Wednesday, January 23, 2019

Many of us remember Tu B’Shevat as the day when we received plates full of varied dried fruits in school. There were prunes, dried apricots, dried apples, raisins, nuts and always that one long brown “thing” known as bokser that we all tried not to break our teeth on as we bit into it. That thing, we found out as we matured, is known as carob. It is frequently used in vegan recipes as a substitute for chocolate. In researching recipes with carob, all suggest using carob powder. As far as the writer knows, the only store in the neighborhood that sells carob powder is Whole Foods. The markets at this time of year in Israel show abundant stalls with “bokser” available, as the Middle East is where bokser grows. This year, Tu B’Shevat will be on Wednesday evening, January 30 and Thursday, January 31.

Following are two recipes using carob powder for those who would be interested in experimenting with new and different things as well as trying healthy food substitutes.

From the Full Helping: Carob Chia Pudding

  • 3 tablespoons chia seeds
  • 1 cup almond milk
  • 2 tablespoons carob powder
  • 1 teaspoon cinnamon


Blend the almond milk, carob powder and cinnamon in a blender until smooth.

Pour the carob mixture over the chia seeds. Stir and let sit for 5 minutes. Stir again. Wait another 5 minutes, stir once again, and then let the pudding sit for at least an hour before serving.

Serves 1 (whoever is the most daring in the family).

Honey-Carob Brownies from Anthony Chiffolo

(Makes 2 dozen)

Preheat oven to 300.

  • ¾ cup flour
  • 1 teaspoon baking powder
  • ¼ teaspoon salt
  • ¼ teaspoon nutmeg
  • ¼ cup oatmeal
  • ⅔ cup butter or margarine
  • ½ cup carob powder
  • 1 cup honey
  • 2 eggs
  • ½ cup brewed coffee
  • ½ cup pistachios chopped
  • 1 teaspoon almond extract

Sift together the flour, baking powder, salt and nutmeg. Stir in oatmeal. Melt the butter/margarine in a small pan over low heat. Add carob powder and honey and blend well, removing from heat. In a mixing bowl beat the eggs and gradually add the carob mixture. Add the coffee, pistachios and almond extract and mix well.

Pour into a greased 8” square pan and bake for about 35 minutes or until done.

By Nina Glick