Enjoying Bold Flavors While Keeping Kosher

Family gathering around dinner table.

Spice Is Your Friend With Kosher Cooking

There are two big misconceptions when it comes to kosher cooking — and we’re going to turn both of them on their head today.

Misconception #1: Kosher Cooking is Bland

Many of us grew up eating store bought matzo. While we’ll never turn down a warm bowl of matzo ball soup, we weren’t exactly craving PB&J on matzo bread. Especially for those who have just started keeping kosher, the word conjures up plain, simple cooking where the goal is nutrition more than an exciting meal. 

Well, just because you can’t mix meat and dairy doesn’t mean you can’t get creative. In fact, sometimes constrictions encourage you to be more creative! So let’s open up the spice rack and use ingredients like cayenne pepper and fresh oregano or select fresh produce like mango and avocado to add color to the table. 

There are some ingredients, such as sesame seeds, considered kitniyot. For certain sects of Judaism, foods that fall under the kitniyot banner are to be avoided during Passover. We’ve done our best to provide recipes from Robin’s Turning Up The Heat cookbook that will work with dietary restrictions, but make sure to double check the ingredients and adapt depending on your needs.

Misconception #2: Mayonnaise is Not Kosher

While mayonnaise is made from eggs, it is considered kosher (and gluten free)! See, eggs are considered pareve, meaning they are not dairy. Mayonnaise can be a great topping to add moisture to dishes. Even better, Dare to Be Different’s Spicy Mayo adds a certain zest to otherwise unassuming plates.

All of the recipes below benefit from a dollop of Spicy Mayo. So, whip up a batch using this simple recipe and let the bold flavors fill your palette!

Spicy Mayo


4 tablespoons mayonnaise

½ teaspoon sesame oil

½ teaspoon cayenne pepper

1 teaspoon Sriracha hot sauce


  1. Combine ingredients and mix well.

Sushi grade tuna steaks

Crusted Tuna with Spicy Mayo

Using Dare to Be Different Crumbs, this easy dinner transforms into a gluten-free masterpiece. One bite of tuna dipped in Spicy Mayo and you’ll know that this recipe is a keeper!


2 6 ounce tuna steaks, cut in 3 long pieces against the grain

Sesame teriyaki

1 cup Dare to Be Different Crumbs

Olive Oil

Spicy Mayo


  1. Roll tuna in sesame teriyaki, then bread it in Dare to Be Different Crumbs.
  2. Heat a thin layer of olive oil in a wide skillet over medium heat until very hot. Add tuna and cook for 30 seconds on each of its 4 sides. **For well done fish, cook for 1 minute on each side.
  3. Remove fish from skillet and with a sharp knife, cut into 1 inch pieces, resembling sushi bites.
  4. Dip in spicy mayo and enjoy!
Mango, avocado, corn salsa

Blackened Grouper with Mango Corn Salsa

We’re going to stick with seafood for the moment. Ideal for spring and summer, the mango corn salsa steals the spotlight for this blackened grouper. Similar to the crusted tuna, you can swap out the mango corn salsa for spicy mayo and enjoy this tasty dish all year long.


3 6 ounce pieces of grouper, butterflied



2 tablespoons chopped fresh oregano

1 teaspoon Italian Seasoning

¼ teaspoon cayenne pepper

½ teaspoon cumin

Cooking spray

Mango Corn Salsa

4 ears of corn, boiled for 8 minutes and remove corn off the cob

2 mangos, cubed

2 avocados, cubed

20 cherry tomatoes, halved

½ jalapeño, seeded and chopped

Olive oil

3 tablespoons lime juice




  1. Preparing and grilling the group: Coat barbeque with cooking spray and preheat barbeque. In a small bowl combine salt, pepper, oregano, ½ packet Italian seasoning, cayenne pepper and cumin and mix well. Brush each piece of grouper with spicy mayo then dip fish into seasoning mixture. Barbeque fish on a high flame for 5-7 minutes on each side.
  2. Mango corn salsa: In a bowl, combine corn, mango, avocado and cherry tomatoes. Add jalapeño, olive oil, lime juice, salt and pepper and toss.
  3. Serve grouper topped with Mango Corn Salsa.

Sushi grade rice

Crispy Rice with Guacamole and Eggplant Miso

Our third and final recipe today works great as a shared plate or appetizer. It’s a cinch to whip up, but if you’re looking to save even more time, swap out the crispy rice for some Dare to Be Different Crisps!


1 cup sushi rice

1 cup water

Vinegar Water

⅓ cup rice vinegar

3 tablespoons sugar

1 tablespoon Kosher salt

Mini muffin trays

Non-stick cooking spray

Vegetable oil


  1. Prepare rice: Combine water and rice in a pot and let sit for 20 minutes. Then, open fire and bring water to a boil. When water evaporates, remove from heat, cover the pot and allow rice to steam for 10 minutes.
  2. Prepare vinegar water: Combine vinegar water ingredients in a small saucepan and stir over a low fire until sugar dissolves. Fold mixture gently into cooked rice.
  3. Prepare rice molds: Pack warm rice into greased muffin trays, pressing down with your fingers to tightly fill the cups.
  4. Crisp the rice: Invert rice molds to a plate. In a small, deep skillet, heat enough oil to cover the rice mold to an adequate frying temperature (350ºF) so that a piece of rice from the mixture actively sizzles when dropped in; alternatively, a deep fryer may be used. Fry the rice 4 to 6 at a time, for about 2-3 minutes turning as needed to ensure even browning. Drain on paper towels. 


Spicy Mayo


Combine the following and toss well: 1 avocado, coarsely smashed, ½ jalapeño, seeded and chopped, 2 tablespoons lemon juice, salt, pepper.

Eggplant Miso

Combine ½ eggplant, peeled and cubed, and olive oil. Cook together over the stove until eggplant softens; mixing and mashing it as it softens. Add: 2 tablespoons shiro miso, 2 tablespoons agave, 1 tablespoon mirin, mix and mash together until mixture becomes creamy. Top with oven roasted tomatoes.

Keeping Kosher is a Breeze with Dare to Be Different

Want to find more recipes and info about kosher and gluten-free eating? Visit our online store to try more of our delicious range of broccoli and cauliflower based products. 

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