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Saturday, May 22, 2010

Cholent Review - Parashas Naso

I think I am getting close to making a decent vegetarian cholent, or I should say, my son Binyamin and I are getting close. This past Shabbos we made a tasty cholent with most of the usual ingredients: a potato, a sweet potato, carrots, barley, beans and shiitake mushrooms. This cholent differed from my previous vegetarian cholents in a number of ways. First, I put only one large potato in rather than two. I also made sure there was more water than I have in the past. As with my other cholents, I added olive oil, but in this cholent, in addition to salt and pepper, I also added soy sauce. I did not add it once, but twice, first, I added it with the rest of the seasoning before I put the pot on the fire, but then after tasting the cooked cholent before serving it, I added a but more, maybe two tablespoons (for a three quart cholent). It was savory and delicious. The only problem is that since the Hamilton Beach Stay&Go Slow Cooker doesn't cook at a high temperature (I always use the low setting - I would not recommend using the high setting), dry beans often are not thoroughly cooked. For next week, I hope to soak the beans ahead of time. Shavua tov to all!

2 comments:

  1. Vegetarian Chulent= an oxymoron
    You never had a good chulent unless you had tasted from the chulent teppel that was brought over to shul from Shaye Weingarten's Mother in law around the corner on Broadway back in the 60's and 70's!
    Those were the days at the Old Broadway Synagogue! Kiddush upstairs, Johnny on the pony or 'tinfoil' baseball in the basement.

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  2. I have heard that the chulent that Shaye Weingarten's mother-in-law used to make was exceptionally good, and I certainly wouldn't quibble with what was probably an authentic eastern European recipe that was brought over here after the Holocaust, but let's face facts: she only made this chulent once a year - for Simchas Torah! Nevertheless, I have also heard it was delicious, and that the teppel was huge.

    As for vegetarian chulent being an oxymoron, I agree that it is difficult to make a good vegetarian chulent. Still, at the risk of being immodest, I have to say that this past week (Parashas Beha'aloskha), I made an excellent parve chulent. True, it was not accompanied by Jonny on the pony or "tinfoil" baseball in the basement (due to our many sins), but it did contribute to our oyneg Shabbos.

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