Thursday, March 25, 2010

Recipe: Charoset

One of my favorite dishes to make (and eat!) at Pesah time. This recipe was passed down from Aba's grandfather and I have yet to taste on exactly like it. Unlike many people, we consume copius amounts of charoset throughout the week and then save just a bit to eat with our homemade matzot on Pesah Sheni.

As with most of my recipes quite a bit of this recipe is "to taste" so always put in less as you can add more. Also, the longer it sits and ripens in your refrigerator the better. This year we are cutting it close by only giving it six days. Usually we try to give it 7-10 days.

The amounts given here are what we used this year. Every year is slightly different.

6 pounds of dates, pitted or pressed
1 pound raisins (we like golden)
1 pound walnuts
4 apples, peeled
4 bananas
Juice of 6 oranges
1/2 bottle of sweet wine (we used Rashi Light Concord)

In a food grinder, process the dates, raisins, walnuts, apples and bananas using the smallest plate. (I've found that interspersing the other items with the dates helps because the dates often bog up the machine.)

Add half of the juice and wine and sprinkle in the cinnamon and pepper. Mix with your hands until everything is mixed in and taste. There should be just a hint of spice from the pepper and wine. No one flavor should be overpowering. Keep adding small amounts of everything until the mix is right. Remember that the flavors will get a bit stronger after sitting in the fridge and the charoset will thicken up.