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Celebrating Passover and Easter in the Time of Coronavirus

Passover and Easter in the time of Coronavirus

Passover and Easter will be celebrated a lot differently this year. Because we have been asked to stay home to stop the spread of the highly contagious coronavirus rather than gathering for religious services, many of us will be attending services through an online platform. Instead of gathering together around the table for Seder or Easter dinner, we will be staying home and celebrating with only those who share our same four walls, and that might mean, as in my case, sitting at the table physically alone. But not alone. 

My daughter and son, one on each coast, have put together for our family and friends a Seder by Zoom, and you know what? We’ll have more family and friends sitting around our virtual table this year than in recent years past. I am sending heartfelt love and support to each and every one of you as we navigate this incredibly difficult time together. Join me in remember the first responders, the grocery clerks, delivery people, and our farmers and farm workers, teachers, in our prayers and all of our thoughts.

I listed the recipes as Passover and Easter, but some of the recipes, for example, the Mendiants and Chocolate Fudge and Mandarin Orange Tart, Truffles, are appropriate for either holiday. 

Many of us do not have all the ingredients to make our usual recipes. Get creative.

Recipes that work for both holidays are assuming you have chocolate and some plant milk—or nuts to make the plant milk, Chocolate truffles, or energy balls. Or make a simple chocolate sauce and use it as a dip for fruit. It’s not called Dip Anything for Nothing!

If you have a smaller amount of coconut, add some ground nuts to the Coconut Macaroons. 

I’m encouraging you to look through the recipes on my blog and find others that are appealing for Passover and Easter. There are many. Don’t forget–gels and puddings too.

For Passover

Nava Atlas’s Matzo Ball Soup

Matzo Ball Soup

Dukkah-Spiced Chocolate–Covered Matzoh

Dukkah-Spiced Chocolate Covered Matzoh

This is my favorite version of dukkah, but if you have a preferred dukkah, use it. You don’t need to be Jewish or to celebrate Passover to like this recipe.  I can see Dukka-Spice Dusted Chocolate Covered Crackers or bread on the Easter table. Why not?

Get the recipe here: Dukka-Spiced Chocolate-Covered Matzo

Bittersweet Chocolate Truffles

Bittersweet Chocolate Truffles

Raw Fudge Truffles

Fran Costigan's Raw Fudge Truffles – vegan, gluten-free, no-oil, low-sweetener

I’m so happily surprised by the outcome of this super easy recipe for raw (or unroasted) chocolate almond coconut fudge truffles. The texture reminds me of brigaderios, the iconic South American truffle that is higher in fat, a little more work, but decidedly delicious. These raw fudge truffles are also a bit chewy, definitely chocolatey, but not too sweet.

Get the recipe here: Raw Fudge Truffles

Chocolate-Dipped Passover Macaroons

Chocolate-Dipped-Coconut-MacaroonsPhoto by Hannah Kaminsky

These vegan coconut macaroons are healthier than the egg-white and white-sugar based Pesach macaroons that my grandma Ida made, and certainly more so than the or the ones my mom bought in a can. These are one of my favorite Passover desserts, and I often make them at non-holiday times. If you don’t have enough coconut, use the almond (or any nut) flour variation.

Get the recipe here: Chocolate-Dipped Passover Macaroons

For Easter

Vegan Carrot Cake

Vegan Carrot Cake

If you are looking for a moist, light, and spiced just right vegan Carrot Cake, I’m confident to say; this is the one for you! If you are celebrating alone or with only your immediate family this year and you are concerned about this being too much, you could bake this as cupcakes or two smaller cakes and freeze some for a later date.

Get the recipe here: Vegan Carrot Cake

Raw Chocolate Fudge and Mandarin Orange Tart

Raw chocolate and mandarin orange tartPhoto by Hannah Kaminsky

This filling is in this tart is different from other raw chocolate fillings. It is luxuriously smooth and definitely chocolate, and I’m betting that whether or not you are a raw enthusiast, the recipe will find its way into your file of favorite chocolate recipes.

Get the recipe here: Raw Chocolate Fudge and Mandarin Orange Tart

Mendiants

Photo by Kate Lewis

Mendiants are a French confection, made to look fancy by arranging nuts and dried or candied fruits strewn on disks of melted chocolate. My version is made with leftover chocolate, so the confection is not only easy by no-waste too!

Get the recipe here: Mendiants

Chocolate, Orange and Almond Olive Oil Cake

If you have ground almonds in your freezer, this cake takes almost no time to prep. But don’t rush the baking and final steps: it is important to bake the cake until it is dark golden-brown for the best texture, and to sprinkle a layer of chopped almonds on the serving plate so that the bottom of the cake doesn’t stick to the plate. No almonds, use another ground nut and change the name of the cake. No olive oil, use any oil you have 1:1.

Get the recipe here: Chocolate, Orange and Almond Olive Oil Cake

Orange Almond Bundt Cake

Vegan Orange Almond Bundt Cake – this dessert will surely impress. #vegan #vegandessert #vegancake #bundtcake

Why do a variation of my tried and true, very popular Big Orange Bundt Cake? Well, I fell in love with the Nordic Ware Heritage Bundt Pan that I bought at Fantes, and had to honor it, so I did an Orange Almond Bundt Cake using almond meal and blood orange extra virgin olive oil. It is divine, just like the bundt pan.

Get the recipe here: Orange Almond Bundt Cake and my original Big Orange Bundt Cake

We may be physically separated from our friends and family, but that doesn’t mean we are apart. Grab your phone and call your loved ones. Passover and Easter celebrations may be different this year but we can still celebrate together and we can still enjoy some delicious vegan treats.

Dukkah-Spiced Chocolate–Covered Matzoh, Chocolate-Dipped Coconut Macaroon, and Raw Chocolate Fudge and Mandarin Orange Tart photos by Hannah Kaminsky.

Mendiants, and Chocolate, Orange, and Almond Olive Oil Cake photos by Kate Lewis.

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About Sandy

Sick of eating steamed vegetables time after time? Tired of making the same old meals? Make things exciting and fun, and explore vegetarian cooking with the recipes in this book. Don’t think that ‘meat’ can’t be part of your vegetarian diet! Even if you’re just interested in vegetarian dishes, you can make your own ‘meat’. You hear me! “Make your own meat!” I will show you the traditional Chinese way of making vegetarian meat. The possibilities are endless after you learn how! You can make Kung Po Chicken, Soft Blow Kidney, Sweet and Sour Chicken, and so much more. Learn and digest the recipes in this book. Then get creative, make your own dishes, and really explore vegetarian cooking.

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