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Passover breakfasts

(article, Leah Koenig)

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Arguably the most carb-heavy meal of the day, breakfast presents a particular challenge during Passover, the springtime Jewish holiday that forbids leavened foods. Waffles, pancakes, toast, bagels, muffins, even most cereals — they're all off-limits during the weeklong holiday. 

But delicious and nourishing Passover-friendly breakfasts are eminently doable. Skip the "kosher for Passover" processed breakfast cereals and focus instead on whole-food ingredients. Bonus: All of the eight suggestions below also work for anyone trying to have a healthy, low-carb breakfast.


#(clear n1). Quinoa "oatmeal." While few breakfasts are more heartwarming than a steaming bowl of oatmeal with all the fixings, oats are decidedly prohibited on Passover. The fix: use quinoa instead, as it's widely considered kosher for Passover. Simmer the quinoa over medium-low heat with a mixture of half milk and half water, stirring occasionally, until it softens and most of the liquid evaporates. Topped with brown sugar, walnuts, and raisins, cooked quinoa tastes every bit as satisfying as oatmeal.

#(clear n2). [%image reference-image float='clear right' width=350 caption="Yogurt parfaits are pretty — and tasty."] Yogurt parfait. Alternate layered scoops of plain yogurt with fresh berries, apple slices, slivered almonds, and generous drizzles of honey. Or ditch the formality and simply throw all the ingredients together in a bowl. 

#(clear n3). Springtime frittata. A frittata is a great make-ahead dish that you can grab to eat on the way to work. Load up your frittata with spring vegetables like leeks, asparagus, and new potatoes. 

#(clear n4). Horseradish omelet. Not sure what to do with that leftover horseradish from the celebratory Passover Seder dinners? (Let’s face it, that jar tends to sit in the fridge for the rest of the year, right?) Dollop a spoonful of prepared white horseradish into whisked eggs to add a touch of heat to an omelet or scramble. 

#(clear n5). Home fries. Potatoes are one of the few starches allowed during Passover, so take advantage of them. Sauté cooked, cubed potatoes with diced onion and red peppers until nicely browned. Right before serving, add a sprinkle of cheese or spoon in some salsa for an extra flavor boost.

#(clear n6). Israeli salad. Salad for breakfast is popular all year round in the Middle East. Stir together finely chopped tomatoes, cucumbers, and onions, then dress the mixture with fresh lemon juice, olive oil, and chopped flat-leaf parsley and fresh mint. Serve with strained yogurt or a poached egg.

#(clear n7). Matzo granola. Crumbled-up matzo makes a surprisingly delicious base for homemade granola. Break up several sheets of matzo into small pieces (or use pre-crumbled matzo farfel) and mix it with honey or maple syrup, a bit of oil or melted butter, sliced almonds, pecans, golden raisins, and a touch of sea salt, and bake until browned and crisp.

#(clear n8). Matzo palette. Begin to view the humble sheet of matzo as breakfast’s version of an artist's palette. Try slathering on some cream cheese, sliced banana, and a drizzle of honey; smash on half an avocado and sprinkle with sea salt; or top with fresh goat cheese and preserves. You may find yourself so inspired that you (almost) hope the holiday never ends.


p(bio). Leah Koenig is a writer based in Brooklyn. Her cookbook, The Hadassah Everyday Cookbook, has just been released.

reference-image, l