Saturday, April 2, 2011

#93 Jewish Style Potato Vegetable Kugel

Kugel is a simple baked egg dish with subtle flavors that I usually made when the girls had friends over in elementary school. On days when Spring break projects or activities had to be a group activity, one of the parents took the responsibility of riding all kids over to their home until the respective parents could pick them up after work. This meant that little school going kids needed something substantial and fairly simple for the little tummies. I always insist on feeding children some form of carbohydrates for energy with a glass of milk, and so it was either pasta or peanut butter and jelly sandwiches. Often, when they got tired of eating the same thing, that's when I came up with something like a Kugel with applesauce, or pancakes and syrup. Kugels have loads of potato and egg which are perfect as an "after school snack" with applesauce.

I have been reading about Jewish festivals lately. Passover is the eight day festival celebrated by the Jews in early spring beginning on 15th day of the month of Nissan(around the month of April). So lets begin April with the commemoration of the emancipation of Israelites from slavery. It is said that Israel served many years of slavery to the Egyptian Pharoahs during which time they were subjected to backbreaking labor and unbearable horrors, so Moses was sent with a message from God which they ignored. But after a long struggle, the Israelites were chased out of the land and it is said that they fled in such a hurry that the bread they baked did not even have time to rise. Almost 600,000 people left Egypt on that day and began the journey to freedom. 

This day is celebrated in two parts--the first two days and last two days identify with the splitting of the Red sea and holiday candles are lit and sumptous meals are enjoyed on both days. The middle four days are semi-festive holidays--- to commemorate the unleaved bread that Israelites ate when they left Egypt and in respect they do not eat bread or leavened grain- or drink anything that contained a trace of wheat, barley, rye, oats spelt or any derivates.  On the two Seder nights matzah can be eaten.  This recipe is from Giora Shimoni's collection It piqued my interest since it is a much more healthier version than the Potato Latke. You will notice that this recipe calls for a large part vegetables to a very small part matzoh meal.  I also took a shot at cooking up fresh applesauce for the Kugel....

•Vegetable oil spray
•2 Tablespoons vegetable oil
•1 large onion, chopped
•1 pound yellow squash, coarsely grated
•2 large carrots, peeled and coarsely grated
•2 large baking potatoes
•3 large eggs
•1 teaspoon salt
•1/4 teaspoon ground pepper
•1/3 cup chopped fresh parsley
•1 teaspoon paprika
•1/4 cup matzoh meal
Preheat oven to 350 degrees F. Generously spray an 8-inch square pan or 7-cup baking dish with vegetable oil spray.
Gently saute the onion in the oil over medium-low heat until soft, about 10 minutes. Place grated squash and carrots in a large mixing bowl and add the onions.
Peel the potatoes and coarsely grate. Place in a strainer and squeeze out any excess moisture. Transfer the grated potatoes to the vegetables in the bowl. Mix in eggs, salt, pepper, parsley, paprika, and matzoh meal.
Heat the baking dish for 5 minutes in the preheated oven. Scrape the vegetable mixture into the hot pan. Lightly spray with vegetable oil and sprinkle with additional paprika for color.
Bake potato vegetable kugel about 1 hour until set and browned on top. Let rest 5 minutes before cutting shapes or just into squares to serve hot with applesauce.

1 Apple
1/2 tspn Cinnamon powder
1/4 cup brown sugar
1/4 cup water
1. Cut the apple into small cubes and add to a small pan with water.
2. Cook well with brown sugar and cinnamon until soft and most of the water has evaporated.
3. Mash well with the back of a spoon and serve at room temperature.


  1. These little morsels look so incredibly yummy...! Thank you for sharing the recipe :).

  2. Potato Kugeln look very delicious and attractive. I found the intro you gave to this recipe very interesting. It is good to know such traditions and rituals in other cultures.. Apple sauce is a yummy combo to this :-)

  3. Oh I loved this post...I brought me to tears with memories of growing up. Our next door neighbor was a Jewish family and we were an Italian family. Well, our mothers would exchange recipes of course and when we came home from school we would go over each others houses and find wonderful food such as this waiting. Such love and caring feeding healthy and good food.

    P.S. I love potato latke....

  4. Thanks for stopping by my blog!
    This recipe looks delicious. It reminds me of my high school days when we used to go to my friend's grandfather's Jewish grocery store after school. He sold this and it was amazing!

  5. Mmmm...... don't think I've tried any Jewish dish. What a colourful dish!

  6. What an awesome recipe... these veggie pancakes look amazing!


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