Haroseth is a chopped nut and fruit mixture served during the Passover seder. It’s usually eaten between two pieces of matzoh, to represent the mortar used by Jews in building palaces and pyramids of Egypt during their slavery.
I simply cannot figure out why I eat this amazingly flavorful fruit dish only two days out of the entire year. It should NOT only be designated for this holiday. This year was my first attempt at making a haroseth recipe. Like many other dishes I’ve tackled, once in the kitchen and confronted with the ingredients and the directions, I couldn’t believe how easy it is to make. Seriously, all that’s required is slicing and dicing and mixing of fruits and nuts and you’re done.
My friend came over this morning to help “make” a haroseth recipe she had torn from the paper. I have found that sharing responsibility in the kitchen with friends is very meaningful to me, especially when the recipe carries such a religious significance. As we mixed and chopped and toasted, we told stories from our past childhood seders: which songs were sang, what food was served.
While methodically chopping and squeezing and dicing (oh, and we were sampling all along the way), we began concocting other variations and uses for haroseth–from a relish for meat, to ice cream and cereal toppings, to sides for waffles and pancake breakfasts. There is no way we’re going to let this vibrant, flavorful fruit dish’s culinary life get stuck between two pieces of dry matzoh.
When we were finished, we both were so satisfied. I felt accomplished. This will be my very second seder where I haven’t dashed to the nearest market to pick up a box of macaroons or candy fruit slices to bring to the host house.
No way. This Passover, the items I contribute are homemade.
And we all know that homemade= made with love.
Haroseth with Pear, Pecans and Figs
(recipe taken from the NY Times – previously adapted from Michael Selig)
Yield: about 4 cups
- 1cup pecans, toasted and finely chopped
- 1cup dried figs, finely chopped
- 2cups finely diced just ripe unpeeled pears
- 1/2 cup peeled, finely diced, crisp and slightly tart apple
- 1 teaspoon ground cinnamon
- 3 tablespoons honey
- 3 tablespoons kosher grape juice
- Zest and juice of half a lemon
- In a glass or ceramic bowl, lightly toss the pecans, figs, pears and apple.
- Add the cinnamon, honey, wine, lemon zest and juice.
- Toss lightly to blend well.
- Cover and refrigerate for at least 1 hour before serving.
Notes: We used grape juice in place of Passover sweet wine. You can go crazy with the fruits for this dish. Feel free to add dates, apricots, etc….It’s important to keep the dish refrigerated for AT LEAST one hour as it will allow time for the different juices and flavorings to soak together.