Combine Hanukkah, Thanksgiving on the menu
Pastrami. Horseradish. Matzo. Frying in oil. All the makings of a traditional Jewish holiday meal. But this time, we add turkey, a nod to the first day of Hanukkah falling on Thanksgiving this year.
Pastrami-Wrapped Fried Turkey With Horseradish
To keep this lusciously savory dinner on the speedy side, we started with turkey tenderloins. They cook quickly and you don't need to worry about thawing them as you often do with a whole turkey. We wrap the tenderloins in pastrami, coat them in matzo and fry them until crisp on the outside but moist and tender inside.
The breaded pastrami wrap on the turkey adds a great “skin” to the otherwise simple turkey tenderloin. The pickled onions have a subtle bite from the horseradish. Of course, putting this together requires a little more hands-on time than throwing a turkey in the oven, but the reward is in the taste.
Start to finish: 1 hour (30 minutes active)
For the pickled onions:
1 cup red-wine vinegar
1⁄2 cup sugar
2 tablespoons pickling spice
2 tablespoons kosher salt
1⁄2 cup prepared horseradish
2 medium red onions, thinly sliced
For the turkey:
3 pounds turkey tenderloins
8 ounces thinly sliced pastrami
2 large eggs
2 tablespoons spicy brown mustard
1 tablespoon flour
1 1⁄2 cups matzo meal
Vegetable oil, for frying
To prepare the onions: In a medium saucepan over medium-high heat, combine the vinegar, sugar, pickling spice, salt and horseradish. Bring it to a boil, then add the onions. Return it to a boil, cover and remove the pan from the heat. Let it sit until cool. The onions can be prepared up to 2 days in advance. Store them in a covered container in the refrigerator.
To prepare the turkey: Wrap each turkey tenderloin in several slices of pastrami, securing them with wooden skewers as needed.
In a wide, shallow bowl, whisk the eggs, mustard and flour. In a second bowl, spread the matzo meal. One at a time, roll each tenderloin in the egg mixture to coat it evenly. Transfer the turkey to the matzo meal and roll to coat. The tenderloins can be prepared in this manner up to several hours ahead of time, then covered and refrigerated.
When ready to cook, heat the oven to 350 degrees.
In a large, deep saute pan, heat 1⁄2 inch of oil until it sizzles when a matzo crumb is dropped into it. One at a time, fry each tenderloin for 5 to 7 minutes per side, or until it is golden brown all over. Transfer them to a rimmed baking sheet.
When all of the tenderloins are fried, place them in the oven for 25 to 30 minutes, or until they reach 165 degrees at the center. Serve them with the pickled onions on the side.
Makes 12 servings.
Nutrition information per serving: 270 calories (70 calories from fat), 8 grams fat (1 gram saturated), 90 milligrams cholesterol, 35 grams protein, 17 grams carbohydrates, 1 gram dietary fiber, 440 milligrams sodium.
Pumpkin Honey Doughnuts
Hanukkah and Thanksgiving may not coincide very often, but these Pumpkin Honey Doughnuts will make you wish they did.
To help bridge these holidays, we borrowed a classic dessert of each — fried doughnuts for Hanukkah and pumpkin pie for Thanksgiving — and brought them together in one delicious mouthful. The result is a terrifically moist, fried doughnut rich with the flavors of pumpkin pie. A glaze of cinnamon- and lemon-spiked honey ties everything together.
Start to finish:1 1⁄2 hours (45 minutes active)
2 teaspoons instant yeast
3 cups flour
1⁄2 teaspoon salt
2 teaspoons pumpkin-pie spice
1⁄2 cup warm water
15-ounce can pumpkin puree (not pumpkin-pie filling)
1 large egg
1⁄3 cup honey
2 tablespoons sugar
2 tablespoons lemon juice
1 teaspoon cinnamon
Vegetable oil, for frying
In a medium bowl, stir together the yeast, flour, salt and pumpkin-pie spice. Stir in the water, pumpkin and egg until a thick, smooth batter forms. Cover it with plastic wrap and allow it to rest for 45 minutes.
In a small saucepan over medium heat, combine the honey, sugar, lemon juice and cinnamon. Bring it to a boil and stir well. Remove it from the heat.
In a large, deep skillet over medium-high, heat 1 inch of oil to 375 degrees.
Working in batches, carefully drop the batter by the tablespoonful into the hot oil. A cookie scoop or small ice cream scoop makes this easier. Turning occasionally, fry the doughnuts until deep golden brown all over and cooked through, for about 5 minutes. Use a slotted spoon to transfer the fried doughnuts to a large bowl. Drizzle the honey syrup over the doughnuts and toss to coat. Repeat with the remaining doughnuts. Serve immediately.
Makes 3 dozen doughnut holes.
Nutrition information per serving: 80 calories (25 calories from fat), 3 grams fat (0 saturated), 5 milligrams cholesterol, 2 grams protein, 12 grams carbohydrates, 1 gram dietary fiber, 30 milligrams sodium
Skillet Apple-Cranberry Sauce With Pistachios
Cooked fruit enjoys starring roles in both holidays. For Hanukkah, there often is applesauce, a sweet and refreshing counterpoint to savory, crispy potato latkes. And for Thanksgiving, a dinner spread is incomplete without a sweet and tart cranberry sauce — even if it's from a can.
These fruits complement one another so wonderfully, there actually are numerous ways to combine them. You could chop raw cranberries and apples, then toss them with sweetened lemon juice, red onion and minced jalapenos for a fresh salsa-like accompaniment.
Or you could simply combine peeled apples and fresh cranberries and simmer them with cinnamon, sugar and lemon juice for a sauce that is a little bit applesauce, a little bit cranberry sauce.
Start to finish: 15 minutes
1 tablespoon butter
4 large apples, peeled, cored and cut into 1⁄2-inch wedges
2 tablespoons cider vinegar
1⁄3 cup water
2 tablespoons firmly packed brown sugar
1⁄2 teaspoon cinnamon
1⁄4 teaspoon ground cardamom
1 cup dried cranberries
1⁄4 cup crushed toasted pistachios
In a large skillet over medium-high, melt the butter. Add the apples and cook until lightly browned on all sides, for 5 to 7 minutes. Add the vinegar, water, brown sugar, cinnamon, cardamom and cranberries. Stir well and bring to a simmer. Cook until the liquid is thick and syrupy, for 2 to 3 minutes.
Spoon the apple-cranberry sauce into a serving bowl, then top with the pistachios. Serve warm or at room temperature.
Makes 6 servings.
Nutrition information per serving: 200 calories (45 calories from fat), 5 grams fat (2 grams saturated), 5 milligrams cholesterol, 2 grams protein, 42 grams carbohydrates, 4 grams dietary fiber, 0 sodium
Latke-Crusted Apple Stuffing
Part of what makes the traditional Thanksgiving stuffing so irresistible is its delicious blend of lightly crisped top and sides with a tender and moist inside.
Turns out that combination also happens to be the mark of a great fried potato latke, one of the most iconic foods of Hanukkah. And because this year marks the rare convergence of Thanksgiving and the first day of Hanukkah, we decided to see whether we could unite these classic comfort foods in one dish.
The result is a wonderfully rich stuffing topped by a crispy layer of fried latkes. And it's good enough that you may want to make it for years to come, regardless of when Hanukkah or Thanksgiving fall on the calendar.
Start to finish: 1 hour, 10 minutes (30 minutes active)
Nonstick cooking spray
2 large russet potatoes
4 large eggs, divided
1⁄2 cup flour
2 tablespoons minced fresh sage
Salt and freshly ground black pepper
Vegetable oil, for frying
1 large yellow onion, roughly chopped
3 ribs celery, roughly chopped
2 carrots, roughly chopped
1 sweet green bell pepper, cored and roughly chopped
1⁄4 cup chopped fresh chives
2 medium apples, peeled and diced
1 large loaf (about 1 pound) challah bread, cut into 1⁄2-inch cubes and toasted
2 cups low-sodium chicken or turkey broth or stock
Heat the oven to 350 degrees. Coat a large casserole dish or a 9-inch by 13-inch pan with cooking spray.
Into a medium bowl lined with several layers of paper towels or a clean kitchen towel, shred the potatoes. Gather the towels with the potatoes inside and squeeze out as much liquid as possible. Discard the liquid, dry the bowl, then return the potatoes to the bowl, removing the towels. Stir in 2 of the eggs, the flour, sage and a hefty pinch each of salt and pepper.
In a large skillet over medium-high, heat 1⁄4 inch of oil. Working in batches, drop the potato mixture in 1⁄4 cup mounds into the oil, flattening them with the back of a spatula. Cook until golden brown on both sides, for about 2 to 3 minutes per side. Transfer the latkes to a paper towel-lined plate and repeat with the remaining potato mixture.
In a food processor, combine the onion, celery, carrots and green pepper. Pulse until finely chopped.
Drain all but 1⁄4 cup of the oil from the pan used to cook the latkes. Set the pan over medium heat, then transfer the vegetable mixture to it and cook until lightly browned and tender, for 5 to 7 minutes. Transfer the mixture to a large bowl, then add the chives, apples and challah. Season with a hefty sprinkle each of salt and pepper.
In a small bowl, whisk together the 2 remaining eggs and the broth. Pour over the stuffing mixture and mix well. Spoon the stuffing into the prepared pan. Arrange the latkes over the top. Cover and bake for 35 minutes. Remove the cover and continue baking for 10 minutes, or until it reaches 165 degrees in the center.
Makes 12 servings.
Nutrition information per serving: 260 calories (50 calories from fat), 6 grams fat (1 gram saturated), 80 milligrams cholesterol, 8 grams protein, 42 gram carbohydrates; 4 grams dietary fiber, 330 milligrams sodium
Alison Ladman is a recipe developer and J.M. Hirsch is the food editor for the AP.