Passover begins a little early this year on April 6th. The seminal piece of the holiday being the sedar, where dishes are fixed to represent aspects of the Israelites enslavement in ancient Egypt. One key dish at any Passover sedar is the traditional Charoset. The Charoset is a paste made of fruit, usually apples, and nuts that is designed to symbolize  the mortar used to build bricks in Egypt. Unfortunately for most vegans out there, Charoset is usually made with honey and standard sugar. However, our vegan recipe of the week is a vegan version of the traditional Charoset. Happy Passover!

Vegan Passover Charoset  

  • 3 Medium Organic Apples (Macintosh work well)
  • 1/2 Cup Organic Unshelled Walnuts
  • 1/4 Cup Kosher Vegan Sweet Red Wine
  • 1 Tbsp Organic Evaporated Cane Juice or Agave
  • 1 Tsp Cinnamon

Chop apples in small cubes and set aside. In a food processor or blender add all ingredients and pulse until pasty but not too much. The consistency should leave some crunchiness of apples and walnuts. Sprinkle a little extra cinnamon on top and serve.

Spring is definitely in the air and the Jewish population is preparing for Passover. Like most holidays, Passover is centered around some tasty dishes. Due to strict Kosher and diet rules during the eight day holiday, many vegan staples are restricted such as most grains and for some all legumes (this means beans, tofu, and tempeh). Due to these restrictions, it may seem impossible to make great vegan dishes for your Passover seder, however there are plenty of options. This year, we have put together a yummy Sweet Potato and Carrot Kugel, although there is no high protein base, the sweet potatoes are the most nutritious veggie out there and does contain protein. A quick tip: Quinoa is not a grain but a seed and is accepted during Passover, thus is easily added to most dishes to up your protein intake. For other ideas, see our recipes for Vegan Latkes, Vegan Matzo Ball Soup, and Vegan Potato Matzoh Kugel.

Vegan Sweet Potato Carrot Kugel

Prep Time: 15 Minutes   Bake Time: 45 Minutes

1 Cup Grated Organic Sweet Potato (with or without skin)
1 Cup Grated Organic Carrots
1 Cup Matzo Meal
1/2 Cup Organic Earth Balance 
2 Tbsp Organic Maple Syrup or Agave
1 Tsp Salt
1 Tsp Baking Soda
1 Tsp Organic Nutmeg

1 Tsp Organic Cinnamon

Pre-heat the oven to 350 degrees. With a food processor or grader, grate the sweet potatoes and carrots and set aside. Grease a casserole dish with a little extra margarine. In a large mixing bowl, combine the matzo meal, Egg Replacer, salt, baking soda, nutmeg, and cinnamon.  Add in the sweet potatoes and carrots. On the stove top, melt the Earth Balance. Next, pour the melted butter and maple syrup into the bowl and mix together. Pour the mixture into the casserole dish, cover with lid or foil, and bake for 45 minutes.  After 30 minutes, remove the lid to brown the top. Garnish with extra cinnamon and nutmeg.

Next Tuesday, March 30th, the traditional Jewish holiday, Passover will begin. Matzo is a large part of the Passover tradition and of course the Passover Seder. There are plenty of great Passover dishes out there, both that include Matzo and those without. This year we have put together a vegan recipe for Matzo-Potato Kugel. This makes a great vegan alternative to traditional Kugel made with noodles and eggs. Don’t forget to serve it along with our Vegan Matzo Ball Soup.  We wish you a wonderful passover and enjoy the food!

Vegan Matzo-Potato Kugel

Prep Time:  30 Minutes   Bake Time: 1 Hour
3 Cups Organic Potatoes, Grated
1 Cup Organic Carrots, Grated
3/4 Cup Organic Vegetable Broth
1/2 Cup Vegan Matzo Meal
1/4 Cup Organic Onions, Chopped
1/4 Cup Organic Earth Balance Margarine
3 Tbsp Water
2 tsp Ener-G Egg Replacer
1 tsp Organic Baking Powder
1/2 tsp Black Pepper
1/2 tsp Garlic Powder
1/4 tsp Salt

Pre-heat the oven to 300 degrees F. Grate the carrots and potatoes and chop the onions finely. In a large saucepan combine the vegetable broth, 2 Tbs of water and Earth Balance. Cook the potatoes, carrots, and onion  until they are tender but not completely soft (10 minutes on medium heat). While these are cooking,  in a small mixing bowl beat the Ener-G Egg Replacer and 1 Tbs of warm Water until you have the consistency of an egg. When the vegetables have finished, add the vegetables and broth to the mixing bowl.  In a separate bowl, combine the Matzo Meal, Baking Powder, Pepper, Garlic and Salt. Slowly add the dry and wet ingredients into one bowl and mix together. Add the mixture to small oiled pan or casserole dish. Bake for 45 minutes to an hour. Let stand for about 5 minutes and serve.

Spring is now upon us and we thought we’d highlight the April holidays by sharing some great vegan recipes. Thursday marks the Passover holiday and of course Passover Seder Dinner! And what would a Passover Seder be without Matzo Ball Soup?! So today you are in for a real treat! We are sharing our vegan version of Matzo Ball Soup just in time for the holiday. Our recipe calls for Silken Tofu, which for some of the Jewish faith who refrain from eating legumes on Passover, it may not be suitable. However, we have included hints for how to create this delicious soup without the use of tofu. Bete’avon!

Vegan Matzo Ball Soup
8-10 Cups of Vegetable Broth (or water and veggie bullion cubes)
1 1/2 Cups of Matzo Meal
3/4 Cup Silken Tofu or 3 Medium Peeled and Boiled Potatoes
4 Tblsp Olive Oil
1 Peeled Carrot
1/2 Medium Peeled and Chopped Onion
2 Tsp Ener-G Egg Replacer (optional)
1 Tsp Salt
1/2 Tsp of Black Pepper
1/8 Tsp Cumin
Fresh Dill or Parsley to Taste (optional)

If you are using potatoes instead of tofu, peel and boil potatoes for about 20 minutes or until they are soft. In a large mixing bowl combine, olive oil, matzo meal, salt, pepper, cumin, egg replacer, and either silken tofu or potatoes. Knead the dough until firm or smooth with your hands or place in a blender for about 4-5 minutes. Let the mixture stand for about ten minutes. Meanwhile, on the stove boil a large pot of water. Form the dough into 2-3 inch balls and drop into the boiling water. Boil the dough for 15-20 minutes and be careful not to overcook them!! While those are boiling, in another large pot, heat up the vegetable broth and bring to a boil. Add in the peeled carrots, peeled onions, salt, and pepper. After boiling for about 5-10 minutes, reduce to low to medium heat and let it simmer. Carefully remove the matzo balls and add them to the vegetable broth. Let the soup simmer on low heat for about ten minutes. The soup is now ready to serve!! Garnish with fresh dill or parsley or both, if you choose.

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