Eat This Word: Halvah

 

WHAT? A global confection. Halvah is a broad term used to describe a flour- or nut-based Middle Eastern dessert. Many countries in the region claim it as their own, although today its reach has spread from South Asia to the Balkans. The sweet’s spellings are as numerous as its origins: Egyptians call it “halawa,” while Indians drop the final "h" and name it “halva.” Regardless of what you call it, what is certain is that the word derives from the Arabic word, “halwa,” which means “sweet confection.” This versatile, rich ingredient has spread across the globe, resulting in myriad variations in its preparation. Israelis create halvah by mixing tahini and honey to create a flaky, satisfying fudge; whereas Indian halva is made with semolina, which creates a crumbly, grainy texture. The dessert can be dressed in various ways: topped with almonds or raisins, mixed with shredded carrots, or flavored with vanilla or coconut extracts.... Read more >

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Passover Seder

 

Make sure the second night of Passover truly is different than all other nights by preparing a feast that combines traditional, Bubbe-approved favorites like wine-braised brisket with outside-the-macaroon-box dishes like halvah pots de crème. 

 

Fennel and Arugula Salad 

Add a pinch of fennel pollen and smoked sea salt to bring fennel to the next level in this simple salad. 

 

Wine-Braised Friday-Night Brisket 

A mixture of port, dry red wine, and a head of garlic makes an aromatic braising liquid for this special-occasion brisket. 

 

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Eye Candy: Turkish Coffee Sundae

Haim Cohen—Israel's premier celebrity chef and cooking show host—spun a menu of reinvented Israeli cuisine at the Beard House last month. This Turkish coffee sundae, layered with puff rice and feathery halva, was a real crowd pleaser. Click here to see more photos of chef Cohen's dinner. (What's the deal with chefs pairing coffee with puffed rice in their desserts? Cohen's is the second one we've seen recently. Look at David Katz's here.)

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JBF Kitchen Cam