“No flour, no Torah; no Torah, no flour.” – Pirkei Avot 3:21
During Passover, when many baking staples are prohibitted because they produce chametz (leavened or fermented wheat, barley, rye, oats, spelt), are kitniyot (avoided by Ashkenazim and some Sephardim; legumes including beans, peas and lentils and some seeds) or may contain one or the other, making the right substitutions can substantially increase the parve baker’s repertoire and improve overall results. They’re helpful throughout the year in a pinch.
My personal favorite: 1¾ cup confectioner’s sugar = 1 cup superfine sugar
Try these, too:
1 ounce baking chocolate (unsweetened) = 3 tablespoons cocoa powder plus 1 tablespoon oil or melted margarine
16 ounces semi-sweet chocolate = 6 tablespoons cocoa powder plus ¼ cup oil and 7 tablespoons sugar
14 ounces sweet chocolate (German type) = 3 tablespoons cocoa powder plus 2 tablespoons oil and 4½ tablespoons sugar
1 cup confectioners’ sugar = 1 cup sugar minus 1 tablespoon plus 1 tablespoon potato starch pulsed in a food processor or blender
1 cup honey = 1¼ cups sugar plus ¼ cup water
1 cup corn syrup = 1¼ cups sugar plus ¼ cup water, boiled until syrupy
1 cup vanilla sugar = 1 cup sugar with 1 split vanilla bean left for at least 24 hours in a tightly covered jar
1 cup all-purpose flour = 5/8 cup matzah cake meal or potato starch or a combination sifted together
1 cup cornstarch = 7/8 cup potato starch
1 teaspoon cream of tartar = 1½ teaspoons lemon juice or 1½ teaspoons vinegar
1 cup matzah meal = 3 matzot ground in a food processor
1 cup matzah cake meal = 1 cup plus 2 tablespoons matzah meal finely ground in a blender or food processor and sifted
1 cup (soy) milk = 1 cup water plus 2 tablespoon margarine or ½ cup fruit juice plus ½ cup water
1 egg = 1 egg white plus ½ teaspoon vegetable oil
Orange liqueur = frozen orange juice concentrate
All but “My personal favorite” excerpted from Eileen Goltz’s “Passover Recipe Substitutes,” OU Guide to Passover 5768/2008. Used with the author’s permission.
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