Prep 30 mins
Cook 1 hr
I came across this in the Times Life newspaper in Mumbai dated September 11th' 2005. This is a Jewish recipe. The Jewish people are a close knit peace-loving community. When one thinks of Jewish food, the word "Kosher" comes to mind. According to the Torah, which is the Jewish holy book, only cloven-hoofed, cud-chewing mammals are kosher, such as deer, sheep and goats. Not all birds are kosher and only fish that have fins and scales pass the test. This means that crustaceans are not on the menu. Jews believe that by eating something which is not Kosher, they damage their spiritual nature. They also believe that every animal or bird must be slaughtered in the prescribed manner. The important thing is to be as humane as possible. Meat and dairy products cannot be mixed and families have to keep two sets of cooking vessels - one for poultry or meat and the other for everything else. There is much beauty in the philosophy that guides Jewish cuisine. For example, a "challah" (egg and milk bread) is round in shape because it symbolises continuity and is braided because that is a symbol of life itself. Another example is what exactly are Kosher vegetables. The land may be flogged for 7 years, but it is a living entity, and hence the eighth year should be one of rest. Only vegetables from such a farm would be kosher vegetables. Some of the popular Jewish foods are: grilled meats, big bowls of salads, the pita and khoubz breads and the hamads(thick stews made with chicken, okra or pumpkin), the kubba hamad (rice flour dumplings stuffed with meat paste in a stew brightened up with sliced beetroot), the arooq (minced chicken fritters), the red cabbage and pickled cucumbers, couscous(semolina wheat pasta) and the Jewish grape wine. The Jews believe that their destinies were shaped by forces beyond their control. The Jewish community value their traditions even as they adapt to the country they find themselves in. The Polish Jews eat pasta-based foods, the Bene Israelis in Maharashtra dish out a superb tomato-spinach bhaath and the Kochi Jews love their coconut milk preparations. Friday nights are special to all Jews because that is the night before Shabbath. No cooking is allowed on Shabbath. Much table-thumping and singing of holy songs is followed by the food and glasses raised in toast to I'chaime(To life!).
- 50 g boiled cooked couscous or 75 g cooked rice
- 2 teaspoons coriander seeds, roasted and ground
- 2 teaspoons cumin seeds, roasted and ground
- 1 teaspoon cinnamon
- 3 tablespoons olive oil
- 40 g pine nuts
- 50 g sliced almonds
- 1 onion, chopped
- 4 garlic cloves, chopped
- 150 g ground chicken
- 2 tablespoons chopped mint leaves
- 2 tablespoons chopped coriander leaves
- 50 g chopped gherkins
- 4 boneless skinless chicken legs, marinated in
- olive oil
- black pepper
- Heat 3 tbsps. of olive oil in a pot.
- Saute onion, garlic and chicken mince in it.
- Add corriander, cumin and cinnamon powders.
- Fold in all the remaining ingredients alongwith couscous.
- Stir well and season with paprika, mustard, salt and black pepper.
- Stuff the mixture into each de-boned leg.
- Brush with olive oil.
- Cover with foil and bake at 180C for 45 minutes.
- Serve hot.