This recipe comes from Rita Sasso, a Panamanian whose roots go back to Spain via Amsterdam and Curaçao, which had a significant Jewish population in the seventeenth and eighteenth centuries. Rita and I became pen pals when I published a recipe in my Reform Judaism magazine column that was given to me by a friend in Mexico. She recognized the recipe as her own. We have shared recipes ever since, and here is one she gave me with her permission to publish.
This recipe is an adaptation of the California-influenced Israeli charoset of the well-known kosher cooking instructor and cookbook author Judy Zeidler. This recipe truly tells a story since the ingredients are an amalgam of both Ashkenazic and Sephardic culinary traditions. Flavorful, intriguing, and a big hit at the seder.