I would like to spoon noodle kugel.
I don't mean I want to eat it with a spoon, I mean I want to spoon it. Don't pretend you don't know what I'm talking about either.
Why do I want to curl my body along the contours of a traditional Jewish food?
I offer five reasons:
1) It's soft. 2) It's comforting. 3) It's warm. 4) It's sweet. 5) It's tender.
Perfect spooning material.
Noodle kugel is also ideal for the following groups: 1) Vegetarians. 2) Noodletarians. 3) Children with loose teeth. 4) Saturated fat adherents. 5) Dairy obsessives.
Me? I'm just wondering what Colin will say when he gets home and sees a lump under the covers.
"It's not what you think," I'll explain. "It's a kugel."
I'm sure that'll go over well.
Recipe for Noodle Kugel with "Melted" Apples
For this Rosh Hashanah, I've created a variation of my (step) Grandma Arline's noodle kugel by sandwiching a mess of very thinly sliced green apples among the noodles. Using a mandoline on the thinnest setting helps the apples "melt" into the kugel. Plus, the apples are nearly invisible, so people get a nice surprise.
Serves 10 to 12
12 ounces extra-wide egg noodles
4 eggs, separated (you'll use all four whites but only 3 yolks)
6 tablespoons unsalted butter, melted and cooled slightly
1/4 teaspoon kosher salt
One 16-ounce container cottage cheese (I use full-fat in this)
1 cup sour cream
1/3 cup sugar
Pinch cream of tartar
1 granny smith apple
1/2 teaspoon cinnamon
Preheat oven to 375 degrees. Butter a 10x14 inch baking dish.
Cook the noodles in a large pot of boiling water according to package directions. Drain and rinse under cold water.
In a large mixing bowl, gently whisk the 3 yolks. Slowly add the cooled melted butter and salt, whisking to combine. Stir in the egg noodles.
In a medium bowl, stir together the cottage cheese, sour cream, and sugar. Scrape into the noodle mixture and combine well.
Using an electric mixer, whisk the egg whites with a pinch of cream of tartar until stiff. Fold gently into the noodles.
Peel and core the apple and slice it as thinly as possible, preferably on a mandoline. Stack the slices and cut them in half to make them easier to eat.
Scrape half the noodle mixture into the prepared dish. Lay the apples on top, in two or three layers. Cover with the remaining noodle mixture and smooth. Sprinkle with cinnamon. Cover with foil and bake for 30 minutes. Remove foil and bake 15 minutes longer.
For ease of serving, let cool before slicing. I actually make mine a day ahead and refrigerate overnight before slicing. (Cover tightly with foil and reheat in a moderate oven.) Serve warm or at room temperature.