Cooking allergy-free is at its most difficult come Passover. In addition to avoiding gluten, and the top eight food allergens (dairy, eggs, wheat, soy, peanuts, tree nuts, fish, shellfish) and sesame, Passover dictates no grains (except for quinoa), which knocks even rice out of the equation, no leavening (there goes Ener-G egg replacer, baking soda, and baking powder), no canola oil (an allergy-free standby), and most ingredients need to be certified “Kosher for Passover.”
When I said I was going to attempt a gluten-free, allergy-free, vegan Sweet Noodle Kugel recipe that was Kosher for Passover, my Jewish husband said, “Some things are not meant to be.” I took that as a challenge I had to meet, and decided to accept Melissa’s request from several weeks ago to make an Allergy-Free Noodle Kugel. Two weeks ago, I came up with a delicious Allergy-Free Savory Potato Leek Kugel, but a Passover meal is not complete without a Sweet Kugel too.
This recipe took several attempts since we are baking without eggs here. I had to figure out how to bind the Kugel without eggs, or even egg replacer. I’d been planning to use Turtle Mountain So Delicious coconut milk yogurt, but to my dismay, I discovered it contains rice bran and tapioca (both not allowed for Passover) and isn’t Kosher, so that went out the window.
I did some heavy Googling to find out what else was out of the question, and finally ended up writing my recipe around ingredients that ARE permissible for Passover (though not many!): potato, apples, raisins, fresh lemon juice, cinnamon, palm oil, coconut milk, sugar, and flax seeds. I decided I could work some alchemy with those. And luckily, Gefen has come out with gluten-free, egg-free Wide Noodles for Passover that I found at Whole Foods. If you can eat eggs, please feel free to use regular wide noodles that are Kosher for Passover.
Allergy-Free Sweet Noodle Kugel
Vegan, Kosher for Passover, Gluten-Free
9 oz bag Gluten-Free, Egg-Free Wide Noodles, Kosher for Passover
4 Tablespoons palm oil shortening, divided (Spectrum Organic Vegetable Shortening is Kosher)
½ cup applesauce
2 Granny Smith apples, peeled and coarsely grated
1 teaspoon freshly squeezed lemon juice
¼ cup granulated sugar
¾ cup golden raisins
1 teaspoon pure vanilla extract
½ teaspoon cinnamon, divided
2 Tablespoons golden flax seed meal mixed with 6 Tablespoons hot water (“flax eggs”
1 cup coconut milk (full fat, Kosher for Passover – be sure to stir up milk well before measuring out)
¼ cup light brown sugar
- Preheat oven to 350°F. Grease an 11 x 7 baking dish with palm oil shortening.
- Cook noodles according to package instructions. Drain, then combine with 2 Tablespoons of the palm oil shortening.
- Stir in applesauce. Add grated apple, lemon juice, granulated sugar, raisins, vanilla, and ¼ teaspoon of the cinnamon. Stir well to combine. Add “flax eggs” and stir. Add coconut milk and stir gently to combine. Transfer to greased baking dish.
- Combine light brown sugar with the remaining ¼ teaspoon cinnamon. Sprinkle evenly over top of kugel. Dot top with the remaining 2 Tablespoons of palm oil shortening.
- Bake 45 minutes, until bubbling up around sides, and the top is a rich golden brown. Remove from oven, and let rest at least 1 hour before serving. Serve warm or room temperature.
Allergy-Free Sweet Noodle Kugel © 2011 by Cybele Pascal
(Please note that all my recipes are completely free of all top allergens (wheat, dairy, soy, eggs, peanuts, tree nuts, sesame, fish, shellfish, and gluten), so as many people as possible can enjoy them. Additionally, all the ingredients are available at Whole Foods, and online at Amazon.com. If you have trouble finding something, let me know and I’ll help you find it.)
SAFETY NOTE: Because each person's food sensitivity and reaction is unique, ranging from mild intolerance to life-threatening and severe food allergies, it is up to the consumer to monitor ingredients and manufacturing conditions. If manufacturing conditions, potential cross contact between foods, and ingredient derivatives pose a risk for you, please re-read all food labels and call the manufacturer to confirm potential allergen concerns before consumption. Ingredients and manufacturing practices can change overnight and without warning.
Cybele Pascal is the award-winning author of "The Allergen-Free Baker's Handbook" and the "Whole Foods Allergy Cookbook." She lives in Los Angeles with her food-allergic family: husband Adam, sons Lennon and Monte, and their dogs, Izzie and Carly (who also has food allergies). Please visit her website at CybelePascal.com or follow her on twitter @CybelePascal.