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Passover Cakes, Cookies and Ice Cream

April 4, 2016 | by Elizabeth Kurtz

You can’t pass over these delicious desserts.

Cakes, cookies, ice cream bars, all perfect for Passover. These delicious desserts are perfect for a sweet ending to a great Yom Tov meal, a morning treat, or a refreshing afternoon sweet tooth. They all can be made ahead of time and either frozen or refrigerated until ready to serve.

Chocolate Tea Cake

Chocolate Tea CakeServes 8

  • ¼ cup unsweetened cocoa powder
  • 1 cup unsalted, roasted almonds, plus 2 tablespoons chopped
  • 7 ounces bittersweet or semisweet chocolate, coarsely chopped
  • ½ cup olive oil
  • 1 teaspoon kosher salt
  • ¾ cup granulated sugar, divided
  • 4 large eggs, separated
  • 1 tablespoon sugar

Preheat oven to 325°F. Lightly grease a 8½x4½" loaf pan with nonstick spray or oil. Pulse cocoa powder and 1 cup almonds in a food processor until very finely ground, about 1 minute.

Microwave chocolate and ¼ cup water in a microwave-safe bowl in 15-second intervals (or heat in a heatproof bowl set over a saucepan of simmering water), stirring occasionally, until melted. Whisk in oil and salt, then almond mixture and half of granulated sugar, then egg yolks.

Using an electric mixer on high speed, beat egg whites until frothy. With motor running, gradually add remaining granulated sugar; beat egg whites to firm peaks.

Gently fold egg whites into chocolate mixture in 2 additions, folding just until incorporated each time. Scrape batter into prepared pan; top with chopped almonds and sugar. Bake cake until top is firm when gently pressed and a toothpick inserted into the center comes out with a few moist crumbs attached, 50–60 minutes. Transfer to a wire rack and let cake cool in pan 15 minutes. Turn out onto rack and let cool completely.

Do Ahead: Cake can be baked 4 days ahead. Store tightly wrapped at room temperature.

Lemon Mousse with Cinnamon Crumb Topping and Fruit

Lemon Mousse with Cinnamon Crumb Topping and FruitMakes 8

Lemon Mousse

  • 1 tablespoon finely grated lemon zest
  • ½ cup fresh lemon juice
  • ½ cup (1 stick) chilled unsalted margarine, cut into pieces, divided
  • ½ cup sugar, divided
  • 4 large egg yolks
  • 1 large egg
  • ½ cup chilled pareve cream

Cinnamon Crumb Topping

  • 1 tablespoon ground cinnamon
  • ½ cup light brown sugar
  • 1/3 cup chopped pecans
  • 1/3 cup chopped walnuts
  • 3 tablespoons margarine, softened
  • 2 tablespoons potato starch or matzo cake meal
  • 1 cup strawberries
  • 1 cup blueberries

For the mousse: Bring lemon zest and juice, ¼ cup margarine, and ¼ cup sugar to a simmer over medium heat in a medium saucepan, stirring to dissolve sugar. Remove from heat.

Whisk egg yolks, egg, and remaining ¼ cup sugar in a small bowl until pale and thick, about 2 minutes. Whisking constantly, slowly pour hot lemon mixture into egg mixture. Transfer back to saucepan and cook over medium-low heat, whisking constantly, until curd is thickened and whisk leaves a trail, about 5 minutes. Remove from heat and add remaining ¼ cup margarine, whisking until melted and curd is smooth.

Transfer curd to a bowl and cover with plastic wrap, pressing directly onto surface. Chill until cold, at least 2 hours.

Whip cream in a small bowl to soft peaks and gently fold into curd. Keep mousse chilled.

For the crumble: In a medium bowl, combine cinnamon, brown sugar, and both nuts. Add margarine and potato starch/cake meal and work into mixture until it is sticking together with some clumps. Break it into crumbs.

Preheat oven to 350°F.

Pour crumble onto a baking sheet in a single layer. Bake for 12 – 18 minutes or until crumble is lightly toasted.

To serve: Place lemon mousse in decorative bowls. Spoon crumble and berries over mousse.

Do Ahead: Lemon mousse and crumble can be made 3 days ahead. Store mousse in refrigerated, covered. Store crumble in airtight container or in freezer. Slice berries just before serving.

Chocolate Layered Ice Cream Bars

Chocolate Layered Ice Cream BarsThese are a fantastic treat on Passover. They taste sweet and salty and are a favorite for Yom Tov day meals. They are also great because they can be made weeks ahead of time and stored in the freezer, tightly covered. Defrost slightly before cutting.

Makes 12-16 bars

  • ½ cup walnuts (2 ounces)
  • ¾ cup matzo farfel, toasted, and coarsely crumbled or ½ cup matzo cake meal
  • ½ cup broken Passover cookies or macaroons
  • 1 stick plus 2 tablespoons unsalted margarine, cut into tablespoons
  • ¼ cup packed dark brown sugar
  • ¼ cup unsweetened cocoa powder
  • 1 large egg, beaten
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
  • 2 pints pareve Passover ice cream, (I like to use mint chocolate chip, chocolate chip or vanilla swirl), slightly softened or sorbet
  • 5 ounces dark chocolate, chopped
  • 2 tablespoons pareve whipping cream

Preheat the oven to 350°F. Line an 8-by-8-inch baking dish with parchment paper, leaving a few inches of overhang all around.

Spread the walnuts on a baking sheet and bake for about 5 minutes, until lightly toasted. Cool, chop and transfer to a large bowl.

In a food processor, pulse the farfel until fine crumbs form; add to the walnuts. In a resealable plastic bag, crush the cookies/macaroons with a rolling pin until small chunks form; add to the walnuts.

In a large saucepan, melt the stick of margarine over very low heat. Add the brown sugar and cocoa powder and whisk until smooth. Slowly drizzle the egg and vanilla into the saucepan, whisking, until thickened, 2 minutes. Mix in the walnut mixture. Press the mixture into the prepared baking dish in an even layer and refrigerate the cookie base for 30 minutes.

Spread 1-1/2 pints of the ice cream over the cookie base and freeze for 2 hours. Reserve the remaining ice cream for another use.

In a medium saucepan, combine the chocolate and pareve cream and the remaining 2 tablespoons of margarine. Heat over very low and stir until the chocolate is melted and smooth. Let cool to room temperature.

Pour melted chocolate over the ice cream and spread it evenly. Freeze for 2 hours, until set. Cut into small bars and serve.

Chocolate Walnut Torte

Chocolate Walnut TorteThis is a meringue torte so it's light and filled with chocolate and walnuts. It’s deceptively moist and speckled (kinda tweedy) and has no flour or egg yolks. It’s gluten free too. I like it with some pareve whipped cream on top.

Serves 10-12

  • 1 cup walnut pieces (or a full ½ cup of ground walnuts)
  • ½ cup plus 2 tablespoons sugar, divided
  • 9 ounces bittersweet chocolate, chopped (or use semi-sweet)
  • Zest of 1 small orange, optional
  • ⅛ teaspoon salt
  • 7 egg whites
  • ¼ teaspoon kosher for Passover cream of tartar, if available, or omit
  • Pareve whipped cream for topping

Preheat oven to 350°F. Grease the bottom and sides of a 9-inch springform pan.

In a food processor, pulse walnuts with 1 tablespoon of sugar until finely ground (alternatively you could use about ½ cup ground walnuts and mix with sugar). Take the nuts out of the food processor and place in separate bowl. Using the same processor, pulse the chopped chocolate with 1 tablespoon sugar, until chopped into pieces of varied sizes, from coarse meal, to ¼-inch bits. Add chocolate to nuts and then mix in orange zest (if using) and salt.

Using a mixer, beat egg whites until creamy white and soft peaks are formed. Gradually add the remaining ½ cup sugar until egg whites are glossy and stiff, but not dry.

Pour half of the chocolate mixture over the egg whites and fold together. Repeat with remaining chocolate mixture and fold until thoroughly combined but do not overmix.

Scrape the batter into pan and spread evenly. Bake for 25-30 minutes until the torte is puffed and golden brown on top. With a tester inserted in the center should come out moist and with some melted chocolate stuck to it.

Run a knife around sides of pan before releasing the springform. The cake can be prepared up to 3 days in advance and stored covered at room temperature or frozen, well wrapped for up to 3 months. Defrost in the refrigerator and serve at room temperature with whipped cream and fruit.

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