Please consult the OU's guidelines for checking fruits and vegetables.

Broccoli Cheese Squares
This recipe is kosher for Passover.
Broccoli Cheese Squares Norene Gilletz | Dairy
1 hour 25 minutes
35 minutes
6 main dish servings or 8 to 10 side dish servings

  • Adapted from The NEW Food Processor Bible: 30th Anniversary Edition by Norene Gilletz (Whitecap, March 2011)
  • Easy and versatile! These scrumptious squares make a delicious dairy brunch dish or side dish, with 400 g calcium per serving. A food processor speeds up preparation time.
Ingredients
  • 8 oz. (250 g) chilled low-fat Swiss and/or cheddar cheese (2 cups grated)
  • 1 Tablespoon grated Parmesan cheese
  • 2 cloves garlic
  • 1 medium onion, cut in chunks
  • 1 carrot, cut in chunks (or 1 red bell pepper)
  • 1 Tablespoon olive oil
  • 4 cups cut-up broccoli
  • 2 Tablespoon fresh parsley (or 2 teaspoon dried parsley)
  • 3 eggs (or 2 eggs plus 2 egg whites)
  • ½ cup matzah meal
  • ½ teaspoon salt
  • ¼ teaspoon each dried basil and dried oregano

Instructions
  1. Insert grater in food processor. Grate Swiss or cheddar cheese, using medium pressure. Transfer to a bowl.
  2. Remove 2 Tablespoons grated cheese, combine with Parmesan cheese and reserve as a topping.
  3. Insert Steel Blade in food processor. Drop garlic through feed tube while machine is running; process until minced.
  4. Add onion and carrot or red pepper; process with several quick on/off pulses, until coarsely chopped.
  5. Heat oil in a non-stick skillet. Sauté garlic, onion and carrot on medium heat until softened, about five minutes.
  6. Meanwhile, rinse broccoli thoroughly in cold water; drain well. Microwave, covered, on High for four minutes (or steam broccoli for five to six minutes.) Cool slightly.
  7. Process broccoli and parsley with several on/off pulses, until coarsely chopped.
  8. Add sautéed vegetables and grated cheese (excluding reserved cheese topping), along with all remaining ingredients. Process 8 to 10 seconds longer, until combined.
  9. Spread mixture evenly in sprayed 7x11-inch glass baking dish. Sprinkle with reserved cheese topping.
  10. Bake in preheated 325°F oven for 30 to 35 minutes, until golden.
  11. Cool slightly before cutting into squares.

Keeps 2 days in the refrigerator. Reheats and/or freezes well.


Kashrut Instructions

FRESH BROCCOLI:

DESCRIPTION: Broccoli is a green vegetable resembling a miniature tree. Its thick central stem divides into many smaller branches, which are crowned with tightly clustered green florets.

INFESTATION: Broccoli may be infested with a variety of insects, most prominently aphids and thrips. The aphids are green or white, but will often turn brown during the parboiling (partial cooking) that is done to prepare the vegetable for inspection (see Inspection, below). The thrips are usually black or gray.

Also present at times is the broccoli worm, a thin white or light greenish worm of about a half inch’s length. This worm, when present, is difficult to discern because it looks like one of the thin stems.

Our research has indicated that infestation levels of broccoli grown domestically (USA, Canada, but not Mexico) vary by season. During the winter months, (approximately November through March), infestation level is around 10%. Broccoli grown during this season should be inspected. During the summer months (the remaining seven months of the year), broccoli can be heavily infested, and inspection is often impractical. Broccoli from Mexico is infested throughout the year. It is primarily used for frozen broccoli products.

INSPECTION: When checking broccoli, a well-lit area should be chosen. This aids in discerning an insect from the floret pieces. It should be noted that cleaning infested broccoli is not feasible. The purpose of inspection is to determine if the broccoli is infested. Once infestation is detected, the floret portion of the head must be discarded. One cannot be certain that all insects will be discovered and removed. However, the stem portion may be separated, washed and consumed.

Fresh broccoli-stems:

Broccoli stems may be used after a thorough washing. No further checking is necessary.

Fresh broccoli (whole):

  1. It is virtually impossible to perform a comprehensive inspection on raw broccoli. Parboil the broccoli for ten seconds to soften the florets and stems. An additional benefit of parboiling is that aphids often turn from green to brown and the florets from light to dark lush green. The contrast of colors makes the insects more easily detectable after this process. Submerge in cold water immediately after parboiling to preserve the flavor and firmness of the vegetable.
  2. It is important to segregate each head individually when processing more than one head of broccoli. If a section of a broccoli head shows infestation, the entire head must be discarded.
  3. Inspect each floret section:
    1. Look carefully at the under part (i.e., the branched area) of each floret. It is important to check the Y-shaped crevice between the branches.
    2. Spread each floret head apart and look inside the floret from the top¬ down (i.e., through the green flower buds, into the branch area).
  4. If one OR two insects are found, special care should be taken in examining the remaining sections of that broccoli head. Should a total of three insects be found, either in a particular section or spread among different sections of the same broccoli head, the entire head should be discarded.

Alternative method:

  1. While parboiling the broccoli as described above, agitate the vegetable in the boiling water and bang it against the side of the pot several times.
  2. After removing the broccoli and submerging it in cold water, check a sampling of the parboiled water in a glass bowl over a light box.
  3. If insects appear in the water, each floret must be checked meticulously.
  4. If no insects appear in the water, the broccoli may be used after running a strong stream of water through the head from top to bottom and from bottom to top.

Beware: Insects like company. If even one insect is found, the entire head must be checked most scrupulously.

Please note: that erudite displays should not include raw broccoli due to the impossibility of properly checking raw broccoli.

FROZEN BROCCOLI:

Uncertified chopped frozen broccoli is quite difficult to check and is therefore not recommended.

Inspection of uncertified frozen broccoli:

  1. Allow the broccoli to thaw completely. Parboiling is not necessary, as the broccoli is already blanched.
  2. Inspect each floret section:
    1. Look carefully at the under part (i.e., the branched area) of each floret. Pay careful attention to the Y-shaped crevices formed where the branches are joined.
    2. Spread each floret head apart and look inside the floret from the top down (i.e., through the green flower buds, into the branch area).
  3. If one or two insects are found, special care should be taken in examining the remaining sections of that package. Should a total of three insects be found, either in a particular section or spread among different sections of the same broccoli package, the entire package should be discarded. Beware: Insects like company. If even one insect is found, the entire head must be checked most scrupulously.

FRESH HERBS:

DESCRIPTION: Fresh Chives, basil, cilantro, dill, mint, oregano, parsley, rosemary, sage and thyme are often used as spices or garnishing.

Please Note: Curly leaf parsley is very difficult to check. It is therefore recommended that only flat leaf parsley be used.

INFESTATION: Aphids, thrips and other insects may often be found on the leaves and stems of these herbs. Insects tend to nestle in the crevices between the leaves and branches of herbs. These insects can curl up and stick to the leaf once they come in contact with water.

Vegetable spinners, power hoses, and light boxes are not always available in the home. We therefore recommend the following alternate procedure.

RECOMMENDATION: In order to determine if a particular bunch of herbs is infested prior to washing, bang it several times over a white cloth. This is most important when checking oregano, rosemary, sage and thyme. If only one or two insects are found proceed with the steps below. If three or more insects are detected in a particular bunch of herbs it should not be used.

INSPECTION:

  1. Soak herbs in a solution of cold water and vegetable wash. The proper amount of vegetable wash has been added when some bubbles are observed in the water. (In the absence of vegetable wash, several drops of concentrated unscented liquid detergent may be used. However, for health reasons, care must be taken to thoroughly rinse off the soapy solution.)
  2. Agitate the herbs in the soapy water, in order to loosen the sticking excretion of the bugs.
  3. Using a heavy stream of water, thoroughly wash off the soap and other foreign matter from the herbs.
  4. Check both sides of each leaf under direct light.
  5. If one or two insects are found, rewash the herbs.
  6. If any insects are found after repeating the agitation process twice, the entire bunch must be discarded.

Please note: To prepare herbs such as cilantro, dill, or parsley for use in soups wash them thoroughly and place in a cooking bag.