Author Topic: Kugelis?  (Read 2709 times)

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RainhaDoTexugo

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Kugelis?
« on: October 28, 2007, 04:46:16 PM »
Okay, maybe it's a long shot...

I'm referring to the Lithuanian version, by the way, I know there's some kind of noodle kugel or something, but I'm looking for the shredded potato and bacon dish.  We have it every Christmas and Thanksgiving, and this year BF wants to make it for Thanksgiving.  We've made it in the past using online recipes, and haven't been entirely thrilled with them.  BF thought my brother's was too salty, so he doesn't want to use his recipe.  I could ask for my aunt's, but she's been cooking it for so long I doubt she could give us anything nearing specific measurements anyway :(  Anyone have any tried and true tasty kugelis recipes?  Any tips you have for not ending up with 5 lbs of browny green potato shreds would also be appreciated ;)

cicero

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Re: Kugelis?
« Reply #1 on: October 29, 2007, 10:42:31 AM »
i don't know what kugelis is, but there are plenty of jewish versions of kugel - without bacon. Here is one recipe that explains how to keep everything white.
I also have seen recipes that call for frying half or all of the onion in oil or fat - so i suppose that would be where one would add the bacon. (I never actually knew that it was anything BUT a typical jewish recipe! you learn something new every day!)

http://www.jewishfood-list.com/recipes/kugel/savory_kugel/potkjugel07.html

Potato Kugel VII (M/P, KLP, TNT)
Source: "Melting Pot Memories," by Judy Bart Kancigor (adapted from "A Treasure for My Daughter")
Serves: 8

4 large eggs
1/3 cup matzo meal
1/2 cup vegetable oil or chicken fat
2-1/2 tsp. salt or to taste
1/4 to 1/2 tsp. pepper, preferable white
2 tsp. baking powder
3 pounds potatoes
1 large onion, cut lengthwise into eights

Preheat the oven to 400°F. Generously grease a 9"x13" baking pan. Fit a food processor with the grating attachment.

Beat the eggs in a large bowl. Add the matzo meal, oil, salt, pepper, and baking powder and mix well.

Peel the potatoes and place them in water to cover in a large bowl. Cut each lengthwise into quarters or slivers no wider than the feeding tube of the food processor. The idea is to have the potatoes exposed to the air as little as possible to avoid having them turn dark.

Grate the potatoes with the onions (grating them together will help to keep the potatoes white) in the food processor. Squeeze with several changes of ink-free paper towels to drain as much liquid as possible. Add the grated potato-onion mixture to the egg mixture and combine thoroughly.

Pour the mixture into the prepared casserole and bake until crusty and brown, about 1 hour. Cut into squares and serve.

Poster's Notes:
This is our family's favorite.

Posted by Judy Bart Kancigor

Nutritional Info Per Serving: N/A

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RainhaDoTexugo

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Re: Kugelis?
« Reply #2 on: October 29, 2007, 10:48:59 AM »
Thanks Cicero.  It's not quite the same as Lithuanian kugelis, but it's similar.  The tips on keeping the potatoes in good shape will definitely come in handy.  I don't want to serve green kugelis for Thanksgiving ;)

I have heard of "Jewish kugel" and "noodle kugel," and I'd be interested to know whether there's any connection between them and Lithuanian kugelis.  If I find a good recipe elsewhere I'll post it here, and you can make it without the bacon to compare the two ;D

Bibliophile

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Re: Kugelis?
« Reply #3 on: October 29, 2007, 11:07:54 AM »
My mom's Lithuanaian, I have 4 Lith cookbooks at home, I can post the recipe for you tonight/tomorrow :)

I normally don't even use the recipe now - I've made it so much...  I put the potatoes through my meat grinder Kitchen Aide attachement.  I also do the same with a whole onion (much easier than grating an onion, let me tell you!).  Add a tiny bit of milk/cream, salt/pepper to taste.  Crisp up about 4 slices of bacon and then grind those up too (or chop into small pieces if no grinder).  The trick is to set the oven and then grease your 13x9 pan - place it in the hot oven and pour your mixture into the pan when the baking dish is hot.  This crisps up the sides nicely. 

I'll get you the real recipe though, I promise!!!  I'll send the one that we've used for years & years so it's a time tested one.  Also, the potato thing, the faster you shred them, the better.  If you could get a couple people shredding the potatoes so that it goes faster, it helps.  My grandma gave me her potato shredder so I'm going to try it out over the holidays.  It's from Lithuania so I have to get the outlet adapter first... 
« Last Edit: October 29, 2007, 11:15:13 AM by kcbrig »

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RainhaDoTexugo

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Re: Kugelis?
« Reply #4 on: October 29, 2007, 11:25:36 AM »
Thanks kcbrig!  It's hard to do the trial and error thing with a recipe you only make once or twice a year, and we've already tried and erred a few times.  We know the general idea, but for some reason can't get the ratios right.  BF and I can grate together if necessary (aren't I lucky to have coincidentally ended up with a Lithuanian BF who understands that it's the man's job to grate the potatoes?), or I might experiment with the food processor my mom gave me recently.  Mmmm, I'm drooling already ;)

cicero

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Re: Kugelis?
« Reply #5 on: October 29, 2007, 11:29:45 AM »
Thanks Cicero.  It's not quite the same as Lithuanian kugelis, but it's similar.  The tips on keeping the potatoes in good shape will definitely come in handy.  I don't want to serve green kugelis for Thanksgiving ;)

I have heard of "Jewish kugel" and "noodle kugel," and I'd be interested to know whether there's any connection between them and Lithuanian kugelis.  If I find a good recipe elsewhere I'll post it here, and you can make it without the bacon to compare the two ;D

thanks i would be very interested.

"kugel" is used today as a 'catch-all' phrase for all kinds of, loafs, i guess, made with bread, or noodles (sweet or savory) or vegetable, or potato. I am assuming that smart housewives invented them as a way to feed their families something filling and tasty at very low cost.

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RainhaDoTexugo

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Re: Kugelis?
« Reply #6 on: October 29, 2007, 11:36:28 AM »
Our kugelis is much stricter.  It's basically shredded potatoes, milk, bacon, salt and pepper, and onion (I might be missing an ingredient or two) baked together.  Not much ingredient variation, although I have seen recipes with condensed milk and other strange things....

All I can think is that Jewish immigrants to Lithuania years and years and years ago brought the idea of kugel (or vice versa) and it was adapted.  Maybe it was just convergent evolution ;)

I've never had Jewish kugel, but it sounds like some of the variations might be tasty.  I may try the recipe you posted some day.  If I do, I'll let you know how it turns out :)

Bibliophile

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Re: Kugelis?
« Reply #7 on: October 29, 2007, 11:37:38 AM »
Thanks kcbrig!  It's hard to do the trial and error thing with a recipe you only make once or twice a year, and we've already tried and erred a few times.  We know the general idea, but for some reason can't get the ratios right.  BF and I can grate together if necessary (aren't I lucky to have coincidentally ended up with a Lithuanian BF who understands that it's the man's job to grate the potatoes?), or I might experiment with the food processor my mom gave me recently.  Mmmm, I'm drooling already ;)

DH is Ukranian so he knows which dishes to help prepare too - if he wants to eat it, he helps :)  He does make the most amazing potato pancakes though and he uses the blender (which I found odd, but it works - too well).  We tend to eat those standing at the stove with loads of sour cream - they never last long enough to ever make it to a table...

“Those are my principles, and if you don't like them... well, I have others.” ~ Groucho Marx

Bibliophile

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Re: Kugelis?
« Reply #8 on: October 29, 2007, 11:39:00 AM »
Do you like cold beet soup (saltibarsciai) too? 

“Those are my principles, and if you don't like them... well, I have others.” ~ Groucho Marx

RainhaDoTexugo

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Re: Kugelis?
« Reply #9 on: October 29, 2007, 11:40:05 AM »
This is making me so hungry!  I love potato pancakes, and it seems like fellow Lithuanians are the only ones who understand that they should be served with sour cream, not applesauce or whatever crazy thing people like to serve them with....  I guess Ukrainians know better too ;)

I do like cold beet soup, although I don't get it too often.  Unfortunately, most of the Lithuanian food I get is restaurant food, which is never as good as homemade, and hard to get to from my house.  If I had a good Lithuanian cookbook I'd probably do more at home.

Bibliophile

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Re: Kugelis?
« Reply #10 on: October 29, 2007, 11:44:06 AM »
The newer Lithuanian cookbooks aren't as good as the older ones.  I have one that is from early 1970 that always turns out the best stuff.  The newer ones just miss something sometimes. 

Now I want potato pancakes for dinner.... 

“Those are my principles, and if you don't like them... well, I have others.” ~ Groucho Marx

cicero

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Re: Kugelis?
« Reply #11 on: October 30, 2007, 10:42:36 AM »
Thanks kcbrig!  It's hard to do the trial and error thing with a recipe you only make once or twice a year, and we've already tried and erred a few times.  We know the general idea, but for some reason can't get the ratios right.  BF and I can grate together if necessary (aren't I lucky to have coincidentally ended up with a Lithuanian BF who understands that it's the man's job to grate the potatoes?), or I might experiment with the food processor my mom gave me recently.  Mmmm, I'm drooling already ;)

DH is Ukranian so he knows which dishes to help prepare too - if he wants to eat it, he helps :)  He does make the most amazing potato pancakes though and he uses the blender (which I found odd, but it works - too well).  We tend to eat those standing at the stove with loads of sour cream - they never last long enough to ever make it to a table...

oh potato pancakes with sour cream!! yum!!

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Bibliophile

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Re: Kugelis?
« Reply #12 on: October 30, 2007, 10:51:58 AM »
I got suckered into signing up for that one free personal training session at the gym yesterday...  After 2 hours of the guy jabberjawing at me (I did learn a lot and it was informative), I finally had to go because I was going to be late for my favorite show (Heroes)...  Yes, no workout and I was at the gym for 2 hours...  grrr.  Anyway, I was wiped from the 2 hour lecture about how fat I was and how I needed to fix it so I didn't get online to copy the recipe to you guys, but I'll do it tonight.  Right after my workout with the same trainer (too much talking an he didn't have time to take me through a workout so I get to listen to the jabberjawin' again tonight, but I need his help with a few things so I'm forced to sit and listen...  Do you know how hard it is to take workout advice and a fat lecture from someone with a much larger midsection than you?)

“Those are my principles, and if you don't like them... well, I have others.” ~ Groucho Marx

Mazdoy

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Re: Kugelis?
« Reply #13 on: October 30, 2007, 11:47:21 AM »
I was on holiday in Lithuania last year and fell in love with the potato pancake things but like all Lithuanian food they eventually made me feel ill because they were so greasy.  I'd like to be able to make them with less butter/oil but then they wouldn't be authentic.

The other thing I fell in love with was a really hard type of black deep fried garlic bread.  Again, very greasy but so tasty.  I've never seen it in any other country.

Bibliophile

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Re: Kugelis?
« Reply #14 on: October 30, 2007, 12:08:00 PM »
I was on holiday in Lithuania last year and fell in love with the potato pancake things but like all Lithuanian food they eventually made me feel ill because they were so greasy.  I'd like to be able to make them with less butter/oil but then they wouldn't be authentic.

The other thing I fell in love with was a really hard type of black deep fried garlic bread.  Again, very greasy but so tasty.  I've never seen it in any other country.

Not all Lithuanian food is greasy.  There are tons that have nothing to do with any oil.

“Those are my principles, and if you don't like them... well, I have others.” ~ Groucho Marx