Serving an all plant-based Passover dinner can be challenging but when you’ve got recipes like these, you know that the meal will be delicious, healthy and traditional. Fitting restricted diets into an important traditional holiday can turn out to be quite satisfying and won’t sacrifice the underlying meaning or significance! These recipes are so great that you’ll want to go back to them all throughout Passover week. Creativity, motivation and Vegan American Princess is all you really need!
Your seder plate, the ceremonial platter holding the symbols of the story of the Exodus from Egypt, can be modified easily by substituting a child’s toy egg and lamb chop for the real thing, if the visual representation is very important to you. The other symbols, the horseradish, parsley, romaine lettuce and charoset (apple and wine mixture), are quite plant-based. Mayim Bialik, celebrated actress of The Big Bang Theory and celebrated vegan, uses a roasted beet in place of the lamb bone—” it’s ‘bloody’ appearance symbolizing the blood the Israelites used to mark their doors to ward off the last of the 10 plagues, death of the first born, from their homes,” she explains in the New York Times article, “A Vegan Passover.”
For more on How to Prepare a Vegan Seder Plate, CLICK HERE.
In addition to eliminating breads and leavened food, many Jews observing the “Kosher for Passover” guidelines also give up certain foods that are regulars in the vegan pantry–such as beans, soybeans, lentils, corn and rice–for the duration of the holiday. Quinoa, which is technically considered a berry, can come to the rescue in many Passover recipes with much success and culinary satisfaction as it is considered “Kosher for Passover.”
VEGAN MATZOH BALL SOUP
Makes about 8 cups
Rich Vegetable Broth for Matzoh Ball Soup
- 1 tablespoon olive oil
- 1 large onion, coarsely chopped (you may include skin)
- 2 large carrots, peeled and coarsely chopped
- 2 parsnips, peeled and coarsely chopped
- 3 cloves garlic, smashed
- 2 leeks, well rinsed and coarsely chopped
- 1 cup loosely packed fresh parsley
- 1 cup loosely packed fresh dill
- 12 cups water (Isa Chandra uses 9 cups of water)
- 1 teaspoon salt
- In a large stock pot, heat the oil. Saute the onions for about 5 minutes on medium heat. Add all other ingredients and bring to a boil. Reduce the heat and let simmer for 1 and 1/2 hours (ie. 90 minutes), uncovered.
- Let the broth cool until it’s an okay temperature to handle. Strain into a large bowl through cheesecloth or a very fine-mesh strainer. Press the vegetables with a gentle but firm pressure to get all the moisture out. This will keep in the fridge in a tightly sealed container for up to 3 days, or freeze for up to 3 months.
Vegan Matzoh Balls
Yields approximately 16-18 matzoh balls (depending on size)
- 1 1/2 cups matzoh meal
- 3/4 teaspoon salt, plus extra for the boiling water
- 3/4 teaspoon ground pepper
- 1 (12-ounce) package firm silken tofu (like Mori-nu)
- 8 1/2 cups or so Rich Vegetable Broth (recipe above)
- 1/4 cup plus 2 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil
- 1 carrot, peeled
- A handful fresh dill, coarsely chopped
- Fresh parsley for garnish
- In a mixing bowl, combine the matzoh meal with the salt and pepper; set aside.
- Crumble the tofu into a blender or food processor, add 1/2 cup of the vegetable broth, and puree until smooth.Add the oil and blend again.
- Mix the tofu mixture with the matzoh meal, making sure that everything is moist.
- Grate half the carrot into the mixture and mix until it’s well distributed. Cover the bowl with plastic wrap and refrigerate for at least an hour and up to overnight. You can’t skip this step! It’s important in making sure that the matzoh balls will not fall apart when boiled.
- When you are ready to form the balls, fill a large stockpot with enough water to fit all the matzoh balls with minimal touching. Salt the water generously, cover, and bring to a boil.
- Set out a cutting board upon which to line up the formed matzoh balls, and cover it with parchment paper if you have any, to prevent sticking. Remove the matzoh mixture from the fridge. Form into tightly packed, walnut-size balls and place on the prepared cutting board.
- When all the balls are prepared, drop carefully into the boiling water, one or two at a time, with a spatula or slotted spoon. Take your time and be careful not to plop one on top of another. When all the balls are in the water, cover the pot, lower the heat to a low setting and DO NOT LIFT THE LID FOR FORTY MINUTES!!! When the 40 minutes are up, you can remove the lid. The matzoh balls will have floated to the top. If you wait a few minutes, they will drop back down to the bottom of the pot.
- Now the matzoh balls are ready to be served. If you want them to be a little lighter, turn off the heat, cover the pot again, and let them sit in the water for another hour or so.
- Prepare the remaining vegetable broth by placing it in a separate pot, grating the other half of the carrot into the broth, along with a healthy handful of fresh dill. Bring to a low boil, and when it’s just heated you’re ready to prepare the bowls. With a slotted spoon, carefully remove the matzoh balls from their pot and place two or three into each bowl. Ladle the broth over the matzoh balls, so that they are covered only about halfway. You can garnish with some more fresh dill, or parsley.
- If you are not serving the soup right away, you can refrigerate the matzoh balls overnight, and boil them when ready to prepare the soup.
CAULIFLOWER STEAKS TOPPED WITH SAVORY QUINOA AND CARAMELIZED ONIONS
- 3 Tbs olive oil
- 1/4 red onion, minced
- 1 shallot, minced
- 1 garlic clove, minced
- 1/2 cup quinoa, (red is nice)
- 2 cups vegetable broth
- 1 sprig thyme
- salt and pepper
- 2 heads cauliflower
- 1/2 cup diced sun-dried tomatoes
- 1 Tbs pine nuts
- 1 Tbs finely chopped chives
- Preheat the oven to 400 degrees F.
- In a small saucepan, heat a tablespoon of olive oil over medium-low heat. Add the onion, shallot and garlic and cook, stirring often until onion is softened , about 5 minutes
- Add the quinoa and toast, stirring constantly for about a minute
- Increase the heat to high, add 1 cup of vegetable broth and the thyme and season with salt and pepper. Bring to a simmer.
- Cook covered until almost all the liquid has been absorbed, about 15 minutes. Remove from heat and let stand for 5 minutes. Discard the thyme sprig.
- Trim the stem of the cauliflower so that the dead sits flat on the cutting board. Cut down through the center of the head, making 4 thick slices. If most of the slices have the stem attached and leave it that way. I was able to get 2 good slices from 1 head of cauliflower and the rest fell into florets that I saved for another time. So I used 2 head of cauliflower to get my 4 thick slices.
- Heat 2 tablespoons of olive oil over medium high heat in the a large skillet. Brown the cauliflower slices on both sides, about 3 minutes per side. Transfer to a baking pan.
- Season the cauliflower with salt and pepper and place in oven. Roast until tender about 15 minutes.
- Meanwhile add the chopped sun-dried tomatoes and pine nuts to the quinoa and gently heat through, stirring.
- Lay the cauliflower slices on plates and spoon the quinoa on top. Top with caramelized onions and the chopped chives.
- 3 medium onions
- 6 Tbs olive oil
- salt and pepper
- brown sugar
- Slice the onion into half rings. Thin rings will cook faster, thick rings will be more robust and rustic.
- In a large skillet, add the olive oil and heat to medium high.
- Add the onions to the hot oil and stir until they are coated.
- Add a pinch salt, a pinch of pepper and pinch of sugar.
- Reduce to medium low. Stir the onions, as their color becomes darker
- If the onions are becoming dry and are sticking to the bottom of the pan too much, add a small amount of water, vegetable broth, wine or balsamic vinegar and stir vigorously to deglaze.
- Continue to cook and deglaze until the onions have reached the color and texture you desire. This could take 30-45 minutes to reach the rich brown flavorful color.
ROASTED KABOCHA SQUASH WITH KALE AND COLLARD GREENS
- 1 organic kabocha squash
- 2 shallots, minced
- 5 tablespoons balsamic vinegar separated as follows: 3 tablespoons to use with the roasting of the squash and 2 tablespoons to use when sauteeing the greens
- 3 tablespoons grapeseed oil
- 1 tablespoon olive oil
- 1 tsp salt 3 garlic cloves, minced
- 1 large bunch of kale, chopped (I just rip pieces off of the stem)
- 1 small bunch of collard greens, chopped
- Preheat the oven to 425 degrees
- Cut the kabocha squash in half and scoop out the seeds. Cut the squash into chunks, leaving the skin on.
- Mix the squash with the minced shallots, 3 tablespoons balsamic vinegar, 3 tablespoons grapeseed oil and salt.
- Roast the squash for 30 minutes, stirring occasionally. When squash is done (it should be tender), remove from the oven and set aside.
- In a large pan, saute the garlic in 1 tablespoon olive oil for about 1 minute, or until fragrant.
- Add the just washed kale and collard greens in batches (they should still be a little wet) to the pan, stirring constantly until they have just started to wilt.
- Then add 2 tablespoons balsamic vinegar to the pan and stir with the greens for one minute longer.
- Add the squash to the greens, mix and serve
BRAISED BLACK KALE with LEMON
- 1 large bunch Black Kale, rinsed with center rib cut out
- 1/2 tbs extra virgin olive oil 3 tsp minced garlic
- 1/8 cup dry white wine 1/4 cup of vegetable broth
- 1 tsp sea salt
- 2 tsp fresh squeezed lemon juice
- Layer the leaves on top of each other and cut the leaves into 1 inch pieces
- In a large pot of water, bring to a boil and add kale
- Cover and cook just until slightly wilted, 5 minutes
- Remove from heat and drain well
- In a large fry pan over low heat, heat the olive oil and garlic for 1 minutes being careful not to burn the garlic
- Add the kale and wine; cover and cook until most of the liquid is absorbed
- Add the vegetable broth and cook until broth is absorbed and kale if very tender, approximately 30 minutes (but it could be longer)
- Season to taste with salt and lemon juice, toss and serve
- I added romanesco cauliflower as a nice addition!
QUINOA RISOTTO WITH ARUGULA and SHIITAKE MUSHROOMS
- 1 tablespoon olive oil
- 1/2 yellow onion, chopped
- 1 clove garlic, minced 1 cup quinoa, well rinsed
- 2 1/4 cups vegetable broth
- 2 cups chopped, stemmed rocket arugula
- 1 small carrot, peeled and finely shredded
- 1/2 cup thinly sliced fresh shiitake mushrooms
- 1/4 cup vegan grated Parmesan cheese OPTIONAL for PASSOVER (I used “Galaxy Nutritional Foods” brand)
- 1/2 teaspoon salt
- 1/4 teaspoon freshly ground pepper
- In a large saucepan, heat the olive oil over medium heat.
- Add the onion and saute until soft and translucent, about 4 minutes.
- Add the garlic and quinoa and cook for about 1 minute, stirring occasionally. Do not let the garlic brown.
- Add the vegetable broth and bring to a boil. Reduce the heat to low and simmer until the quinoa is almost tender to the bite but slightly hard in the center, about 12 minutes. The mixture will be brothy.
- Stir in the arugula, carrot, and mushrooms and simmer until the quinoa grains have turned from white to translucent, about 2 minutes longer.
- Stir in the vegan parmesan cheese (optional for Passover) and season with salt and pepper.
- Serve immediately.
BAKED “GOLDIE” SQUASH WITH PINE NUTS AND GARLIC
- 1 large “Goldie” squash or 2 small acorn squashes (about 2 lbs total weight)
- 1 tablespoon extra-virgin olive oil
- 1/4 teaspoon salt
- 8 garlic cloves, halved
- 1 tablespoon pine nuts
- 1/4 teaspoon freshly ground pepper
- Preheat oven to 400 degrees F.
- Coat a shallow dish or baking sheet with cooking spray.
- Cut the squash into 1/2 inch thick rings (TIP: for easier cutting, microwave whole unpeeled squash for 3 to 5 minutes) leaving the peel intact.
- Scrape the seeds out of the center of each ring and discard.
- Place rings in the prepared baking dish in a single layer and brush them with 1 1/2 teaspoons of oil (I sprayed the rings with olive oil from a MISTO sprayer), and sprinkle with 1/8 teaspoon of the salt. Bake for 15 minutes.
- Meanwhile, in a small bowl, toss the garlic with the remaining 1 1/2 teaspoons of olive oil.
- Sprinkle the garlic, olive oil and pine nuts evenly over the squash rings and continue baking until the squash is tender and the pine nuts are lightly browned, about 10-15 minutes longer.
- Season with the remaining salt and pepper.
CARROT AND SWEET POTATO TZIMMES
- 2 Tablespoons olive oil
- 1 cup chopped onions
- 3 large carrots, sliced
- 3 large sweet potatoes, cooked or microwaved in their skins, then peeled and sliced
- 1 large apple or pear, cored and sliced
- 1/2 cup chopped prunes
- 1/4 cup chopped dried apricots
- 1/2 cup orange juice
- 1 1/2 teaspoons cinnamon
- 1/2 teaspoon each: ground ginger and salt
- 1/3 to 1/2 cup chopped walnuts, optional
- 1) Preheat oven to 350 degrees F.
- 2) Heat the oil in a large skillet. Saute the onions over medium heat until they are translucent.
- 3) Add the carrots and continue to saute until onions and carrots are golden.
- 4) In a mixing bowl, combine the onion-carrot mixture with all the remaining ingredients except walnuts.
- 5) Mix thoroughly; don’t worry if the potato slices break apart.
- 6) Transfer the mixture to a large, oiled, shallow baking dish (a round or oval is attractive).
- 7) Sprinkle the optional walnuts over the top.
- 8) Bake for 45 to 50 minutes, or until the top begins to turn slightly crusty.
SWEET POTATO KUGEL
makes 12 servings
From No Cholesterol Passover Recipes by Debra Wasserman and Charles Stahler, Vegetarian Resource Group (VRG.org) and PETA
6 small sweet potatoes, peeled and grated
3 apples, peeled and grated
1 cup raisins
1 cup matzo meal
2 tsp. cinnamon
1 cup walnuts, chopped (optional)
1 cup fruit juice or water
1) Mix ingredients together.
2) Press into a baking dish.
3) Bake at 375ºF for 45 minutes, until crisp on top.
9 Granny Smith Apples
9 Fuji Apples
2 cans of unpeeled apricot halves in light syrup (or apricot juice)
1) Peel, core and slice each apple into 8th’s. Do not chop into little pieces! Each apple should be quartered and then each quarter should be halved to make 8 slices.
2) In a large soup pot, put all the apple slices.
3) Pour 4 cups of water into the pot.
4) Pour the 2 cans of unpeeled apricot halves with light juice into the pot.
5) Bring the pot to a boil, then reduce to very low and cover
6) Simmer on low for 2 hours
7) Allow to cool and mix very gently. You do not want to create a smooth consistency. Don’t worry if seems watery, it will thicken when chilled.
8) Put in the refrigerator overnight and enjoy it cold the next day.
Notes: For a smaller batch, use 6 granny smiths and 6 fuji’s and only one can of apricots.
xox Enjoy your holiday!!