Rosh Hashanah/Yom Kippur

Honey Date Cake

We had a delicious honey date cake for dessert during Rosh Hashanah.  I usually don’t like honey cakes, but I actually made a big mistake while making the cake and added twice the honey than I was supposed to.  I made other adjustments to the recipe to counteract the extra honey and the cake was honestly the best honey cake I have ever had.  And it was definitely honey-forward!


I did not expect this to be very good, so I did not take photos.  But this was good enough that I want to share it with you anyway.  At least we have a picture of the finished product.

Honey Date Cake

Slightly adapted from Date Honey Nut Cake by Tori Avey


3/4 cup (6 oz) whole pitted dates

1 1/4 cup flour

1 tsp baking powder

3/4 tsp cinnamon

1/2 tsp salt

Pinch of nutmeg

3/4 cup canola oil 

1/4 cup brown sugar

1/2 cup honey

2 eggs (from Farmer Kim)

1 tsp vanilla

1/2 cup chopped walnuts

Nonstick cooking spray



Preheat oven to 325F. Coat a loaf pan with cooking spray.

Place the dates in a bowl and cover them with very hot water. Let the dates soak while you prepare the cake batter.


In a large mixing bowl, whisk together flour, baking powder, cinnamon, salt, and nutmeg. In a medium mixing bowl, whisk together vegetable oil, brown sugar, honey, eggs, and vanilla.


Pour the wet ingredients into the dry ingredients and stir till a thick batter forms.


Drain the water from the dates and chop them into small chunks. Fold the walnuts and date chunks into the batter. Pour the batter into loaf pan.


Bake for about 1 hour, or until a toothpick inserted in the center comes out clean. Remove from oven and set on a wire rack to cool. Enjoy!

Makes 1 loaf-sized cake, serves 8.



Categories: Dessert, Jewish Holiday, Kosher, Recipe, Rosh Hashanah/Yom Kippur | 1 Comment

Sweet Potato Kugel

We had a bountiful sweet potato harvest this year.  Not only are they plentiful, they are huge! So I guess you will be seeing a bunch of sweet potato posts this fall and winter.


To start off with, I made a sweet potato kugel for Rosh Hashanah.



I loved the flavor, but the cayenne pepper was a bit much for my 7 year old, so you can, and probably should, omit that if you make this for children. But the cayenne really did give it a nice kick!


The kugel called for 2 pounds of sweet potatoes.  Here they are.  As you can see, this didn’t even make a dent in my supply, and we will be eating the kugel for days. Man, the sweet potatoes really are going to last through the winter.



Sweet Potato Kugel

slightly adapted from Jewish Food: The World at Table by Matthew Goodman

6 Tbsp canola oil

3 large onions, halved lengthwise then thinly sliced

2 pounds sweet potatoes, peeled (from the garden)

1 pound russet potatoes, peeled (from the garden)

3 eggs, lightly beaten (from Farmer Kim)

2 Tbsp honey

3/4 cup matzoh meal

1/2 tsp cayenne pepper (optional)

1/2 tsp ground cumin

2 tsp salt


Heat 3 Tbsp of the oil in a large skillet over medium-low heat.  Add the onions and cook, stirring often, until soft and lightly colored. Remove from the heat and set aside.


Preheat the oven to 400F.  Lightly grease a 9×13 baking dish.

Grate the sweet potatoes and russet potatoes. Place in a large bowl.


Add the rest of the oil, the onions, eggs, honey, matzoh meal, cayenne, cumin and salt. Stir to combine.


Pour the mixture into the prepared dish and smooth the top. Bake until the kugel is well browned on top, about an hour.  Cool for 10 minutes to make it easier to cut. Serve warm.




Serves 8 – 12

Categories: Jewish Holiday, Kosher, Recipe, Rosh Hashanah/Yom Kippur, Sweet Potatoes, Vegetarian | Tags: | 2 Comments

Date Glazed Orange Chicken

I want to share a recipe I used for one of our Rosh Hashanah dinners. It has wonderful flavors, but was simple to make so it could be made for any dinner where you want to enjoy the flavors of dates and oranges.   It does take a little prep ahead of time.  The first thing you need to make is date honey syrup.  I am providing the link because other than a picture of my dates, there is not much to share in making this and Tori Avey does a very good job in her post.

Dates are decidedly NOT local in Delaware, but I do try to bring home a large supply of dates when I travel to the Middle East or California.  We typically have a suitcase that is half-filled with dates and nuts – it is rather amusing.

The chicken needs to marinate overnight (or at least for three hours). So plan on prep time the day before. But day of is very simple.  You line your pan with orange slices and fresh thyme…

Add the chicken and roast it, basting every 15 minutes for a total of about 50 minutes.

Add some rice and a salad and, voila!, you have a dinner!

Date Glazed Orange Chicken

from Tori Avey

6 large chicken pieces, bone in, skin on (I prefer leg/thigh quarters)

1/2 cup freshly squeezed orange juice

1/4 cup hot sauce

1/2 cup + 3 tbsp extra virgin olive oil

3 tbsp mustard (Dijon or yellow)

2 tsp orange zest

Salt and black pepper

Large bunch fresh thyme, divided (from the garden)

3 large navel oranges, divided

2/3 cup date honey syrup – click here for recipe


Whisk together orange juice, hot sauce, olive oil, mustard, orange zest, 1/2 tsp salt and pinch of black pepper to form a marinade. Place chicken pieces into a plastic zipper bag or into a ceramic or glass dish. Pour marinade over the chicken and add 6-8 sprigs of thyme. Seal the bag (if using) or cover the dish with plastic wrap. Marinate in the refrigerator at least 3 hours, up to overnight.

Preheat oven to 475 degrees F. Remove chicken from marinade and discard the excess marinade. Heat 1/2 cup olive oil in a nonstick skillet over medium until hot but not smoking. Add the chicken pieces skin side down, three pieces at a time, and let them cook for 5-10 minutes until the skin is nicely browned. Remove from skillet and repeat with remaining 3 pieces. Remove the skillet from heat.

Lightly grease a roasting pan or dish. Slice two of the large navel oranges into rounds and lay them on a single layer, covering the bottom of the pan. Sprinkle some thyme sprigs into the bottom of the roasting pan as well.

Place the chicken back into the pan, skin side up. Brush each piece generously with date honey.

Cover the pan tightly with foil and bake 45 minutes, basting the chicken every 15 minutes with more date honey.

After 45 minutes the chicken should be cooked through and internal temperature should be at least 165 degrees F (I usually cook it to 170). If not, re-cover and continue to cook until it reaches temperature.

Uncover the chicken. Baste once more with remaining date honey. increase heat to 500 degrees F and cook for 5-10 more minutes until the date glaze is bubbly and shiny. Keep a close eye to make sure the glaze doesn’t burn, it contains a lot of natural sugar and will blacken if you’re not careful.

Slice up the remaining orange. Serve each piece of chicken garnished with a fresh orange slice. Enjoy!

Serves 6.

Categories: Kosher, Main Dish, Recipe, Rosh Hashanah/Yom Kippur | Tags: | 1 Comment

Cousin Bentzi’s Noodle Kugel

How many ways can you say “yum!”? I think this may be my favorite noodle kugel recipe ever.

I guess is should give you some context. My cousin Bentzi lives in Israel and we have never met. But we have bonded over our mutual love of cooking and feeding people.

He sent me his recipe for noodle kugel, which was translated from Hebrew. As I was about to make it, I realized that I did not understand some of the translation, so I have probably tweaked his recipe a bit.  I guess this is my version of Bentzi’s noodle kugel.

It was a hit even with family members who do not usually like noodle kugel.


Cousin Bentzi’s Noodle Kugel

1 lb package of wide egg noodles

1 stick butter, softened and cut into small cubes

3 eggs, beaten (locally raised)

4 – 5 Tbsp apricot preserves (or plum or peach)

1/2 Tbsp cocoa

2 – 3 Tbsp flour

1 cup walnuts, chopped

1 apple, peeled and grated (locally grown)

1 cup raisins, prunes and dried apricots, coarsely cubed (I also used dried pears)

3/4 cup sugar

1/8 – 1/4 cup cinnamon-sugar for sprinkling on top 


Preheat the oven to 350F.  Line a baking dish with parchment paper (you can use either a 9×13 pan or loaf pans)

Cook the noodles according to package directions (til al dente). Drain and place in a large bowl with the butter (you can also toss them with a little oil first, I didn’t and the noodles did not stick together).

Add all the other ingredients except the cinnamon sugar. Mix well.

Transfer to the baking dish. Sprinkle with cinnamon sugar.

Bake until a deep golden brown, 30 – 35 minutes.

Serve warm or at room temperature and enjoy!

Categories: Apples, Kosher, Pasta, Recipe, Rosh Hashanah/Yom Kippur, Vegetarian | Leave a comment

Challah Project # 11 – Raisin Honey Challah

After making what we decided was the perfect challah for Rosh Hashanah (Brown Sugar Challah with Pomegranate Glaze) about 3 weeks before Rosh Hashanah, I couldn’t make it again for the actual holiday, it was too soon for a repeat. So, I decided to try an experiment for our ‘real-time’ holiday challot.

I had plenty of high-gluten flour in my pantry that needed to be used.  I had bought it by mistake and have been trying to figure out what I should use it for. I found some recipes for challah that used high-gluten flour, so I decided to try it in this relatively simple raisin challah and see how the texture would be.  It was beautiful!  Such a a great challah!

And absolutely delicious when paired with the honey I brought back from my trip to Norway!

A great way to start our new year, Shana Tova to all!


Raisin Honey Challah

Adapted from Miriam Szokovski‘s Round Raisin Challah with Sweet Crumb Topping


2 Tbsp dry yeast

2 1/2 cups very warm water

3 large eggs, beaten, with a little (about 1/2 egg-worth) removed (locally raised)

5 Tbsp honey

1/2 cup canola oil

1 Tbsp salt

1/2 cup raisins

8 – 9 cups flour (I used high gluten flour)

Egg wash

1 egg (locally raised)

Crumb topping

1/4 cup flour

1/4 cup sugar

1/2 tsp. vanilla

2 1/2 Tbsp canola oil


In a very large bowl, dissolve yeast in 1 cup warm water and let sit about 15–20 minutes until slightly frothy.

Add the rest of the ingredients and half the flour. Mix until a loose batter forms. Add the rest of the flour a couple of cups at a time, until the dough is soft but not sticky. Cover the dough with plastic wrap and put it in the refrigerator overnight (or a warm place to rise for about 1½ hours). Dough should double in size.

Punch the dough down and let it rest for 10 minutes. Divide into 2. Roll each half out into a long rope.  Form into a round spiral loaf or braid and then form into a round loaf.

Place loaves on a parchment sheet-lined cookie sheets and let rise for another 40 minutes.

Make the sweet crumb topping by putting the flour and sugar into a bowl. Slowly add the vanilla and oil, mixing with a spoon, or your fingertips until you it reaches crumb consistency.

Egg wash the loaves and sprinkle with crumb topping.

Bake at 375° F for approximately 45 minutes. Loaves should be golden brown and firm on the bottom. Enjoy!

Makes 2 round loaves.

Categories: Bread, Kosher, Recipe, Rosh Hashanah/Yom Kippur, Vegetarian | Tags: | Leave a comment

Honey Cookies

I love Rosh Hashanah. And I love eating honey: honey and apples, honey in the challah, honey on the challah, honey apple cake, honey on my chicken… honey, honey, honey!

Of course that also means local honey. Luckily we have a lot of local honey to choose from. These are just a few that happen to be in my cupboard.


So, when I found this recipe for Honey Biscuits (what we would call cookies) on the Monday Morning Cooking Club website, I was very excited.  But I did not end up being the one to make the cookies, my daughter did.  Then Cam helped her with cutting out the cookie shapes. (Truth be told, this was last year, when Arielle was still home for the holidays, this year she had to return to Israel too early).


I love them!  Perfect with a cup of tea or coffee.


Ruth’s Honey Biscuits

2.12 oz Unsalted Butter at room temperature

3/4 cup caster sugar

1/2 cup honey 

1 egg 

14.82 oz Plain (All purpose) Flour (3 scant cups)

teaspoon baking soda

1/2 teaspoon ground cinnamon

pinch Ground Cloves

1 egg white lightly whisked for glazing

Preheat oven to 350F. Line two baking trays.
In an electric mixer, cream the butter and sugar until pale and creamy. Warm the honey gently in a saucepan or in the microwave until lukewarm, then add to the butter mixture. Add the egg and mix well.
Sift together the flour, bicarbonate of soda, cinnamon and cloves. Beat into the butter mixture on a low speed until a soft dough forms. Shape the dough into a ball, cover with plastic wrap. Rest in the freezer for one hour, or the fridge for 2 to 3 hours.
Roll out the dough on a lightly floured counter to about 5 mm thick, then cut out shapes with a biscuit cutter and
place on the prepared trays, well spaced to allow for spreading.
Brush with the egg white and bake for 10 – 12 minutes or until golden brown.
Cool on the baking trays. Store in an airtight container for up to one month.
 Makes about 30 biscuits/cookies.



Categories: Dessert, Jewish Holiday, Kosher, Rosh Hashanah/Yom Kippur | Leave a comment

The Challah Project #10 – Brown Sugar Challah with Pomegranate Glaze …Perfect for the High Holidays

I really enjoy making special Challahs for the High Holidays.  Two of my favorites are Date Challah and Apple Cinnamon Challah; but now we may have a new favorite – Brown Sugar Challah with Pomegranate Glaze!

It is beautiful on the outside and sweet and enticing on the inside.It captures the wishes for a sweet year and just brings a smile to the face of everyone who eats it.Can you tell we really liked this? The three of us finished it off in a day!

Brown Sugar Challah with Pomegranate Glaze

from Molly Yeh

3/4 c warm water
1 tbsp dry yeast
1 1/4 c + 2 tsp brown sugar
3 c all-purpose flour, plus more for dusting
1 tsp kosher salt
A pinch of cardamom
1/3 c vegetable oil
3 eggs
2 c powdered sugar
2-3 tbsp pomegranate juice

In a measuring cup or small bowl, combine the water, yeast, and 2 teaspoons of brown sugar. Let sit for a few minutes until it gets foamy on top.

Meanwhile, in a large bowl or bowl of a stand mixer fitted with the dough hook, mix together 1/4 cup of brown sugar, the 3 cups of flour, salt, and cardamom. In a separate bowl, mix together the oil and 2 of the eggs.

When the yeast has proofed, add it to the dry ingredients, immediately followed by the egg mixture. Mix to combine and knead, either on a floured surface, or with the dough hook for 7-10 minutes, adding more flour as needed, until smooth.

Transfer to an oiled bowl, cover with a damp towel, and let rise until doubled in size, about 2 hours. (or cover it with plastic wrap and put it in the fridge overnight, like I did).

Turn onto a lightly floured surface, and roll the dough out into a large (approximately 10-inch by 14-inch) rectangle. Sprinkle on the remaining cup of brown sugar, and roll it up like a jelly roll.

Pinch the edges to seal them shut and then coil into a swirl shape with the seam side down. Place it on a baking sheet lined with parchment.

Beat together the remaining egg with a splash of water and brush it lightly onto the challah. Let it rise for 30 more minutes while you preheat the oven to 375.

Bake the challah until it’s golden brown and cooked through, about 35-40 minutes. Because this challah is round, it will take slightly longer to bake than a typical loaf. It may look done on the outside after about 20 minutes, but it will still be raw on the inside. If you’d like, you can tent the loaf with foil after 20 minutes to prevent it from getting too done on top.

When it’s done baking, let it cool and make the glaze.

To make the glaze, mix the powdered sugar with 2 tablespoons of pomegranate juice. Add more until you reach your desired consistency. Drizzle or pour it on your loaf and enjoy!

Makes 1 loaf.

Categories: Bread, Jewish Holiday, Kosher, Recipe, Rosh Hashanah/Yom Kippur, Vegetarian | 4 Comments

A Tale of Two Kugels

Sweet or Savory? Which kugel should rule?

This holiday I made a savory kugel for Rosh Hashanah

IMG_7923.JPGand my mother’s sweet pareve kugel for Yom Kippur.IMG_7998.JPGThe reviews are in… The savory Salt and Pepper Kugel was a great side dish.  It stood up well to foods with bold flavors and sauces.  And the paprika on top was a nice touch. The sweet Mom’s Noodle Kugel was an equal hit, standing up well to brisket and beckoning the next day for lunch. so the winner was…both!

Salt and Pepper Noodle Kugel


1 12 ounce package of wide or extra wide egg noodles

2 Tbsp minced garlic (from the garden)

1 Tbsp garlic powder

1 1/2 tsp salt

1 tsp pepper

6 eggs (from Powers Farm)


3-4 Tbsp olive oil


Preheat oven to 375 degrees. When oven is heated, add 3-4 heaping Tbsp of olive oil to baking dish and place pan in oven for the oil to heat. This step will make for a crispier kugel.

Bring a large pot of salted water to boil. Cook noodles as directed on package, around 7-8 minutes. Drain and set aside.

While noodles are cooking, whisk together eggs, garlic, garlic powder, salt and pepper.


Add cooked noodles to egg mixture and mix gently until completely coated.


Remove baking dish with hot oil from the oven and add noodles to the dish. It will sizzle slightly – this is a good thing. Sprinkle top with paprika.


Bake for 40 minutes uncovered or until noodles are desired crispiness.


Serve warm or room temperature. Enjoy!

IMG_7923.JPGServes 8 – 10.


Mom’s Noodle Kugel

1/2 -3/4 lb medium-wide egg noodles

3 eggs, separated

1 cup raisins

1/2 – 3/4 cup sugar

1 – 2 tsp cinnamon

1/2 tsp nutmeg



Preheat oven to 350F.  Grease a 9×13 baking dish.

Boil noodles.

Beat egg whites until peaks form.IMG_7992.JPGIn a large bowl, beat egg yolks, add sugar, spices and raisins, mix well.IMG_7993-0.JPGDrain noodles, add to egg yolk mixture.IMG_7994.JPGFold in egg whites.  IMG_7995.JPGTransfer to baking dish.IMG_7996.JPGBake for 45 minutes.IMG_7997.JPGCut into squares and serve.  Enjoy!IMG_7998.JPGServes 8 – 10.

Categories: Jewish Holiday, Kosher, Recipe, Rosh Hashanah/Yom Kippur, Vegetarian | 1 Comment

Chicken with Parsnips and Leeks

I have debated posting this dish, but in the end taste has won out over looks. This is an ugly, boring-looking dish. That almost makes the fact of how flavorful it is even more surprising and enjoyable. Each time I would take a taste while I was cooking it, I was always caught off guard by the richness of the flavors that hit my mouth. I called my daughter over, gave her a parsnip and she was equally as surprised.


The parsnips, leeks and sage all came right out of my garden, freshly harvested. They were beautiful, even if my leeks were thin (so I used more, but left the recipe at the amount for ‘normal-sized’ leeks).

I was unable to find skin-on, bone-in thighs, so I had to use boneless, skinless. That added to the drabness of the dish’s looks, but reduced the fat without any noticeable loss of flavor.

We enjoyed this as part of our holiday meal, but it is very simple and could be done any night. It definitely goes well with rice. So…don’t let the looks stop you, this is worth a try!

Chicken with Parsnips and Leeks

from Whole Living, December 2012

2 Tbsp vegetable oil

2 lb skinless bone-in chicken thighs

Coarse salt and freshly ground black pepper

2 leeks, white and pale green parts thinly sliced (2 cups) (from the garden)

1/2 cup apple cider vinegar

1 lb parsnips, peeled and cut into 1-inch pieces (from the garden)

10 fresh sage leaves (from the garden)

1 3/4 cups low-sodium chicken stock

2 cups cooked rice, for serving


Heat oven to 350 degrees. Heat oil in a large ovenproof pot over medium-high heat. Season chicken generously with salt and pepper. Cook until golden on all sides, about 5 minutes, and set aside.

Reduce heat to medium and cook leeks until tender, about 4 minutes.


Add vinegar and scrape up brown bits with a wooden spoon. Add parsnips, sage, stock, and seared chicken and its juices and bring to a boil.


Cover and transfer to oven. Braise until chicken and parsnips are very tender, about 50 minutes. Serve over rice. Enjoy!

IMG_7918-0.JPGServes 4


Categories: Jewish Holiday, Kosher, Leeks, Main Dish, Parsnips, Recipe, Rosh Hashanah/Yom Kippur | Leave a comment

Stuffed Cabbage

I hate to say it, but my mother was not such a great cook.  But there were a few dishes that she made that were outstanding – sweet and sour meatballs, noodle kugel (when she remembered all the ingredients), chicken fricasse, and stuffed cabbage.  Sadly, her stuffed cabbage recipe has been lost. But I have found one that very closely resembles it and is just as delicious…Aunt Myrna’s Cabbage Rolls from Monday Morning Cooking Club.  This is basically their recipe, I only made some slight changes in technique.

One thing I definitely agreed with them on is to cook this a few days before serving it, to let the flavors blend and grow.  My mom would say the same thing.


After placing all the rolls in the sauce, I covered it with the leftover leaves to help seal in the moisture while it cooked. It worked quite well.


Stuffed Cabbage

very slightly adapted from

1  green cabbage


2  onions chopped

1/4 cup canola oil

1 can condensed tomato soup

3/4 cup pureed tomatoes

1 tin diced Italian tomatoes

juice of 2 lemons

1 1/2 tablespoons sugar

1 teaspoon salt

1/2 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper


1 lb ground beef, grass-fed if possible

2 – 3  cloves of garlic

2 teaspoons salt

1 cup cooked long grain rice (about 1/2 cup raw) (I used brown rice)

1  onion, grated

1/2 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper

2  eggs lightly beaten, from Powers Farm


Core the cabbage and place in a large pot of cold water so that the cabbage is fully submerged. Bring to the boil and simmer for 15 minutes. Remove from the stovetop and allow to cool in the water. Remove when cool, separate the leaves and cut out the thick stalks with a knife.

In a large saucepan, fry the onion in the oil over low heat until soft, around 20 minutes.


Add the remaining ingredients and simmer for 15 minutes. Taste for seasoning. Set aside until needed.

 Using a mortar and pestle, grind the garlic with the salt to form a paste.


To make the filling, put the beef in a medium sized bowl. Add the garlic paste,  rice, onion and pepper. Season generously. Add the eggs and combine.


To make the parcels, lay 1/4 cup of the filling in an oblong shape in the centre of a cabbage leaf. Fold in the ends and then roll up like a parcel.



Place into the sauce, seam side down. Continue with all the filling and cabbage leaves, placing the rolls snugly side by side in the sauce. Any unused or torn leaves can be rolled up and stuffed into the gaps in the pan. Make sure all the rolls are covered with sauce. Bring to a simmer, cover and cook for 3 hours, basting from time to time. If the cabbage rolls start to dry out, add more water to cover.


Place in the refrigerator when cool and reheat to serve another day. Enjoy!


Serves 8.


Categories: Jewish Holiday, Kosher, Main Dish, Recipe, Rosh Hashanah/Yom Kippur | Tags: , | Leave a comment

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