Here are 5 easy recipes that meet the culinary requirements for Tu B'Shevat. Tu B'Shevat is a Jewish holiday, considered one of the four New Year's, which is celebrated in late January or early February. The holiday is also known as "the new year of trees". It is customary to eat one of seven foods called the Shivat Haminim (the Seven Species) every day. These foods are: figs, pomegranates, olives, dates, grapes, wheat and barley. Many of the recipes appropriate for the celebration of Tu B'Shevat include some or all of these seven ingredients.
7 Species Salad for Tu B'Shevat
- 1 head of Romaine lettuce, cleaned and chopped.
- 1 ripe pomegranate, seeds removed from skin
- 8 figs, quartered
- ¼ cup red seedless grapes, quartered
- 3 dates, sliced
- 3 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil
- 3 tablespoons balsamic vinegar
- ¼ teaspoon ground oregano
- 1 tablespoon extra virgin olive oil 2 slices multi-grain bread containing wheat and barley
- Preheat toaster oven to 400ºF. Combine olive oil and oregano. Brush both sides of bread slices with olive oil, arrange on a baking tray, and cook for 5 minutes. Remove from heat and cut into 1-inch cubes to make croutons.
- Combine 3 tablespoons olive oil and 3 tablespoons vinegar to create salad dressing. Combine lettuce, pomegranate seeds, figs, grapes and dates. Drizzle with salad dressing and toss.
- Top salad with croutons. Optional: serve with crumbled goat cheese.
Almond Wine Cake
- 1-1/2 cups potato starch
- 1 tablespoon baking powder
- 3/4 cup Merlot or Cabernet Sauvignon
- 2 tablespoons orange zest
- 3 tablespoons brandy or dark rum
- 6 large eggs
- ½ teaspoon salt
- 1-1/2 cups white sugar
- 1/2 cup extra virgin olive oil
- 1-1/4 cups almonds, minced
- Preheat oven to 350°F, cooking for 1 hour. Grease a 10-inch spring form pan.
- In a separate bowl, combine potato starch and baking powder, and set aside. Combine wine, orange zest and brandy is a separate bowl, and set aside.
- Crack six eggs and separate whites from yolks. Combine eggs whites and salt, and beat with hand mixer until stiff. Combine egg yolks, olive oil and sugar and cream with hand mixer.
- Gradually combine dry ingredients, wine, and eggs yolks with hand mixer, blending until just combined. With a wooden spoon, mix in nuts. Finally, gently fold in eggs whites.
- Transfer ingredients to greased spring form pan. Remove from mold and turn upright before serving.
Date Nut Squares
- 5 tablespoons all-purpose flour
- 2 teaspoons baking powder
- 1/8 teaspoon salt
- 2 large eggs
- 3/4 cup white sugar
- 3-1/2 cups pitted dates, chopped
- 1 teaspoon vanilla
- 1 cup almonds, chopped
- 2 tablespoons powdered sugar
- Preheat oven to 325ºF, cook for 35 to 40 minutes. Grease a 10 x 12-inch baking pan.
- Sift flour before measuring 5 tablespoons. Then combine flour, baking powder and salt and sift again. Mix in eggs, stirring well. Gradually stir in sugar, dates and vanilla. Gently fold in almonds.
- Transfer dough to baking pan. When baked, cut into 2-inch squares and sprinkle with powdered sugar.
Tu B'Shevat Wild Rice Casserole
- 3 tablespoons salted butter
- 1-1/2 cup fresh mushrooms, chopped
- 1/2 cup wild rice
- 1/4 cup blanched almond slivers
- 1 tablespoon shallots, minced
- 1 tablespoon vegetable broth
- 1-1/2 cups water
- Preheat oven to 300°F, cook for 2 hours. Recipe requires an ungreased 1-quart casserole dish.
- In a large skillet, melt butter and sauté mushrooms, rice, almonds and shallots. Cook until almonds are lightly browned. Stir in vegetable broth. Transfer to 1-quart casserole dish.
- Add water to casserole dish. Cover tightly before cooking. Serve hot.
Almond and Garlic Soup
- 2 cups peeled raw almonds
- 3 cups ice water
- 3 tablespoons of red wine vinegar
- ½ teaspoon salt
- 2 cloves garlic, minced
- 1/3 cup extra virgin olive olive oil
- ½ cup green seedless grapes, halved
- 4 to 6 mint leaves to garnish
- Puree almonds, water, vinegar, salt and garlic in blender or food processor until it attains the color of milk. To thicken, add more almonds. Finally, add olive oil.
- Place halved grapes at the bottom of chilled soup bowls. Transfer soup to bowls and garnish with mint leaves. Serve cold.