Sunday, December 17, 2006

A Hanukkah Feast

Even though we are not Jewish, I have been celebrating Hanukkah since I was a teenager when my mom & I decided it sounded like fun. I have added it to my blended family's traditions. We play with dreidels for chocolate gelt, exchange gifts (always books or non-electronic games), tell the Hanukkah story (and read Eric Kimmel's Herschel & the Hanukkah Goblins), light the candles of the hanukkiyah (reciting the traditional blessings in Hebrew and English) and eat delicious food. Friday night, Pie and I were on our own for the evening. We celebrated the first night with Manischewitz matzo ball soup and jelly doughnuts. Last night was our big celebratory dinner. I made brisket, latkes, applesauce and glazed carrots.

2 and 1/2 pounds beef brisket
Salt & pepper
2 c. beef stock
1 c. dry red wine
1 sliced onion
2 cloves garlic, slivered
Preheat oven to 250 degrees. Trim excess fat from brisket until only a fine, thin layer is left. Put in 13 x 9 baking dish, fat side up. Salt & pepper. Add stock, wine, onion & garlic. Cover tightly with foil & bake at 250 4-5 hours, adding more liquid if needed. Let stand 5-10 minutes before slicing.

7 medium potatoes
1 small onion
2 eggs
1/4 c. flour
2 tsp. salt
1/2 tsp. pepper
Oil for frying
Peel & grate potatoes. Grate onion. Beat eggs with onion. Add flour, salt & pepper. Squeeze potatoes dry. Add to egg mixture. Heat oil in a 12" skillet. Form thin patties from the potatoes & fry until golden on each side. Drain on a paper towel lined plate. Serve hot with sour cream.

2 1/2 lb. apples (I like to use MacIntosh), peeled, cored & diced
7 tbsp. sugar
1 tbsp. lemon juice
4 tbsp. water
Put all ingredients in pot and bring to a boil. Cover & simmer 20 minutes.

Glazed Carrots
1 lb. carrots, peeled and cut into 2" long pieces
1/2 tsp. salt, divided
2 tbsp. butter
2 tbsp. brown sugar
A grating of fresh nutmeg
Put carrots in pan with water to cover and 1/4 tsp. salt. Bring to boil. Simmer 1/2 hour. Drain. Stir in the rest of the salt, butter, brown sugar and nutmeg. Cook on low until well-glazed.

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