the mother of all potato kugel

Matthew 26:19 – “So the disciples did as Jesus directed them and prepared the Passover.”

You might not expect to find a recipe like this on a web site dedicated to healthy, natural cooking but I believe in everything in moderation and this is one of those traditions that I will not give up.

The key here is to keep it real…use the freshest organic vegetables and real butter.  If you decide to use schmaltz  (which really amps up the flavor), you will have to allow time to make that (see below).  While high in fat, this is one of the best tasting, once-a-year indulgences I look forward to!

We started celebrating the Passover Seder a few years ago as a prelude to Easter-the Jewish traditions so perfectly pointing to the coming Messiah.  The gathering includes our oldest daughter and her family, plus a few dear friends that come and go each year (here is a beautiful song by one of those friends)…

This would be a tough recipe to make without a food processor.  I’ve said it before-it is the work horse of my kitchen.  For this one, you get to use almost every blade in the arsenal…even the paddle.

potato kugel

4 medium yellow onions

4 lbs Yukon Gold potatoes, peeled and placed in a bowl with cold water until ready to use

1 cup peeled, shredded carrots (we will shred them later)

7 eggs

2 tsp salt

1/2 cup loosely packed fresh parsley leaves

3/4 tsp freshly ground black pepper

2/3 cup Matzo meal

1/2 tsp baking powder

1/2 cup butter, margarine, or schmaltz (rendered chicken fat-there are great directions for making this on the website Cheap Like me)

Preheat oven to 375 degrees.

Mince the parsley in the food processor using the chopping blade.  Put minced parsley in a very large bowl.  Remove chopping blade and put in the slicing blade.

Peel onions, cut in half, and slice them in the food processor.  Heat a large skillet and add 1/4 cup schmaltz (or substitute).  Add 3/4 of the sliced onions to the pan and saute them until they are golden, brown and caramelized (this could take up to 30 minutes).  Meanwhile, replace the chopping blade in the food processor and pulse the remaining 1/4 of the onions until well chopped.  Add onions to bowl with parsley.

Remove slicing blade and put on the plastic paddle blade.  Break eggs into the food processor bowl, add salt and pepper and pulse to mix and beat the eggs.  Add the parsley and raw onion to the bowl and pulse to combine.  Put this mixture back in the large bowl.

How are the onions?  remove from heat if they are a dark golden brown color and set aside to cool a little.

Using the shredding blade, shred the carrots and add to mixture in bowl.

Don’t shred the potatoes until the onions have cooled slightly and you’re ready to mix them together.  The onions will keep the potatoes from turning brown.

Shred potatoes in food processor (you may have to empty the bowl a few times during the process-just put them into the large bowl with the onion/parsley mixture).

Add potatoes, caramelized onions, matzo meal, baking powder, and remaining schmaltz to the bowl and mix thoroughly. *At this point, you will probably have to use your hands.

Grease a large, deep 9 x 13 dish with butter or schmaltz (if you have any left).  Scoop mixture into pan, smoothing and evening it up as you go.  Dot the top with more schmaltz, or butter.

Bake 60-90 minutes or until light golden brown and crisp looking on top.  If making ahead, remove from oven when it starts to brown a little (after about 45 minutes) and then finish baking before serving.

I serve this with plain nonfat Greek yogurt.

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