Latkes for Jewish New Year

Diane WolffHow To, Recipes, Thoughts Comments

Get Out Your Spiralizer and Twist Your Wrist Latkes are potato pancakes. They are traditional at Hanukkah, but may be eaten at any holiday. They are usually made with russet potatoes, but you can make a substitution in this recipe. I make sweet potato latkes and include two tablespoons of lightly sautéed scallions. I like the balance of the savory and sweet. This is a tweaked version of the traditional recipe, flash roasted in the oven instead of shallow fried in chicken fat or schmaltz. If you use lower sodium … Read More

A Hanukah Menu from the Jewish Kitchen

Diane WolffHow To, Recipes, Thoughts Comments

As Hanukah begins on December 24th in 2016, I’ve included a recipe for turkey, plus three fantastic recipes for side dishes from the Jewish kitchen. These are perfect for puree. These are dishes that can accompany a classically roasted turkey. If you have a family, roast the turkey with your family, as usual. Or, you can get a roast breast or roast leg of turkey from the deli counter of your supermarket by special order. In my eBook, The Purees of Fall: Delicious Under Pressure, I include a recipe for … Read More

Post-Bariatric Surgery Recipes Made Easy with the Essential Puree Guidebook

Diane WolffAdvice, How To, Thoughts Comments


Sometimes bariatric surgery, or gastric bypass, saves a person from the health complications caused by morbid obesity. Success depends on the post-op period when a person must learn new eating habits. The post-op period is a time for a clean diet and a new start. Post-Surgery Diet Recipes Though widely successful, those who are in the post-surgery recovery period for gastric bypass or bariatric surgery can struggle to maintain proper eating habits due to the more restrictive diet, including the need for liquid or pureed foods. Many find this to … Read More

Herbed Brisket with Chickpea Risotto

Diane WolffEquipment, How To, Recipes, Thoughts Comments

A New Year Menu from the Essential Puree Jewish Kitchen My favorite cook for clean eating recipes from the Jewish kitchen is Tori Avey. Tori has created a delicious risotto for the Rosh Hashanah meal. I adapt it for the dysphagia kitchen in the following manner. Tori makes her risotto on the stovetop and her brisket in the oven. Both of these are long cooking methods. For the dysphagia kitchen, I suggest shortening the cooking time with an electric pressure cooker. The flavor and the texture are perfect for puree.  … Read More

Introducing the Foolish: Greek Yogurt with Warm Black and Blue Sauce

Diane WolffHow To, Thoughts Comments

A Quickies for Caregivers Sweet Snack: Ready in Twenty Minutes The Fool is the easiest and most basic dessert in the world. It can also serve as a snack at four o’clock in the afternoon, when there’s a dip in energy and a person might want a light snack. This combination of blueberries and blackberries is a treat for the eyes as well as for the tastebuds. I call this version a Foolish because a Fool, the almost abandoned traditional English dessert, is properly made of a layer of fruit … Read More

Ripe Plantain Arepas: The Latin Kitchen Series

Diane WolffHow To, Recipes, Thoughts Comments

Arepas de Plátano Maduro The arepa is one of the most popular foods in Colombia and Venezuela. It is probably equivalent to the English muffin or the scone but with a Latin flavor profile. This is a breakfast food, with a flavor like a banana biscuit with savory to balance the sweetness.  It can also be served as a side dish for meat or poultry. The arepa is made from ripe plantains. It is also made with masarepa, or corn flour. (available at specialty markets or from Amazon). The arepa … Read More

B.D.’s Secret Pink Remoulade Recipe

Diane WolffRecipes Comments

pick remoulade puree recipe

Further Adventures in Sauces: As the reader of Essential Puree knows, the sauce is the big secret to making outstanding puree. The sauce, as I never tire of saying, is the medium of flavor. This daring pink remoulade is perfect for summer dishes of all kinds. Use pink remoulade on julienned celery root for the classic French salad. It is excellent as a substitute for coleslaw when used on a combo of julienned jicama, Asian pear and apple (granny smith or gala), with a little carrot thrown in for color. Deelish … Read More

How to Calculate Nutritionals for your Own Pureed Recipes

Diane WolffAdvice, How To Comments

food tracking software

Know Thy Ingredients is a motto of Essential Puree. There is a terrific tool on the U. S. Department of Agriculture website that allows the cook to calculate the nutritionals for home recipes. As nutrition and hydration are key components for the dysphagia patient, this is an excellent resource. Go to the Supertracker website and enter your recipe, ingredients and amounts. You enter the ingredients one by one, and the Supertracker calculates the nutritionals for you. (To get to the site, use the button below and once on the page, … Read More

Eating With Your Eyes

Diane WolffThoughts Comments

Welcome to the Essential Puree System. This is my first blog. I like to think that running a puree kitchen is a fun adventure. Cooking is creative. Yet it must be admitted that one encounters a problem with the dysphagia patient, (one with swallowing difficulties). The pureed entree, as a friend of mine said, looks like a bowl of oatmeal. The look of the diet could be boring over time. How to get around this problem was my first big challenge in preparing meals for my mom. She was a … Read More