After the ceremonious reading of the Haggadah, invite your loved ones to join you for a hearty Seder dinner that is both traditional and modern. Start things off with a reinterpretation of the classic gefilte fish: pan-fried matzo-crusted trout. Serve with a crisp green salad. Next move on to rich bowls of piping hot matzo ball soup. Instead of offering the expected brisket, select another tough cut of meat — beef short ribs — and slow-cook in Kosher red wine. A tzimmes, a time-honored Passover stew made from sweet potatoes and dried fruit, is delicious on the side.

For these festive recipes, read more.

Matzo Meal-Crusted Trout

Matzo Meal-Crusted Trout

Matzo Meal-Crusted Trout

Ingredients

1 large egg
1/4 cup water
Kosher salt
1 cup matzo meal
1/2 teaspoon freshly ground pepper
1/4 teaspoon garlic powder
Eight 6-ounce rainbow trout fillets with skin, rinsed and patted dry
6 tablespoons vegetable oil
Oregano Oil, recipe below

Directions

  1. In a bowl, beat the egg and water with a pinch of salt. In a shallow baking dish, toss the matzo meal with the pepper, garlic powder and 1 1/2 teaspoons of salt.
  2. Dip the trout fillets in the beaten egg, then dredge in the matzo meal mixture; transfer to a baking sheet.
  3. Heat 3 tablespoons of oil in each of 2 large nonstick skillets. Add 4 fillets, skin side up, to each skillet and cook over moderately high heat until browned at the edges, 5 minutes. Turn and cook until the skin is crisp and the fish is just opaque throughout, about 3 minutes.
  4. Transfer to a platter and sprinkle with salt. Serve with the Oregano Oil.

Serves 8.

Oregano Oil

3 oregano sprigs, lightly crushed
2/3 cup extra-virgin olive oil

In a glass measuring cup, combine the oregano and olive oil. Cover and refrigerate for at least 1 and up to 2 days. The oil can be refrigerated for up to 1 week. Discard the sprigs before using.

Makes 2/3 cup.

Simple Spring Green Salad

Simple Spring Green Salad

Simple Spring Green Salad

Ingredients

7 to 8 ounces Boston lettuce (2 heads), torn into bite-size pieces
1/2 pound Bibb lettuce (2 heads), large leaves torn into bite-size pieces
2 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil

Directions

Combine lettuces in a large bowl. Season with 1/2 teaspoon salt, then drizzle with oil and toss to coat. Serve immediately.

Serves 8.

Matzo Ball Soup

Matzo Ball Soup

Matzo Ball Soup

Ingredients

4 eggs
5 Tbs. melted chicken fat or vegetable oil
8 1/2 cups chicken stock
1 cup matzo meal
1 tsp. salt, plus more, to taste
1/4 tsp. freshly ground pepper
3 Tbs. chopped fresh dill
2 Tbs. minced shallots
1 carrot, peeled and finely grated
1 cup peeled and finely diced carrots

Directions

  1. In a large bowl, combine the eggs, 4 Tbs. of the chicken fat and 1/2 cup of the stock and whisk until well blended. Stir in the matzo meal, the 1 tsp. salt, the pepper, dill, shallots and grated carrot. Refrigerate for about 1 hour.
  2. In a large pot over medium-high heat, bring the remaining 8 cups stock to a simmer. Season with salt.
  3. Meanwhile, with wet hands, gently form the matzo meal mixture into 6 balls, each about 2 inches in diameter. Do not make them too compact.
  4. Slip the matzo balls into the simmering stock. When they rise to the surface, reduce the heat so the stock is barely simmering. Cover and cook for about 35 minutes.
  5. Meanwhile, in a sauté pan over medium heat, warm the remaining 1 Tbs. chicken fat. Add the diced carrots and sauté until tender, about 5 minutes; do not allow them to brown. Set aside.
  6. Using a slotted spoon, transfer the matzo balls to a bowl. Strain the stock into a clean pot and return the matzo balls to the soup. Ladle the soup and 1 matzo ball into each of 6 warmed bowls. Garnish with the sautéed carrots.

Serves 6.

Braised Short Ribs

Braised Short Ribs

Braised Short Ribs

Ingredients

1 bottle kosher for Passover Cabernet Sauvignon
2 tablespoons kosher for Passover vegetable oil
6 short ribs, trimmed
Salt
1 teaspoon black peppercorns, crushed
Matzoh meal, for dredging
10 cloves garlic, peeled
8 large shallots, peeled, trimmed, rinsed, split, and dried
2 medium carrots, peeled, trimmed, and cut into 1-inch lengths
2 stalks celery, peeled, trimmed, and cut into 1-inch lengths
1 medium leek, white and light green parts only, coarsely chopped
6 sprigs Italian parsley
2 sprigs thyme
2 bay leaves
2 tablespoons tomato paste
2 quarts unsalted beef stock or chicken stock
Freshly ground white pepper

Directions

  1. Pour the wine into a large saucepan set over medium heat. When the wine is heated, carefully set it aflame. Let the flames die out, then increase the heat so that the wine boils; allow it to boil until it cooks down by 1/2. Remove from the heat.
  2. Center a rack in the oven and preheat the oven to 350 degrees F.
  3. Heat the oil in a Dutch oven or large casserole, large enough to hold 6 ribs, over medium-high heat. Season the ribs all over with salt and the crushed pepper. Dust the ribs with about 2 tablespoons of matzoh meal and then when the oil is hot, slip the ribs into the pot and sear for 4 to 5 minutes on each side, until well browned.
  4. Transfer the browned ribs to a plate. Remove all but 1 tablespoon of fat from the pot; lower the heat to medium, and toss in the vegetables and herbs. Brown the vegetables lightly, 5 to 7 minutes, then stir in the tomato paste and cook for 1 minute to blend.
  5. Add the reduced wine, browned ribs, and stock to the pot. Bring to a boil; cover the pot tightly, and slide it into the oven to braise for about 2 1/2 hours, or until the ribs are tender enough to be easily pierced with a fork. Every 30 minutes or so, lift the lid and skim and discard whatever fat may have bubbled up to the surface.
  6. Carefully transfer the meat to a heated serving platter with a lip and keep warm.
  7. Boil the pan liquid until it thickens and reduces to approximately 1 quart. Season with salt and pepper and pass through a fine-mesh strainer; discard the solids.
  8. Pour the sauce over the meat. Serve with vegetables of your choice.

Serves 6.

Tzimmes

Tzimmes

Tzimmes

Ingredients

9 medium carrots, (about 1 pound), peeled
4 sweet potatoes, (about 2 pounds)
1 cup bite-size pitted prunes, (about 6 ounces)
1 cup dried apricots, (about 5 ounces)
2 tablespoons fresh lemon juice
1/3 cup fresh orange juice
1/4 cup honey
1 teaspoon ground cinnamon
2 1/2 teaspoons orange zest, (from one orange)
1/4 teaspoon salt

Directions

  1. Heat oven to 350 degrees.
  2. Cut carrots into 2-inch pieces.
  3. Bring a large saucepan of water to a boil, and lower heat to medium; add sweet potatoes in their skins, and cook for 20 minutes, adding the carrots after 10 minutes. Drain in a colander, and set aside until cool enough to handle.
  4. Peel sweet potatoes, and cut into 1-inch chunks. Place in a large bowl along with carrots and remaining ingredients. Mix well, and transfer to a 2-quart baking dish.
  5. Cover with foil, and bake for 30 minutes, basting with pan juices after 15 minutes. Remove from oven, and serve immediately.

Serves 10.