Cooking for Passover and beyond

The Baltimore Sun

Passover by Design

Picture-Perfect Kosher by Design Recipes for the Holiday

Hip Kosher

175 Easy-to-Prepare Recipes for Today's Kosher Cooks

By Ronnie Fein

Da Capo Press / 2008 / $16.95

I should point out immediately that this book is not "hip" by any modern culinary standard. But when it comes to Jewish cooking, maybe.

Ronnie Fein argues that kosher is not just for Jews anymore. Among those seeking kosher recipes these days, she says, are Muslims, Jehovah's Witnesses, vegetarians, vegans, the health-conscious and the animal-welfare crowd.

I'm not a keeper of kosher, but the Farro Salad With Grape Tomatoes, Green Beans and Sweet Onions seemed like a fresh and healthful lunch option for anyone. And the use of the ancient grain farro? Earns a few hipness points.

Potato-Crusted Snapper With Mushroom Sauce

Serves 6

6 (6-ounce) red snapper fillets, with skin

fine sea salt

freshly ground black pepper

2 cups mashed-potato flakes


3 tablespoons olive oil (divided use)

3 tablespoons butter (divided use)

1 shallot, sliced

3 cloves fresh garlic, chopped

8 ounces assorted exotic mushrooms, such as oyster, shiitake caps and cremini mushrooms, sliced

2 cups pinot grigio or other white wine

1/2 cup light cream

Season the snapper fillets with salt and pepper. Pour the mashed-potato flakes into a plate. Dip the fish into the flakes, pressing to get them to stick. Turn the fillets over and press the flakes into the skin side. Set fish aside.

Meanwhile, prepare the sauce: In a medium skillet, heat 1 tablespoon each of olive oil and butter over medium heat. Add the shallot and garlic. Saute for 4 minutes, or until shiny and translucent.

Add the mushrooms and cook for 2 minutes or until fragrant. Add the wine and bring to a simmer. Allow the wine to reduce for 6 to 7 minutes. Stir in the light cream. Keep warm.

To cook the fish: In a large skillet, heat 1 tablespoon each of the oil and butter. When the butter is melted and the oil is hot, add 2 or 3 pieces of fish, skin side up, in a single layer. Cook for 4 to 5 minutes, or until the potatoes are golden-brown and crusted onto the fish. Flip and cook on the other side for 5 minutes, or until cooked through.

Remove the fish to a platter. Wipe out the pan between batches. Add remaining tablespoon each of olive oil and butter to the pan. When hot, add the remaining snapper fillets. Cook as directed above.

Serve the fish with the sauce.

From "Passover by Design"

Per serving: 384 calories, 37 grams protein, 19 grams fat, 7 grams saturated fat, 16 grams carbohydrate, 1 gram fiber, 88 milligrams cholesterol, 140 milligrams sodium

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