Thinking Holiday Meal Ideas? Chef Toben Kochman Shares Tasty Easter & Passover Recipe Ideas

This Spring celebrate the holidays with a festive and of course delicious menu that’s perfect for both Easter and Passover. Toronto’s Chef Toben Kochman shares his delicious and creative meal plan especially for you this Holiday Season!

Toben’s Rabbit Pot Pie with Buttered with Spring Vegetables & Salad

Makes 4-6 Pies

Rabbit Pot Pie Recipe by Chef Toben for Village Living Magazine Midtown Toronto


·         6 individual oven proof casserole dishes ·         6 cups of braised rabbit pie filling (see recipe below) ·         4-6 rounds of frozen puff pastry, punched 1inch beyond the circumference of the casserole dishes being used ·         2 eggs, whisked ·         3 cups of frozen peas, ·         3 small carrots, peeled and sliced into rounds ·         2 TBSP of butter ·         ½ TBSP of chopped parsley ·         ½ TBSP of chopped chives ·         1 cup of green kale, chopped ·         ½ cup of frisee lettuce, chopped ·         ½ of a lemon, juiced ·         1 TBSP of truffle olive oil ·         Salt and pepper to taste ·         12 whole sage leaves


1)      Preheat oven to 425° F. 2)      Place the oven proof casserole dishes on a baking sheet. Spoon the braised rabbit pie filling into each of the dishes filling about 90 % or leaving     1 cm clearance from the top. 3)      Brush the edge of all 6 pieces of puff pastry with the whisked egg wash and place this side over all of the filled ramekins, pinching with fingers to seal around the casserole dishes. 4)      Brush the top of the sealed puff pastry with egg wash, season with salt/pepper and place 2 whole sage leaves on each. 5)      Bake in the oven until pastry is golden and has risen, approximately 15- 20 minutes. 6)      While the pot pies are baking, assemble the garnish by tossing the kale and the frisee with the lemon juice and truffle oil. Once the pies are ready, remove from the oven and transfer each to liner plates, top with the salad and serve immediately. Rabbit Pot Pie Filling Makes enough filling for individual pies


·         1 whole fresh rabbit, (chicken may be substituted) ·         2 cups of dry white wine ·         8 cups of chicken stock ·         1 large white onion, peeled and thinly sliced ·         10 sprigs of thyme ·         1 bunch of sage ·         3 TBSP of extra virgin olive oil ·         1 TBSP of salt ·         ½ TBSP of ground black pepper


·         3 TBSP of extra virgin olive oil ·         ½ cup of butter ·         1 cup of flour ·         1 whole carrot, peeled and diced ·         1 whole parsnip, peeled and diced ·         1 whole white onion, peeled and diced ·         2 stalks of celery, diced ·         4 cloves of garlic, chopped ·         1 TBSP of thyme leaves, chopped ·         1 TBSP of sage leaves chopped


1)      Preheat oven to 325°F. 2)      Preheat a heavy bottomed oven proof braising pot (like a Dutch oven), on medium high heat. 3)      Season the outside of the whole rabbit with salt and pepper, add the oil into the pot and begin searing 1 side of the whole rabbit until an even brown crust develops. Flip to the other side and repeat. 4)      Remove the whole rabbit from the pot and set aside. With the pot still on medium heat, add in the sliced onions and sweat out for 5-7 minutes or until the onions soften and have taken on light color. 5)      Deglaze with white wine being sure to scrape up all brown bits from the bottom of the pot, and reduce this liquid by half. 6)      Add in the chicken stock, the thyme and sage and the seared rabbit. Bring to a simmer, cover with lid and transfer to preheated oven and continue to braise until the rabbit meat just starts to pull away from the bones (approximately 1 hour). 7)      Remove the pot from oven and take out the braised rabbit, picking away the meat from the bones, strain off the braising liquid and set aside. 8)      In a medium pot, on medium heat, sweat the carrot, parsnip, white onion, celery, garlic, chopped thyme and chopped sage until they have just started to soften, remove from the pot and set aside. 9)      In the same pot, make a roux by whisking together the flour and butter and allow to cook for 2-4 minutes, add in the reserved liquid from the braised rabbit, 1 cup at a time, while still whisking until fully combined. 10)  Bring to a simmer and allow to cook for 20 minutes. Add in the rabbit meat and cooked vegetables, adjust seasoning as necessary and set aside until ready to bake and assemble.

Toben’s Lemon Curd Tarts

Makes 6 individual tarts


·         6 individual pastry crust tart shells, baked off according to package directions ·         1 cup of freshly squeezed lemon juice ·         1 cup of granulated sugar ·         4 whole eggs ·         Zest of 2 lemons ·         4 TBSP of butter ·         1 cup of blueberry compote (see recipe below) ·         Few pieces of baked meringues*optional (see recipe below)


1)      In a medium bowl on a double boiler, mix the lime juice, sugar, eggs and lime zest with a whisk. Continue to whisk until mixture begins to thicken. 2)      Once the mixture has thickened to curd consistency, whisk in butter (curd should be thick but not lumpy). 3)      Remove from the heat and strain through a fine mesh strainer into a clean mixing bowl. Place a sheet of saran wrap right over the surface of the curd and allow to cool completely in the fridge before use. 4)      Fill each of the pastry shells with approximately ½ cup of the lemon curd, garnish with a dollop of the blueberry compote and a few pieces of the baked meringues.

Blueberry Compote

Yields approximately 2 cups


·         3 cups of frozen blueberries ·         ½ cup of granulated white sugar ·         ¼ TSP of ground cinnamon ·         Zest and juice of 1 lemon ·         2 cups of water


1)      In a mediums sauce pot, combine all ingredients except the zest and juice of lemon and bring to a boil. 2)      Allow to simmer on medium-low heat until compote consistency has been reached, approximately 20-30 minutes (compote should be thick, but not gummy). 3)      Fold in the juice and zest of lemon, allow to cool completely in fridge overnight before using. Whipped and Baked Meringue


·          3 egg whites ·          ¼ TSP of cream of tartar ·          ½ cup of sugar


1)      Preheat oven to 200°F. 2)      Using an electric mixer on medium high speed, mix the egg whites with cream of tartar until medium peaks are formed. 3)      Turn speed down to low and continue to whisk while slowly streaming in the sugar. Once all the sugar is incorporated, turn the speed to high until firm shiny peaks are formed. 4)      Transfer the meringue mix to a piping bag with a medium round tip and pipe small mounds on a parchment lined baking sheet. 5)      Bake in oven for approximately 20 minutes or until the meringues are firm but not browned.
Toben Kochman, Executive Chef and Founder of Toben Food by Design Chef Toben Kochman started his journey at Cordon Bleu School of Culinary Arts in Paris. Afterwards he worked at the acclaimed restaurant, Apiscius in Paris, and then at Susur in Toronto. In 2005 Chef Toben and his sister launched Toben Food by Design.  
Photo Credits: Toben Food by Design

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