who's in the kitchen

Getting ready to cruise, Jerry doesn’t disappoint


Since I was about to leave on vacation, I figured this week’s column would be a straight recipe and that, when I return from vacation, I’d write about our cruise. But by the time we finished packing, Jerry had delivered enough material for this week’s article. 

Jerry laid out all of his clothing, and as I began packing I realized he had eight pairs of casual pants. By casual pants, I don’t mean slacks or Dockers. Those, Jerry would wear to a wedding if I let him. I mean the pants that are made with what I call parachute material. They have pockets, lots of pockets, everywhere. They put handyman pants to shame. He says they’re really comfortable. I say, “Good, because I’m glad you have a reason to wear those ugly pants!”  

Next came his shoes. There was the pair of ugly Crocks and the pair of even uglier ones. I’ve gotten used to the standard one-color Crocs, but Jerry bought special rugged ones built for climbing through mountains and water. Then there are the ones that come with laces and an assortment of ugly colors. I’m convinced these are created to annoy the wives and girlfriends of the guys who wear them. By the way, the one time he was actually climbing in the water on an island, he didn’t even wear them. When I asked why, he said because he knew I didn’t like them. I told him I didn’t like him to wear them when we go to the movies. When he’s hiking in the Dominican Republic he can wear them!

Then, the piece de resistance, he comes home and adds a pair of rugged mountain hiking, waterproof, basically everything proof boots. “What’s that for? We’re going to Miami, then a cruise to Aruba, Bonaire, Haiti and Curacao. Are you planning for a snow storm?” I asked. He replied, “You never know what type of weather it will be when we land.”

I took the pair of boots out of the suitcase as I said, “You walk to shul in the dead of winter when there is snow outside and the temps are 30 or below and you’re wearing a shirt and no jacket. You can manage to walk outside and step into our friend’s car that will be waiting for us!” He sheepishly grinned. 

Once packed we caught our flight to Miami, where we will be for two days till we board the cruise ship. 

Jerry went to pick up our rental car while I waited with the luggage. Expecting him to return with the Altima he reserved, I was shocked to see a Mustang convertible. He said, “You have to hear the roar of this engine. It purrs like a lion.”

Hmmm … is this the Jerry I’m married to? Yes, no worries, it is. He might be driving with the top down, but he’s still wearing his LL Bean dozen pocket pants, while speeding along at 49 MPH in a 65 MPH zone. 

Talking about convertibles, I found a great site on Facebook called Convertible Cooking. These recipes, by Leanne Vogel Vegan, are gluten free and dairy free.

Zucchini Apple Breakfast Cake with Cashew Glaze


2 cups finely ground almond flour (I use JK Gourmet)

1/2 cup quinoa flakes

1/2 teaspoon himalayan rock salt

1/2 teaspoon baking soda

1 teaspoon ground cinnamon

2 flax eggs (2 tablespoon freshly ground flax + 6 tablespoon water)

1/4 cup coconut oil, melted

4 Medjool dates, pitted

1/4 cup apple juice, room temperature

2–3 tablespoon yacon syrup (alternatively you can use maple syrup, I chose yacon for it’s slight molasses taste and lower GI)

3/4 cup zucchini, grated – squeeze out the moisture over the sink

1/4 cup apple, grated – leave the peel on! – squeeze out the moisture over the sink

1/4 cup pecans, roughly chopped

1/4 cup dried apple or diced apples

(I used regular salt instead of the Himalayan rock salt and maple syrup instead of the yacon syrup.)


1. Preheat oven to 350F and grease a 9×9 cake pan with coconut oil. (Alternatively you can use a 6 cup casserole dish.)

2. Prepare flax egg and set aside.

3. In a large bowl whisk together almond flour, quinoa flakes, salt, baking soda, and cinnamon.

4. Place coconut oil, dates, apple juice, and yacon in a blender. Process until smooth and transfer to the bowl of flour mix.

5. Stir mixture until well combined, then fold in zucchini, grated apple, pecans and dried apples.

6. Drop mixture into prepared pan, place on the middle rack of the oven and cook for 50-60 minutes.

7. Remove from oven and allow to cool for 20 minutes. Serve with almond milk and drizzle with cashew glaze.

Cashew Glaze aka Soy Free, Vegan Cream Cheese Icing!

Serves: 1.5 cups of icing

 Ditch the soy-full alternative cream cheeses out there and opt for a healthful version! This cream cheese icing will not disappoint. It’s perfectly sweet, creamy, and has just the right amount of bitter cream cheese taste you know and love. Inspired by Vegan Baking.net.


3/4 cup raw cashews, soaked in water for 4-6 hours

1 tablespoon coconut oil

3 tablespoon almond milk

2 teaspoon apple cider vinegar

1 teaspoon lemon juice

1/4 cup sucanat sugar, ground fine – I used a coffee grinder

1 teaspoon vanilla

2–4 tablespoon almond milk – depends on how thick or thin you want it. I used 4 tablespoon to make it into a thin glaze.


1. Line a 2-cup glass container with cheese cloth.

2. Combine cashews, coconut oil, almond milk, vinegar, and lemon juice in a blender. Process until smooth.

3. Pour the mixture into the container, cover and leave on the counter overnight.

In the morning, stir in sugar, vanilla, and almond milk. Refrigerate until ready to use.