Perfect for Passover! Georgian Jews arrived in Israel the 1970’s, but their cuisine only became a delicious part of Israel’s culinary life in recent years. This is one of their favorite dishes. Note: Serve 2 pieces per person as a first course, 3 or more as a main course. Kosher for Passover, this dish is also great throughout the year. Makes about 12- pieces 2-3 medium eggplant Olive oil for brushing Salt Black pepper 2 cups walnut halves 2 medium garlic cloves, pressed (1 tablespoon) Half teaspoon white or red wine vinegar 1/3 cup chopped onion Scant quarter teaspoon ground coriander 1 teaspoon salt or more to taste 1 small dried hot pepper or cayenne to taste 1/2 cup packed chopped cilantro 1/3 cup packed chopped fresh Italian parsley Pomegranate syrup to garnish (optional) 1. Cut the stem end off the eggplant, and slice lengthwise into 1 ½ cm slices. Sprinkle both sides with a little coarse salt and pepper and rub in. Let stand for 10 minutes, rinse off and pat dry. 2. Lay the eggplant slices in a parchment paper lined pan, brush with olive oil on both sides and bake on both sides till golden brown. Remove and place between two sheets of paper towels to absorb excess oil. Set aside. 3. Finely grind the walnuts to a powder in a food processor. Add the rest of the ingredients, blending until the paste forms a ball. Lay the eggplant slices on a work surface and place 2 or more tablespoons of filling (depending on type of eggplant), at the base. Carefully roll up from the bottom into a compact roll. Place on a serving platter decorated with fresh greens if desired, and serve with a sprinkling of pomegranate syrup if desired.
Perfect for Passover! Although genuine chopped liver holds a special place in the annals of Ashkenazic culinary history, today an increasing amount of people are looking for an alternative both for health and humane reasons. The following recipe is an excellent alternative. In both recipes, the secret to success in flavor and color is the slow stewing-frying of the onions till they are well browned but not burnt. To achieve this requires the patience of cooking over low heat for at least a half hour, stirring occasionally. It’s worth it. This also makes a great stuffing for kreplach. Makes 12 servings as an appetizer or 6 servings in a main course lunch salad 1 lb. fresh young or frozen whole green beans, steamed 3 medium onions 1/3 cup light olive oil 6 hard-cooked eggs, quartered 1 1/2 cups walnuts salt, white pepper, black pepper to taste Method If using fresh beans, clip the edges of the beans. Steam fresh or frozen beans in a small amount of boiling salted water, uncovered, until they are crisp but tender. Drain well. Heat the oil on medium heat in a large frying pan, lower heat and saute the onion slowly in oil till deep brown. Stir occasionally. Add more oil if necessary to prevent burning. Drain well. (Add remaining oil in pan to mixture if mixture seems dry). Mix fully drained steamed beans, onions, eggs and walnuts together in a bowl. Season with salt, white and black pepper to taste. Process in a food processor in two batches till finely ground. Taste and adjust seasonings. Transfer to a bowl, cover with plastic wrap and chill in the refrigerator till serving time, or at least and hour. To serve, make a bed of arugula or red and green butter lettuces on individual serving plates and top each with a ball of the mixture (use an ice cream scoop dipped in ice water, if you have one).The healthiest way by far to preserve the nutritional value of vegetables like beans, is to steam them, preferably in a steamer basket, where water-soluble B vitamins cannot come in contact with cooking water. Alternately, use just enough boiling salted water to cover the bottom of a pot. Cook green vegetables without a cover, adding more boiling water if necessary. Salting the water raises the temperature of the boil allowing faster cooking.