Thanks to Gil Marks, author of Encyclopedia of Jewish Food for sharing this recipe!
Cholent kugel is a dumpling similar to a knaidel, dating back to the Twelfth Century, which is cooked in the Shabbos stew. In Eastern Europe, these dumplings were referred to as “Shabbos Ganif” (thief) since they “stole” flavor from the cholent. While this dish originated as a way for the poor to stretch their resources, it became a beloved component of Jewish cookery.
You’ll want to add more water than usual to the cholent pot since the dumplings absorb a lot of liquid. Place the dumplings in a single layer on top of the cholent once its already hot (late in the day Friday). By Shabbos morning, the dumplings will have formed a seal around the top of the pot resulting in a moist cholent below.
If you are preparing a small cholent, you can freeze half the prepared dumplings to save for next week.
5 thick slices challah or 2 large rolls, torn into small pieces
1 1/2 cups flour
1/4 cup oil
1 large egg
1 to 3 teaspoons paprika
About 1 teaspoon table salt or 2 teaspoons kosher salt
1/2 teaspoon pepper
- In a medium bowl, soak the challah in water until soft but not mushy, about 2 minutes.
- Drain and squeeze out the excess moisture. Place in a medium bowl and mash until smooth.
- Add the flour, oil, egg, paprika, salt, and pepper, adding more flour it too loose; the mixture should be able to hold its shape.
- Form into a log or balls and place it on top of hot cholent. Cook overnight.