your unkosher) Thanksgiving feast!

After pureeing and flavoring the pumpkin for the inside of the ravioli, I made my own dough to wrap it in, and rolled it out by hand. I only got about as far as 20 raviolis before I broke my rolling pin. I suggest using a pasta maker or the pasta Kitchenaid attachment. I have neither, so I went out and bought some wonton wrappers the next day (for less than $3) to form the rest of my raviolis, which I threw into the freezer to save for another day.

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Nutless Granola Bars

I often try to make granola bars, only to find myself with granola in the end. After watching Ina Garten so easily make granola bars for her friends, I decided to try it out again. I added dried fruits and flax seeds to her basic recipe, and omitted the nuts so I could bring them into school (nut-free) and snack on them while there.

ready to go

I ended up with 17 granola bars. There should have been 18, but one completely crumbled. I had it with milk the next morning. These granola bars were pretty easy to make. I cut them after a few hours and wrapped each one in wax paper. I then stuck them in zip-top baggies and stored half on the counter and half in the freezer.

Next time I think I’ll lower the sweetness and add some chocolate chips.

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Toasted Ravioli


As annoying as Rachael Ray is, a lot of her recipes are delicious and easy. After watching her make toasted ravioli, I decided to try it on my own, with a few tweaks. Rachael used fresh herbs and made a delicious looking roasted red pepper dipping sauce. I was pretty lazy and used only what I had on hand, so stuck with the seasoned breadcrumbs and jarred marinara sauce. They still turned out delicious.

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