Sunday, October 21, 2012

Kosher Connection October Link Up: Root Vegetables!

About 7 years ago, around the middle of December, my family decided we were going to get a dog. I don't remember whose idea it was, who decided it was a good idea or who put the plan into action. I do remember driving quite a distance from our home to be subjected to a trial run with a puppy. I remember going into the room and standing on a chair terrified and my siblings telling me I had to suck it up or they would never give us the puppy. I must have done a fantastic job of pretending to be calm, because a little while later our puppy was on his way home with us. The next few weeks were spent with me standing on top of tables, couches and chairs, terrified that it was going to come for me, but eventually I calmed down. 

Annually however, it seems our dog, Bruce, enjoys destroying one of my winter hats. Or mittens. He's even eaten a scarf or two. 


And when it comes to dinner, he seems to have a preference for kosher food, because if I turn my head for even a split second, he'll take the food right off of my plate without showing any interest in the rest of the food my family has prepared.

What has this got to do with anything?

Well, if nothing else, Bruce knows one thing, and that he knows well.

Do. Not. Touch. My. Potatoes.

My Mother and I could literally live off of potatoes and bread. The first time I tried a Hermes (a fantastic bakery in Toronto) Kugel at a friend's house for Shabbos, I knew I had to get one to my Mom as soon as possible. We have tried our fair share of fantastic, gourmet food, but nothing, and I mean nothing, beats a good potato and/ or fresh bread.


And Bruce knows this. He knows that we can forgive him taking food but that potatoes are WAY off limits. 

When this month's Kosher Connection Link Up theme was announced as root vegetables,  I somehow managed to convince myself not to use it as an excuse to cook (and subsequently eat) endless amounts of kugel, roasted, mashed and/ or baked potatoes, in the name of recipe development.

But a girl can only go so far beyond her comfort zone! 


There's something about puff pastry that will make me eat my vegetables happily. Maybe it's the flakey, warm dough. Maybe it's the fact that I can't see the vegetables I'm eating so it's almost like they're not there.


Yes, at heart I'm about 5. 

This is a great recipe to make for a snack on the go (vegetables for a snack? Is that a sign of growing up? Am I a grown up now?!), to serve hot or cold on Shabbat or as an appetizer with a dollop of hummus! It's fantastic, simple and barely requires any mess. It's also versatile, and can include whichever vegetables you prefer! 

The preparation, utilizes one of my favorite kitchen companions these days, my KitchenAid dutch oven! Just when I thought they couldn't get more awesome after my mixer settled comfortably onto my counter, this dutch oven proved me wrong! It is to vegetables and meat what the mixer is to cake and cookie batter! It eases the preparation unbelievably, quickens the cooking time and produces moist, flavorful results every time! 

I hope you enjoy my contribution to the link up and be sure to take a look at the other posts as well! 

Vegetable Bourekas (Yields 6)

1 package of puff pastry dough, defrosted
1 sweet potato
1 carrot
2 yellow potatoes
*for additional flavor I added the following, not necessarily root vegetables...
1/2 red bell pepper
1 small zucchini
5 mushrooms

Olive oil
1 clove of garlic (minced)
1 tsp rosemary
1 tsp salt
3 tbsp melted margarine

1 egg yolk
1 tsp water
dash of salt
2 tbsp sesame seeds

Preheat the oven to 425 degrees F
Chop the vegetables into 1 inch cubes and place into dutch oven (or a baking dish)
Drizzle with olive oil, covering all vegetables and add garlic, rosemary and sprinkle with salt
Pour melted margarine overtop mixture
Bake in oven covered for 1 hour at 425 degrees F
Roll out the puff pastry dough to an inch and a half thickness and divide into 6 even squares
Remove from oven and allow 15 minutes to cool
Scoop vegetable mixture into centre of puff pastry squares
Fold each square into a triangle
Combine the egg yolk, water and salt and brush over each triangle
Take a small fork and dip into egg wash. Press down around edges, occasionally dipping the fork into the egg wash again
Sprinkle sesame seeds overtop each boureka
Bake on a parchment paper lined, baking sheet at 425 degrees F for 15 minutes
Brush egg wash overtop the bourekas again
Bake for another 5 minutes
Remove from oven and allow to cool for 15 minutes

Enjoy!