Saturday, April 26, 2014

Spring Holidays: Veganizing Easter and Passover

Much like Christmas and Hanukkah, Easter and Passover can be very near or relatively further apart- depending on the Jewish Calendar.


As a mixed tradition family, the time gap between the two usually dictates exactly how much cooking VM is willing to do in a short span of time.  This year, even though the holidays were in the same week, I lucked out because VM was up to the task of cooking for both.

As a non-religious family, we agreed years ago that it was the tradition of the seder we enjoyed, but- for us, it was more important for it to be cruelty-free rather than to abide with the food restrictions that Passover dictates (which Andrea explains here much better than I ever could).  So, our seder is decidedly NOT Kosher for Passover- by any stretch of the imagination.  Instead, it's a celebration of recipes that my Catholic-raised mom learned from my dad's Jewish mother...and veganized over time.

Charoseth: walnuts, apples, cinnamon and Manischewitz served with matzoh.

More matzoh:

Matzoh ball soup: in a veggie broth with carrots, etc.

Sweet noodle keugel (with Brussel sprouts and a sweet potato making an appearance in the background).

The whole shebang:

Roasted potatoes and onions with beet horseradish.

With no competition, I managed to find the afikomen.  I was told that it was the one I didn't find last year.  After all of these years, still $5.

For dessert, let's start with the bad.  Lilly's chocolate rugelah with an expiration date of 5/9/14.  Except for that it was covering an expiration date of 4/9/14.  Union Square Whole Foods fail.  I wrote to them and they haven't responded.

Moving Sweet and Sara!

mocha almond chip and cinnamon hazelnut:

Aaaaand, smores!

A video on how to take your smore from now to wow:

And then, just a few days later: Easter.
Early on Easter morning and I was already taking my life in my hands making 89 wear the bunny suit again.

My parents were coming over for the traditional (read: un-traditional) Easter brunch: matzoh brei.

They arrived while I was mid-preparation, so I let my mom take over.

Still smoking:

Plated with grape jelly (I've decided I like it better with maple syrup):

Brunch is served!

In lieu of my own basket (which is now 89's), a VM-decorated box from Vegan Treats!

89 the glom stalking my goods.

Check it out!!!

Sorry, but dogs still can't eat chocolate, 89.

This tiny little box contained two adorable, dark chocolate, cotton-tailed (not real) bunnies filled with caramel (real).

Also: twin caramel cookie bars, twin peanut butter cookie bars, foil-wrapped eggs filled with as-yet-uneaten so undetermined goodness, a  dark chocolate rabbit pop, and my fave: nonpareils.

In order to avert her attention from my goodies, it was time for 89's basket.

Nothing immediately impressed her,

so she grabbed the present from my parents and started to eat the bag.

Once I showed her the toy inside, she returned to the basket to steal two cookies.  It would have been more, but I took them away after that.

Later that day we headed over to their house for more spectacular eats.

For starters: artichokes!

For everyone!

Eggplant rollatini stacks:

Served with spaghetti:

While we were eating, 89 disappeared.  She'd gone to find the afikomen I'd neglected to search for on Tuesday night.  It didn't hurt her chances that two treats were tucked in with the matzoh.

Then, more dessert.  First up: Sweet & Sara veeps: vegan marshmallow peeps:

This is when I got a little delirious with the treats and the holiday napkins.
Vegan Treats' chocolate-covered cannoli:

And chocolate chip cheesecake on-a-stick:

One final photo op!

The end.


  1. This post is quite overwhelming. Who knew Lilly's Bakeshop made vegan Rugelah? Is that Panko on the Artichokes? I'm also starting to think that it's time to adopt a 90 to help 89 handle all that love. How much adoration can one little pup take?

  2. Those Peeps are so cute! And I had no idea S&S also made biscotti. The VT chocolate chip cheesecake sounds SO good. It all does.
    Very nice that you celebrate both holidays and all but I think 89 looks better with the yarmulke than the bunny costume...FWIW

  3. I've said it before and I'll say it again, you guys really know how to celebrate — lots of yummy food here. 89 looks like she's about to utter a four-letter bark in her bunny suit. Poor baby.

  4. There is so much stuff going on in the blog post, I have no idea where to begin...Firstly 89 in a bunny suit!!! I cannot deal!! And that VT easter basket, OMG! The caramel bunny sounds especially amazing. And I cannot believe WF, that's not how eat by dates work!!

  5. That's the best thing about festivals - so much good food gets made, and dogs get to show off their new gear!

  6. The Shenandoah Vegan- oh yes; there are a couple of varieties of Lilly's vegan rugelah. Still no word back from WF. 90! I don't know about that.

    foodfeud- That's funny that you say that b/c I had to use the yarmulke photo from last year as a certain numbered dog wouldn't put it on this year.

    Andrea- You hit the nail on the head! One night soon after I was getting a cold and must have been making funny breathing noises while I slept. I kept waking up to 89 standing on me, staring; I thought she was trying to smother me in retaliation. That caramel bunny was astounding! I still have one left :-) WF can be such jerks.

    Joey- And 89 has a lot of gear!

  7. What an adorable photo… 89 is so cute!!! My family doesn’t celebrate Easter and I’m always curious and excited to see how families and vegans celebrate Easter together. The VM decorated box from Vegan Treats is absolutely cute and I want to try these caramel bars so bad including Sweet & Sara veeps (want!).


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