PASCALE’S KITCHEN: Easy family favorites

Three family recipes.

Chocolate rolls (photo credit: PASCALE PEREZ-RUBIN)
Chocolate rolls
(photo credit: PASCALE PEREZ-RUBIN)
Now that Passover and Independence Day are over and we’re getting back into a daily rhythm, I would like to provide you with three recipes that are some of my family’s favorites.
None of them is extremely complicated, and yet they all come out delicious every time. The first recipe is for burgers, which is a favorite among kids, but this version is made with green and orange lentils and tehina in place of beef. In the recipe below, the burgers are fried, but they could also easily be baked instead.
And if the oven’s already on, I recommend that you serve the lentil burgers alongside my famous chocolate rolls, which are chock full of chocolate chips and loved by all children. Every bite you take of them turns into a party and there’s so much chocolate inside you don’t need to spread anything else on top.
The third recipe is for a wonderful maple cake that does not take a lot of time to prepare and is perfect to serve after any meal or as a snack anytime of the day or night. I recommend doubling this recipe and freezing one of the cakes so that you have something prepared ahead next time you have guests over.
Makes 28 to 32 rolls.
1 kg. flour, sifted 2 Tbsp. dry yeast ½ cup sugar 3 Tbsp. cocoa powder 200 gr. chocolate chips ½ cup oil 2½ to 3 cups water 1 Tbsp. salt Wash: Bowl of water For sprinkling on top: 3 Tbsp. flour, sifted In the bowl of an electric mixer with a dough attachment, add flour, yeast, sugar, cocoa powder and chocolate chips. Mix for a minute or two.
While mixing, gradually add the oil and water. Mix until smooth. Add salt and continue mixing for seven more minutes.
Spray oil onto dough and let rise in a warm place for 90 to 120 minutes.
Separate the dough into 28 to 32 equally large round balls. If you choose to make rolls a different shape, the number of rolls will change accordingly.
Arrange rolls on a tray that’s covered with baking paper or is greased. Brush rolls with a little water and then sprinkle with flour. Using a pair of scissors, make two indentations in the form of an X in the middle of each roll.
Bake in an oven preheated to 190° to 200° for 20 to 25 minutes.
LENTIL BURGERS Makes 12 burgers.
¼ cup olive oil 2 large onions, chopped 2 cloves garlic, chopped 1 heaping Tbsp. cumin 1 tsp. sweet paprika ½ tsp. harisa Salt and pepper, to taste 1 handful of parsley, chopped 1 handful of coriander, chopped 1 bunch of mangold leaves, chopped finely 1½ cups orange lentils or cooked organic quinoa 1 cup green lentils, soaked overnight and cooked ½ cup chickpea or whole-wheat flour 1 Tbsp. olive oil 1 to 2 Tbsp. raw tehina For frying: Oil (use the same amount you’d use to fry schnitzel) Heat the oil in a large pan. Add the onion and the garlic and fry until golden brown. Add the spices and the parsley, coriander and mangold. Stir and cook until mangold is reduced in volume. Turn off the flame and cover. Let sit for 10 minutes. Transfer to a large bowl. Add the two types of lentils, chickpea flour, olive oil and tehina. Knead mixture with your hands until it’s a bit sticky, but comes off your fingers. You can add more tehina or chickpea flour if needed. Taste and adjust seasoning.
Wet your hands in the bowl of water and form balls with a diameter of 4 to 5 cm. Heat oil in a large pot and fry balls on both sides until golden brown. Alternatively, you could bake in oven. Place them evenly spaced on baking paper and spray them with canola oil.
Bake in an oven preheated to 180° for 25 minutes.
The burgers will be ready when they lift off the baking paper easily. Serve warm. Can be served with sauces for dipping if desired.
TIPascale You can make an endless number of variations of this cake.
For example, you can add dried dates or cranberries, hazelnuts, raisins or fresh fruit slices.
You can also add different spices, such as ginger, cloves, cinnamon and nutmeg.
Instead of two cups of orange juice, you can replace this with one cup of orange juice and one cup of yogurt or cream.
MAPLE CAKE Makes 2 loaf pans.
3 large or 4 small eggs 1¼ cups demerara or regular sugar 2 packets vanilla sugar or 2 to 3 drops of vanilla extract ½ cup oil 2 cups fresh orange juice (can mix with cream or yogurt if the cake doesn’t need to be parve) 2½ cups white or spelt flour, sifted 1 tsp. baking powder Pinch of salt Topping: ½ cup chopped walnuts, sesame seeds, almonds or hazelnuts Syrup topping: ½ cup maple syrup In a large bowl put eggs, sugar, vanilla sugar, oil, and orange juice. Mix well until smooth. While mixing, gradually add flour, baking powder and salt. Mix until all the lumps have disappeared.
Grease two loaf pans or use baking paper. Pour in batter in both pans and flatten. Sprinkle nuts on top.
Bake in an oven preheated to 180° for 35 to 40 minutes or until a toothpick comes out dry.
Remove from oven and let cool on a wire rack. Poke holes with a toothpick and separate cake from the sides of the pan using a knife. Pour maple syrup on top of cake. The syrup will absorb into cake and make it nice and moist.
Translated by Hannah Hochner.