Mum’s lokshen kugel with apple

Lokshen kugel is an extremely traditional Ashkenazi Jewish food, and it appeared on my family’s Shabbat table almost every week when I was a child. In essence, it is a sweet pudding made with noodles – lokshen in Yiddish – and it can also contain dried fruit, spice, and even a creamy custard in its dairy incarnation.

Almost every Friday of my childhood I would watch my Mum as she made the lokshen kugel. Melting the margarine, mixing in the sugar, fruit and egg, then measuring out some of the lokshen she’d cooked which was destined both for the kugel, and for the chicken soup. Mum would then put half the kugel mixture into the dish, add a layer of stewed apple or other fruit, then spread the rest of the lokshen on the top. Into the oven, and ready in time for Friday night dinner. YUM! If we were lucky we’d be allowed to have a scoop on the plate with our main course. Sounds horrible, tastes fantastic!

Anyway, a while ago I decided to make a lokshen kugel, so I phoned my Mum for advice.

I just want to make a small one, just one egg, how much lokshen should I use?  I asked.

“I don’t know,” said Mum. “Maybe 2 or 3 ounces?”

Er, OK. How much sugar?

“A couple of ounces? I’m really not sure,” said Mum.

We carried on like this until she finally said, “You know I just use the recipe from Evelyn Rose, don’t you…?”

WHAT?! 

All my life I’d never seen her refer to a recipe for this. She measured and mixed, week in, week out, TO HER OWN SPECIAL RECIPE! Learning that it had come out of a book, albeit one I treasure myself, was DEVASTATING.

“The fruit in the middle though, that’s me,” said Mum. “I don’t know anyone else who does that.”

Which was, I suppose, some consolation.

So, I duly pulled my trusty Evelyn Rose from the bookshelf and looked up lokshen kugel. There it was. I didn’t make it exactly like she says. Less sugar, more fruit, more spice, and my Mum’s layer of apple in the middle. It turned out just as I remember 🙂

Makes one lokshen kugel. Serves 4.

lokshen kugel

Mum's lokshen kugel
Serves 4
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Prep Time
15 min
Cook Time
45 min
Total Time
1 hr
Prep Time
15 min
Cook Time
45 min
Total Time
1 hr
234 calories
45 g
47 g
7 g
2 g
1 g
147 g
22 g
37 g
0 g
5 g
Nutrition Facts
Serving Size
147g
Servings
4
Amount Per Serving
Calories 234
Calories from Fat 59
% Daily Value *
Total Fat 7g
10%
Saturated Fat 1g
7%
Trans Fat 0g
Polyunsaturated Fat 2g
Monounsaturated Fat 3g
Cholesterol 47mg
16%
Sodium 22mg
1%
Total Carbohydrates 45g
15%
Dietary Fiber 3g
13%
Sugars 37g
Protein 2g
Vitamin A
7%
Vitamin C
8%
Calcium
2%
Iron
4%
* Percent Daily Values are based on a 2,000 calorie diet. Your Daily Values may be higher or lower depending on your calorie needs.
Ingredients
  1. 2 bramley apples (approx 500g)
  2. 130g fine lokshen
  3. 25g margarine
  4. 50g caster sugar
  5. 50g dried fruit - I used raisins, sultanas and dried cranberries
  6. 0.25 tsp mixed spice
  7. 1 egg
Instructions
  1. Peel and core the apples. Cut into pieces and place in a microwavable bowl. Cover and cook on high for 4-5 minutes until they have 'fallen' into mush. (Alternatively, cook in a saucepan on the stove.)
  2. Cook the lokshen in boiling water according to the packet directions. Drain well.
  3. Preheat the oven to 180C.
  4. Melt the margarine and allow to cool slightly. Mix in the sugar, dried fruit and spice.
  5. Add the egg and mix well, then mix in the lokshen.
  6. Put half the lokshen mixture in the bottom of a baking dish and spread out. Spoon the apples on top and spread to level. Finally, add the remaining lokshen and spread out to cover the apple layer.
  7. Bake at 180C for 45minutes or until cooked through and browning on top.
  8. Allow to cool slightly before serving.
beta
calories
234
fat
7g
protein
2g
carbs
45g
more
Family-Friends-Food http://family-friends-food.com/
lokshen kugel

I’m dedicating this recipe to Jewish food historian Rabbi Gil Marks, author of (among other things) the fabulous book Olive Trees and Honey, which is an encyclopaedic collection of Jewish vegetarian recipes from around the world. It was one of the first books that really demonstrated to me the vast variety of Jewish food that exists outside my own familiar Ashekenazi tradition.  

I learned recently that he is suffering from cancer, and this month’s Kosher Connection link-up is in his honour. The theme is for ‘get well’ recipes, and since this kugel is one of my most favourite comfort foods, it seemed appropriate. I hope you will also wish him Refuah Shelaimah – a speedy recovery.

PS If you’re looking for seasonal gift inspiration for your foodie friends and family, check out my gift guide.

7 Comments:

  1. I use broad lokshen as my mother did, nothing weighed, everything just thrown in a bowl and put in oven till really crispy on top
    Cinnamon was used inside and on top.
    Mum was of Polish descent and .sometimes other fruit was used even prunes, depending what was in the house. With eight children we used to fight over the crispy top,so mum made it in a wide dish to get the maximum top

  2. Many thanks for this great recipe. Was reminded that my mum used to make lokshen pudding, when I was still in short trousers (a very long time ago), when I saw a programme on the BBC with Edwina Curries cousin made it with apple. My German wife was sceptical when I said I would cook it, but finished every last scrap!
    Job well done!
    Steve Lyons
    Luxembourg

  3. Made this for dessert last Shabbat and it was delicious – one of the best I had tasted. as we had guests I doubled and quantities which worked really well. I made it in advance and it froze and reheated perfectly.

  4. Pingback: Blueberry & sweet cheese lokshen kugel - Family-Friends-Food

  5. Pingback: In the kitchen with Family Friends Food | Foodies 100

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