Wednesday, January 20, 2010

Kosherica Presents The First Leading Pesach Hotel of the World Program

Kosherica is proud to announce its first-ever Leading Pesach Hotel of the World Program.

Kosherica’s inaugural 2010 Leading Pesach Hotel of the World Program gets underway this spring at the Miami Biltmore Resort and Spa. The program combines a five-star vacation experience with signature Glatt Kosher, Cholov Yisrael and Pas Yisrael gourmet meals at affordable prices.

While some Passover programs easily exceed costs of $4,000 or $5,000 per person, Kosherica’s seven-day luxury Passover packages – complete with full board and sedarim -- start at $3,480 in the United States or Israel. And Kosherica value-added cruises begin at $1,600.*

Since its founding in 1996, Kosherica has brought more passengers to international ports of call at affordable prices than all other kosher cruise companies combined.

“As the company that started it all, we’ve set the bar high. And we keep setting it higher and higher,” says Kosherica Owner and CEO Yehuda Shifman. “No other company knows better how to combine honest value with five-star luxury. Our new Leading Pesach Hotel of the World Program is the perfect example of Kosherica’s long-established tradition: combining the best in luxurious kosher travel with affordable pricing.”

A proven industry leader, Kosherica has set new standards at sea--with an extensive menu of luxury cruises to exotic ports of call--and on land, with luxurious Passover programs. And it’s no secret Kosherica’s full-service packages nourish both body and soul. This family-owned business offers everything from meaningful Shabbat services, inspiring lectures with scholars in residence, Daf Yomi classes and Minyanim to top-notch live concerts with Jewish headliners, all-women’s dance classes, movie screenings, mixers and more.

Wednesday, January 6, 2010

2010 Passover at the Miami Biltmore Hotel

Come join and Kosherica for Passover 2010 in Miami!! Some of the amenities offered at the Miami Biltmore Hotel:
* Beautiful grounds including LARGEST HOTEL POOL in the US.
* Incredible 18 Hole Donald Ross designed golf course and 10 tennis courts.
* Delightful in-room amenities in a contemporary setting including luxurious comfort bedding and a flat screen TV.
* Complimentary entrance to the lavish and luxurious Biltmore Spa and Fitness Center
* Sumptuous and Superb famous Kosherica Tea Room.
* Teen and adult activities programs and entertainment.
* Excellent, fun, and educational Chidren's day camp and infant care programs.
* Quickly becoming one of the most desirable Passover Hotels worldwide.

Tuesday, October 27, 2009

Passover Dinner Ideas!

Here's a list of dinners you CAN have during Pesach!

* Good old-fashioned steak and potatoes
* Beef stew (without beans or barley if you normally use those; use potato starch for thickening)
* Pot roast (use potato starch for thickening)
* Meatballs or meatloaf (use matzah meal instead of rice or bread crumbs)
* Stuffed peppers (use matzah meal instead of rice or bread crumbs)
* Beef brisket (recipe below)
* Roasted chicken or turkey (gravy can be thickened with potato starch)
* Chicken with lemon wine sauce (use matzah meal for breading if desired)

See? The choices are plentiful.....

Tuesday, October 20, 2009

Kashering for Passover

Kashering For Passover

One of the many preparations one must make for Pesach is kashering, a process to prepare chametz vessels for Pesach use. (Although most people only kasher their utensils in preparation for Pesach, the following directions apply to kashering utensils all year-round as well.) As with all areas of halachah, those who are unsure of how to apply the rules of kashering to their situation should consult their local Orthodox Rabbi.

General rules:

There are two steps in kashering:
1. Cleaning—removing all tangible traces of chametz, and
2. Purging—using heat to remove all absorbed chametz flavor.


All chametz utensils that will be used for Pesach must first be thoroughly cleaned.

This involves the removal of all food, rust, dirt, calcium deposits and anything else that protrudes; it does not include the removal of discolorations. Items which have narrow cracks, crevices, deep scratches or other areas that cannot easily be cleaned, cannot be kashered for Pesach. Therefore, the following, for example, cannot be kashered:
• Colanders
• Decanters or baby bottles (due to their narrow necks)
• Filters/screens over drains in sinks
• Graters
• Knives (or other utensils) where food or dirt can get trapped between the blade and handle
• Slotted spoons
• Sponges
• Toothbrushes

Additionally, the common custom is to cover tables, counters, refrigerator shelves and other areas where one might not have been able to clean away every trace of chametz. CONTINUED......

Friday, October 16, 2009

2 Amazing Passover Recipes

Perfect Matzah Balls

2 eggs slightly beaten
2 tablespoons oil or chicken fat
2 tablespoons soup stock or water
1/2 cup matzah meal
1 teaspoon salt

Beat eggs slightly with fork. Add other ingredients, except matzah meal, and mix. Add matzah meal gradually until thick. Stir. Refrigerate for 20 minutes in covered bowl.

Wet hands and form into balls. Drop into bubbling chicken soup or into a large wide pot into which 1 quart water seasoned with 1 tablespoon salt has been added and has come to a boil. Cook for 30 minutes. Yields 4 balls per each 1/4 cup of matzah meal.

2 pounds carrots
1/2 pineapple, crushed
3/4 cup water sugar syrup (optional)

Peel and slice carrots. Cook in slightly salted water for about 20 minutes or until almost done. Crush pineapple in blender. Add to carrots. Cook another 15 minutes until soft. Add sugar syrup to taste.

Variation: Substitute sweet potatoes for pineapple and add more sugar.

Monday, October 12, 2009

Passover Cooking Tips!

Pesach foods generally require special Kosher-for-Passover certification. Regular kashrut certification is not sufficient for Pesach, and many foods that are perfectly kosher year-round are not kosher for Pesach. Look for a "P" (not the word "pareve"!) to the right of the hekhsher, like the one at top right, or the letters KFP (Kosher for Passover) or KP, or the words Kosher for Passover in English or Hebrew, seen at bottom right.

In areas with a significant Jewish population, grocery stores often gather Passover items together in a single aisle. Be aware that some supermarkets are very sloppy about what they shelve in their Passover aisles.
Suggested Meals and Foods

To help you reorient your thinking, here is a list of things that you CAN eat during Pesach with minimal substitutions:

* Good old-fashioned steak and potatoesMatzah Ball Soup
* Beef stew (without beans or barley if you normally use those; use potato starch for thickening)
* Pot roast (use potato starch for thickening)
* Meatballs or meatloaf (use matzah meal instead of rice or bread crumbs)
* Stuffed peppers (use matzah meal instead of rice or bread crumbs)
* Beef brisket (recipe below)
* Roasted chicken or turkey (gravy can be thickened with potato starch)
* Chicken with lemon wine sauce (use matzah meal for breading if desired)

* Eggs (fried, scrambled, poached, whatever)
* Omelet
* Hash brown potatoes
* Matzah brie

* Leftovers from the previous night's dinner
* Tuna salad or egg salad on a tomato
* Cold cuts on matzah or Atkins-style
* Salad Vegetables

Most people will eat any fresh or frozen fruits and vegetables from the grocery store, as long as the vegetable itself is kosher for Passover.*

* Cabbage
* Carrot
* Cauliflower
* Celery
* Cucumber
* Leek
* Lettuce
* Mushroom
* Onion
* Parsley
* Parsnip
* Peppers (e.g., bell peppers, chili peppers)
* Potatoes (regular and sweet)
* Radish
* Spinach
* Squash (eggplant, zucchini, spaghetti squash, etc.)
* Sweet potatoes
* Tomatoes
* Turnip
* ... and many more too numerous to list!

* All fruits are Kosher for Passover! Fruit Passover


As I said above, you should generally avoid substitutions and focus on foods that are naturally kosher for Pesach. That being said, there are a few simple substitutions that can give you more options for your Pesach cooking without compromising flavor.

Potato Starch
Potato starch can be used instead of corn starch or flour to thicken sauces, stews or gravies.

Matzah Meal
Matzah meal is ground up matzah in pieces about the size of bread crumbs. It is an effective substitute for bread crumbs to make breading for things like fried chicken or eggplant parmesan. In fact, I use it that way year round. It is also an effective substitute for bread crumbs or rice in recipes where they are used to hold ground beef together, such as stuffed peppers, meatloaf or meatball recipes.

Matzah Farfel
Matzah farfel is chunks of matzah about the size of a dime. It is a useful substitute for noodles, rice or pasta as a side dish. Serve your main course over matzah farfel and it will soak up the sauces nicely. It can also be used much like croutons on a salad, or can be used as the basis for a Kosher-for-Passover stuffing.

Saturday, October 10, 2009

5 Steps to Picking Your Perfect PASSOVER Hotel Program

Once you've selected your passover destination, the next step is to choose your hotel. If you are particular about your hotel, you may need to pick your hotel before your destination or you might end up switching locations a couple of times. Play around with it and keep your options open. Many destinations are similar - white sandy beaches or mountain skiing - but your passover hotel will make all the difference. You will be spending a lot of time at the hotel or in your room, so do the research.

1. Choose the location of your hotel. Do you want to be by an incredible golf course? In warm weather? This will narrow down your selection quiet a bit.
2. How much can you spend? You may be surprised how affordable a Passover vacation can be when you factor that all meals, accommodations, activities and events are included in the price.
3. What type of hotel do you want to stay out? Hotels can vary from couples-only, adult-only, all-inclusive, large resorts, small boutique hotels... We recommend a resort that has wonderful grounds to roam.
4. What kind of room or suite do you imagine? You will be spending quality time in your hotel room, so keep this in mind when picking your hotel.
5. Amenities? Hotel costs usually increase as the number of amenities increases. If you're planning on spending most of your time away from your hotel ~ sightseeing, shopping, excursions... then the number of amenities shouldn't be very important. If you don't want to leave your resort, then the amenities are key! Here is a list of important resort amenities to consider:
o Tea Room availability
o Concierge
o Golf center
o Fitness center
o Great Pool
o Live entertainment
o Kids Club
o Adult activities
o Quality food
o Spa ~ Massage
o Access to main attractions in Coral Gables and Miami