Saturday, April 18, 2009

Volume 18. A Recipe Straight From Hell's Kitchen

Some people do many things well.

My brother Eric is one of them.

When he painted, it would come out like a Picasso.

When he played piano, he'd rollick like Fats Waller.

He even danced like James Brown!

Lately he's been cooking up some real delights.

Here's his recent contribution to the Jewish Culinery World:

"O.K. all you little fressers....
here is the long awaited (and mouthwatering) recipe for

Pineapple Coconut Matzoh Farfel Kugel.

First we'll kinda go by the recipe on the box (originally for Apple Kugel) and then customize it (dick around with it til it's REALLY good and too sweet to be good for you......but God knows it's Jewish and therefore heavy as lead, so why not really jazz it up?)
So the boring box recipe is as follows (but I left out apples and walnuts) :
Here's what you need.......

3cups of Matzoh Farfel
3 eggs
1/2 cup sugar....(only I use brown and way more than a you do the same.)
1/2 t-spoon of salt
1/4 cup of melted butter or margerine.
Margerine for the Kosher and butter for the not.
You know who you are. And butter ALWAYS tastes better.

(The big secret is that even when I make this for Passover....which is the only time I ever do..... I sneak butter in even if it's only for the topping. Who's gonna know anyway???)

And use more to taste.
1 t-spoon cinnamon (more...these recipes are so STINGY!!! Just throw in more of all the good stuff !!!)
A couple tbs of vanilla extract...

Now here's the stuff that's NOT in the boring recipe on the box:
2 16 to 22 OZ cans of crushed pineapple ( I'm not sure what size they come in and I don't have any in the house at the moment. I'm looking at a can of baked beans and a can of Progresso Minestrone....somewhere in that size vicinity.)

A can of pineapple rings

A 7 oz bag of shedded coconut or more. (I know that sounds like a weird size but they came in 7 or 14 OZ sizes) I always multiply this recipe times 3 or 4. So I go through like 21-28 OZ.

You figure it out for yourself if you're multiplying. My philosophy is more is always better.
1) Preheat oven to 350

2) throw the farfel in a collander run some water over it.drain it or squish it but get the majority of water out of it.

3) Beat eggs.

4) Combine melted shortening w/sugar, salt, and cinnamon. Add eggs and beat the whole mess together.

5) Drain liquid out of crushed pineapples.

6) Mix combined shortening etc. w/farfel and one can of crushed pineapple and mix all this together well. That's right stir and stir and stir some more. You'll need a good strong arm for this. I always use a wooden spoon. Using modern appliances is cheating. Your grandmother didn't (and I'd like to see the modern food processer that could slog it's way through a lump of all this !!!).
Throw in 5 OZ's of coconut ( just leave 2 OZ's for the topping I haven't told you about yet.) And keep stirring.

7) Put all this glop in a well greased 2 quart pyrex or aluminum or whatever you like to bake with casserole or pan. I don't know from a 2 quart or a 7"X13" or how these things are measured, but the resulting kugel should be approx 2 or 3 fingers deep. So adjust pans to how much you're making. This year I made a huge one,a medium one and a small one. I like to use PAM, but you use whatever you like. And obviously you'll need more baking pans if you make more. And remember...if you use a really big one it'll take longer to bake.

8) O.K., so I forgot to tell you that you needed more butter and sugar for the topping. So melt some more shortening (like a stick.) Add 1/2cup more of brown sugar and stir. Now add the other can of crushed pineapple and stir it in. Pour like about 1/2 of it on top evenly. Arrange pineapple rings on top of that.(Helpful hint:I like to cut them in 1/2 and make little patterns) Then sprinkle lots of coconut evenly on top. Remember you still have some topping left.

9) Bake at 350 for approx 45 min. Or until golden brown. I go by the "O.K. the edges are slightly browner and starting to seperate from the sides of the pan and the middle feels firm and not gooshy" rule.

10) Take out of oven and smear on the rest of the topping and some more coconut. Toss it back in and crank that sucker up to 500 or for the daring....the broiler. But keep a close watch on it.
It won't need more than a minute or 2 to kinda crunchify. And you don't wanna burn the coconut black.

Okey Dokey.....I think that's it. I don't think I left anything out but if I did....too bad. Life's tough and remember Jews have to suffer for everything and that goes double for making Passover Seders.

(But actually it's fun to make this.)

So let this cool down for a while. 5,10,15 min., 1/2 hr is fine, but if you have to bring it to someone's house for a seder and it takes you a while to get there, that's O.K. too.
Serve hot, warm, luke, whatever. But of course......the best way to eat it is as leftovers right out of the pan, straight from the fridge, secretly in the dark of night.

p.s. Variation: Skip pineapple and coconut and make apple or apple/apricot. Use canned apple pie filling and canned apricots. Also throw in lots of raisins &/or chopped walnuts.

For topping just use some shortening and brown sugar.

Oh yeah, btw.....the recipe on the box says it'll serve 6-8 people, but the way I did it is probably good for that AND a whole LOTTA leftovers which of course are way better than the 1st time around.

Ciao for now!!!!

Love, Eric "

Vat a Kugel!

Vat a guy!

Perhaps in the future, if we're lucky, he'll grace us with his Meatloaf and Turkey recipes!

Thank You Eric!


  1. oh...i'll be curious to peep into this hell kitchen!

    and yes...please grace us with the meatloaf recipe..-am all ears and knife and fork ready to get into action...

    re your last post, i wanted to leave a comment and for some reason could not.
    so, just to tell you, i'm so glad to discover a new director for me and am very curious to see some of his movies

    on a light note...noticed the other day, Gainsbourg was on your right bar...He was great wasn't he ?

    hope you're having a lovely week end David!

  2. sorry...and yes..thank you Eric !

  3. Hi Lala,

    I'll twist Eric's arm and see if we can get his Famous Meatloaf recipe.

    As to Serge... I love him, Jane, Charlotte... When I was in Paris I went to his grave site. Such wonderful, cheerful, 60's French Pop!



  4. eric--- your recipe is the best--and I know because I ate a vat of it at passover. you are a wizard at everything you do... and you even give stellar advice. your loyal fan. june