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Kasha Varnishkes


From the days before noodles were pasta comes one of my favorite childhood taste memories: Kasha and Bowties (which really does sound better than bowtie egg noodles and buckwheat groats).

It’s yet another combo (like bagels and lox) I really think my kids should like, therefore when I make it once a year on Rosh Hashanah, I make them taste it again. 

I don’t use chicken fat or butter in the preparation, but thought I’d post the real-deal recipe here as we all start to consider, in the back of our minds, not only the start of school, but the holidays that are around the corner.

Kasha Varnishkes 

  • 3 tbl chicken fat or butter
  • 1 medium onion, diced fine
  • 1 clove garlic, minced
  • 1 cup kasha, medium
  • 1 each egg large, beaten
  • 2 cups chicken stock or water
  • 2 tbl parsley chopped
  • salt and black pepper—to taste
  • 1 8-ounce bow tie egg noodles (or any bowties) cooked and drained
  • 1 tbl chicken fat or butter

1. In a heavy pot. cook the onion in the chicken fat till lightly browned, add the garlic.2. Add the kasha and stir constantly with a wooden spoon. Turn the heat on full. The kasha should get very hot.

3. Add the beaten egg, all at once, and start stirring like crazy. You want to coat all the grains of the kasha, and not see scrambled egg. The kasha will puff up a little. Keep stirring till it becomes dry and separate.

4. Add the liquid, which will boil up furiously. Bring the liquid to a full boil and cover. Lower the heat as far as it will go. In five minutes or so, the liquid will be on its way to being absorbed. Stir with a fork. When the liquid is all absorbed, fluff it with a fork, recover and turn off the fire. Leave it on the burner for 15 minutes longer. Stir in the chopped parsley. Season with salt and pepper. It needs a lot of both to bring out the rich nutty flavor of kasha.

5. Boil the noodles and drain them. add chicken fat or butter to dress them, then combine 1/2 the cooked kasha and toss. Add the second half of the kasha, and toss again.

Can be served as is, but is improved by a little mushroom gravy over the top.


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