Friday, February 16, 2018


Short on time? Leave the Hamentaschen making for the kids with these less traditional fun, frozen and festive Purim Hamentaschen cookies. This icebox cake or frozen version of the Hamentaschen is a fabulous treat to indulge in this Purim  holiday.

You can make variations of this cake by filling the centre with canned cherries or fresh strawberries and topping the cake with white chocolate, chopped walnuts, candied nuts or pistachios.

Dont forget to take a picture and share it by tagging me on Instagram @leslierperez.


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Prep Time: 20 minute |  Freeze Time: 2 hours minimum Dairy or Pareve Makes 12-14 



3/4 of Nutella

1/3 cup of cream

1 tsp vanilla extract

1/2 cup of sugar

3 tbsp of butter or margarine

1 egg

250 g of cream cheese or dairy-free cream cheese

9  graham crackers

1/2 cup of marshmallows

Sprinkles of choice to garnish

Tools: cling wrap and
baking sheet

 In a bowl, beat the butter and sugar until light and fluffy, add in the egg.  Once blended well, add in the cream cheese and vanilla extract.

2. In a separate small bowl mix 1/2 of your Nutella with 1/4 cup of the Nutella thoroughly until nice and creamy (it should not be too liquid.)

 On a baking sheet, lay the cling wrap over a baking sheet over the edge so that it holds sturdy. Place your graham crackers in 3 rows and 3 columns very tightly beside one another.  (Put aside the remaining cream and Nutella)

4.  With a spatula, gently spread the mixture over each cracker, throughout the entire surface as evenly as possible. Place as a row of one or 2 marshmallows along the centre of the centre row of crackers. Drizzle the Nutella mixture over the marshmallows. 

5.  Use the cling wrap to help bring up the two side rows of the crackers so that it forms a triangle wedge. Press down gently to compress the structure. Secure the cling wrap and freeze for at least 2 to 3 hours.

6.  In a small bowl, gradually add the cream in the Nutella, you want the mixture to be creamy enough to slightly drizzle. Remove the icebox cake from the freezer. Gently remove the cling wrap and drizzle the chocolate on top. 

7.  Sprinkle sprinkles on top and place it back into the freezer until you are ready to cut each slice and serve.

Wednesday, January 3, 2018


What are you making for dinner tonight? Whatever it is, MAKE IT WITH YOUR KIDS. 

It's winter break, and north of North America had a track record of below 25 freezing weather for the past two weeks. More so, I'm cold indoors seeing kids glued to all forms of screens or tech (choosing tech to connect with each other). Snap-chatting away, glued to Netflix or Youtube Slime how-to videos, playing the 'HQ' trivia app game.. we live in cold times, not just on the seasonal front. 

So how do we fight this cold? The answer: cooking together :)

Yes, cooking together it is. Go for it, confiscate all things tech, call every kid down, gather around the chopping board, heat that oven, turn-on that stove... make cooking-together happen at once, and of course print this couscous recipe if need-be :)

Couscous is a staple in most sephardi homes, we can all use a hearty recipe like this one, one dear to our roots, filled with wholesome veggies, aromatic spices and of course heart-warming comfort. Enjoy this heartiness! 

with squash, chickpeas and raisins

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Prep time 20 min | Total time: 40 minutes  | Serves 8-10 | Meat or VegetarianInspired by Modern Jewish Cooking



1/3 cup of extra virgin olive oil

2-3 onions 
3 vine tomatoes, chopped
3 garlic cloves, minced
2 cups of couscous, Zinda medium blend (brand of choice)
1/2 cups of water
1 can of chickpeas, rinsed and drained
2 to 3 cups of cubed butternut squash
2 carrots, peeled and cut in large dices
1/4 cup of raisins
2 cups of chicken or vegetable broth

1 teaspoon of ground cinnamon
1 teaspoon of ginger
1/2 teaspoon of cumin
1/2 teaspoon of ground coriander
1 teaspoon of ground sweet paprika
1/2 teaspoon of red pepper flakes
1 tsp of kosher salt and freshly ground pepper
Roughly chopped cilantro or flat-leaf parsley

For the veggies

1.  In a medium pot, heat olive oil and sauté the onions on medium heat. Stir often, until soft and lightly browned, up to 10  minutes. Toss in diced tomatoes and cook for 5 minutes.

2. Add garlic, and spices, stir frequently.

3.  Add the chickpeas, squash, carrots, raisins and broth and 1 tsp of kosher salt and pepper. Turn heat down to a simmer and cover with lid, until vegetables are nice and tender about 15 minutes.

4. Uncover and continue and continue simmering, stirring occasionally, texture of mixture should be thickened. Add salt to taste.

For the couscous
5. Follow package instructions

6. Place couscous on a platter, add vegetables and top with roughly chopped cilantro or flat-leaf parsley and voila!