Pam Stein: In Pam’s Kitchen, Baking with Wine and Hanukkah Dishes

Taste Buds with Deb - Episode 34
December 8, 2023

Hanukkah is the perfect time to experiment with recipes and have a little fun. And, while you’re at it, why not try adding wine to some of your favorites!

Pam Stein, founder of In Pam’s Kitchen, started baking with wine in 2020. When Hampton Water Wine Co., co-founded by father-son team Jesse and Jon Bon Jovi, started offering virtual Happy Half Hours during the pandemic, it inspired her to start cooking and baking with wine.

“My go to is always a cookie,” Stein told the Journal. “I created this strawberry rosé cookie and sent it to the company. Jesse Bon Jovi made these on one of his Hampton Water Happy Half Hours and the rest is history.”

People started contacting Stein, asking her, ”What else can you do with and without alcohol?” Her @InPamsKitchen social media cooking demos and tips soon followed.

One of Stein’s favorite Hanukkah recipes is baked glazed strawberry rosé donuts with dipping sauce. You still have the jelly, It’s just outside of the donut. Recipe is below.

“In these doughnuts, [I use] a freeze-dried strawberry, because if you use a regular strawberry, you’ve really got to be mindful of the fact that there’s water in the berry,” she said.

In fact, if you’re doing any type of cooking, or especially baking, with alcohol, less is more. Fruit and other ingredients may add water to the recipe. The result may be a “runny mess.”

Typically, Stein advises, donuts use a half cup of wine, whereas a cookie may use three quarters of a cup, because there is more flour in the batter.

“It’s a lot of trial and error,” she said. “I have some other cookies that I’m experimenting with right now that use limoncello.”

These only use a couple tablespoons, because it’s a stronger alcohol taste. You don’t want to overpower what you’re doing. You want to enhance the flavor.

When I asked Stein if you could use any brand of wine for the donuts, she said it’s fine, as long as it’s a dry or very dry rosé.

“That’s another catch to cooking/baking with alcohol,” she said. “Rosés run a spectrum of super sweet to very dry. If it’s a sweet rosé it will definitely affect the taste of the recipe and the extra sugar could affect the leavening of the donut.”

Experimenting with recipes is one of Stein’s favorite things.

“I really like to just get in the kitchen and see what I can create,” she said. “I’ll start with a recipe that I’ve already created, where I have some basic measurements, and see what I [can] change.”

One of these experiments led to a jicama latke with bourbon applesauce. That recipe is below too.

The key is to take what you know, whether it’s your recipe, from a cookbook or a treasured family recipe – and just have fun.

“I’ve got recipes handwritten by my grandparents,” Stein said. “There’s something special about that.”

However, older recipes tend to be unhealthy.

“People used to cook – and some people still do – with a lot of schmaltz, fats, etc,” Stein said. “That becomes an opportunity to take these recipes, update them and make them a little healthier.”

Follow @InPamsKitchen on Instagram.

For the full conversation, listen to the podcast:

Watch the interview:

Strawberry Rosé Donuts

Yield: 12 donuts

1 3/4 cups all-purpose flour

2 tablespoons finely ground, freeze-dried strawberries

1/2 teaspoon baking soda

1 teaspoon baking powder

1/4 teaspoon Salt

1/2 cup sugar

2 tablespoons vegetable oil

1 large egg

1/2 cup plus 2 tablespoons Hampton Water Rosé wine

3 tablespoons Milk

For the Glaze:

1 cup powdered sugar

1 teaspoon finely ground, freeze-dried strawberries

2 tablespoons heavy whipping cream

1 tablespoon Hampton Water Rosé wine

Pink food coloring, as desired

To Make the Donuts:

Preheat the oven to 350 Degrees F. Lightly coat two six-cavity donut pans with nonstick cooking spray. Set aside.

In a medium bowl add the flour, ground strawberries, baking soda, baking powder and salt. Whisk to  combine. Set aside.

In another medium bowl add the sugar, vegetable oil, egg, wine and milk. Whisk until smooth.

Add the dry ingredients into the wet ingredients; stir to combine.

Using a scantily filled #16 cookie scoop (or scant 4 tablespoons), fill the cavities of the donut pans 2/3 way full. With a knife smooth the batter to make level.

Bake for 16-18 minutes*, or until a toothpick inserted in a donut comes out clean.

Remove from the oven and cool in a pan for 5 minutes. Transfer to a wire rack to cool completely.

To Make the Glaze:

In a small bowl add the powdered sugar, ground strawberries, whipping cream**, wine, and food  coloring to reach desired color. Whisk until smooth.

When donuts are cooled, dip each donut in the glaze and return to a wire rack for the glaze to set.

Store donuts in an airtight container for up to 5 days

*If using a mini donut maker, follow the manufacturer’s directions for baking time and amount of batter to use.

** For a thinner glaze, replace whipping cream with milk.

Rosé Dipping Sauce

Yield: 1 cup

1 jar strawberry preserves

2 – 3 tablespoons Hampton Water Rosé wine

In a small bowl stir together the strawberry preserves and 2 tablespoons of wine. If you prefer a thinner consistency to your sauce, add an additional tablespoon of wine.

Serve with strawberry rosé donuts.

Refrigerate leftovers in an airtight container for up to 10 days.

Jicama Latkes

Yield: 12 latkes

4 cups jicama, coarsely shredded

2/3 cup yellow onion, coarsely shredded

2 large eggs, slightly beaten

1/2 teaspoon salt

1-1/2 tablespoons fresh basil, chopped

1 teaspoon fresh parsley, chopped

1/4 cup cornstarch

Extra virgin olive oil

Line a rimmed baking sheet with a paper towel. Lay the shredded jicama on the paper towel and cover with another sheet of paper towel. Let stand to dry for 15 minutes.

In a large bowl add the jicama, onion, eggs, salt, basil, parsley and cornstarch. Stir to  combine.

Line a baking sheet with parchment paper. Spoon 1/4-cup mounds of the latke batter into the pan, about 2 inches apart; flatten slightly. Let stand for 5 minutes.

Lightly brush the tops of the latkes with olive oil.

Preheat the air fryer to 380 degrees for 3 minutes. Spray the inside of the air fryer with nonstick cooking  spray.

Place latkes in the air fryer. Do not overlap.

Cook for 12 minutes. Do not flip over.

Preheat the oven to 300 degrees.

Remove latkes from the air fryer and set on an oven-safe platter. Place the platter in the oven  to keep warm while you fry the remaining latkes.

Serve with the bourbon or rosé applesauce sauce.

Store any leftovers in an airtight container in the refrigerator for up to 3 days or wrap well and freeze for up to a month.

Bourbon Applesauce

Yield: About 3 cups

2 medium Granny Smith apples-peeled, cored and cut into quarters

2 medium Macintosh apples-unpeeled, cored and cut into quarters

1 tablespoon fresh lemon juice

1-1/2 tablespoons Bourbon (for Rosé applesauce, use 2 tablespoons of Hampton Water Rosé wine instead)

Add all ingredients in a high powered blender in the order listed and close the lid.

Begin  processing at the lowest speed and gradually increase to high. Blend for 1 minute or to  desired consistency.

Place applesauce in a serving bowl. Serve immediately or cover and refrigerate for up  to 3 days.

Debra Eckerling is a writer for the Jewish Journal and the host of “Taste Buds with Deb.Subscribe on YouTube or your favorite podcast platform. Email Debra: tastebuds@jewishjournal.com.

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