Jewish Recipes

Nothing says "community" more than sharing a good meal. If you're hosting a shabbat dinner or high holiday celebration, or just looking to try something a little different (time-tested, but different), we offer you these favorite recipes from friends in the MJCC community. Keep in mind, these recipes are guidelines... taking liberties with them and making them your own is expected.

Each recipe will be marked "Meat", "Dairy", or "Pareve" (meaning it can be served with either meat OR dairy).

"Use in good health!"

"Here, eat something!"

"Don't eat that! Here, try the liver..."

"A little matzah ball soup will clear that right up, it's Jewish penicillin you know."

Sweet Luckshen Kugel

Submitted by Jane Feinberg, winner of the 2015 Kugel Bake Off
(adapted from

Prep Time: 15 Minutes
Cook Time: 60 Minutes
Total Time: 75 Minutes
Servings: 15
1 cup pineapple tidbits (well drained) - you may substitute other fruits like raisins, craisins, dried chopped apricots
16 oz wide egg noodles
6 large eggs
1 lb sour cream (2 cups)
8 oz cottage cheese (1 cup)
8 oz cream cheese, softened (1 cup)
1 cup sugar
1/4 cup unsalted butter, melted
1/4 tsp salt
Zest of one orange
Cinnamon and sugar for dusting
Nonstick cooking oil spray

Place a rack in the middle of your oven and preheat to 350 degrees F. If using raisins or other dried fruit, cover with hot water and let them soak to plump while you prepare the other ingredients.

Bring a large pot of water to a boil. Add the noodles to the pot, bring back to a boil, and let them cook until tender (not overly soft), about 5 minutes. Drain and return the cooked noodles to the pot.

In a food processor, blender, or large bowl with hand mixer, mix together the eggs, sour cream, cottage cheese, cream cheese, sugar, melted butter, orange zest, and salt.

Pour the egg mixture over the cooked noodles in the pot and stir till well combined.

Add well-drained fruit, and stir into the noodles.

Spray a 9x13-inch baking dish with nonstick cooking oil. Pour the noodle mixture into the dish.

Top the kugel with generous sprinkling of sugar and cinnamon. Alternatively, you can use your favorite kugel topping (streusel, crushed graham crackers, cornflakes, etc.).

Bake the kugel for about 60 minutes, turning once halfway through cooking, until the center of the kugel is set and the tips of the noodles turn golden brown. Remove from the oven.

Let the kugel rest for 15-20 minutes before slicing. Kugel can be served warm or cold.

Note: Best results are achieved when all ingredients are at room temperature.

Grandma Esther's Brisket (Meat)

Submitted by the Horowitz family


  • 10 pounds brisket
  • 2 large cans of crushed tomatoes
  • 4 onions, peeled and quartered
  • 4 large cloves of garlic, peeled but left whole (may add more to taste)
  • 1 cup dried shiitake mushrooms
  • 2 cups fresh mushrooms

Preheat the oven to 325° F. Pour 1/4 can of tomatoes into oven-proof baking pan. Add brisket. Pour remainder of can, plus additional can, on top of the brisket. Add onions, garlic, and dried and fresh mushrooms. Stir to cover everything with the crushed tomatoes. Cover and cook in low oven up to 6 hours or until the meat is very tender. Slice and serve with lots of horseradish. This tastes even better the second day!

This would go well with Aunt Sabra's Potatoes.

Grandma Sylvia Paley's Brisket (Meat)

Submitted by the Brown family


  • A brisket (big if you're serving many, slightly smaller if serving just a few)
  • 1 onion, diced
  • 10 cloves of garlic, minced (less if you like, more if you like)
  • 1 - 2 packets of Lipton® Onion Soup mix (they make a kosher version so plan ahead if you need it)
  • 2 carrots, roughly chopped
  • 1 tomato roughly chopped or if you prefer, one 14 oz can of crushed tomato
  • About 2 Tbs Worchestershire Sauce
  • About 1/4 cup Ketchup
  • Brown sugar
  • Paprika, Salt and Pepper

Preheat oven to 325ºF. Trim the brisket of the fat and let the meat come to room temperature. Season the brisket liberally with salt, pepper, and paprika. Don't be afraid. Rub brisket all over with the minced garlic. In oven proof pan (Dutch oven), saute the diced onion in a little olive oil until soft and slightly brown. Push onion to the side. Add brisket and brown on each side, careful not to burn. Pour in Onion soup mix. Toss in carrots and tomatoes. Add Worchestershire sauce. Add ketchup (one long squeeze ought to do it). Add two handfuls of brown sugar (maybe it's 1/4 cup packed). Now add enough water to the pan to cover the meat. Cover the pan and place it into the preheated oven. Cook at least three hours until meat is cooked and the sauce is coming together. Once meat is cooked, take it out of the sauce and let it sit 20 minutes before slicing. Sauce is great strained or even with the carrots blended into it. Serve sauce on the side. To warm brisket before serving, place sliced brisket in a pyrex pan and coat with the sauce.

Bubbe Shirlee Lenske's Chopped Liver (Meat)

Submitted by the Snyder Family

Schmaltz and Greiven

  • Skin and fat saved from chickens
  • 3 Tbs water
  • 1 chopped onion


  • 4-6 hard boiled eggs
  • 1 sweet white onion
  • 1 onion to finely grind and add raw at the end
  • 4-5 cloves of garlic, coarsely chopped
  • 2 1/2 - 3 pounds of chicken liver
  • Lawry's® Seasoned Salt
  • White pepper
  • Ground cumin

SCHMALTZ: Put skin and fat into a pot with the water and cook until it just begins to brown. Add the onion and cook until all is browned. Strain, separating fat (schmaltz) from greiven (the rest). Salt and pepper to taste. Save both the schmaltz and greiven.

LIVER: Peel, rinse and quarter hard-boiled eggs and set aside in a bowl. Rinse chicken livers in cold water and drain in colander and then on paper towels. Halve livers and cut out green gall. Broil the livers to remove all blood. Add schmaltz to a large fry pan. When hot add livers and season with Lawry's Seasoned salt, white pepper, and cumin. Let liver get dark brown (burn) on one side before turning and adding onions and garlic. When cooking, bottom of pan should be somewhat dry before lowering heat and then finish cooking. To eliminate "pinkness" one can cover to finish cooking at medium low heat. Let the liver mixture cool. Put a small amount of greiven in food processor and grind. Add eggs and liver mixture. Process using pulses so it doesn't get too mushy. Mix in some raw, finely ground onion, schmaltz, seasonings to taste, and garnish with crumbled hard-boiled egg.

Aunt Sabra's Potatoes (Pareve)

Submitted by the Horowitz family


  • 2 pounds small (new) potatoes
  • 1 HEAD (not clove) of garlic, minced
  • 1/2 cup fresh mint, coarsely chopped
  • 1/4 cup kosher salt
  • 1/2 cup great olive oil

Wash the potatoes. Cook in shallow roasting pan at 325ºF for at least 1 hour or until brown. Remove from oven. Toss with olive oil, garlic and salt. When cool, add chopped mint.

Sweet Potato Souffleé (Dairy)

Submitted by the Rocker family


  • 3 lbs sweet potatoes
  • 1/3 cup half and half
  • 1/4 cup unsalted butter at room temperature
  • 1/4 cup sugar
  • 2 large eggs well beaten
  • 3/4 tsp allspice

Butter an 8-inch square glass dish (sides too). Preheat oven to 350°F. Cook sweet potatoes in water until very soft. Remove peels. Process all ingredients in a food processor until smooth. Pour into prepared pan and bake until the center is set and top begins to brown, about 50 minutes.

Noam and Elana’s Greek Potatoes (Pareve)

Submitted by Merrill Hendin


  • 6 large potatoes
  • ½ cup lemon juice
  • 1/3 cup oil (all or some Olive oil)
  • 2 tsp salt
  • 1 tsp oregano
  • 2 cloves garlic
  • pepper to taste

Wash the potatoes. Coat with the lemon juice, oil, salt, oregano, garlic, pepper and place in a 9 x 13" oven safe pan. Pour 3 cups hot water into the pan with the potatoes. Bake at 475°F. Stir every 20 minutes or so until the liquid is gone and potatoes are done (about one hour).

Mom's Kneidlach (Matzah Balls) (Pareve)

Submitted by Merrill Hendin for Barbara Leinwand


  • 6 eggs
  • 1 cup water
  • 1 cup oil
  • 1 tsp sugar
  • 1 tsp salt
  • 2 to 2 1/4 cups matzah meal

Mix ingredients together and let rest in the refrigerator for two hours. With wet hands, roll spoonfuls of the mixture into 1-inch round balls and drop into boiling salted water. Simmer with the lid on for 20 minutes or until fluffy and tender. NOTE: You may cook the kneidlach in boiling soup, thus rendering them MEAT and no longer PAREVE.

Chicken Soup (Meat)

Submitted by Perry Hendin and adapted from Edmonton (Ami-Chai Chapter) Hadassah-WIZO – “The Great Hadassah Cookbook; 1982


  • 4 lbs chicken
  • 8 cups cold water
  • 1 large white onion, halved
  • 5 tsp salt
  • 1 1/2 tsp pepper
  • 1 tbsp sugar
  • 4 large carrots, sliced into rounds
  • 1 to 2 parsnip(s), sliced
  • Garlic, as desired
  • 4 stalks celery with leafy tops
  • 3 sprigs fresh parsley)

Place chicken and onion in cold water in a large soup pot. Add seasonings. At high temperature, bring just to the boil, reduce heat to a low simmer and add remaining ingredients. Simmer for 2 to 3 hours. Let cool. Remove chicken pieces and skim top before reheating and serving. Strain the broth through cheesecloth and discard vegetables for clear broth.

Double-Chocolate Crinkle Cookies from Babi (Gloria Hendin) (Pareve)

Submitted by the Hendin family


  • 4 oz unsweetened chocolate
  • ½ cup shortening
  • 2 cups sugar, or if you prefer, 1 cup white and 1 cup brown sugar
  • 2 tsp vanilla
  • 4 eggs
  • 2-cup flour
  • 2 tsp baking powder
  • ½ tsp salt
  • 6 oz package chocolate chips*
  • 1 cup powdered sugar

Melt chocolate and shortening together. Stir in sugar; cool. Beat until blended. Add vanilla, then eggs, one at a time. Add flour, baking powder, salt. Add chocolate chips. Refrigerate dough several hours or overnight.

To bake: 375 deg F. Grease cookie sheet or use parchment paper.

Break off pieces of dough, roll into 1-inch ball. Place powdered sugar in a bowl. Roll cookie in sugar. Coat it well. Place 2 inches apart on cookie sheet. Bake 10 min. cookie will be soft; becomes firm as it cools. May be frozen. Makes about 70 cookies.

*NOTE: If you use dairy chocolate chips, the cookies will be DAIRY and no longer PAREVE.