Passover Cooking Stream-of-Consciousness

Mile End Deli, Nashville

Mile End Deli Nashville, from a 2018 visit

Time to think about what to serve during Passover again. Lots of times I get really great inspiration from restaurants — I started at Mile End Deli, which I learned to love first in Nashville, then Birmingham which had the best everrrr cheesecake (though the restaurant is back to just NY now). At their Passover menu, I’m thinking maybe I’ll make cumin roasted cauliflower…maybe the zaatar chicken…or maybe just both on a sheet pan with zaatar all over, like this?

Nashville location

Mile End Deli, Nashville

Mile End Deli, Nashville

Mile End Deli, Nashville

The best cauliflower of my life was in New Orleans, when Alon Shaya still owned Shaya on Magazine (in a very HBO Treme move, Alon doesn’t own his namesake, and he now has Saba, down the street). This is the curried fried cauliflower hummus at Shaya in 2015:

Curried Fried Cauliflower Hummus at Shaya, New Orleans

BTW, I still have the Shaya Passover menu from last year:

wood-fired matzo
charred mini Perseo radicchio, pomegranate seeds, grapefruit, date molasses
shaved horseradish, smoked beets, taggiasca olives, pickled shallots
yemenite stuffed egg, schmaltz, gribenes, chives
apple, walnuts, fig, verjus
fingerling potato, cane vinegar, sea salt
lamb chop, fenugreek “aioli”
braised short rib, fava beans, charred chilis, soft herbs
flourless chocolate tort, barberries, almonds

At Saba, everything is great but, ack, I think about their gorgeous warm chocolate babka with the hazelnut ice cream all the time!

Warm Chocolate Babka with Hazelnut Gelato and Blackberry Sauce, Saba, New Orleans

The Saba Passover menu for this year is:

Matzo with Sea Salt, Red and White Horseradish with Allspice and Laurel, Yemenite Curried Egg Salad with Toasted Sunflower Seeds, Parsley and Quinoa Tabbouleh, Sephardic Style Charoset, Matzo Ball Soup with Duck, Celery and Dill, Slow Cooked Brisket with Heirloom Carrots and Rosemary, Saffron Jasmine Rice, and Flourless Almond Cake, Meringue and Cardamom Syrup

Ooooh a dark matzah ball soup with duck like listed above might be great for a change.

Kenny & Ziggy's, Houston TX

Kenny & Ziggy’s, 2019 visit

Kenny & Ziggy’s in Houston just moved a short distance from their previous location, so we’ll get to go there this summer. Their Passover menu for this year is huge, and they’re doing Goldbelly too. The recipe for Ziggy’s charoset is here.

This year I’m helping make Passover desserts for one of our synagogues — I’m bringing Passover cake bites. So crazy easy and everyone loves.

Chocolate Passover Cake Balls

Other faves:

Broccoli Kugel

Passover Broccoli Kugel

Standing Rib Roast

Standing Rib Roast



Charoset bar (have people make their own)

Charoset Bar

Fried green tomatoes (using the Jeff Nathan panko, and because the green tomatoes are terrific already)

Passover Fried Green Tomatoes

Union Square Cafe Matzah Meal Polenta

Union Square Cafe Matzoh Meal Polenta

Coffee Granita

If you have some faves, send them over! We’re doing both nights at my home so would love the extra inspiration. xoxo!