Friday, January 11, 2013

Candied Carrots for Passover

I know little or nothing about Jewish cooking. It is a whole area of cuisine that has just eluded me. I do know the basic stuff one can pick up from reading fiction, such as no mixing of meat and dairy, houses have to be cleaned down to the last crumb before Passover to rid the house of leavened bread, Jewish moms feed their kids chicken soup (I know. That last one is a stereotype.)  Readers will be seeing a lot of Kosher recipes in the coming months, since those are basically what is left in the Northeast section of the cookbook.
However, I suspect that enormous culinary changes took place in Jewish cooking between the 1960s when these recipes were compiled and now. This recipe is not, frankly, something that most home cooks would want to serve today, during Passover, or any other time. It calls for shortening, which makes the carrots greasy. The sauce congeals in an unappetizing way when it grows cold on the plate.
Clearly one cannot use butter, due to the prohibition against meat and dairy, since most people in the 60s served their veggies with meat. However, margarine, or, I would think, better yet, olive oil, would cut the grease substantially and improve health benefits. Other than the greasiness, these carrots are sweet, due to the honey, and flavored with cinnamon, which gives them a vaguely middle eastern taste. I would experiment with olive oil or margarine and see how it works out. It might be one way to get recalcitrant children to eat carrots. If anyone would care to comment on the recipes, if their mothers or grandmothers served them, etc., input would be especially welcome now.

Candied Carrots for Passover

3 tablespoons kosher shortening
4 cups sliced carrots
3 tablespoons orange juice
1 1/2 teaspoons salt
1/4 teaspoon cinnamon
4 tablespoons honey

Combine all the ingredients in a saucepan, cover and cook, stirring occasionally, over low heat, twenty-five minutes. Serves six.

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