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May 17, 2001 08:11 AM


  • b

Want to make it but am only finding sweet, raisiny (shudder) versions of it. Anyone have a good, simple savory recipe? Also, by itself or with something else? Side dish or entree is the ?

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  1. s
    steve drucker

    Yes, two kinds of kugel are recognized by cogniscenti: salt and sweet.

    Here is a recipe for salt kugel:
    Prep time: 20 minutes
    Cook time: 45-60 minutes
    serves 5 as a main course, 8-12 as a side dish

    --1 pound pkg medium width good quality egg noodles (Goodman's, Muellers).
    --1/4 stick melted butter or 4 Tablespoons olive oil
    --4 eggs
    --3/4 firmly packed cup 1/4 inch width sliced onion
    --salt to taste (start with 1 teaspoon and keep adding)
    --black pepper to taste
    --1/4 cup heavily reduced triple strength veal or chicken stock (optional)
    --2 qt casserole dish, amply greased with either butter or olive oil (depending on which you have chosen in recipe)

    Pre-heat oven to 400 F
    1. Bring 6 quarts water with 1 Tablespoon salt to rolling boil
    2. while water boils, saute onions in ample oil, stirring frequently so they don't stick, until medium brown.
    3. Meanwhile, cook noodles to just al dente
    4. Drain and rinse noodles with cold water and then let cool a few minutes
    5. Beat together 4 eggs and 1/4 cup melted butter (or 4 Tablespoons olive oil)and 1 teaspoon (or more) salt and veal or chicken stock and the black pepper
    6. combine drained noodles with egg/butter/salt/pepper/stock mixture and browned onions
    7. turn into 2 quart well greased round glass casserole dish
    8. salt the top of the kugel with either coarse or regular salt
    8. place into pre-heated 400 F oven
    9. after 10 minutes, turn temp down to about 365F
    10. cook until top is golden brown, about 45-60 minutes
    11. let rest 10 minutes or so
    12. carefully run a flexible knife or thin spatula all around the edges and sides to loosen
    13. slide onto a round plate for service
    14. use a serrated bread knife to slice

    13 Replies
    1. re: steve drucker

      I share Barbara's aversion...I'm so sweet-raisiny-kugel intolerant that I'm actually skeptical of anyone who feels the need to stipulate "salty kugel". It's sort of like "Korean/Japanese food"; the mere title conclusively shows one's alliances (or maybe a closer analogy would be "chocolate egg creams"...if someone feels the need to stipulate the flavor, it calls into question their staunchness!).

      While this recipe looks like it might cook up something delicious, I've never in my life heard of adding onions to kugel. Olive oil was even more of a shocker. And some sort of soft cheese is generally considered an essential. But hey, delicious is delicious, and while this is no kind of kugel I've ever heard of, it does sound worth making. Can't we call it "onion-noodle casserole" or something, though?


      1. re: Jim Leff

        Actually, kugel just means pudding where the addition of eggs and the usual other ingredients that constitute a batter are combined with some major ingredient. One needs to stipulate noodle kugel, potato kugel, cabbage or carrot etc. So your salt/sweet distinction is secondary to that which is being kugelized.

        1. re: Stefany B.

          Of course. Kugel is my life. But we're talkin' noodle kugel here, so I was saying "kugel" for short in that context. Not sure how this applies to the sweet/salty issue, though.

          1. re: Jim Leff

            >>I'm so sweet-raisiny-kugel intolerant that I'm actually skeptical of anyone who feels the need to stipulate "salty kugel".<<

            You may use "kugel" to mean noodle kugel but thats about the same as saying "pie" always means apple pie.

            With regard to the salty/sweet story, maybe the distinction should be savory vs. sweet but any kugel would need to have a balance of flavor. I do know what you mean, however. The usual fruit cocktail laden coagulated mess of noodles with four cups of sugar is indeed revolting and is, unfortunately, ubiquitous. But to ascribe salty to the properly prepared dish is not quite there either. One distinction that does hold is milchadik vs. fleishadik (sp?). One being prepared with dairy and the other without. This really determines the true overall nature of the dish and two very different results.

            1. re: Stefany B.

              Interesting. But how could it be kugel without dairy? Is it still pudding like? And you also mentioned cabbage and potato kugel? Are these prepared the same way as the first recipe? Just substitute cabbage or potatoes for the noodles?

              1. re: barbara ryan

                That which makes a pudding base for any particular vegetable or noodle is eggs, which are not dairy. With the vegetable kugels a flour or flour-like ingredient and leavening are also needed. All of the recipes would have fat as an ingredient but one may use oils, instead of butter. Cheese can be used if appropriate or omitted in any particular pudding. So, any kugel can contain dairy or not as the requirement of the kosher meal or personal preference would dictate.

                Each basic ingredient such as carrot or cabbage or potato would have a different recipe. The potato is the most different, I think, and requires grated raw potato much like potato latkes.

                Hope this helps.

                1. re: barbara ryan

                  Actually, it was potato kugel that originally led me to this site -- specifically Jim's article (link below), which must've come up on a Google search. Sadly, I'm now the only person in my little world who still occasionally finds it worthwhile to whip up a potato kugel. This is a versatile, savory, nondairy, nonmeat dish, suitable as a side dish at almost any meal, and the leftovers make a fine breakfast or lunch IMHO.


          2. re: Jim Leff
            steve drucker

            "...I've never in my life heard of adding onions to kugel. Olive oil was even more of a shocker"

            Oy veh. ok, you can substitute rendered chicken fat for the olive oil or butter. Even better (or worse), use gribnes(sp?): rendered chicken fat browned onion confit instead of the olive oil butter.

            As for the caramelized onions, trust me...the combo of triple strength veal or chicken stock and seriously caramelized onions delivers 95% of the 'tam' (i.e.taste) absent the artery blockers.

            1. re: steve drucker

              "you can substitute rendered chicken fat for the olive oil or butter. Even better (or worse), use gribnes(sp?)"

              NOW you're talkin' my language!

              1. re: steve drucker

                I need a kugel receipe with a rice krispie topping

              2. re: Jim Leff

                Jim, all of the "plain" savory noodle kugel recipes I have specify onion. They typically specify a choice of chicken fat or vegetable oil. Kugel with cheese is another story; it can be savory or sweet - and my recipes do not contain onions. Probably this is the kind familiar to you.

                Conclusion: you are mixing up two distinct families of kugels. Steve's is just as authentic - and properly called kugel - as the kind you describe. Suggested reading on this subject: Claudia Roden's "The Book of Jewish Food."

                1. re: Jim Leff

                  Had a hard time figuring out which part of the thread to post this to, but replying to Jim's post seems to make sense.

                  There are actually two subsets of noodle kugels: milchek (with dairy products) and fleishek (without dairy and perhaps with schmaltz). Either kind can be made salty or sweet and if made correctly, all four types are delicious. My two favorites are probably a non-dairy salty, scmaltzy kugel and a dairy sweet kugel.

                  The sweet milchek kugel does not need to have any fruit. I actually do not like it with raisins or pineapple or apples. But the recipe my mother uses is great. You should try it before you dismiss sweet kugels. I'll write the recipe at the end.

                  Finally there is a fifth kugel no one has mentioned that has the added bonus of being sweet and savory. This is Kugel Yerushalmi and is a favorite in Israel. When I lived there I bought some every week. It is a fleishik noodle kugel made with carmalized sugar and lots of pepper (and oil). It is spicy and sweet and a beautiful brown color. It is made with long noodles like spaghetti and is traditionally served at kiddush after Sat. morning services. I made it once. A pain in the neck, but worth it. The recipe was a mix between Claudia Roden and something I found on the web, Epicurious perhaps.

                  Here is the recipe for the sweet kugel
                  12 oz. broad egg noodles
                  1 stick butter
                  1 cup sugar
                  1 tsp. vanilla
                  a pinch or two of cinnamon
                  4 eggs
                  16 oz. cottage cheese (Friendship is the best)
                  16 oz. sour cream (full fat please!)

                  Preheat oven to 350 or 400 and grease a 9x13 pan.

                  Cook noodles until tender.

                  While noodles are cooking, mix together eggs, cottage cheese and sourcream in a bowl and set aside.

                  When noodles are done, drain well and put back in the pot. Add sugar, butter, vanilla and cinnamon to taste (I don't like so much, just a few sprinkles)

                  When butter is all melted, add cheese mixture. Mix well and pour into greased pan.

                  Cook for 45min at 400 or 1 hour at 350.

                  It's not great for you, but then what Eastern European Jewish dish besides borscht really is?
                  Enjoy and let me know what you think. (I won't be offended if you don't like it, but my mom might be)

                2. re: steve drucker
                  steve drucker

                  Ok, I dug into my email files...

                  Last Thanksgiving, 14 of us assembled in Cape Cod, at the home of my ailing aunt for turkey. We were an ethnically polyglot group of many varieties from many continents, besides just 3rd generation jews.

                  In addition to all the usual fixin's, I made two kugels, salt and sweet. That was enough for 20-24 people, but the crew demolished the kugel, and asked for the recipes.

                  So here is the Kugel Primer. Notice we don't speak of cottage cheese, farmers cheese or pineapple. If that's what you are looking for, I can't help you. These recipes are meant to stir deep seated race memories, not remembrances of 1960's covered dish suppers. If you can handle the bad cholesterol, you can use rendered chicken fat instead of butter or olive oil.
                  Basic Kugle Recipe:
                  Prep time: 20 minutes
                  Cook time: 60-75 minutes

                  16 oz pkg good quality egg noodles--Goodman's, Muellers etc. Don't use store brands--they won't come out right
                  4 oz stick of unsalted butter
                  4 eggs
                  1-1/2 teaspoon salt
                  4 qts boiling water with 1 tablespoon salt added
                  2-qt round pyrex baking dish, well greased with butter or olive oil

                  0. preheat oven to 400 F
                  1. Put water on to boil. Add the 1 tablespoon of salt.
                  While the water is coming to a rolling boil:
                  2. melt butter
                  3. Into a 4 quart mixing bowl, crack the 4 eggs
                  4. Let the melted butter come to room temp
                  5. Add the 1-1/2 tsp salt to the eggs
                  6. Gently whisk the melted butter into the eggs
                  7. Set egg-butter-salt mixture aside
                  8. Into boiling water add egg noodles
                  9. Boil noodles to al dente stage
                  10. Drain noodles into a colander.
                  11. Immediately fill noodle cooking pot with ice and water or very cold water and throw noodles in until they have cooled to room temperature
                  12. Drain noodles again into the colander
                  13. Add drained noodles to butter-egg-salt mixture. stir thoroughly. adjust salt to taste.
                  14. Empty noodle-egg-butter mixture into well-greased 2-qt pyrex bowl.
                  15. Place uncovered into pre-heated 400 F oven
                  16. After 15 minutes, reduce oven temp to 360 F
                  17. Cook until top is golden brown, about 60-75 minutes total.
                  18. Remove from oven. Let rest 5 minutes. Using a spatula, loosen from bowl. Turn out onto plate for serving.

                  Salt Kugle:

                  Basic Kugle Recipe PLUS...
                  1 med-large onion

                  Before boiling water, coarsley mince 1 medium large onion and saute until caramelized to a rich deep golden brown, starting on high heat and being careful to stir and periodically reduce heat as onions begin to brown.
                  Add caramelized onions to butter-egg-noodle mixture. Add another tsp or more of salt. Add a generous amount of black pepper (probably more than you think is needed). If you have it, add 1/2 cup of triple strength chicken stock--the kind that's been boiled for days on end. Mix thoroughly, pour into well greased 2-qt pyrex bowl.
                  Bake as per basic kugle recipe.
                  Serves 8-10 as a side dish

                  2. Cheddar Cheese kugle
                  Follow Basic Kugle Recipe (and Salt Kugle Recipe if you have the time)
                  Coarsely grate 10 oz of very sharp cheddar. Add to noodle-egg-butter mixture
                  Bake as per Basic Kugle recipe.
                  Serves 4-6 as a main course

                  3. Sweet Kugle
                  Basic Kugle Recipe PLUS...
                  3 medium size cooking apples (Mac, Staymen, Courtland); the same as you would choose for a pie
                  about 1/2 cup (or more) of raisins
                  White Sugar
                  Light Brown Sugar

                  While water is boiling, and before you boil the noodles:
                  Core and Quarter the apples. Slice thinly. Set Aside. Save about 24 of the nicest slices for decorating the top.

                  Sweet Kugle Assembly:
                  Pour 1/3 of the noodle-egg-butter mixture into the well-greased pyrex bowl. Completely cover with a single layer of sliced apples. Sprinkle generously with raisins, white sugar and cinammon. Then sprinkle with light brown sugar. Pour in 1/2 of the remaining noodle-egg-butter mixture. Completely cover with a single layer of the sliced apples, then sprinkle with sugar, raisin, cinammon , brown sugar. Pour in the remainding noodle-egg-butter mixture. On the top center place a ring of overlapping nicely quartered apple slices, about 3 inches in diameter, bearing in mind that they will shrink by about half when cooked. Sprinkle white sugar over the entire top. Lightly brush with butter.
                  Bake as per Basic Kugle recipe.
                  Serves 8-12 as a side dish
                  Whew! Cut and paste is a miraculous thing. Enjoy.

                3. Mollie Katzen has some interesting, very tasty versions of kugel in her Enchanted Broccoli Forest (veggie recipes). We used em for Passover, with all sorts of different vegetable substitutions,and we were thrilled to have something different and healthful. Her books should be available in any library or at most bookstores. Let me know if you need further info on this board and I'll e-mail you privately. (If it's "old Jewish" you want, I'd steer you to the Grossinger's cookbook.)

                  2 Replies
                  1. re: Loeb

                    how do you get a copy of grossinger's cookbook?

                    1. re: greg

                      Here's a link to abe books, a website that sells used books from a large network of booksellers. They had 18 sources for The Art of Jewish Cooking by Jennie Grossinger. Just type Jennie Grossinger in the author area of the search window.


                  2. If you go to the following link, you'll see a very good looking savory kugel recipe:


                    1. My mother used to make (and now I occasionally make) a simple, nonsweet, dairy noodle kugel. You cook up a pound of flat egg noodles (not the thin, stringy ones), drain, and mix in a pound of cottage cheese, 2 beaten eggs, "most of a pound" of sour cream, and a bit of salt and pepper. Turn the mixture into a greased pan and bake for 40-60 minutes until lightly browned and bubbling. We used to have this as the main dish in a dairy supper to break the Yom Kippur fast, but it's delicious anytime.

                      1 Reply
                      1. re: C. Fox

                        I just tried this yesterday and it was delicous. Steve's get's a go next time. Thank's C. Fox. Just what I was looking for.