Jul 23, 2015

Dini Klein: Recipes (My Ultimate Shabbat Lunch)

by Dini Klein

As a personal chef cooking for multiple families a week, I am always tired by the time it comes to cook for my own family. Every Friday I prepare a ‘roasting special’ as I like to call it. That means I take all the produce laying around my house, and roast it for Shabbat. I make a protein, a grain (at times we just eat fresh challah with dips instead), a simple dessert and that is my ultimate shabbos meal for my family. It’s quick, light, simple and not fussy. I have a baby in the house, so whatever is easiest and that can cook in the oven (hands-off), the better!

These are some of my favorite shabbos recipes that my family enjoys week after week. I hope you love them just as much as we do!

Radicchio Salad with Pears and Roasted Eggplant

I created this salad recipe for the Joy Of Kosher magazine a few months ago and it remains my all time favorite salad. I love the textural component (crunchy pear and peanuts versus the chewy eggplant), the sweet and salty flavor profiles, and the versatility of this salad. If I have company for shabbos I serve it as a first course, and if it’s just us at home I simply assemble it in a big bowl and eat it all day.

Serves 4



  • 1 medium eggplant, cut into 1 inch cubes
  • ½ teaspoon oregano
  • ½ teaspoon cumin
  • ½ teaspoon curry
  • 2 tablespoons olive oil
  • salt and pepper
  • 2 cups arugula
  • 2 cups radicchio, thinly sliced
  • 1 pear, thinly sliced into matchsticks
  • ¼ cup peanuts, toasted


  • ¼ cup balsamic vinegar
  • 2 tablespoons honey
  • ½ cup olive oil
  • salt and pepper
  1. Preheat oven to 400 degrees and line a baking sheet with parchment paper
  2. Coat the eggplant with olive oil, oregano, cumin, curry, salt and pepper. Roast for 20 minutes until golden.
  3. Prepare the dressing by whisking together all ingredients, adding the oil in a slow and steady stream while whisking.
  4. Toss together the arugula, radicchio, pear, and eggplant. Add the dressing and peanuts. Serve immediately.

Tri-Color Cauliflower Roast

I love going to the Farmer’s Market and buying seasonal and fresh produce whenever possible. It’s always exciting when I’m able to find unique colored produce, cauliflower in particular. I like to buy the green, yellow, and purple cauliflower for this dish. It is just as good with plain white cauliflower but it is a showstopper if you can find the coloured.

Serves 6

  • 3 head cauliflower all different colors if available, cut into bite-size florets
  • 1/4 cup extra-virgin olive oil
  • 1/2 teaspoon garlic powder
  • 1 tablespoon kosher salt
  • 1 teaspoon course black pepper
  • 3 tablespoons soy sauce
  1. Preheat the oven to 420 degrees F.
  2. Toss the cauliflower with the olive oil, garlic powder, salt, peppers and soy sauce.
  3. Place on a foil lined baking sheet.
  4. Roast until golden and tender, about 20-25 minutes.
  5. Transfer to a serving bowl and serve.

Mexican Chicken Fingers with Smoky Ketchup Dipping Sauce

I wanted to make some form of a chicken nugget a few months ago, but didn’t want to fall back on the usual egg and breadcrumb chicken. I switched up the breadcrumb component, added in some Mexican flair and these delicious nuggets were born.

Serves 6

  • 3 eggs, beaten
  • 2 tablespoons hot sauce
  • 1 cup cornmeal
  • ½ cup panko bread crumbs
  • ¼ cup taco seasoning (I like Ortega brand that comes in a packet)
  • ½ teaspoon salt
  • ¼ teaspoon cayenne. Adjust according to preference
  • 2 lb chicken cutlets, sliced into strips
  • olive oil spray
  1. In a small bowl, whisk together the eggs and hot sauce. Set aside.
  2. In a medium bowl mix together the cornmeal, panko, taco seasoning, salt and cayenne. Set aside.
  3. Preheat oven to 400 degrees.
  4. Line a baking sheet with parchment paper and spray with cooking spray.
  5. Dip each chicken piece into the egg and then into the breadcrumb mixture.
  6. Place on baking sheet and continue with remaining chicken.
  7. Spray the tops of the chicken with more cooking spray and bake for 30 minutes until golden.
  8. Serve with dipping sauce

Dipping sauce

  • ½ cup ketchup
  • ½ teaspoon sriracha
  • 1 teaspoon smoked paprika
  1. Mix all ingredients together and serve with chicken.

Tomato-Basil Barley Salad

This salad is fresh, hearty, and perfect for summer. It’s another family favourite!

Serves 6



  • 1 cup whole grain barley
  • 3 cups water
  • 4 plum tomatoes, cut into small dice
  • 7 scallions, thinly sliced
  • 1/2 cup chickpeas, drained
  • 1/4 cup kalamata or cured black olives, chopped
  • 1/4 cup fresh basil, chopped


  • 1/4 cup balsamic vinegar
  • 3 tablespoons olive oil
  • 1 tablespoon Worcestershire sauce
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 1/4 teaspoon pepper
  1. Combine the barley and water in a small saucepan.
  2. Bring to a boil uncovered and then lower to a simmer and cover.
  3. Cook for about an hour until cooked but still slightly al dente.
  4. Drain and place in a medium bowl.
  5. Add in the chopped tomatoes, scallions, chickpeas, olives, and basil.
  6. Prepare the dressing by whisking together all ingredients.
  7. Pour over salad, mix carefully, and let sit an hour before serving to allow the barley to absorb all the dressing.
  8. Serve room temperature or cold.

Oatmeal-Peanut Butter Cream Sandwiches- makes 2 dozen small sandwiches

My husband absolutely loves oatmeal cookies, but usually they are made with raisins- an ingredient he can’t stand! These cookies are raisin-less plus these are sandwiched between a delicious layer of peanut butter cream. It doesn’t get much better than this!

  • 1/2 cup (1 stick) unsalted margarine, softened
  • 1 cup brown sugar, packed
  • 1 large egg
  • 1 tsp vanilla extract
  • 1 1/4 cups uncooked old-fashioned oats
  • 1 cup all-purpose flour
  • 1/2 tsp baking soda
  • 1/2 tsp baking powder
  • 1/2 tsp salt
  • 1/2 cup slivered almonds

For the filling

  • 3 tablespoons margarine, at room temperature
  • 1/2 cup smooth peanut butter
  • 1 cup powdered sugar
  • 3-4 tablespoons soy milk


  • 1/4 cup jelly
  1. Place racks in the center and upper third of the oven and preheat oven to 350 degrees F.
  2. Line two baking sheets with parchment paper and set aside.
  3. Beat the sugar and butter in the bowl of a stand mixer fitted with a paddle attachment. Beat until creamy, about 3 to 4 minutes.
  4. Add egg and beat on medium speed for about 1 minute. Add the vanilla extract and beat until blended.
  5. In a medium bowl, whisk together the oats, flour, baking powder, baking soda, and salt. Add the dry ingredients to the butter and egg mixture slowly beating on low speed until just incorporated. Stir in the slivered almonds last.
  6. The cookies will be small, so portion about 1 heaping teaspoon of cookie dough into your hand. Roll into a ball and place on the prepared cookie sheet. Keep cookies about 1 1/2-inch apart on the baking sheet. If the cookie dough begins to stick to your hands as you’re making dough balls, rinse your hands and portion the dough with just slightly damp hands.
  7. Bake for 10 to 13 minutes or until they’ve reached your desired doneness. Allow to cool on the cookie sheet for 5 minutes before transferring to a wire rack to cool completely.
  8. To prepare the filling, place butter, peanut butter, and powdered sugar in the bowl of an electric stand mixer fitted with the paddle attachment. Beat on medium speed. Scrape down the bowl as necessary. Add milk one tablespoon at a time until you’ve reached your desired consistency. The filling should be easily spreadable.
  9. When cookies are completely cool, flip over and spread half of the cookie bottoms with peanut butter filling. Spread jelly on the other side if desired. Top with a similar size cookie. Wrap individually and store in the refrigerator. Cookies are best served slightly chilled. Cookies last, wrapped in the fridge, for about 5 days.
Dini Klein

Dini Klein is an enthusiastic foodie, kosher personal chef, and the founder of Dini Delivers. She graduated from the Center or Kosher Culinary Arts (CKCA) in 2011 with a Servsafe certification, and followed up her training with an externship at The Prime Grill. In 2014, Dini launched her own YouTube channel where she showcases her unique cooking style. Dini frequently performs cooking demos and gives private cooking classes for aspiring cooks of all ages.

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