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Desserts to make Passover seder a little sweeter

Passover is upon us, which means that Jewish dessert lovers out there are now deprived of their cookies and cakes and must instead rely on flourless options. Often times these substitutions come from mixes or are packaged goods with chemical substitutions. And more often than not, they are relatively tasteless or just plain bad. But every year, my family has been determined not to suffer through those expensive store-bought alternatives to real dessert. For those of you celebrating the holiday or for you individuals with gluten allergies, these options are guaranteed to be delicious. The first recipe I made myself and cannot get enough of. The second two require a bit more time and energy, but they are family recipes that I know will make any Passover seder a a little sweeter. Happy Pesach everyone!

Matzo Brittle

  • 4 sheets matzo
  • 2 sticks (1/2 lb) butter
  • 1 cup brown sugar
  • 2 cups (12 oz) chocolate chips
  • 1 cup choppped nuts (optional)

Preheat oven to 450 degrees. Line a baking sheet with aluminum foil. Spread matzo in a single layer on foil, covering entire sheet. You will probably need to break the matzo to fit. Melt butter and brown sugar in a small saucepan over medium heat, stirring frequently, just until it boils. Pour the hot mixture over the matzo. Toss in the oven to bake for just 5 minutes. Remove from the oven and sprinkle chocolate chips on the surface. Return the pan to the oven for 3 to 5 minutes, or until the chips are soft. Remove the pan from the oven and use a spatula to spread the chocolate evenly over the entire surface. Sprinkle with nuts if desired. Let it cool for about 15 minutes, then place the baking sheet in the freezer and chill for about an hour. Break the sheets into random pieces once solid. Can be refrigerated in resealable bags for up to 2 weeks.

Matzo Brittle 4

Flourless Chocolate Torte

In an 8” cake pan:

  • 12 oz semisweet chocolate
  • ½ cup sugar
  • 1/3 cup water
  • ½ lb unsalted butter (2 sticks)
  • 4 eggs
  • 2 teaspoons vanilla extract

Preheat oven to 300 degrees. Chop the chocolate and set it aside. Combine the sugar and water, boiling over low heat. When the sugar dissolves, remove the mixture from heat and stir in the butter and chocolate. Cover the pan, letting it stand for 5 minutes. Then, whisk the batter until smooth.

In a separate bowl, whisk the eggs and vanilla extract until it becomes foamy. Whisk in the chocolate mixture only until both components are combined. Pour batter into a buttered pan lined with parchment paper. Set the 8” pan in a bigger pan that is filled with water 1” deep. Bake for 45 minutes until slightly dry on the surface and set. Immerse the pan in hot water to release the torte – if the cake will not come out. Let it cool on a cake rack.

Source: Farm8.staticflickr.com

Source: Farm8.staticflickr.com

Chocolate Chip Meringue Cookies

  • 4 egg whites
  • 1/8 teaspoon salt
  • 1 cup sugar
  • 1 cup chocolate bits
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract

Preheat oven to 300 degrees. Line a sheet pan with parchment paper.  In a mixer, beat the egg whites until they are foamy. Then beat them until they are stiff and form peaks. Add the sugar 2 teaspoons at a time. Also add the salt. Beat thoroughly with each additional quantity of sugar. Fold in the chips and the vanilla. Bake for 20 to 25 minutes. Remove the cookies from the paper while they are still slightly warm. If you eat them while they are warm, they will be gooey and soft. If you wait for them to cool they will be crunchy and crumbly. Either way, they are completely delicious.

Source: I2.yummly.com

Source: I2.yummly.com

-Izzy Levenson

Cover photo source.

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