Juliana and I have been waiting more than a year (actually, one year, one month and three days since we signed the contract on March 15, 2010) to make this announcement: our cookbook, The Lazy Gourmet: Magnificent Meals Made Easy, is now available in bookstores and online!
Like our blog, The Lazy Gourmet is meant to be a hip, fun, and useful guide for anyone—even those short on time, patience, skill, or experience—who dreams of dazzling friends and loved ones with fabulous home-cooked fare. With more than 125 easy recipes for fabulous, party-worthy dishes, the book conquers the misguided belief that preparing an elegant meal requires spending hours—or days—in the kitchen. With these deceptively easy recipes, and a bevy of useful tips and tricks, The Lazy Gourmet shows that anyone can prepare delightfully simple yet surprisingly delicious and sophisticated meals that are certain to impress.
Celebrate today by cooking up a bit of the addictive Chocolate-Hazelnut Matzo Toffee (aka “Passover crack”) you see in the picture above. It’s so easy, you hardly even need a recipe. Sure, it’s not the most elegant dessert, but we think the hazelnuts are a classy touch. And besides, we promise you, one bite and no one will be dissing it for not being “gourmet enough.”
- 4 or 5 matzos
- 1 cup (2 sticks) unsalted butter or Passover margarine
- 1 cup (packed) brown sugar
- pinch of salt
- 1 cup semi-sweet chocolate chips
- ½ cup finely chopped hazelnuts
- Preheat oven to 350ºF and line a large rimmed baking sheet with layer of aluminum foil topped with a layer of parchment paper.
- Place matzos in a single layer on the prepared baking sheet, breaking as necessary to fill the pan completely with a single layer of matzo.
- In a heavy-bottomed pot over medium heat, stirring constantly, bring butter, sugar, and salt to a boil. Continue to boil, stirring constantly, until mixture begins to thicken, about 3 to 4 minutes more.
- Pour mixture over the matzo on the baking sheet, smoothing with the back of a spoon or a heat-resistant spatula, to spread distribute evenly and cover the matzo completely.
- Bake in preheated oven for about 15 minutes (check frequently to make sure it isn’t burning and reduce heat if necessary to keep from burning).
- Remove from oven and immediately turn oven off. Sprinkle chocolate chips evenly over the top and put the pan back into the turned-off oven for 3 to 5 minutes.
- Remove from oven and spread the chocolate out into an even layer.
- Sprinkle chopped hazelnuts over the top.
- Chill in freezer until completely set, then break into pieces.
- Store in the refrigerator and bring to room temperature before serving.