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The Modern Jewish Home – Passover Prep: Family, Food, and Guests! [audio] ?

This week’s show is your hour-long companion as we ready our thoughts, our family, and THE KITCHEN for Passover. We are gearing up for the Festival of Our Freedom with practical advice from those who know how to get through this hectic time, and thrive!

Behavior Analyst Deena Singer guides us on how to speak with, and listen to, everyone at home – even while the whole place is getting a Passover make-over. Heather also checks in with Brynie Greisman, recipe and food columnist at Mishpacha magazine, on suggestions and recipes we may want to prepare as we banish “chometz” (leavened products) from our kitchens. Check out Brynie’s great tips on how we can use up those noodles! And with the ingathering of relatives, friends, and guests of all kinds, businesswoman and raconteuse Dena Gottlieb drops by with some incredible tales of guests she’s hosted over the years. And based on her extensive experience as a host (and guest), Dena offers essential advice for those of us on both sides of the welcome mat.






Deena works clients in-person and via Skype.





Email:, OR

To call Dena’s land line from USA: (516)259-3169

To call Dena’s cellphone from USA: 972-52-5323818

To call Dena from within Israel: 052-532-3818






Three of the Recipes Brynie Mentioned on the Show…



By Brynie Greisman


PLEASE NOTE: Cheeses differ from country to country. The Israeli white cheese is available in different cities in the USA. Try substituting a cheese that’s available, e.g. Farmer’s cheese, or a different soft white cheese.



2 8oz. containers cottage cheese (5% fat)

2 8oz. containers white soft cheese (5% fat)

4 – 6 eggs beaten

2 oz. butter, melted

3/4 cup sour cream

1 pkg. vanilla sugar

1/2 cup sugar

Cinnamon (opt.)

6 – 8 oz. thin noodles, RAW

6 tea biscuits or corn flake crumbs



Mix together the cottage cheese, white soft cheese, beaten eggs, sugar, and sour cream (and cinnamon).

Add UNCOOKED noodles, and mix.

Melt butter and pour 2/3 into mixture. Mix well.

Pour into a greased 7″ x 11″ pan.

Crush biscuits into crumbs. Mix with remaining butter. Sprinkle crumbs on top of kugel.

Bake at 350 F/180 C





By Brynie Greisman


Yield: 12-15 Servings


Ingredients for Fruit Mixture:

7 apples, peeled and sliced

½ cup sugar

2 teaspoon lemon juice

½ teaspoon cinnamon

1 small box strawberries, cleaned and sliced (or use frozen)


Ingredients for Crumble:

2 ½ cups potato starch

¾ cup sugar

1 egg

1 cup oil

100 grams (3 ½ -4 oz.) ground nuts

1 vanilla sugar, optional



Combine apples, sugar, lemon juice and cinnamon.

Put on bottom of a 9×13 pan or 2 9” round pans.

Top with sliced strawberries.

With a fork, mix together the crumb ingredients: potato starch, sugar, egg, oil and nuts.

Crumble with your fingers and place on top of strawberries.

Bake uncovered at 350F/180C for 1 – 1 ½ hours, or until done.


It’s a good idea to put a piece of foil under the pan(s) to catch crumbs that might fall and make a mess.


NOTE: You can prepare this kugel in advance and freeze. Let it defrost slightly at room temperature, and then warm in the oven at a low temperature. Once it’s defrosted, turn the oven to a higher temperature until completely heated through.


TIP: In order to reduce the calories and fat, I tried using half oil and half applesauce. The results were satisfactory (it was all eaten!) but, honestly, the kugel did not have the same texture as with the all-oil version.




SUCCULENT CHICKEN a.k.a. “Grape Juice” Chicken

By Brynie Greisman


This chicken is simple to make, yet superb in taste. Just sauté onions, pour grape juice over the chicken as it cooks, and then sit back and accept the compliments!



5 large onions, sliced

4 Tablespoons oil

2 chickens, de-skinned and cut into eighths or 4½ lbs. (2 kilo) boneless chicken cut lengthwise into long wide strips

1–1½ cups Kedem dark grape juice

1–1½ teaspoon salt



In a 6-quart pot or Dutch oven, sauté the onions in oil for approximately 15 minutes, until just golden (not brown or crisp).

Add the skinned chicken to the pot (“skin side” down) and brown for a few minutes, until the edges appear cooked.

Add the grape juice and salt, to taste.

Bring to a boil. Lower the heat and mix gently so all pieces of chicken are sitting in the juice. This assures that all pieces will be evenly colored.

Cook for 1½-2 hours.


If using fillets, cook for much less time, approximately ½-¾ hour. Chicken will then have a dark tinge to it. When serving, remove the chicken carefully from the pot, as it will be very soft, and you don’t want it to fall apart.


NOTE: Using skinned chicken is much healthier, and it is the only chicken we use in our (Brynie’s) house. You can ask your butcher to skin it for you, or do it yourself.


TIP: This recipe is excellent for people who don’t use any condiments on Pesach, as you can serve a really delicious chicken using hardly any ingredients. I also serve this chicken during the year when I have lots of company, along with other chicken dishes, and there usually isn’t any left.


The Modern Jewish Home 29March2017 – PODCAST


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