Last night, the Jewish holiday of Passover arrived! Like most Jewish holidays, many of the Passover traditions center around a grand feast, during which the biblical story of the Exodus is retold with the aid of colorful symbolic foods. While of course all culinary aspects of the Passover feast are both intriguing and scrumptious,
(we fixed our "famous" Saffron matzah ball soup again this year... :-)
I tend to spend the most time, as Passover approaches, contemplating the dessert course, because Passover baking entails a special challenge - during Passover, no leavened, or risen, foods, are to be consumed. For one week out of the year, we put aside the showy nature of puffy dough, and try to humble ourselves with unassuming, flat, cracker-like matzah. No offense to bread baking, naturally - I'm madly addicted to all forms of yeast-rising and dough-kneading, as you all know - but I do find the metaphor a rather powerful one.
Hence, every year, I attempt to conquer the rising and bake a Passover dessert... I often follow the flourless, nut-based route, as many Passover desserts wisely do, but this year, knowing Zach's fondness for blondies, I decided to try to simply substitute finely ground matzah meal for flour and plunge into Passover blondie territory. This was indeed a risky substitution, as matzah meal has a very dense and rather plodding nature, quite unlike fluffy flour. So, in the spirit of humbling oneself, I even put aside my gourmet notions and added a package of Kosher-for-Passover pudding mix for added moisture. The result was not at all like a normal blondie...
Instead, these blondies, emerging from the oven fully baked, tasted blissfully, stickily, tantalizingly just like cookie dough!
Passover Cookie Dough Blondies
1/2 cup light vegan margarine
1/2 cup applesauce
1 cup raw turbinado sugar
1 package (4-serving size) Kosher-for-Passover butterscotch pudding mix
1 tsp vanilla
4 egg whites
1/2 cup skim milk
2 cups matzah cake meal
1 tsp baking soda
12 oz dark chocolate chips (at least 60% cacao)
~ Preheat the oven to 375 degrees. Coat a 9X11" baking pan with cooking spray.
~ Beat together the vegan marg, applesauce, turbinado sugar, butterscotch pudding mix, and vanilla until smooth and creamy.
~ Beat in the egg whites and milk until well-combined.
~ Stir in the matzah meal and the baking soda until just combined.
~ Fold in the chocolate chips (the batter will be a bit stiff).
~ Scoop the batter into the baking pan, and bake for 20 minutes - until the tops of the blondies are just beginning to turn brown.
~ Serve warm or cooled, topped with whipped cream!
On the blog this time last year... Smokey Cheddar Whole Wheat Biscuits!