All cold, all make-ahead . . .
Yom Kippur buffet On Yom Kippur, October 6 this year, the 24-hour fast for the Day ofAtonement concludes with a special menu combining fish and dairy foods.By custom, all labors for the meal are expended on a preceding day, andJewish families spend a reflective day at a synagogue. For the foods to be kosher–conform to Jewish dietary laws–theymust contain no meat or meat products if dairy foods are served, as inthis attractive buffet for 8 to 10 from the women of Temple Beth Jacobin Redwood City, California. The menu appeals to any hostess who likes to be well organizedbefore guests arrive. The meal begins with a simple ritual. A blessingis said over challah, a golden loaf, which is then broken into piecesfor all to share.
Then cold cerise beet borscht is served to sip fromcups. The main part of the meal focuses on a molded poached fish saladserved with a sour cream sauce pungently seasoned with horseradish. Tomake this dish kosher, use kosher gelatin, available in Jewish foodsections of well-stocked supermarkets or Jewish and Middle Easterndelicatessens.
Accompany with cooled steamed potatoes in a mustard dressing, and asalad of tomatoes and cucumbers. Sweet kugel– noodles baked incustard–is eaten with the savory foods in Jewish homes, but it alsomakes a wholesome dessert. Yom Kippur buffet Challah Beet Borscht Fish in Fresh Herb Aspic with Horseradish Cream New Potatoes in Mustard Dressing Cucumber and Tomato Salad Noodle Kugel Grapes Buy a golden loaf of challah–it comes in many decorative shapes,or make it or another egg-rich, slightly sweet bread from a favoriterecipe; freeze the bread if you make it more than a day before you planto serve it. You can prepare all the remaining dishes 1 to 2 days ahead. Exceptfor the kugel, which goes from refrigerator to oven just before themeal, the menu is served cold. Beet Borscht 2 pounds beets without tops About 4 cups water 1 small onion, chopped 2 eggs 2 tablespoons sugar 3 tablespoons lemon juice Salt and pepper Lemon slices Peel beets and coarsely shred in a food processor or through thelarge holes of a grater; you should have about 5 cups. In a 4- to 5-quart pan, combine the beets, 4 cups water, and onion.Bring to a boil over high heat; reduce heat to low, cover, and simmeruntil beets are tender to bite, about 15 minutes.
Let cool. Add eggs, sugar, and lemon juice to beet mixture; in a blender,puree a third to a half at a time. Season with salt and pepper. Coverand chill at least 2 hours or as long as 2 days. Before serving, stir borscht; if too thick to sip, add water tothin soup to desired consistency. Pour into a serving bowl and garnishwith lemon slices. Ladle into cups to sip, or into bowls to serve withspoons. Makes about 2 quarts, 8 to 10 servings of 3/4 to 1 cup each.
Fish in Fresh Herb Aspic with Horseradish Cream 2 pounds boned firm-textured white fish (such as lingcod, redsnapper, or halibut) in 1-inch-thick pieces 1 1/4 to 1 1/2 pounds boned salmon in 1-inch-thick piece Poaching liquid (recipe follows) Water 2 envelopes kosher or regular unflavored gelatin 3/4 cup each minced parsley and minced green onion Salt 2 whole green onions, split lengthwise Horseradish cream (recipe follows) Arrange fish in pan of poaching liquid, overlapping so fish issubmerged. Bring to a boil on high heat; reduce heat, cover, and simmerjust until fish is opaque in thickest part (cut to test), 7 to 10minutes. Lift fish from liquid with a slotted spatula; cover and chill.
Boil poaching liquid rapidly over high heat, uncovered, untilreduced to 3 cups, about 5 minutes. Pour liquid through a strainer;discard residue. Measure liquid; if less than 3 cups, add water; setaside.
Combine gelatin and 1/2 cup water in a 1-to 2-quart pan; let stand5 minutes to soften. Stir over medium heat until gelatin dissolves;blend in reserved poaching liquid. Chill until mixture is as thick asunbeaten egg whites; stir in the parsley and onion.
Season with salt. Remove and discard skin and bones from fish; break fish into about1-inch chunks. Cut root end and tips from whole onions; lay onions in the bottomof a 2 1/2- to 3-quart ring mold. Pour about 1/2 inch of the gelatininto mold, over onions.
Distribute about a fourth of the fish chunks around the ring.Continue to make layers of fish and gelatin until all are used. Pressfish down firmly in gelatin to make top as level as possible. Cover andrefrigerate until firm, at least 4 hours or as long as overnight. To serve, dip mold to rim in hot tap water just until edges beginto liquefy; invert mold onto a serving platter. Cut into thick slicesand serve with horseradish cream to spoon onto individual portions.Makes 8 to 10 servings.
Poaching liquid. In a 4- to 5-quart pan, combine 1 quart water,1/2 cup dry white wine, 6 each whole allspice and whole black peppers, 3tablespoons lemon juice, and 1 large onion, sliced. Bring to a boil onhigh heat; reduce heat to low, then cover and simmer 20 minutes to blendflavors. If made ahead, cover and chill in pan as long as overnight. Horseradish cream. Stir together until blended 1 1/2 cups sourcream, 1 tablespoon lemon juice, and 2 to 3 tablespoons preparedhorseradish. Use, or cover and chill up to 2 days. Makes 1 3/4 cups.
New Potatoes in Mustard Dressing Scrub 16 to 20 red-skinned potatoes, each 2 1/2 inches in diameter.Set potatoes on a rack in a 6- to 8-quart pan over water. Cover pan,bring water to boiling, and cook potatoes over medium-high heat untiltender when pierced, 30 to 35 minutes. Let stand until cool enough tohandle.
With the large end of a melon baller or tip of a small spoon, scoopout a 1/2-inch-deep cavity in each potato. Arrange potatoes hollowedside up on a serving dish. Blend together 3/4 cup olive oil or salad oil, 1/4 cup white winevinegar, and 1 tablespoon Dijon mustard; season with salt and pepper.Spoon about half the dressing into potato cavities, allowing it todrizzle down sides; reserve remaining dressing. Cover potatoes and chillat least 4 hours or as long as overnight.
Just before serving, spoonreserved dressing over and around potatoes. Makes 8 to 10 servings. Cucumber and Tomato Salad Rinse 2 long English (European) cucumbers, about 1 pound each.Slice cucumbers, discarding ends; you should have about 6 cups. Placeslices in a bowl and sprinkle with 2 teaspoons salt; mix, well. Coverand chill 30 minutes.
Rinse cucumbers thoroughly in cold water; drain. Mix together 1/2 cup each white wine vinegar and sugar and 1/2teaspoon dry dill weed. Pour dill dressing over cucumbers, mixinggently. Cover and chill at least 2 hours or up to 2 days; mix severaltimes. Core and thinly slice 4 large tomatoes; arrange tomatoes on oneside of a serving dish; lift cucumbers from dressing and moundalongside.
Pour the dressing over both vegetables. Makes 8 to 10servings. Noodle Kugel 1/2 pound (8 oz.) dried wide lasagna noodles Water 4 eggs 1/2 cup sugar 1 cup (1/2 pt.) small-curd cottage cheese 1 cup (1/2 pt.) sour cream 1/4 cup (1/8 lb.) butter or margarine, melted 1 1/2 cups milk 1 teaspoon vanilla 3/4 cup raisins Streusel (recipe follows) 1 cup whipping cream In a 6- to 8-quart pan, cook noodles in 4 quarts of boiling water,uncovered, until tender to bite, about 10 minutes; drain. Beat together eggs, sugar, cottage cheese, sour cream, butter,milk, and vanilla until well blended.
Pour about 1 cup of this mixtureinto the bottom of a shallow, greased 2- to 2 1/2-quart baking dish.Top with 1/4 the noodles and sprinkle with 1/4 of the raisins. Continueto layer these ingredients until all are used. Cover and chill at least4 hours or up to 2 days. Sprinkle streusel evenly over the noodles.
Bake uncovered in a350| oven until pudding feels firm in center when touched, about 1 hour.Whip cream until it holds soft peaks. Cut kugel in squares and servewarm with whipped cream. Serves 8 to 10.
Streusel. Mix together 1/2 cup all-purpose flour, 1/4 cup firmlypacked brown sugar, and 1/2 teaspoon ground cinnamon. With yourfingers, rub 1/4 cup (1/8 lb.
) cold butter or margarine into mixtureuntil coarse crumbs form. Use, or cover and chill as long as 2 days. Photo: To break the fast at Yom Kippur, thick sweet-sour beetborscht is served to sip after the loaf of challah is blessed Photo: Cold buffet, prepared ahead so the holiday is notinterrupted by cooking, combines dairy foods with fish and vegetables.Molded salmon and sole with sour cream is the main dish, accompanied bypotatoes with mustard dressing and cucumber and tomato salad Photo: Streusel-topped kugel: wide noodles baked in a raisin-lacedcustard are crowned with a dollop of whipped cream to end the meal