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Recipe for Charoset: A Passover Favorite

4/3/2009 11:03:21 AM

Tags: Passover, Easter, Seder, Charoset, Recipes, Holidays, Cooking


Passover  begins April 9th and I won’t be home this year to celebrate my favorite Jewish festival. Fortunately, my friend Karen was willing to share her delicious recipe for charoset, a wonderful fruit, nut and wine mix eaten during Passover. Charoset is meant to remind its eaters of the mortar the Jewish slaves used to bond bricks in Ancient Egypt. It is served on matzah and it’s a great Jewish dish. Here are two recipes from my friend Karen, who makes charoset every year for our Seder back home.  

Photo by Imagine24/Courtesy Flickr

Ashkenazi Charoset with Brown Sugar
Serves 8 

 This is a standard Ashkenazi (Eastern European Jews) recipe, with a little brown sugar added for depth. 

• 3 medium Gala or Fuji apples, peeled, cored, and finely diced
• 3/4 (or more to taste) cups walnut halves, lightly toasted, cooled, and coarsely chopped
• 1/2 cup sweet red wine such as Manischewitz Extra Heavy Malaga
• 1 1/2 teaspoons ground cinnamon
• 1 tablespoon packed brown sugar

1. In large bowl, stir together all ingredients.

2. Store, covered, at room temperature until ready to serve.

Sephardim Charoset with Fragrant Spices
Serves 8 

The Sephardim (Mediterranean Jews) use dates and other dried fruit and then purée the mixture.

• 20 pitted dates, preferably Medjool
• 3 bananas
• 1/2 cup golden raisins
• 1/4 cup sweet red wine such as Manischewitz Extra Heavy Malaga
• 3 tablespoons date syrup (silan) or honey
• 1/2 cup walnut halves, toasted
• 1/2 cup unsalted shelled pistachio nuts (not dyed red), toasted
• 1/2 cup whole almonds, toasted
• 1 1/2 teaspoons ground cinnamon
• 1 teaspoon ground allspice
• 1/2 teaspoon ground ginger
• 1 teaspoon ground nutmeg
• 1 teaspoon ground cloves

1. In food processor, purée dates until smooth.

2. Add bananas, raisins, wine, and date syrup and process to combine.

3. Add walnuts, pistachios, almonds, cinnamon, allspice, ginger, nutmeg, and cloves and process until smooth.

4. Store, covered, at room temperature until ready to serve.

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