Sunday, September 5, 2021


Did you know that the singular form of kreplach is krepl, but when will you ever eat just one? 

Every year my mother makes over 160 kreplach using the recipe/technique that she learned from her mother, my Bubby who learned from her mother-in-law, my Savta, the woman I’m named for. 

My first memory in the kitchen is making these kreplach with my mother when I was 5 years old. Every year, until I moved to Israel I would help my mother prepare the kreplach. We would devote a Sunday a few weeks before Rosh Hashana to preparing all of the kreplach that we will enjoy a few weeks later on Erev Yom Kippur. The kitchen becomes a kreplach production line. A very soft dough is made, it is then rolled out by hand, and then circles are cut out using a drinking glass. Each circle is filled with meat that has been cooked for a few hours until it is fall-apart tender (no ground beef here). The circles of dough are then folded around the flavorful meat and sealed with a fork. The kreplach are then boiled for a couple of minutes and placed on a towel to cool. When they are cooled down my father counts them, packages them, and freezes them they are then distributed to our family in the States and in Israel. My mother makes enough kreplach so that everyone in our extended family can continue the tradition of having them in their chicken soup before Yom Kippur (she also makes a few extra so that I can have some in my freezer all year). 

This isn’t so much as a recipe as it is a technique as it is a very Bubby recipe - a little of this a pinch of that, but I hope you take the time and try making your own kreplach, maybe you will even start a tradition for your own family. This recipe makes about 160 kreplach, but you can of course cut the amounts and it won’t take you much time at all to prepare kreplach for your family to enjoy before Yom Kippur. 

Just like this kreplach may we be able to see the hidden brachot in our lives and be sealed in the book of good life!

Beef Filling 

2 medium onions

2 medium carrots 

2 lbs chuck steak fillet (according to the number chart that is a #2 in Israel) but you can use any meat that needs to cook low and slow until tender 

Peel and dice the onions and carrots and place them into a large pot with the meat along with a good pinch of salt and pepper. There is no oil or water added as the meat releases its own fat and the vegetables release their own juices. 

Cook on a very low flame for about 2-3 hours until the meat is fall-apart tender. While the meat cooks prepare the dough (recipe below). Allow the meat to cool slightly and then using a slotted spoon remove it from the pot along with the carrots and onions. Don’t discard the liquid that is in the pot, you will need this as you’re making the kreplach if you see the meat is drying out. Place the meat into a bowl along with the carrots and onions and using a meat chopper chop up the meat, this should take a few moments as the meat is very tender. If you don’t have a meat chopper this can be done on a cutting board with a knife. Set aside and start rolling out your dough (directions below).

My mother found a written dough recipe that is very similar to what my grandmother used to do so I can provide you with exact measurements for the dough. 

This recipe comes from the Ratner’s cookbook - Ratner’s was an iconic dairy restaurant on the Lower East Side. 

6 eggs

1/4 cup oil 

4 tsp salt 

3/4 tsp black pepper (my bubby’s addition) 

2 cups lukewarm water 

9 1/2 - 11 cups of flour 

In a large bowl mix together the eggs, oil, salt, pepper, and water. Gradually add in the flour until a soft dough has formed. You might not need all of the flour so don’t dump it all in at once. Knead the dough on a floured surface until smooth and elastic adding more flour if necessary. Brush the dough with oil to prevent it from drying out and set aside for 1 hour. 

My mother likes to cut the dough into a few pieces and wrap it in plastic wrap and that way the dough doesn’t dry out while the other pieces are being rolled out. You can also make the dough in advance and keep it in the fridge for 2 days just let the dough sit on the counter for 15 minutes before rolling out. 

Flour your work surface and take a piece of the dough and roll it out to 1/8 inch thickness. Before cutting out the circles make sure the underside of the dough is not stuck to the board. Using a drinking glass, cut circles out of the dough. Place a teaspoon of meat in the center of the circle and then fold in half pressing around the meat to release any air bubbles. Use a fork to ensure that the edges are sealed well. Gather the scraps of dough and roll it out again until all the dough and filling are used. 

Bring a large pot of water to a boil add a good pinch of salt and a drizzle of oil (that’s what my Bubby did). Carefully place the kreplach in the boiling water and cook for a couple of minutes until they float to the top. If you are making the full recipe you can make about 20 kreplach at a time and while the first batch boils roll out another piece of dough. Remove the kreplach from the water with a slotted spoon and place the kreplach in a colander. Gently rinse with cold water and then place on a kitchen towel to cool and dry. Once the kreplach are completely cool they can be frozen in zip-top bags. On Erev Yom Kippur add the kreplach to your pot of chicken soup a few minutes before you are ready to serve as they don’t take long to defrost. 

To understand the full process check out the kreplach highlight on Instagram. I was in NY this year when my mother made them so I got to record the whole process. 

Monday, July 12, 2021

Cinnamon Bun Muffins

There is really nothing that compares to a piping hot, fluffy, sticky cinnamon bun slathered in cream cheese frosting. However, they are quite a time-consuming thing to make. Totally worth it, but the yeast, the kneading, rising, rolling, rising it can be a little much, and sometimes you just need that cinnamon bun fix without all of the work. These cinnamon bun muffins have the flavor of a delicious cinnamon bun but are ready in 15 minutes. 

These muffins have three simple components. First, there's a vanilla-scented batter, then a mixture of cinnamon, brown sugar, and chopped nuts which plays the rolls of the classic cinnamon bun filling. Some of that is folded into the batter so every bite has the hard-to-resist cinnamon sugar flavor and then the rest gets sprinkled on top for a crunchy caramelized topping. Finally, once the muffins have cooled they are drizzled with a rich cream cheese icing. 

Cinnamon Bun Muffins 

2 cups flour 

1 Tbsp baking powder

1/4 tsp baking soda

3/4 tsp salt 

1/4 cup oil

3/4 cup milk of your choice

2 eggs

2 tsp vanilla extract 

1/3 cup sugar 

Mix in and Topping

3/4 cup brown sugar

1 cup chopped nuts like walnuts, almonds, or pecans - you can use just 1 type, but I recommend a mix of all 3*

1 Tbsp cinnamon

Pinch of salt

2 Tbsp oil 

Cream Cheese Icing 

2 Tbsp room temperature cream cheese** 

1 cup confectioners' sugar 

1/2 tsp vanilla extract

Splash of milk of your choice 

Preheat the oven to 200°C/400°F 

Grease a standard-size muffin pan liberally with non-stick cooking spray.

In a large bowl mix together the flour, baking powder, baking soda, and salt. In a liquid measuring cup or medium-size bowl, whisk together the oil, milk, eggs, and vanilla. Add the liquid ingredients to the flour mixture along with the sugar. 

Mix together until just combined, being sure not to overmix as this will result in a dense muffin.

In a separate bowl mix together the ingredients for the mix-in/topping. 

Add 1 cup of the mix-in/topping mixture to the batter and gently fold it in only two or three times just to swirl it in not to fully combine with the batter. Scoop the batter into the prepared muffin pan and top with the remaining mix-in/topping mixture. 

Bake for 13-16 minutes or until a toothpick inserted in the center of a muffin comes out clean.

Allow to cool for a few minutes in the pan and then pop out and cool on a rack. 

To make the icing mix together the cream cheese, confectioners' sugar, and vanilla extract. Add a tiny splash of milk and mix adding more milk if necessary until you reach a drizzling consistency.

Drizzle over the tops of the muffins and devour :) 

These muffins will keep for 2 days in an airtight container or can be frozen without the icing. Just defrost them on the counter overnight and then top with the icing when ready to eat. 

Yield: 12 standard-size muffins 

*if you have a nut allergy try using 3/4 cup instant oats in place of the nuts so you won't miss out on the body and texture that the nuts add to these muffins. 

**If you would like to make these muffins dairy-free you can omit the cream cheese and just use more dairy-free milk or use Tofutti cream cheese 

Monday, June 14, 2021

Morning Glory Muffins

These muffins really are the glory of the morning. They are packed with so much good stuff which make them the perfect way to start your day! Don't be discouraged by the long list of ingredients because each one adds so much flavor and texture to these delicious muffins and you most probably have all of them in your kitchen right now. 

These muffins actually get their name from the cafe that created them in 1978, The Morning Glory Cafe in Nantucket. The recipe was published in Gourmet magazine in 1981 and in 1991 it was chosen by readers as one of the best recipes from the past 25 years. My version takes inspiration from the original recipe from over 40 years ago but with a few substitutions and yummy additions. 

I recommend making a double batch of these tasty muffins so you can have a stash in the freezer for a quick breakfast or healthy afternoon pick me up to brighten up your day whenever you need it. 

Morning Glory Muffins 
1 1/2 cups whole wheat flour (all-purpose works too)
2 tsp baking powder
1/2 tsp baking soda 
1/4 tsp nutmeg*
1 tsp cinnamon 
3/4 tsp salt 
1/2 cup oats (rolled or instant) 
2 Tbsp oil (preferably olive oil or melted coconut oil)
1 large egg 
1/2 cup honey/silan/maple syrup
1/3 cup milk of your choice 
1 medium carrot, peeled 
1 medium zucchini 
1 apple - whatever type you have on hand - quartered and core removed 
1 large overripe banana, mashed** 
1/3 cup chopped dried fruit (if you must you can use raisins, but I use a mix of chopped dried cranberries and apricots) 
1/3 cup chopped nuts 
2 Tbsp coconut flakes 

Preheat your oven to 190°C/375°F 

Line a standard-size muffin pan with paper liners. 

Grate the carrot, zucchini, and apple on the coarse side of a box grater. 

In a large bowl mix together the flour, baking powder, baking soda, nutmeg, cinnamon, salt, and oats.

In a liquid measuring cup mix together the oil, egg, sweetener of your choice, and milk. Add the wet ingredients to the dry ingredients along with the mashed banana and shredded zucchini, carrot, and apple. Mix until just combined. Make sure not to overmix your batter or else your muffins will be dense and chewy. Fold in the dried fruit and nuts. 

Scoop the batter into the prepared muffin tin and bake for 18-22 minutes. 

Allow the muffins to cool for 5 minutes in the muffin tin before popping out and cooling on a rack. 

Yield: 12 standard-size muffins 

*if you don't have nutmeg you can leave it out, but it can be substituted with 1/4 tsp pumpkin pie spice
**If you're not a banana fan don't worry because you can't taste the banana in the muffin, it just adds moisture. If you don't have a banana you can also use 1/3 cup of unsweetened apple sauce. 

Monday, June 7, 2021

French Toast Muffins

Every Sunday, after everything from Shabbat has been cleaned up and put away there's usually one thing that is still left on the counter from Shabbat and that is leftover challah. Fresh challah is delicious on Friday night when we sit down for our Shabbat meal. It's fluffy and warm, and it is the centerpiece of every Shabbat table. When Shabbat is over, there is often leftover challah and it is a little stale and dry which makes it perfect for croutons, bread pudding, stuffing, and of course french toast. These are all great ideas for day-old bread because the dried-out bread is the perfect canvas to absorb delicious flavor. This time instead of making any of those tasty options I had the idea to take the classic french toast and muffinize it. 

Traditionally for french toast, you would slice the day-old bread, dip it in a sweetened egg and milk mixture, and then pan-fry it in some butter. The resulting dish is delicious, but it's a bit tedious standing over the stove dipping piece after piece until saturated and then frying until golden brown. By turning french toast into muffins all of the bread gets soaked in the egg and milk mixture at the same time and then gets baked in a muffin tin which allows the muffins to get golden brown and a bit crispy all around, but still soft and slightly creamy in the middle.

Feel free to mix in berries or chocolate chunks to make these french toast muffins to the next level. 

French Toast Muffins

Large challah, sliced into about 10-12 slices then cut into 1/2-inch cubes - READ NOTE BELOW*

2 cups milk 

6 eggs 

2 tsp vanilla extract 

1/3 cup sugar 

1/2 tsp cinnamon 

1/4 tsp salt 

Preheat your oven to 180°C/350°F 

Liberally grease a standard-size muffin tin with non-stick cooking spray. 

Place the bread cubes into a large bowl. 

In a medium-size bowl mix together the milk, eggs, vanilla, sugar, cinnamon, and salt until well combined. Pour the egg mixture over the cubed bread and using a large spoon or your hand gently toss the bread with the egg mixture until all the bread is well saturated. 

Scoop the french toast mixture into the prepared muffin tin and top with any extra batter left in the bottom of the bowl. Feel free to add some chocolate chunks or berries to the mixture. 

Bake for 20-25 minutes until the muffins puff up and are golden brown. 

Allow to cool for 5-10 minutes in the pan and then run a knife around each muffin to release them from the pan. 

Serve these warm topped with confectioners' sugar or maple syrup or you can make a big batch and freeze them. Allow the muffins to cool completely then either store in an airtight container in the fridge for up to 5 days or freeze in a ziptop bag or airtight container defrost by warming in the microwave for about 45 seconds. 

NOTE: Really any day-old bread would work for this recipe, but the best bread for french toast muffins is challah or brioche so try to get either of those if you can. You want to have about 10-12 cups of bread cubes. Don't worry about being super exact you just need to make sure that you have enough bread to soak up the egg mixture you can always add a bit more milk if you have too much bread. 

To really take these over the top - in addition to adding berries or chocolate chunks - place a small pat of butter in the bottom of each cavity of the muffin pan before adding the batter french toast batter and top each muffin with some turbinado sugar before baking. 

Monday, April 26, 2021

Give Me S'more Muffins!

This Thursday night is the Lag B'Omer the 33rd night of the Omer. It is a night of celebration with singing, music, and bonfires. 

I think many will agree that you can't have a bonfire without toasting some marshmallows and if you're going to be toasting marshmallows you're going to be making s'mores. 

For those of you unfamiliar with s'mores it is a sandwich of graham cracker, chocolate, and marshmallow. To make one simply roast a skewered marshmallow over a flame, place a piece of chocolate on top of a graham cracker, place the perfectly charred marshmallow on top of the chocolate and then place another graham cracker on top. Carefully press the sandwich together while simultaneously pulling the skewer out of the marshmallow. The pressing of the crackers will cause the marshmallow to get shmushed (yes that is the technical term) and it will cause the graham crackers to adhere to one another and for the chocolate to slightly melt. The next step is kind of obvious, devour your sandwich of sticky ooey gooey yumminess. 

If you're not going to be roasting marshmallows this Thursday night or at any point this summer, but you still want to experience the delicious combination that is chocolate, graham cracker, and toasted marshmallow then you're going to want to make these muffins. 

A simple vanilla and cinnamon scented batter filled with chunks of chocolate, graham cracker bits, and marshmallows that burst through the top of the muffins to caramelize and get deliciously toasty while the muffins bake. 

These muffins are the perfect addition to your Lag B'Omer celebrations, a birthday party, a BBQ, or just any Monday to make it a truly special Muffin Monday. 

If you are going to be making s'mores and you want your chocolate to really melt use half chocolate-coated biscuits like these in place of graham crackers. You get chocolate all over the s'more and the chocolate is in a thin layer so it really melts unlike a thick piece of chocolate bar.

S'more Muffins 

2 cups flour 

1 Tbsp baking powder 

3/4 tsp salt 

1/4 tsp cinnamon 

1/2 cup milk of your choice 

1/3 cup oil 

2 eggs 

1 tsp vanilla extract 

1/3 cup sugar 

3 graham crackers or 5 lotus biscuits broken into small pieces 

1/2 cup chocolate chips/chunks or 1 chocolate bar broken into small pieces 

12 marshmallows / 3/4 cup marshmallow fluff 


1 1/2 graham crackers or 3 lotus biscuits crushed fine crumbs

2 Tbsp chocolate chips/chunks 

Preheat your oven to 200°C/400°F

Line a standard-size muffin tin with paper liners. 

In a large bowl mix together the flour, baking powder, salt, and cinnamon.

In a liquid measuring cup mix together the milk, oil, eggs, and vanilla. Add the wet ingredients to the dry ingredients along with the sugar. Mix until just combined. Make sure not to overmix your batter or else your muffins will be dense and chewy. Fold in the graham cracker/biscuit chunks and chocolate. 

Scoop 1 tablespoon of the batter into each well of the prepared muffin tin, top with 1 marshmallow or 1 tablespoon of marshmallow fluff, and then top each marshmallow with another tablespoon of batter. Make sure that the marshmallows are fully covered in batter. Top each muffin with a sprinkling of cracker/biscuit crumbs and a few chocolate chips. If you want to take these muffins over the top - sprinkle a little bit of flaky salt over the top of each muffin before baking. 

Bake for 15-18 minutes. 

Allow the muffins to cool for 5 minutes in the muffin tin before popping out and cooling on a rack. The marshmallows will burst through the batter and some might overflow onto the muffin pan if this happens just run a knife around the outside of each muffin to carefully release them from the pan. 

These muffins are great when fresh, but they will also keep for 3 days in an air-tight container just be sure to pop one in the microwave for a few seconds before enjoying.

Yield: 12 muffins 

Monday, April 19, 2021

Birthday Funfetti Muffins

Today is a very special day at The Katamon Kitchen because today is the 1st birthday of #MuffinMonday!! 

It's crazy to think that one year ago I started posting a brand new muffin recipe every Monday. Last year just after Pesach on April 20, 2020, during Israel's first lockdown I was at my brother and sister-in-law's house with not much to do so I thought why not bake? I made a batch of my double chocolate mocha muffins, posted a picture to Instagram with the hashtag #muffinmonday, and soon the messages came pouring in. All of us were stuck at home spending a lot of time on social media and in the kitchen and so many people made those decadent chocolate muffins and sent me pictures of their baking creations. The next week we were still in a lockdown and I still had nothing to do so I made a batch of coffee cake muffins and the same thing happened people got in their kitchens and baked their own muffins. 

Week after week I posted a new muffin recipe every Monday and since April 20, 2020, I have posted over 45 new muffin recipes that have been inspired by a memory, the fruit that's in season, a holiday, or just what I have on hand in the kitchen. 

To celebrate 1 year of Muffin Monday I had to create a very special muffin and nothing says birthday quite like funfetti! 

These muffins are light and fluffy packed with rainbow sprinkles and I put some chocolate chips in too because well it's chocolate and also as an ode to that first Muffin Monday flavor. 

I still have a few more muffin ideas up my sleeve, but if you have any idea for muffin flavors that you would like to see created let me know! 

Here is a full list of the Muffin Monday flavors and just below that is the newest Muffin Monday recipe - Funfetti!

Double Chocolate Mocha 

Coffee Cake 


Apple Cinnamon 

Cranberry Orange White Chocolate 


Banana Chocolate Chip 


Cherry Chocolate Chunk

Lemon Poppyseed 

Peach Cobbler 


Peanut Butter and Jelly 

Mango Lime 


Best Time of Day - Coffee 

Pink Lemonade - Strawberry Lemon 

Dunkin Style Chocolate Chip 


Oatmeal Breakfast 

Apple and Honey 


Banana Zucchini 



Raspberry White Chocolate 


Apple Cider 

Pumpkin Spice


Bourbon Pecan Pie 

Fluffy Cheese 

Hot Cocoa




PiƱa Colada 

Shivat Haminim 

Strawberry Banana

Maple Pancake

Chocolate Strawberry 


Hazelnut Mocha


Blue and White 


Funfetti Muffins 

2 1/2 cups flour 

1 Tbsp baking powder

1/2 tsp baking soda

3/4 tsp salt 

1 cup buttermilk*

1/4 cup oil 

2 eggs 

2 vanilla extract

1/2 cup sugar 

1/3 cup rainbow sprinkles 

1/2 cup mini chocolate chips 

Glaze and Topping

1 cup confectioners' sugar 

1 Tbsp milk/water

1 teaspoon sprinkles

*Mix together 1 cup milk or dairy-free milk of your choice + 1 Tbsp lemon juice and let it sit for 5 minutes before proceeding with the rest of the recipe 

Preheat your oven to 400°F/200°C 

Coat a standard-size muffin tin with non-stick cooking spray or line with paper liners. When I make a muffin without a crumb topping I just spray the pans to pop the muffins right out because there's no issue of losing some crumb topping. 

In a large bowl mix together the flour, baking powder, baking soda, and salt. 

In a liquid measuring cup mix together the buttermilk, oil, eggs, and vanilla. Add the wet ingredients to the dry ingredients along with the sugar. Mix until just combined. Make sure not to overmix your batter or else your muffins will be dense and chewy. Fold in the sprinkles and chocolate chips. 

Scoop the batter into the prepared muffin tin and bake for 15-18 minutes. 

Allow the muffins to cool for 5 minutes in the muffin tin before popping out and cooling on a rack. 

While the muffins cool prepare the glaze. Add the confectioners' sugar to a bowl and slowly drizzle in the milk/water until you reach your desired consistency. 

Once the muffins are cool drizzle the glaze over the top of each muffin and top with the remaining sprinkles.  

Yield: 12 standard-size muffins 

Monday, April 12, 2021

Falaffins - Falafel Muffin Cups

With Yom Haatzmaut coming up in a few days I was trying to think about what special muffin to make for Muffin Monday. I thought what foods are synonymous with Israel and falafel was the first food to come to mind. I said to myself, no I can't make a falafel as a muffin, so I made these delicious Blue and White Muffins instead. But then I thought why not? Israel is the land of saying why not? It is a country that defies the odds. A country that doesn't take no for an answer and pushes itself to be the best that it could be. So if Israel, a little piece of land the size of the state of New Jersey can accomplish so much in 73 years why can't I make a falafel into a muffin? 

These falafel muffins or falaffins are made from a simple mix of chickpeas, spices, and lots of fresh herbs to create the delicious flavor of falafel we all love. But instead of forming them into balls and frying as is usually done, the chickpea mixture is pressed into a muffin pan and baked to create a falafel muffin cup. These falaffins are crispy around the edges and soft on the inside. They are delicious on their own, but they are made even better when loaded up with classic falafel additions like Israeli salad, chummus, techina, and pickles. Or you can go the sabich route and fill the falaffins with chummus, fried eggplant, hardboiled eggs, and amba. Shwarma is another option, make shwarma spiced chicken, chop it up and fill the falaffins along with chummus and pickles. Whichever filling you choose just make sure not to leave out the chummus because it acts as a barrier between the other fillings and the falafel so the bottom doesn't get soggy and break and really what is a falafel without chummus? 


1 cup dried chickpeas, soaked overnight - NOT CANNED* - see below for more info

1 small onion

2 cloves garlic 

1 tsp cumin 

1/2 tsp salt 

1/8 tsp hot paprika (optional) 

1/2 tsp baking powder 

Zest of one lemon 

1 1/2 packed cup fresh parsley and/or cilantro 

2 1/2 Tbsp olive oil  

Preheat oven to 200°C/400°F 

Generously coat a standard-size muffin pan with oil and set it aside

In the bowl of a food processor fitted with an s-blade, place all of the ingredients. Pulse until finely minced, scrape down the sides of the bowl and pulse a few more times until just combined. Make sure not to turn this into a pureed mix or this result in a dense and chewy falafel. 

Place a heaping tablespoon of the chickpea mixture into each space of the prepared muffin pan and using your fingers or the base of a disposable shot glass gently press the mixture into the pan creating a small well in the center and walls around the side. Make sure that you don't make the base on the bottom too thin or else the falaffin will crumble when baked. Once all the falaffins have been formed spray the tops with oil and bake for 25 minutes until golden brown around the edges. Leave the falaffins in the pan for 10 minutes and then place a tray over the top and flip the pan to remove them from the muffin pan.

To serve place 1/2 a teaspoon of chummus on the bottom of each falaffin and then fill up with your favorite falafel additions.

The falaffins can be made up to 2 days in advance and stored in the fridge in an airtight container or in the freezer just pop them into a 190°C/375° oven to defrost and crisp up. 

*To achieve the perfect crumbly soft texture of falafel these need to be made with dried chickpeas that have been soaked not canned. Place 1 cup of dried chickpeas in a large bowl and cover with a few inches of water. Leave the chickpeas to soak for 8 hours or overnight they will grow in size and be slightly softer if you can firmly press one between your fingers and it breaks you're good to go. If you're short on time you can achieve the same texture with a quick soak. Simply place the dried chickpeas in a large pot and cover with a few inches of water, bring to a rolling boil and allow the chickpeas to boil for 5 minutes. Turn the heat off, cover the pot and let the chickpeas sit for one hour. Canned chickpeas are too soft and have too much moisture and will result in a wet and mushy falaffin. 

This recipe can also be used to make regular baked falafel balls. Just form the chickpea mixture into patties or balls, place on a parchment-lined cookie sheet, spray the tops and bake for 25 minutes flipping halfway through. 

Yield: 12-14 falaffins