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Mar 31, 2007 11:40 AM

Recipes for a sephardic passover

Family would like to mix it up a bit this year on the second night by having a sephardic style passover. Does anyone have any good recipes to share? I was thinking about lamb as a main dish but can't find that perfect sounding dish. Recipes for Haroset would be much appreciated as well. Thanks.

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  1. Please think about braising your lamb rather than roasting it. Roasting lamb runs afoul of Passover culinary strictures but cooking in liquid does not (this has to do with the sacrifice being burnt over fire).

    As to the rest, just Google. You'll come up with more recipes than you'll know what to do with. There are about half a dozen charoset recipes that will come up over and over again, including Yemenite, Italian, Greek, Persian, and others.

    1. Here's a link to a recipe for a sephardic lamb dish from the Philadelphia Inquirer earlier this week:

      1 Reply
      1. re: vicarious

        This past Wednesday the Boston Globe had a large section with recipes from a woman who migrated fromTurkey to Boston area, recipes included charoset. Logon to Boston Globe and click on recipes and you should be able to find. Unfortunately, I have disposed of it.

      2. Check out this link - it's all Jewish, all the time. Tons of recipes from all regions (charoset, main courses, sides, soup, everything), and many of the recipes come from well respected authors like Claudia Roden, Joan Nathan, etc. I love it!

        4 Replies
        1. re: margieslocal

          I always make a mina - usually meat. We don't have the minhag of eating lamb for the seder. We often have turkish leeks and apio - a sweet/sour celery dish. Both can be served hot or at room temperature. My recipes for both are at

          This is how I make my charoses. Vary the amounts by how many people you have.

          Soak figs, dates, prunes and raisins in sweet kosher wine overnight. Transfer to a saucepan and add coconut and grated/chopped unpeeled apples. Cook on low heat for 30 - 45 minutes, stirring often and being careful not to burn. Remove from the heat and add chopped toasted almonds.

          1. re: margieslocal

            I second the motion about Claudia Roden's book(s). The book cover blurb in my copy of her book indicates that she is of Sephardic heritage.

            1. re: ChiliDude

              Claudia Rosen is indeed Sephardic - she is an Egyptian. Roden is her (Ashkenazi) husband's surname. Her books are utterly wonderful. I scored a hardback copy of her Middle Eastern Cooking (the original edition), in perfect shape for $2 at a charity shop!

              My background is in social history (notably migrations) and Roden's great tome on Jewish cuisines is a remarkable work of social history, and in particular a look at cultures and religious practices through the eyes of women.

              Joyce Goldstein's three books on Mediterranean Jewish cookery have many Passover dishes, and suggested menus.

              1. re: lagatta

                Thanks for the reply. I like the historical aspects of Claudia Roden's book.

                Our first daughter gave me a gift copy of one of Joyce Goldstein's books, 'Cucina Ebraica.' Our children were born of a culturally diverse marriage, Italian and Jewish. I've seen enough pasta to last me 3 lifetimes. Basta cosi!

          2. I just made the Haroset from this month's Gourmet, recipes by Floyd Cardoz of Tabla in NYC. It called for
            1.5 c pitted dates, chopped
            3/4c walnuts
            1 1.5in cinnamon stick--finely ground
            2tsp finely chopped fresh ginger
            2 gala apples, peeled, cored, chopped
            1/3c Ruby port, but i used Manischewitz
            You put the first 3 ingredients in a food processor and whiz til combined. Then added the apples and port. Sadly for me, the apples got processed too fast! So they got kinda applesaucey. Having no time to buy more ingredients, i just combined it all anyway. Still tastes pretty darned good but is definitely a paste, which is not like the usual Haroset we have. Rebellion may ensue. But I still think it's yummy! Being more a fan of savory rather than cloying sweet, I'd use half the amount of dates and sub in the rest with apricots, for some tangy goodness.

            1. I decided to do a Sephardic-inspired seder too! I am SO excited about it - and so is everyone I tell. I am making moussaka and salmon.

              My charoset recipe is from, but here is the gist:
              Golden raisins
              Sweet wine/juice
              Honey/date syrup
              Pistachios, Walnuts, Almonds (toasted)
              Cinnamon, Nutmeg, Allspice, Cloves

              Blend in food processor. Done and DELICIOUS! (I had to tear myself away from eating it before the seder...)