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As promised, here is a yummy cookie recipe (even gluten free) from “The New Passover Menu” by Paula Shoyer, which is reviewed in this week’s Jewish Standard.

Shoyer declares these cookies “the official snack bar of the Passover holiday” because they make everyone happy. She continues, “the ends are crunchy if you like crisp cookies to dunk in milk, and the middle is chewy if you like a gooey cookie. Next, you can vary these cookie bars in so many ways. Don’t like coconut or raisins? Leave them out. Love chocolate? Reduce the chopped nuts and substitute some more chocolate chips. Start with the base recipe the first time you make them and then vary the add-ins as you like. In any case, you will want to make these cookie bars more than once over the holiday.”

Check weekly in the JS and here, online, for more recipes and Passover ideas.

Fully Loaded Cookie Bars

Paula Shoyer

(gluten-free)

Makes 24 (2-inch square bars or 49 (1 X 3- inch bars)

Prep time: 15 minutes

Bake time 30″“35 minutes

May be made 5 days in advance or frozen

Equipment: Measuring cups and spoons “¢ Cutting board “¢ Knives “¢ 9 x 13-inch baking pan (for best results, don’t use a disposable pan) “¢ Electric mixer or wooden spoon “¢ Large mixing bowl “¢ Silicone spatula

Ingredients:

1 1/2 cups sugar
2 large eggs
1 cup vegetable oil, plus extra for greasing pan
2 tablespoons vanilla sugar (see box, below)
3 1/4 cups ground almonds
1/4 cup potato starch
1 cup mini chocolate chips or 1 bag (10-ounces) chocolate chips
1/3 cup pecans, chopped into 1/2-inch pieces
1/3 cup shelled pistachios, chopped into 1/2-inch pieces
1/3 cup walnuts, chopped into 1/2-inch pieces
1/3 cup dried shredded coconut
1/3 cup golden raisins
1/3 cup dried cranberries

Preheat oven to 375°F

Grease a 9 x 13-inch baking pan with oil and press in a piece of parchment paper to cover the bottom and sides. Grease the top and sides of the parchment.

In a large bowl, beat the sugar, eggs, oil, and vanilla sugar with an electric mixer on medium speed, or mix well with a wooden spoon until combined. Add the ground almonds and potato starch and mix well. Add the chocolate chips, pecans, pistachios, walnuts, coconut, raisins, and cranberries and mix to distribute.

Scoop the dough into the prepared pan and use a spatula to spread it evenly. Bake for 30 to 35 minutes, or until the edges are brown and when you insert a toothpick into the center, it has just a few crumbs on it. Let cool. Lift out the parchment and then cut into squares or bars.

Vanilla Sugar

If you cannot find vanilla sugar, you can make your own by placing a whole vanilla bean inside a container or jar with 2 cups sugar. You can also use regular sugar plus 1 teaspoon vanilla. (there is no pure vanilla extract for Passover.)