Thursday, July 14, 2011

Something Cheesy This Way Comes

While stir frying and cooking rice, saw the lump of knish dough that had to be used or thrown out. So I looked up a recipe for a basic cheese filling in the Encyclopedia of Jewish Cooking. Very simple, just farmers cheese, cream cheese, egg yolks, vanilla, and salt. Lined a loaf pan with the dough and slapped the filling in, covered it up and baked under golden. Innards are a little too moist for my comfort but still pretty good, a good starting point for improvement.

Tuesday, July 12, 2011

Knish Beta

Followed this recipe per last week's knish lecture. I guess the compromises it makes (modern chemical leavener vs. traditional yeast, volume measures instead of weight, lack of certain descriptives, etc), is to appeal to the general public, not someone hungry for the authentic, true knish with a culinarily precise, repeatable product. But the knishes came out well -- even if the dough was a little more brittle than I like on a knish -- perhaps in part to a few modifications I made to the recipe, including:

  1. Carmelized the onions longer and with more oil than recommended, which all ended in the potato mixture.
  2. I let the dough rest for a solid hour to make rolling and cutting easier. 
  3. The recipe describes an assembly that would result in a bagel-shaped knish. Instead, I did a simple square with a lump in the middle, then folded up the sides to make a kind of giant open-faced dumpling, aka Shao Mai.
  4. Used white pepper instead of black, which gave a distinctive sharp note. Also, I think it looks nicer in the finished product.

Wednesday, July 6, 2011


Woke up with sore feet, ankles and legs. I was wearing flip flops all day yesterday, and the walk from Grand Central to home did a number on my joints, much worse than any bike ride. So though I planned to bliss-out on an 80 mile bike ride today, instead I packed up some snacks and trundled off to a well air-conditioned multiplex to catch 3 movies in a row on a single matinee ticket.

While there, my wifey found a little knish lecture at a small community outpost out in Carrol Gardens, and asked me to do it. So I did, a talk from a knish-crazed lady to about 10 random people from all over the city. It was pretty inspirational, and this week I'm gonna knock out some knishes -- can't be too hard to pass the low bar that Yonah Shimmel has been producing these days...