Gefilte Fish, Made with Love

Gefilte Fish, Made with LoveGeri’s Gefilte Fish

Gefilte Fish made with love…for Passover, for our beloved family, for our cherished friends. While the gefilte fish doesn’t appeal to everyone at the Seder (to put it mildly) it does have a time-honored place on the Passover menu.

How To Make Gefilte Fish

It could have something to do with nostalgia and the memory of my Nana’s gefilte fish from Passovers long ago…but I love those fishy balls poached with carrots and onion now served with chrain, matzohs, and a delicious beet salad with citrus and walnuts. Especially when they’re made by Geri!

Several guests at our Seder adore the perennially controversial appetizer, while others politely refrain, due to its “ahem, fishiness” – but we all have to appreciate that it is made in respect for age-old customs and tradition, and ultimately made with love.

This year, I asked my dear Cousin Geri, who has been making our gefilte fish for decades, if she would share her recipe. It simply rocks. What took me so long to ask?

Gefilte Fish for Passover

Geri’s Gefilte Fish Recipe

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Our Best Passover Menu and Tips For Serving

Our Best Passover Menu

Our Best Passover Menu and Tips For Serving

We’ll be hosting our 16th Annual Passover Seder and dinner on April 10th at sundown. I’ve been flying back to Chicago for the past 16 years to cook Passover dinner for family and friends at the lovely home of my brother and sister-in-law.  When they married in 2001, the honor of hosting the First Night of Passover for our family was passed to them from our cousins.

OUR BEST PASSOVER MENU
Welcome

Kosher Wines

Olives & Nuts

Starter Course

Kristy’s Haroset

Geri’s Gefilte Fish

Vicki’s Beet Salad, Fresh Horseradish, Matzohs

Davida’s Chopped Liver with Pistachios

Hard Boiled Eggs

Soup Course

Homemade Chicken Soup

Herbed Matzoh Balls

Main Course

Super-Tender Traditional Beef Brisket with Red Wine Tomato Sauce

Chicken Adobo with Scallion, Cilantro, Sesame Seeds

Horseradish Potato Cakes with Chives

Roasted Brussels Sprouts, Balsamic Glaze

Dessert

Karen’s Chocolate Matzoh Crisp

Flourless Apple Almond Cake

Chocolate Souffle Cake

Chocolate Hazelnut Brownie Bars

Pistachio Ganache Tart

Macarons

Fresh Fruit Skewers

(Click on Menu Links For Recipes)

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Tuna Melt Flatbread

Tuna Melt Flatbread

Tuna Melt Flatbread
with Tomatoes and Pickles

Who doesn’t crave a Tuna Melt sandwich every once in a while?

Classic flavors and gooey melting cheese, with a lower-carb bonus (for those who are counting) makes Tuna Melt Flatbread perfect for a lunch/brunch buffet or party appetizer.

Here, the same sandwich ingredients are served atop a crispy-thin lavash flatbread. Red ripe tomato slices are an essential fresh element while simultaneously great for presentation. Tangy “bread & butter” pickles add crunch and a delightful hint of sweetness. Definitely crave-worthy.

Tuna Melt Flatbread Recipe

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Teacher Appreciation & Pi Day

Teacher Appreciation & Pi Day

Happy Pi Day!

If you are a math nerd (like me), this is a fun day!

People young and old, all around the world, challenge themselves to memorize π on this day
March 14 or 3.14

3.141592653589793238462643383279502884…

Pi, the ratio of the circle’s circumference to its diameter, is an irrational number which never repeats,
so memorizing pi can be a lifelong adventure!

For this Pi Day, we are not baking an apple pie, nor a pizza pie, nor egg pie or quiche!

To celebrate Pi Day 2011 we are going to appreciate our math teachers, or better yet, all our teachers!

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Chocolate Soufflé, Cherry Vanilla Ice Cream

Chocolate Soufflé with Cherry Vanilla Ice Cream

Chocolate Soufflé with Cherry Vanilla Ice Cream

I waited for Valentine’s Day to present the third and final course of my re-creation of The Inaugural Luncheon.

Extending a special thank you to Executive Chef Shannon Shaffer of Design Cuisine and the Joint Congressional Committee on Inaugural Ceremonies for providing these memorable recipes. It has been an honor and pleasure to re-create and share this historical event on Taste With The Eyes.

Inaugural Luncheon Menu

The First Course

Inaugural Lobster and Shrimp with Saffron Sauce and Peanut Crumble

Lobster and Shrimp, Saffron Sauce, Peanut Crumble Recipe

The Second Course

Inaugural Luncheon Angus Beef with Dark Chocolate Juniper Jus

Angus Beef, Dark Chocolate Juniper Jus Recipe 

The Third Course

Chocolate Soufflé, Cherry Vanilla Ice Cream

Chocolate Soufflé with Cherry Vanilla Ice Cream Recipe
serves 10 people

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Angus Beef with Dark Chocolate Juniper Jus

Inaugural Luncheon Angus Beef with Dark Chocolate Juniper Jus

Inaugural Luncheon Part 2
Angus Beef with Dark Chocolate Juniper Jus

Earlier in the week I shared my re-creation of the First Course of the Presidential Inaugural Luncheon, held on January 20, 2017 – a day that transcended politics and celebrated the peaceful transition of power, one of the true treasures of our nation.

Inaugural Lobster and Shrimp with Saffron Sauce and Peanut Crumble
The First Course – Lobster and Shrimp, Saffron Sauce

Since 1901, The Joint Congressional Committee on Inaugural Ceremonies has been responsible for the planning and execution of the swearing-in ceremonies and the luncheon for the Inauguration of the President of the United States at the U.S. Capitol.

I’m delighted to share my re-creation of The Luncheon’s Second Course below.

The Flowers
Inaugural Luncheon Flowers
Inaugural Flowers photo credit: instagram @jccic

Stunning inaugural floral design by Toulies en Fleur: Garden roses, regular roses, stock, Spray roses, calla lilies, dusty miller, silver brunia berries, and cloni ranunculus.

Inaugural Angus Beef with Dark Chocolate Cabernet Sauce
Inaugural Table Setting Re-Creation by Taste With The Eyes
The 58th Presidential Inauguration
Luncheon Menu

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Inaugural Lobster and Shrimp with Saffron Sauce and Peanut Crumble

Maine lobster and Gulf shrimp with saffron sauce and peanut crumble
Taste With The Eyes Re-Creation of the 58th Inaugural Luncheon

One of my most cherished creative outlets is to re-create historical events through food. The Abraham Lincoln Dinner at Delmonico’s on February 12, 1900; Barack Obama’s 57th Inaugural Luncheon; and Julia Child’s First Meal in France are a few examples of many of my favorite re-creations.

Inaugural Lobster and Shrimp with Saffron Sauce and Peanut Crumble
Taste With The Eyes Re-Creation of the 58th Inaugural Luncheon
A Re-Creation of the 58th Inaugural Luncheon

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Ski Lodge Theme Holiday Party: Baby It’s Cold Outside!

Ski Lodge Theme Holiday Party: Baby It's Cold Outside!

Ski Lodge Theme Holiday Party
Baby It’s Cold Outside!

Ninety of us gathered at the Bluewater Grill at sunset in King Harbor, Redondo Beach amidst the sailboats and palm trees to celebrate the holiday season.

It was my pleasure, once again, to host our annual Rolling Hills Country Day School holiday party. With the help of fabulously creative colleagues, a super-fun theme, and a waterfront venue that exceeded expectations – this gala was another smashing success.

Guests arrived for Après Ski in ski lodge attire, presumably after a day on the slopes, as the sun was setting over the Pacific. They mingled during a cocktail hour with an open bar enhanced with an array of passed appetizers.

As the sky turned from hues of blue to shades of red, orange, violet and yellow – the DJs played a nostalgic mix of Christmas music and our favorite songs (saving those hot dance tunes for after dinner). The photo booth was a big hit as groups of skiers grabbed props to strike a pose.

Ski Lodge Theme Holiday Party: Baby It's Cold Outside!

To set the holiday mood, just before dinner, guests gathered around the “piano and fireplace” (actually the DJ booth and cocktail tables with candles) for a group sing-a-long. With lyrics in hand, everyone joined together, enthusiastically belting out White Christmas along with Bing Crosby. Dean Martin’s Let It Snow was sung in verses alternated by the guys and the gals. So fun!

Immediately after the sing-a-long guests took their seats for dinner. Waiters served the award-winning New England Clam Chowder, then table-by-table guests were invited to the buffet featuring carved-to-order prime rib roast. The meal concluded with a Dessert Station and Hot Beverage Bar brimming with whipped cream and all the accoutrements to warm a winter evening.

The night continued with general merrymaking, dancing, photo booth pics with ski lodge antics and prizes. Before leaving, guests picked up a cozy blanket and made a trip to the Hot Chocolate Bar to personalize hot cocoa to take home.

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Holiday Entertaining: Scrambled Eggs, Caviar, Crème Fraîche

Holiday Breakfast: Scrambled Eggs, Caviar, Crème Fraîche

Holiday Breakfast
Scrambled Eggs, Caviar, Crème Fraîche, Chives

Last but not least in a series of 4 Holiday Entertaining Dishes, scrambled eggs with caviar is a wonderfully extravagant way to celebrate Christmas morning or New Year’s Day brunch.

Served in charming mini Lodge cast iron skillets, this breakfast is simultaneously elegant and rustic. Fluffy scrambled eggs paired with puffed popovers and butter are irresistible, but for the ultimate breakfast experience, add creamy-tangy crème fraîche and burst-in-the-mouth pearls of rich-brown nutty ossetra caviar .

Holiday Breakfast: Scrambled Eggs, Caviar, Crème Fraîche, Chives

Holiday Entertaining Series

Holiday Entertaining: Oysters with Caviar

Hors d’oeuvre: Oysters, Ossetra Caviar, Crème Fraîche (here)

Foie Gras with Sweet & Salty Palmier Cookies, Passionfruit, Pistachios

First Course: Foie Gras with Sweet & Salty Palmier Cookies (here)

Asparagus, Hollandaise, Caviar

Holiday Side Dish: Asparagus, Hollandaise, Caviar (here)

Scrambled Eggs and Caviar Recipe

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Holiday Entertaining: Asparagus, Hollandaise, Caviar

Holiday Entertaining: Asparagus, Hollandaise, Caviar

Holiday Entertaining
Asparagus, Hollandaise, Caviar

More caviar? Yep, ’tis the season after all! Asparagus with Petrossian Ossetra Caviar is served as a fancy side dish to a standing prime rib roast of beef for a very special holiday meal.

The briny dark brown eggs create a striking presentation when draped over bright green asparagus with a pale yellow sauce. Silky hollandaise and crunchy roe make for an exquisite contrast of textures. The subtle flavor of the sea plays well with the earthy elegant taste of the asparagus. It’s an extraordinary dish – perfect for Hanukkah, Christmas, or New Year’s Eve.

Asparagus, Hollandaise, Caviar Recipe

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