Holidays Call for Home Cooking!

Great recipes for holidays

My assistant Suzi has Hanukah family party I her house and she told me that she was planning to make latkes from the mix. Back in Poland we were eating potato latkes once a week, and mom or grandma were making it the way “God ordered”. For our holidays everything was made at home from scratch. I found great recipes for latkes, horseradish sauce and beet soup. Beet soup was very popular among Jews living in Poland and Russia, and could bring great memories for your great parents and parents.

Happy holidays from all of us at Renu!  

Dill Beet Soup with Mini Potato latkes and Horseradish Sauce


Colorful, sweet, and spicy, this dish also offers an elegant presentation! I prefer fresh horseradish root, if it’s available, finely grated into the sauce. If you like even more heat, add a chile arbol or pinch of cayenne to be simmering broth.

For the dill beet soup:

¼ cup butter

1 leek, white part only, washed well and finely diced

1 yellow onion, finely diced

2 carrots, diced into 1/4 –inch pieces

2 celery stalks, diced into ¼-ich pieces

6 garlic cloves, minced

2 pounds beets, trimmed and peeled, diced into 1/2-inch pieces

1 cup canned diced tomatoes

8 cups chicken stock or water

1 tbls brown sugar

2 bay leaves

Kosher salt and freshly ground pepper

2 tbls apple cider vinegar

¼ cup chopped fresh dill

Dill sprigs or chopped chives, for garnish


Melt the butter in a large, heavy saucepan. Add the leek, onion, carrots, celery, and garlic. Set the vegetables on low until soft. Add the beets, tomatoes, stock or water, sugar, and bay leaves. Season with salt and pepper. Cover and cook until beets are tender, about 25 minutes. Remove bay leaves. Adjust seasoning. Add chopped dill, and puree if desired. Top with Mini Potato Latke and Horseradish Sauce. Garnish with dill or chives. Serves 8.


For the potato latkes:

½ medium onion, grated

1 large potato, peeled and grated

1 large egg, beaten

¼ cup flour and/or matzo meal

Kosher salt and freshly ground pepper

Vegetable oil


Combine onion and potato together. Put mixture into a clean, lint-free towel or a double square of cheese-cloth and squeeze out as much moisture as possible. Place in a medium bowl and add eggs, flour, and salt and pepper to taste. Heat 3 tablespoons of vegetable oil in a non-stick skillet over medium heat. Add a tablespoon of potato mixture (to make a silver dollar-sized latke). Flatten slightly with spatula and sauté on both sides until golden brown. Drain on paper towels.


For the horseradish sauce:

¾ cup sour cream or crème fraiche

¼ cup prepared horseradish

2 tbls chopped chives

2 tsp fresh lemon juice (or apple cider vinegar)

Kosher salt and freshly ground pepper, to taste

Whisk all the ingredients together in a small bowl. Cover and chill.



Herb Quarterly

Winter 2012



 If you want to personalize your holiday gifts, or create a sensational dessert for your own party, I found a perfect recipe for that!


Dark Chocolate Truffles


       These rich truffles are as good as anything you’d get from a chocolatier. Even more amazing? They are vegan. (Coconut oil, not heavy cream, lends them their buttery richness.) Finish simply with cocoa powder or roll in toppings like crushed pistachios, Marcona almonds, and shredded coconut.

TO PACKAGE Mini cupcake liners are just the right size to cradle these little flavor bombs. (Pack in a shadow box to keep them from rolling around.) For a tutorial on wrapping like a pro, go to wholeliving.com/gift-box.


8 oz dark chocolate (70% coca), chopped

¼ cup coconut oil

Pinch sea salt

¼ cup cocoa powder, for rolling

Assorted toppings: coca powder (for an ombre effect, use a few different brands), finely chopped nuts (pistachios, Marcona almonds, hazelnuts), and toasted unsweetened shredded coconut


  1. Heat chocolate, oil, and 3 Tbsp water in a double boiler, stirring, until just melted. Remove from heat and stir in vanilla and sea salt.
  2. Transfer to an 8-inch baking dish and refrigerate until mixture is set but still pliable, about 2 hours.
  3. Using a 1-inch scoop or melon baler, scoop out chocolate mixture and transfer to a parchment-lined baking sheet. Coat hands in cocoa and roll chocolate into balls. Refrigerate on parchment-lined baking sheet 10 minutes.

Per 3 truffles: 188 cals; 15 g fat (10 g sat fat); 0 mg chol; 17 g carb; 33 mg sodium; 1 g protein; 2 g fiber *


MAKE AHEAD Truffles can be refrigerated in an airtight container up to two weeks. Let stand 30 minutes before rolling in cocoa or patting with nuts or shredded coconut.



Whole Living

December 2012


It is so simple that even I can make it!!! J

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