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How to Make Sephardic Charoset for Passover (Pesach)

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Seder Plate
Janis Christie/Photodisc/Getty Images
Charoset is an important part of the Passover seder, representing the mortar that the Israelite slaves used to make bricks in Egypt. The word "charoset" comes from the Hebrew word cheres (חרס), which means "clay." Ashkenazi versions are generally made of apples and either walnuts or almonds. This Sephardic version is made with dried fruits and wine.
Difficulty: Easy
Time Required: Active time: 10-15 minutes. Cooking time: about 1 hour.

Here's How:

  1. Assemble your ingredients. You will need:
    • 1/2 cup shredded coconut
    • 1/2 cup chopped walnuts or almonds
    • 1/4 cup granulated sugar
    • 2 teaspoons ground cinnamon
    • 1 cup raisins
    • 1 cup dried apricots, chopped
    • 1/2 cup prunes, chopped
    • 1/2 cup dried pears, chopped
    • 12 ounce jar cherry preserves
    • 1/4 cup Manischewitz or pomegranate juice
    For an allergy-safe version substitute chopped dates for the nuts and dried, chopped figs for the apricots.
  2. Chop all of the dried fruits into small pieces and mix with the coconut, nuts/dates, sugar and cinnamon.
  3. Place the mixture in a small stockpot and add enough water to just cover the mix.
  4. Bring it to a simmer over medium heat and simmer uncovered, stirring occasionally with a wooden spoon, for approximately 1 hour.
  5. When the mixture begins to thicken and come together, stir in the cherry preserves.
  6. Remove from heat; add the wine/juice and let it cool.
  7. Your charoset is now ready to use as part of your seder!

Tips:

  1. Don't raise the heat too high on your stove in the hopes of shortening the cooking time. Doing so will only dry out your charoset and may even result in some burning. Better to let the dried fruits slowly absorb the liquid.

What You Need

  • The ingredients listed above
  • A sharp knife
  • A medium to large pot, along with a cover for the pot.
  • A large spoon for stirring the mixture
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