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Great Menu for Yummy Passover Meal

April 10, 2016 | by Elizabeth Kurtz

Asparagus soup, pot roast with mushroom sauce, ice cream with balsamic strawberry sauce.

This Yom Tov meal is all about old favorites mixed in with some new current food trends. I start the meal with the visually beautiful asparagus soup. It’s a simple soup that is creamy from almond milk, a newer Passover ingredient that adds flavor and richness without a lot of calories or chemicals. I love classic pot roast and this one is a winner because it’s infused with the wonderfully rich flavors of woodsy dried mushrooms, rich red wine, and savory rosemary. And the classic cookie bar is elevated with pareve ice cream and balsamic strawberry sauce. It’s a great way to end any meal.

Asparagus soup

Asparagus soupServes 8

  • 3 tablespoons olive oil
  • 1 large bunch asparagus, ends trimmed, cut into 2-inch pieces (if desired, cut off top)
  • 2 stalks celery, chopped
  • 1 large onion, chopped
  • 8 cups vegetable stock or chicken stock
  • 1 bay leaf
  • 1 cup almond milk, or non-dairy creamer
  • 1 ½ teaspoons Kosher salt
  • ½ teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
  • 2 cups fresh baby spinach

In a large stockpot, heat the oil over medium heat. Add the asparagus, celery and onion and cook, stirring occasionally, until tender, about 10 minutes. Add the vegetable stock and bay leaf and bring to a boil, then reduce the heat and simmer for 30 minutes. Add the almond milk/non-dairy creamer and simmer for another 10 minutes. Remove and throw away the bay leaf. Season with salt and pepper.

Add the spinach to the soup and let wilt for about 1 minute. With an immersion blender, puree the soup. Serve hot.

Classic Pot Roast with Porcini Mushroom Sauce

Classic Pot Roast with Porcini Mushroom SauceServes 8

  • 1 (4-pound) boneless beef chuck roast
  • Salt and freshly ground black pepper
  • 3 tablespoons olive oil
  • 2 onions, sliced
  • 1 cup sliced mushrooms
  • 6 garlic cloves, coarsely chopped
  • 1 cup dry red wine
  • 1 3/4 cups canned beef broth
  • 1/2-ounce dried porcini mushrooms or other dried mushrooms
  • 1 large sprig fresh rosemary, plus extra for garnish

Preheat the oven to 350 degrees F.

Pat the beef dry with paper towels. Sprinkle the beef generously with salt and pepper. Heat 2 tablespoons olive oil in a heavy 6-quart roasting pan over medium-high heat. Add the beef and cook until brown on all sides, about 15 minutes total cooking time. Transfer the beef to a bowl. Add remaining tablespoon oil to the pan, add the onions and saute until tender, scraping up the brown bits on the bottom of the pot, about 5 minutes. Add the mushrooms and garlic and saute 3 minutes. Add the wine and boil 1 minute. Stir in the broth and mushrooms. Return the beef to the pan. Bring the liquids to a boil. Cover and transfer to the oven. Braise until the beef is fork-tender, turning the beef over halfway through cooking, about 3 hours.

Transfer the beef to a cutting board.

Meanwhile, spoon any excess fat off the top of the pan juices. Puree the pan juices with an immersion blender. Add a rosemary sprig and bring sauce to a simmer to infuse the rosemary slightly into the sauce. Bring to a boil. Season the sauce, to taste, with salt and pepper.

Cut the beef across the grain into 1/2-inch-thick slices. Arrange the sliced beef on a platter and garnish with rosemary. Pour sauce over meat and serve.

Chocolate Chip Cookie Bars with Pareve Ice Cream and Strawberry Balsamic Sauce

Chocolate Chip Cookie Bars with Pareve Ice Cream and Strawberry Balsamic SauceMakes 24 bars

  • 2 cups sugar
  • 2 large eggs
  • 1 cup neutral oil (like grape seed oil), plus extra for greasing pan
  • 2 tablespoons vanilla sugar
  • 3 ¼ cups ground almonds
  • ¼ cup potato starch
  • 1 cup mini chocolate chips
  • Pareve Ice Cream
  • Strawberry Balsamic Sauce, recipe follows
  • Garnish, fresh strawberries

Preheat oven to 375F. Grease the bottom and sides of a 9 x 13-inch pan. Press in a piece of parchment paper that is big enough to cover the bottom and sides of the pan. Grease the top and sides of the parchment. Set it aside.

Place the sugar, eggs, oil and vanilla sugar into a large bowl and beat with an electric mixer on medium speed until combined. Add he ground almonds and potato starch and mix well. Add the chocolate chips and mix to distribute.

Spoon the mixture into the prepared pan and use a spatula to spread it evenly.

Bake for 35 minutes or until the edges are brown, or a toothpick inserted in the center comes out with just a few crumbs on it. Let it cool. Loft out the parchment and then cut into squares or bars. Store at room temperature for up to five days or freeze up to three months.

To assemble:

In a decorative glass dish or bowl, place one slice of cookie bar. Top with a scoop of ice cream. Serve strawberry sauce either warm or at room temperature. Decorate with fresh strawberries.

Strawberry Balsamic Sauce

Makes 2 cups

  • 1/2 cup balsamic vinegar
  • 2 cups ripe strawberries, stemmed, hulled, and roughly diced
  • 2 tablespoons brown sugar
  • 1/4 teaspoon kosher salt
  • 1/8 teaspoon lemon zest

Bring balsamic vinegar to a boil in a small saucepan over medium heat. Reduce heat to low and simmer until vinegar has thickened and reduced to 1/4 of its original volume, 5 to 10 minutes.

Stir in strawberries, sugar, salt, and lemon zest. Increase heat to medium and bring to a boil. Reduce heat to low and simmer until strawberries have released their juices and softened, about 5 minutes.

With an immersion blender, puree slightly, or until smooth with a few pieces. Continue to simmer until sauce has thickened and is syrupy, 5 to 10 minutes more. Remove from heat, let cool to room temperature, then use immediately or transfer to an airtight container and store in refrigerator for up to a week.

Click here for more great Passover recipes.

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