Rosh Hashanah Recipes: Squash Melange and Panko-Crusted Salmon

Here is Part II of my recipes for Rosh Hashanah. B'tayavon (the Jewish version of 'Bon Appetit')!

Rosh Hashanah ends at sundown tonight, but you still have time to make these easy and quick dishes. Or, if your menu is already planned, you can save them for pre- or post-fast meals for Yom Kippur, which begins at sundown on October 7.

Squash mélange (serves four as a side dish)

When I was younger, my mom used to write letters to me at sleepaway camp and would tell- in excruciating detail- of the pounds and pounds of zucchini she’d picked. Whenever I make this dish now, I think of those letters and miss the fresh-picked squash. Thank goodness for the farmers’ market!


  • 1 medium green zucchini, sliced into quarters lengthwise and then into a ¼ -inch dice
  • 1 medium summer squash or yellow zucchini, sliced into quarters lengthwise and then into a ¼ -inch dice
  • ½ purple onion, diced
  • 2 – 3 cloves garlic peeled, smashed and coarsely chopped
  • 1 tablespoon extra virgin olive oil
  • 1 tablespoon fresh thyme
  • salt and pepper to taste


  1. Over medium-high heat, heat olive oil with garlic in it. Make sure not to let garlic burn.
  2. Add onion and sauté until softened and translucent, about 4 minutes.
  3. Add squash and toss with oil, garlic and onion.
  4. Cook squash and onion, stirring frequently, until squash is softened but not limp, about 8 minutes.
  5. Add fresh thyme cook for another 2 minutes.
  6. Add salt and pepper to taste, and serve.


Panko-crusted Salmon with Herbs (serves 6)

My mother, who is my culinary Yoda, makes this salmon dish for practically every Sabbath she and my father are here visiting us in Boston. In fact, she often makes it for just the two of them at home in Sacramento, CA- where I grew up. It is adapted from a recipe in the Boston Globe. If you use the honey mustard, it has a nice tie-in to the use of honey for Rosh Hashanah…but I prefer the Dijon. Note that depending on how hot your oven is, this may require extra time to cook to your liking; I like my salmon on the medium-rare side.


  • 2 tablespoons olive oil
  • 6 pieces thickly cut skinless, boneless salmon (each 6 ounces)
  • Salt and pepper, to taste
  • ¼ cup honey mustard or Dijon mustard
  • 1 tablespoon chopped fresh thyme
  • 1 cup panko bread crumbs
  • 3 tablespoons chopped Italian parsley
  • 3/4 teaspoon paprika


1. Set the oven at 400° (convection or regular). Set the salmon on foil-line baking sheet skin side down. Sprinkle with salt and pepper.

2. In a small bowl, combine the mustard and half of the thyme. In another small bowl, mix the panko with the remaining thyme, olive oil, parsley, and paprika. Add salt and pepper.

3. Using a small spoon, spread the mustard mixture on the salmon; top with the breadcrumb mixture.

4. Roast the salmon for 13 - 15 minutes or until it is almost completely firm to the touch and flakes when poked with a fork. Serve at once. 


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