Friday, April 2, 2010

Passover Popovers and Potatoes - The 3 P's

I think I mentioned previously that I found some interesting recipes on the King Arthur Flour Blog . I mean who knew that a flour company would provide such incredible recipe for flourless baking. Pretty impressive, n'est ce pas? I decided to try their Passover Popovers that I have to tell you are both easy to make and really far lighter than I ever expected them to be. Passover is all about using eggs as a leavening agent so don't go into cardiac arrest at the number of eggs in this recipe.

2 cups water
1 cup vegetable oil
1 to 1 1/4 tsp salt
2 Tbsp sugar
1 cup cake meal
1 cup matzo meal
12 large eggs

1. Put the water, oil, salt and sugar in a saucepan and bring to a boil.
2. Stir in the cake meal, then the matzoh meal; the mixture will be very stiff. Set it aside to cool to lukewarm, about an hour.
3. Preheat the oven to 400 F. Use shortening or non-stick vegetable oil spray to grease a standard muffin tin; a standard 6-cup popover plan; or a 12-cup mini-popover pan.
4. Crack the eggs into a large measuring cup. With your mixer running, gradually pour them into the bowl. Beat till smooth; scrape the sides and bottom of the bowl, and beat till smooth again.
5. Scoop the stiff batter into the prepared pan, filling the cups about 3/4 full. You'll need to bake in batches; this recipe will make 28 muffin-size popovers; 15 standard popovers; or 30 mini popovers.
6. Place the pan in the center of the oven and bake for 10 minutes. Reduce the oven heat to 325 F and bake for an additional 35 minutes (mine took 30 minutes) (for the muffin-pan popovers); 40 minutes (for the standard popovers); or 25 minutes (for the mini-popovers). Popovers should be a medium-golden brown. To check if they're done, pull one out of the pan (they come out really easily) and break it open; the interior should be mildly moist, but not soggy.
7. Remove the popovers from the oven, and tilt them in the pan to cool. (I didn't do this part and they were still great)

Passover isn't the same without a Norene Gilletz recipe. This year we chose her Duchesse Potato Mounds with Mushroom.

10-12 large potatoes, peeled & cut up (about 4lb./2kg)
2 eggs plus 2 egg whites
1/2 cup chicken or vegetable broth (approximately)
2 Tbsp tub margarine, divided
salt and pepper to taste

Mushroom Filling

3 cups mushrooms, coarsely chopped (I used baby bellas)
2 onions, coarsely chopped (I used one large and was happy I cut it back)
1/2 tsp. dried thyme
paprika, to garnish

1. Cook potatoes in lightly salted water until tender, about 15-20 minutes. Drain well. Place pan with drained potatoes over high heat for a minute to evaporate excess moisture. Mash potatoes until smooth.** Add eggs, egg whites and just enough broth to moisten. Beat well. Add 1 Tbsp. margarine and season with salt and pepper. Mixture should be firm enough to pipe through a pastry bag. Amount of broth used will depend on the size of potatoes and how dry they are when you mash them.

2. In a non-stick skillet, saute mushrooms and onions in remaining margarine on medium-high heat until nicely browned. If necessary, add a little broth. Season with salt, pepper and thyme.

3. Line a baking sheet with foil and spray with non-stick spray. Place potato mixture in a large pastry bag fitted with a large star tube. Pipe potatoes into mounds onto prepared baking sheet, leaving a small opening in the centre of each mount. Spoon in some of the mushroom filling. Sprinkle lightly with paprika. (Can be prepared ahead of time) Bake uncovered at 400 F for 20 minutes, until golden

** - making sure the potatoes are mashed well is critical; if you have any lumps they'll get stuck in your tip when piping.
This will yield about 12 servings depending on how large you make them.
Reheats really well. Do not freeze

Verdict: I would make these over and over again. Everyone thinks it's magic when it's really so simple, pretty and delicious.

Easter and Passover usually fall around the same time. We'd like to wish all of our friends who celebrate Easter a soulfully enriching and joyous time with your families and friends. StumbleUpon


Valerie Harrison (bellini) said...

The potatoes really are a find and perfect for any Spring menu. Have a wonderful weekend!!

Julia said...

The popovers recipe remind me of pate a choux. I wonder if you could use this instead of matzah on Shabbat?

giz said...

Julia - why not?

FOODalogue said...

Potatoes got my eye too!

All the best to you and your family.

Lori Lynn said...

Wow! Both those recipes sound terrific!
Hope you are having a wonderful Passover Giz.
And that all the cooking was not too much work.

Ruth Daniels said...

Too bad Passover is just about done. I won't be making either dish this year. You can be sure that the popovers are bookmarked for next year.

kat said...

Those potatoes look wonderful!

grace said...

i do love me some alliteration...and potatoes. i haven't ever attempted popovers, but duchesse taters are one thing i know and LOVE. :)