KOAB Guest Poster Leah P is back to share her Pesach Menu. I love that she includes both her complete seder menu and her dinner menus throughout the week. Check out the rest of Leah’s Menu Planning posts – here and here.
The snow has melted (again), and they are selling tulips and hyacinths in the store. That can only mean one thing here in Cleveland: Pesach is around the corner.
So my kitchen might not be completely cleaned yet and my seder dinner might not be cooked yet, but on paper at least, we are all ready. This will be the third year I am hosting seder.
I miss the days of moving into my parents’ home for the week — especially since now we all end up eating most of the meals at my house. I’m lucky to have my mother in town, though, so we have already coordinated the shopping and cooking next week.
I keep a notebook just for Pesach and update it every year with food I purchased (from which store, quantity and how much I spent) and what I need to remember for the next year. This year I need to remember more snack and lunch food.
So, here is what our seder menu looks like. I’m still not sure how many guests we will end up having, but the menu remains about the same regardless of numbers. We spend second seder with close family friends.
Seder Menu Plan
- Three Layers Gefilte Fish Loaf (Salmon, Regular and Spinach)
- Matzah Ball Soup
- Charoset (standard, nothing fancy but made by my mother and kids every year)
- Relish Tray
- Grandma Anita’s Egg “Soup” (hard boiled eggs shredded into salt water…you can’t mess with tradition)
- Cranberry Relish (jellied cranberries, crushed pineapple, mandarin oranges and frozen strawberries – I borrowed the recipe from a friend’s sister)
- Asparagus (blanched with olive oil, lemon juice, salt and pepper)
- Grandma Anita’s Tzimmis (Onions, sweet potatoes, carrots, flanken, honey and “the balls”. My grandmother used to put a couple of onions in the food processor and pulverize them and then mix in eggs and matzo meal until it becomes the consistency of matzo ball mix. My mother spreads the mixture over the top of the tzimmis and then bakes it but I like to make balls and hide them throughout the tzimmis. They soak up the juices from the flanken and melt in your mouth.)
- Lemon and Herb Chicken (Last week I went to Costco and bought large packs of chicken thighs and drumsticks that have been in my freezer since and I picked up 4 chicken breasts with bones from the butcher this week. I cook the chicken pieces rather than whole chicken, since it’s much easier then having to carve several chickens at the table.)
- Sweet and Sour Meatballs
- Fresh Fruit
- Butterscotch Crunch Bars (thank you Susie Fishbein’s Passover by Design)
- Chocolate Matzoh Farfel Clusters
With seders over, the good news is that there are usually plenty of leftovers but there is only so much meat one can eat. I like to alternate back and forth between meat and dairy.
- Cottage Cheese Latkes
- Cottage cheese mixed with matzo meal and eggs until it has the right consistency and then pan fried. Soooo delicious!
- Cheese Slices
- Fresh Fruit
- Seder leftovers
Tuesday – Back to dairy!
- Matzo Parmigiana
- Eggplant Parmigiana
- Roasted Carrots and Zucchini
- Leftover Matzo Farfel Clusters and Brittle
Wednesday – Our synagogue has a fabulous Kosher for Passover dinner. I can’t pass up a night off from cooking during Pesach!
- Chicken Schnitzel
- Egg Drop Soup
- Steamed Broccoli
- Chicken soup
- BBQ Brisket
- Leftover Seder Chicken and Meatballs (from the freezer of course)
- Rosemary and Garlic Potatoes
- Roasted Broccoli and Cauliflower
- All leftover desserts
Saturday – IT’S OVER!
- We’re going out to eat!
Leah Eisenberg Polikoff was born in Cleveland, Ohio and studied Political Science and Jewish Studies at Indiana University, in Bloomington. Shortly after college, she moved to Boston to work for Combined Jewish Philanthropies and eventually met her husband. They thought it would be fun to pair moving a lot with having a family, which took them to Cherry Hill, New Jersey; Las Vegas, Nevada; Houston, Texas and then back to Cleveland. Leah is the Systems Specialist for the College Financial Aid Program at Jewish Family Service Association and the Cleveland Recruiter for Camp Ramah in Canada. She is also the mother of three beautiful children ages 11, 9 and 5. In her spare time, Leah enjoys cooking, entertaining and spending time with her family and friends.
Doesn’t Leah’s menu look great? I’m drooling over the Tuesday plan in particular! I love dairy! And speaking of menu planning, you can check out all of my Passover menus from years past – here’s 2015, 2014, 2013, and 2011. (Do you notice that I don’t reinvent the wheel? Many same dishes appear year after year.) And stay tuned: Because my 2016 menu plan is coming soon!