I wasn’t brought up in any particular religion – my mom was raised Protestant and my dad was raised Jewish, but neither practice their respective religions any longer. My brother and I grew up celebrating both Christmas and Hanukkah, yet traditional Jewish fare rarely made its way onto our holiday table.
I distinctly remember the first time I tasted kugel when I first met some of my distantly related paternal relatives; the tender egg noodles surrounded by a sweet and creamy custard dotted with plump raisins and topped with a crisp crust was a revelation.
If I could get away with eating something that tasted like dessert as a component of dinner, it was all good in my book!
Now, if you’re thinking that custard and noodles and sugar and raisins have no business jumping into the oven together in one dish, may I gently point out to you that bread and rice puddings are both very similar to noodle kugel. This is basically a sweet noodle pudding with raisins.
Sounds pretty good, right?!
Typical kugel is packed with butter, full fat cottage cheese, sour cream, and white sugar. I’ve significantly lightened the dish by using just one tablespoon of butter, low fat cottage cheese, fat free Greek yogurt, and a moderate amount of unrefined sugar. But not to fear, this healthier version is every bit as delicious.
Kugel may be a new dish for many of you – but it is definitely a Jewish tradition worth sharing.
yield: 6 servings
- 4 cups wide egg noodles
- 1 Tbsp butter, melted & cooled
- 2 large eggs
- 1 cup low fat cottage cheese
- 1 cup 0% fat plain Greek yogurt
- 1/2 cup 1% milk
- 1/4 cup cane sugar
- 2 tsp pure vanilla extract
- 1 tsp ground cinnamon
- 1/2 tsp Kosher salt
- 1/2 cup raisins
- 1/4 cup Turbinado sugar
- Preheat oven to 350°F. Lightly grease a 9 inch pie plate.
- Cook noodles in a large pot of boiling water until al dente, about 5 minutes. Drain, rinse with cold water, and set aside.
- In a large bowl, whisk together the eggs and cooled melted butter. Whisk in the cottage cheese, yogurt, milk, cane sugar, vanilla extract, cinnamon, and salt. Fold in the raisins and cooked noodles.
- Spread mixture into prepared pie plate and sprinkle the Turbinado sugar evenly over the top.
- Bake until lightly browned and set, about 40 minutes. If the top starts to burn or turn too dark, cover with aluminum foil. Let sit for at least 5 minutes before serving.
Nutritional Information Per Serving:
321.6 calories, 5.3 grams fat, 2.4 grams saturated fat, 1.6 fiber, 14.9 grams protein
Recipe by Lauren Zembron