NEW YORK (MainStreet) As we enter the threshold of this year's holiday season, more and more people are catching on to the excitement for the "once in a lifetime" holiday mash-up now known as "Thanksgivukkah." Coined by a Massachusetts resident, who also created this Facebook page and this Twitter page to spread the word, the term "Thanksgivukkah" is a name combination of the American holiday of Thanksgiving and the Jewish holiday of Hanukkah. Both holidays are set to be celebrated in tandem on November 28, 2013.
According to this interview with Jonathan Mizrahi, a physicist and Jewish calendar specialist, this overlap will not occur again for approximately another 80,000 years.
All the more reason to indulge ourselves, don't you think? Well, we're certainly not the only ones who think so!
All levels of food enthusiasts have begun to brainstorm dishes that combine traditional flavors from both holidays. The following is a sampling menu of Thanksgivukkah-themed dishes that perfectly combine flavors iconic to these two highly-celebrated holidays!
Ingredients for Sage-Scented Matzo Balls:
- 7 eggs (separated)
- 1 tbsp. kosher salt
- ¼ cup chicken fat
- 2 C. matzo meal
- 3 tbsp. club soda
- 2 tsp. onion powder
- 2 tsp. rubbed sage
- 1 tbsp. fresh parsley, chopped
Fill an 8-quart pot three quarters of the way with salted water, and bring to a boil.
Place the egg whites in a mixing bowl, and add a pinch of salt. Whip the egg whites until they form stiff peaks, and set aside. In a separate bowl, mix together the egg yolks, salt, chicken fat, matzo meal, club soda, onion powder and herbs. Gently fold in the egg whites. Place this mixture in the refrigerator for 15 minutes. Using your hands, roll the mixture into walnut size pieces and drop into boiling water. Reduce heat to a simmer and cook covered for 35 minutes.
Remove with a slotted spoon. Makes 12-15 matzo balls.
Ingredients for Turkey and Root Vegetable Soup:
- 2 tbsp. olive oil
- 2 cloves freshly minced garlic
- 1 large Spanish onion, diced
- 1 fennel bulb, diced
- 4 carrots, peeled and sliced
- 2 parsnips, peeled and sliced,
- 2 sweet potatoes, peeled and diced
- 1 lb. butternut squash, peeled and diced
- 4 quarts poultry stock
- 3 cups roasted turkey, cooked and diced
- 3 tbsp. fresh parsley, chopped
- 3 tbsp. fresh dill, chopped
- Kosher salt and freshly ground black pepper, to taste
In a large heavy lined stock pot add the olive oil and place on medium high heat.
Add all of the vegetables and garlic and sauté for 5-7 minutes. Add the poultry stock and bring to a boil.
Once you have reached a boil, turn down slightly and simmer for 20 minutes. Add the turkey meat, fresh herbs and seasoning and cook an additional 5 minutes. Add the matzo balls and ladle into soup bowls and serve.
Makes 12-14 servings.
Carrot Latkes with Applesauce and Sour Cream
(Recipe Credit: Chef Matthew Riznyk, Executive Catering Chef for Great Performances)
- 4 C. carrots, coarsely grated & peeled
- 2 C. potato, coarsely grated & peeled
- 6 tbsp. all purpose flour
- 1 ½ tsp. salt
- ¾ tsp. baking powder
- ½ tsp. ground black pepper
- 4 tsp. fresh ginger, finely grated & peeled
- 2 tsp. orange zest
- 2 tbsp snipped chives
- 3 large eggs, beaten to blend
- 1 C. sour cream
- 1 C. applesauce
Place carrots in large bowl; press with paper towels to absorb any moisture. In another large bowl, whisk flour, salt, baking powder and pepper to blend. Mix in carrots, chives and ginger, then eggs.
Pour enough oil into heavy large skillet to cover bottom and heat over medium heat. Working in batches and adding more oil as needed, drop carrot mixture by 1/4 cup into skillet and spread to 3 1/2-inch rounds. Fry until golden, about 5 minutes per side. Transfer latkes to rimmed baking sheet.
Top with a dollop of applesauce and sour cream.
Braised Beef Brisket with Cranberry & Cider Glaze
(Recipe Credit: Chef Jim Solomon of Massachusetts, owner of The Fireplace)
Ingredients for the Braised Beef Brisket:
- 5 lb. beef brisket
- ¼ C. vegetable oil
- 3 large onions, halved and sliced ½ -inch thick
- 3 large carrots, cut into ¼ -inch round slices
- 3 celery ribs, cut into ¼ -inch round slices
- 8 cloves garlic, crushed
- 3 sprigs fresh thyme, roughly chopped
- 3 sprigs fresh rosemary, roughly chopped
- 3 bay leaves
- 2 C. crushed canned tomatoes
- 1 tbsp. tomato paste
- ¼ C. brown sugar
- ¼ C. balsamic vinegar
- 6 C. veal stock (preferable) or beef stock or low sodium chicken stock
- 3 C. red wine
Pat brisket dry with paper towel. Liberally sprinkle salt and pepper on one side of the brisket to evenly cover.
Heat a cast iron skillet or Dutch oven (preferable) on high heat (otherwise a stainless steel pan may be used instead). Add oil and heat until oil just begins to smoke. Sear each side of the brisket long enough to brown (approximately 10 minutes).
Remove brisket and set aside (refrigerate). Pour off all but 2 tbsp. of fat.
Preheat oven to 300 degrees.
Reduce flame to medium and in the remaining oil add the onions, carrots and celery. Slow cook stirring occasionally until the vegetables are well caramelized (darker than golden brown).
Add garlic and herbs, and continue cooking, occasionally stirring until garlic becomes soft.
Add tomatoes and tomato paste and cook for approximately 15 more minutes or until the tomatoes become well caramelized (brownish).
Add brown sugar, balsamic vinegar and red wine and reduce until the liquid is mostly absorbed by the vegetables.
Add the stock and bring to a slow boil. Then shut the flame off.
Return brisket to the pot or baking pan (fat side up).
Cover the pot with a top or tin foil. Place in the pre-heated oven and cook for approximately two and a half hours.
Remove from the oven and check for doneness. Place the brisket on a platter.
Chef's Note: For easier slicing, stop the cooking when the meat is still slightly firm. If you prefer a more reduced, candied effect on the brisket, cook for approximately another half hour. The meat will fall apart more with the increased cooking time.
Ingredients for the Cranberry and Cider Glaze:
- ¼ C. shallots, minced
- 2 tbsp. garlic, minced
- 1 tbsp. ginger root, minced
- 16 oz. cranberries, whole
- 1 stick cinnamon
- 1 tbsp. orange zest
- 1 qt. apple cider
- 1 pt. chicken stock
- 2 tsp. salt
- ¼ C. honey
Sauté shallots, garlic & ginger until very lightly browned. Add the additional ingredients except the honey. Cook in a heavy saucepan at medium heat. Stir in the honey until dissolved. Remove the cranberries when they begin to burst. Remove them and set aside.
Continue cooking until almost a glaze-like consistency. Reduce the temperature and stir until it forms a thick consistency. Strain in a metal mesh strainer. Add the cranberries back.
Pour the cranberry glaze over the brisket and serve.
Apple Pie Parfait with Cinnamon Rugelach Crumble
(Recipe Credit: Caterer Andrea Correale, Lenox Home Entertaining Expert and owner of Elegant Affairs)
Ingredients for Apple Pie Filling:
- 4 ½ C. apples, chopped
- 1 tbsp. lemon juice
- ½ C. brown sugar
- ½ C. sugar
- ¼ c. cornstarch
- 1 tsp. cinnamon
- ¼ tsp. nutmeg
- ¼ tsp. salt
- 2 C. water
Combine the sugar, cornstarch, cinnamon, nutmeg and salt in a saucepan. Add the water and bring to a boil, boiling for 2 minutes. Add the apples and bring back to a boil. Reduce the heat and simmer for 8-10 minutes. Set aside in a bowl and cool at least 30 minutes.
Ingredients for Cinnamon Rugelach Crumble:
- 2 dozen store-bought, "day old" rugelach cookies (these make for a better crumble)
- 1 stick of butter, softened
- 2 oz. cinnamon sugar
In a food processor, pulse the cookies until they are broken down into large crumbles. Add the butter and pulse until incorporated, and then add the cinnamon sugar and continue to pulse until a crumble consistency is formed. Set aside.
Ingredients for Cinnamon-Scented Whipped Cream:
- 2 C. heavy cream, cold
- ¾ C. confectioner's sugar
- 1 tsp. ground cinnamon
- ½ tsp. vanilla extract
In a large bowl using a mixer set on medium-high speed, beat the cream, sugar, cinnamon, and vanilla until stiff peaks form. Be sure to not overbeat.
Assemble the parts into individual parfait glasses, spooning the crumble on to the bottom, layering then with apple pie filling, and then with whipped cream. Repeat once and finish with crumble on top. Serve!
If you're more in the market for a Thanksgivukkah-inspired turkey and stuffing entrée, be sure to check out the lovely recipes that Epicurious has to offer or dive into these tips MainStreet provides to spruce up your culinary skills. This roast turkey with pomegranate gravy paired with matzoh vegetable stuffing is sure to wow any guest seated at your table!
--Written by Ciara Larkin for MainStreet