It's 5 p.m. on Friday. The Jewish Sabbath starts in two hours. My 16-year-old daughter walks in from the beach and tells me she has to take a kugel to the potluck Shabbat dinner she is having with friends.
I open up my freezer to find a bag of frozen broccoli. As fast as I can, I throw together this broccoli kugel. Boy, was I surprised when she came home and told me the kugel was the hit of the party! And if I wasn't totally convinced by my daughter's report, I was convinced on Sunday when the mother of the friend hosting the dinner called to ask me for the recipe.
A kugel, of course, is a traditional side dish at Shabbat dinners. "Kugel" is a word out of the German language that was spoken around 1,000 years ago—it means "sphere" or "ball," and may stem from the fact that the original kugels were baked in round pans and looked a bit puffy, like a sphere. However, there's no reason not to use a square pan for your kugel, as has become traditional.
Many kugel recipes use noodles, most commonly egg noodles. But since I didn't have any noodles on hand when my daughter announced at the last minute that she needed a kugel to take to her potluck Shabbat, this recipe didn't wind up including noodles. Nor does it include potato, which is the other traditional starch used for kugel dishes.
I don't think the recipe needs either egg noodles or potatoes. Instead, I used what I had in the pantry, which was whole wheat flour. To make the kugel savory (I prefer savory kugels to sweet kugels), I added chopped onion, garlic powder, plus salt.
I think the results were quite good, especially considering the short amount of time I had to create this broccoli kugel. And obviously, my daughter's friends and her friend's mother agreed.
- 1 1/2 pounds (800 grams) frozen broccoli
- 4 eggs, beaten
- 3/4 cup mayonnaise
- 1 onion, chopped
- 1 Tablespoon garlic powder
- 2 teaspoons salt
- 1/4 cup whole wheat flour
2. Boil water. Add frozen broccoli. Cover pot and simmer. When broccoli is soft enough to mash with a fork, drain. Mash with a fork.
3. In a mixer, mix together the eggs, mayonnaise, onion, and broccoli. Add salt, garlic powder, and flour.
4. Pour mixture into the pan. Bake for 40-45 minutes or until a knife inserted into its center comes out clean.