Recipe: What to do with Passover leftovers

Editor’s note: People who eat ham or other meat and dye Easter eggs at Easter, usually know they have to follow up with leftovers of ham sandwiches, ham and bean soup, or more than they can eat of egg salad sandwiches. All of this while those observing Ramadan could still be fasting.

So I asked Mara Kahn to share with us what those of the Jewish faith do with Passover leftovers. Here are her recipes for Shepard’s Pie and Charoset dessert, sent all the way from her blissful vacation in Hawaii. – Kathleen Thompson Hill.

It’s said, somewhat tongue-in-cheek, that all Jewish holidays can be categorized into holidays where you are forbidden to eat and holidays where you are commanded to eat. Yom Kippur, fast all day. Hanukkah, eat fried foods for eight days.

On Passover Jews are commanded to both eat and to drink at a Seder, an ordered service and meal usually held at home, where the Passover story is retold with symbolic foods and ritual blessings. Four cups of wine are consumed. A multicourse meal is shared with gathered family and friends during which traditional Jewish foods are served such as matzoh ball soup, brisket and savory puddings called kugels. For eight days no leavened foods are eaten.

Of course, no Jewish mother has ever been known to cook too little food, hence there are always Seder leftovers. What’s a mama to do?

Brisket and Potatoes Leftovers Become Shepherd’s Pie


2 tablespoon olive oil

1 onion, chopped

2 carrots, chopped

salt and pepper

½ cup brown mushrooms

1 bay leaf

1 tablespoon tomato paste

2 tablespoon flour (or 1-2 tablespoons cornstarch)

1¼ cup beef stock

1 tablespoon Worcestershire sauce

1 pound leftover beef brisket, roughly chopped

3 cups mashed potatoes or an 8-by-8 slab of leftover potato kugel (potato pudding)


1.Heat olive oil over medium heat. Sauté onion and carrots for 2 minutes. Season with salt and pepper. Add mushrooms and bay leaf. Cook until vegetables are soft and liquid is absorbed. Add tomato paste and cook for 2 minutes. Add flour or cornstarch and cook for 2 minutes, stirring. Stir in beef stock and Worcestershire sauce. Bring to a boil. Reduce to simmer and cook for 10-15 minutes until thickened. Add beef brisket to the gravy.

2.Preheat the oven to 400F. Grease an 8-by-8 baking dish. Pour mixture into the dish. Cover meat mixture with mashed potatoes or carefully lay the slab of potato kugel on top. Bake for 10-15 minutes or until heated through.


Charoset is a tasty raw compote traditionally made from chopped apples, raisins, nuts, spices and sweet wine. It symbolizes the mortar used by the Israelites to build the pyramids and is a great base for a tasty Jewish fruitcake, one people will actually eat.


4 sheets Matzoh, broken into pieces

Cooking spray

1 cup leftover Charoset

5 large eggs, room temperature

¾ cup light brown sugar, packed

¼ cup granulated sugar

½ cup flaked unsweetened coconut

½ cup dark chocolate chips

Confectioners sugar for garnish


1.Preheat the oven to 350F.

2.Grind matzo in a food processor until fine. Transfer to a medium bowl. Coat a 9-inch springform pan with cooking spray. Place 3 tablespoons of the ground matzo in the pan; turn and tilt to coat the sides and bottom.

3.In a food processor roughly chop the charoset into a chunky paste.

4.Separate four of the eggs. Beat the four egg whites in a medium bowl of an electric mixer on high until soft peaks form. Beat the remaining whole egg and 2 of the yolks with brown sugar in a large bowl on medium until thick and very creamy, about 4 minutes.

5.Fold the charoset into the egg-yolk mixture, fold in the remaining ground matzo, then gently fold in the whites until incorporated. Fold in the coconut and chocolate chips. Scrape the batter into the prepared pan, spread evenly and gently tap the pan against the counter a few times.

6.Bake until lightly browned and a toothpick inserted into the center comes out clean, about 45 minutes. Cool on a wire rack for at least 2 hours. To serve garnish with confectioners’ sugar.

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