Cherry Tomato, Olive and Artichoke Pasta

There’s only been a (Jewish) new year, a few holidays, the end of summer (though I’m still melting over here in LA), and a slew of other major and minor milestones since the last time I was here. No big deal. I’ve been keeping quite busy with some projects, which I can’t wait to share. But between the whirl of September and the tight deadlines, I feel like I’ve been on a constant sprint to cross things off that bottomless to do list. After holiday cooking, running errands and manning my delicious, rambunctious crew of kids, all I’m looking forward to come Monday is the bliss of routine and the (relative) calm of a regular week.

I made this pasta for my daughter’s sixth (sixth!) birthday a few months ago and it was such a hit, I was secretly wishing there’d be leftovers. And there was; a bowlful, just for me. This dish came together haphazardly in an attempt to use up whatever was in my fridge and pantry. I was pleasantly surprised at the outcome and secretly relieved. I just love it when simple ingredients yield amazing results and in no time, too. I would also a handful of feta cheese for the extra saltiness. This is a pasta dish I’m surely going to revisit, because nothing screams routine more than quick, comfort food. And that’s the direction I’m heading in.

Za'atar Baked Salmon

Though I've always been attracted to simple recipes that yield a lot of flavor, I find myself falling back on even simpler ones; especially in the summer. Maybe it's the unbearable heat that has me looking for ways to get out of the kitchen or the desire to spend more time with my family sitting on the floor building lego forts. I find having these 3-4 ingredient meals that are ready in 15 minutes indispensable. And that's how I've come to include this Za'atar salmon in my repertoire. It's not much of a recipe; some spices and oil and a quick bake yields the perfect results despite the minimal effort.

Peach Panzanella Salad

  As much as I'm looking forward to wrapping myself in a cozy scarf come fall, I can't easily part with summer's produce. The stone fruits are irresistible and I find myself most often enjoying them raw, in their most elemental form, sweet and juicy and bursting with flavor.
Many times I'll have grand plans for the bounty I return with from the market, but somehow they don't last long enough to be transformed with an interesting recipe. After camp snack, breakfast treat, and dessert are ways we enjoy them unadulterated.

Asian Coleslaw Salad

 I can’t believe it has taken me so long to tell you about this salad. It has practically become a family staple. It’s interesting how it even came about. The way many recipes wiggle themselves into your life, I suppose. My father-in-law was at an event and took a taste from the salad bar. He loved one in particular and tried recreating it at home. We, his eager taste testers, which include kids and grandkids, took a bite and couldn’t stop. This salad made its appearance every single Shabbat lunch for months.

© the kosher spoon
Design:Maira Gall.