Rosh Hashanah

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Curried Carrot & Sweet Potato Soup
with Cilantro Matzo Balls

Monday, October 10th, 2016

It’s that time of year again. The season is (finally) changing, the leaves are starting to color, and Pumpkin Spice Latte is back on the Starbuck’s menu. It’s when all the blogs start to dish out their sweet pumpkin creations and I betchya thought I was one of them.

Pumpkin is alright. I even made my usual mini pumpkin pies for Rosh Hashanah last week. What I didn’t make was tzimmes. Lets just say that that cloyingly sweet dish of honey-sweetened carrots and sweet potatoes (sometimes with added prunes) is not one of my favorites. My mom always makes a big pot (tradition!) with the addition of marrow bones and flanken, but somehow it always manages to make it’s rounds around the table, barely making a dent in the heaping pile of sweetness. That’s just it – the stuff is just. too. sweet. And the more I discuss holiday menu’s with people, the more I hear that tzimmes is on the out (I guess my tzimmes roast is going to get buried real deep in the archives!)

Most people keep tzimmes on their menus because it’s traditional to eat carrots over the holidays. Besides for the obvious symbolism for a sweet New Year, the Yiddish word for carrots is meren, to multiply, which is a blessing we hope for in the coming year. Not being a big fan of tzimmes, I try to incorporate my carrots elsewhere, such as in a raw slaw, or roasting them with some maple and harissa.

It occurred to me that with Yom Kippur upon us, and Sukkot not too far away, a savory play on tzimmes ingredients might we a welcome change. I decided to do that in the form of a soup, and to incorporate some of my favorite Thai flavors – curry (for some heat), honey (for some sweet) and coconut milk (for some creaminess). To make it festive and holiday worthy, I added cilantro matzo balls to round out the flavors and keep things exciting!

Truth be told, I’m not a big fan of cilantro but I am coming around. I used to find it completely intolerable but I am slowly sneaking in small amounts and it’s growing on me. Honey + curry though are one of my favorite combinations and I use it in curries, chicken recipes, fish dishes, roasted chickpeas and even popcorn. There’s something about the sweet and spicy that I absolutely love.

I can’t tell you how many posts I’ve seen on Facebook recently lamenting the lack of savory recipes in kosher cookbooks. Every roast is smothered in a sweet concoction, chicken is doused in apricot jam and don’t even get me started on the ridiculous amount of sugar in salad dressings. I mean, I get it. I grew up that way too. But the only way out of the sugar coma is to slowly reduce the amount of sweetness you add to recipes and to introduce more savory (and if you’re open to it, spicy) food. It’s all about conditioning your palette. If you go back to the old recipes on my blog, you can see for yourself how I’ve slowly transitioned to more savory foods. Now, when I taste a salad that’s been doused in sweet dressing, I can’t even swallow it.

There’s a place in food for all that sugar – it’s called dessert, and that’s why we all love it so much! And finishing a meal off with something sweet is precisely why you should start it with something savory. So, now that Rosh Hashanah is behind us, and we don’t *have* to douse everything in apples and honey, lets welcome the New Year with a newer savory approach to food. This curried carrot and sweet potato soup is a great place to start because it’s both sweet and savory with a nice amount of heat from the ginger and curry.

Wishing you a sweet New Year as sweet as honey and as spicy as curry. Shanah Tova Umetuka!



This post was sponsored by Lipton Kosher. All opinions are my own. 

Related Recipes:

peanut chicken curry
curry chicken salad
coconut crusted fish with curry aioli
curried rice salad
butternut squash soup with shallots and apples

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Simanim Fritto Misto
with Honey Roasted Garlic Aioli

Wednesday, September 28th, 2016

I’m baaaaack!!!! After 2 months of maternity leave, some amazing bonding time with my delicious baby, and lets face it, plenty of adjusting to my new life with five kids (!!!), I’m so happy to tap back in to my creative energy and BRING IT!

Of course I must thank all my dear friends who filled in for me these past couple of weeks: Amy from WhatJewWannaEat, Sina from TheKosherSpoon,  Melissa from LilMissCakes, Miriam from OvertimeCook, Eitan from CookwithChefEitan, Melinda from KitchenTested and Whitney from Jewhungry! I hope you all enjoyed their recipes and guest posts as much as I did!

Now with Rosh Hashanah just a few days away, I really wanted to highlight the symbolic foods of the holiday, which include carrots, gourd (pumpkin), beets, leeks, green beans (or black eyed peas) and dates. It’s also customary to eat apple dipped in honey, a sheep or fish head, as well as pomegranate seeds. Many people of sephardic decent have a custom to hold a seder, where special blessings are recited over the simanim (symbolic foods) before they are eaten. It is not unusual for all or some of the ingredients to be cooked into separate appetizers, so I thought it would be fun to create one simple, yet sophisticated, dish that would incorporate most of these foods.

I was wracking my brain trying to think of something other than another boring “simanim salad” (you can watch me make an amazing one in this old post) when it came to me in the dead of night (while nursing my babes!); Fritto Misto! Fritto misto is Italian for “mixed fry” and is an assortment of lightly fried foods, often served as an appetizer. I know lots of people get scared off by the idea of frying, but if you do it right, this tempura batter is so light and elegant, and it’s not greasy at all.

The biggest trick to avoid having your food turn out greasy is to make sure it doesn’t soak up the oil. You MUST, MUST, MUST use a deep fry thermometer. It’s imperative to keep your oil at 350 degrees so that when the cold batter touches the hot oil, it immediately begins to fry and crisp up. If the oil isn’t hot enough, the thin tempura batter won’t hold on to the veggies.

Another trick to making perfectly crisp tempura fried veggies is to use seltzer in the batter. The air bubbles in the seltzer help to lighten up the batter. The cornstarch also contributes to a crispy coating.

The last, and equally important thing that contributes to a light, crispy tempura is to use ice cold seltzer and mix the batter in a cold bowl, set over a bowl of ice water. If you’re batter is nice and cold, it will work it’s magic when it hits the hot oil and you’ll get yourself a non-greasy addictive appetizer.

Of course I couldn’t just make a mix of fried simanim, it’s got to have a dip! So I indulged in some amazingly sweet and caramelized honey roasted garlic. How gorgeous??? I mix that all up with some mayo, meyer lemon zest and juice and voila – sweet, light and delicious aioli that pairs perfectly with the fritto misto.

But I couldn’t stop there. Because I had a vision. A vision of the most elegantly set holiday table, complete with individual boxes of Simanim Fritto Misto at each place setting! It’s been a while since I posted table setting ideas (these apple napkins were fun!), and I really wanted to indulge.

Since I left the apple and honey out of the fritto misto, I put out some beautiful farm-fresh apples with an assortment of honeys. I love to serve different flavored honeys, it makes things so exciting and fun! I also skipped the pomegranates in my fritto misto (because I can’t fry teeny tiny little seeds!) so I put out some Vintage pomegranate seltzer instead. We’ve pretty much got everything covered besides for the Sheep’s head. I’ll let you figure that one out ;)

To set your own tables like this, lay a long strip of burlap down the center of the table. Place a cake stand over a large matching platter. Fill the platter with apples and place an assortment of honeys on the stand. Use milk glass or mason jar cups and set out boxes of simanim over coordinating napkins. Tape some neutral colored gift tags onto the boxes, write the name of each guest on their corresponding box and finish with a twine bow. Don’t forget the Vintage seltzer!

I hope you’ve enjoyed my comeback post, there’s a little something for everyone. If you like to be try new things in the kitchen, go for the fritto misto. Hate frying? Make my honey roasted garlic aioli for dipping your Rosh Hashanah challah. Love to set a beautiful table? Take some inspiration from my tablescape. And most of all, have a healthy and happy SWEET NEW YEAR.

Shanah Tova!



This post was sponsored by Vintage seltzer. All opinions are my own. 

Related Posts:

apple stamp napkins
holiday salad with apple and honey vinaigrette
simanim roundup
angel hair simanim pasta salad

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Roasted Smashed Potatoes with Leeks

Thursday, September 15th, 2016

Food blogging has taken me to some truly amazing places (front cover of The Wall Street journal, anyone?), but none as priceless as some of the friendships I’ve made through the process. Melinda of Kitchen-Tested has become my “lets-pig-out-at-this-restaurant” buddy, my recipe idea sounding board, my support coach (“You can do this Chanie!”) but most of all, my friend (awwwww….can I grab you a tissue Mel?). So, aside from being an amazing chef (her desserts are so impressive, she should open a bakery), Melinda is totally fearless in the kitchen. She comes up with the craziest stuff you’ve ever seen [like bagel, lox and cream cheese hamantaschen! pecan pie bacon (kosher bacon) and falafel mozzarella sticks!] but she also knows how to keep it simple with down-home-delicious-recipes [like puff pastry potato roses, classic red velvet cake and Texas-style dry rub brisket). I’m honored to have Melinda guest post for me today, and I hope you enjoy her Rosh-Hashanah inspired recipe! Welcome Mel!

Today is a great day because I get to write a recipe for Busy in Brooklyn! Hi, I’m Melinda Strauss and my blog is Kitchen-Tested.com. Ever heard of me??? Basically, you all want to be me today! Chanie is one of the coolest people I know and her masterful recipes blow me away EVERY. SINGLE. TIME. Chanie loves tahini, cookie butter, marzipan and long walks on the beach. But really, Chanie loves her family and that’s why I’m here on her blog. She recently gave birth to the most beautiful baby girl and all I can say is “Mazal Tov…now move to Long Island!!!” Oh, did I say that out loud? Seriously, my dream is for Chanie to become Busy in The Five Towns so she can live closer to me and I can babysit while she takes naps and maybe goes out for those long walks on the beach.

So about this recipe…sure, you can eat mashed potatoes or you can eat roasted potatoes but why not get a bit of both in every bite? I love this recipe because it’s a one-pan-wonder packed with crazy amounts of flavor. The potatoes are steamed in the oven then smashed, drizzled with tons of olive oil and garlic and roasted with leeks. I love how the leeks get super crunchy in the oven and act as added texture for the potatoes, which are soft in the center and crispy around the edges. The fun thing about this recipe is that you can add any of your favorite spices to the potatoes and you can even throw some fresh whole garlic in the pan. Go nuts and make these roasted smashed potatoes your own!

Related Recipes:

honey mustard roasted potatoes
cream of leek soup with crispy leeks

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Apple & Honey Galette

Tuesday, September 6th, 2016

Few things truly blow me away in the foodie world nowadays. After five years of blogging, I’ve come to see it (almost) all. But this guy right here? This guy is something to write home  blog about. I don’t remember when I met Eitan Bernath for the first time, but I do remember watching him on Chopped. This kid isn’t just impressive because he had the confidence to go on national TV as a kosher cook and compete against other kids his age. He’s impressive because he took that experience and turned it into a passionate career, all the while attending Yeshiva and doing all the things that kids do at his age. Besides for running a blog, making appearances and doing cooking demos, Eitan somehow managed to teach himself food photography, and I am blown away! I hope that my kids have even half of his passion, drive and determination someday. Eitan, it’s such a pleasure to have you guest post on my blog, welcome!

P.S. Check out Eitan’s interview with me here!

Hey Guys! My name is Eitan Bernath. I am a teen chef from Teaneck, New Jersey. I am so excited to be guest posting on Chanie’s blog while she’s enjoying time with her new baby. You may know me as the Jewish kid who appeared on “Chopped” on the Food Network, a little over 2 years ago. Now at 14 I have a full career as a recipe developer, food photographer, chef and foodie personality in the culinary world. Check out my food blog, CookWithChefEitan.com where I post new fun recipes every Sunday.

Chanie is a legend in the kosher food blogging world and was one of the people who inspired me to start my blog. I am a big fan of many of her recipes. One of my favorites is her Drunken Hasselback Salami. It is awesome! If you haven’t tried it yet, then you clearly are living under a rock! It’s so cool to be guest posting on her blog today! Thank you Chanie!

I am sharing with all of you my Apple Galette recipe. Pie dough has always intimidated me for some reason. As someone who tends to stick to the culinary side of the field, I don’t bake often. But after taking the pastry class at ICC this past summer, I have begun to experiment more in the kitchen with baking.

So a few weeks ago I randomly decided to attempt to make pie dough. After letting it chill in the fridge, I rolled out the dough and filled it with a filling of sliced apples, honey, brown sugar, cinnamon, and butter. I baked it off in the oven and waited for it to finished baking. (Now I’m a 14 year old in the 21st century. I don’t really know what patience is and the pie filled the entire house with with a warm, delicious smell. So that was like the longest hour of my life!)

I took it out of the oven, cut myself a slice, and tried it. It was the BEST pie I had ever had in my life! The dough was perfectly flaky. The filling perfectly sweet. It was perfect! My first attempt at pie dough was a success! I will definitely be making many more pies! Comment below and let me know about your first time making pie.

This Apple Galette recipe is perfect for Rosh Hashanah and even for the rest of the upcoming Chagim. It’s great for breakfast, warmed up with a cold scoop of vanilla ice cream or even anytime of the day. Also, I definitely suggest drizzling your slice with even more honey. Because, can you really ever have too much honey? Enjoy!

Related Recipes:

honey hasselback baked apples
apple and honey tart
honey cake with caramelized apples

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Sous-Vide Stuffed Eggplant
with Pistachio Dukkah & Tamarind Tahini

Thursday, September 24th, 2015

So I’m sitting on board a Jetblue flight en route to Florida, noshing on my Terra Blues, drinking a diet coke, and working on my blog post via (free!) Fly-Fi. We were lucky enough to score an empty seat, so my very active 23-month old (who’s on the last free flight of his life) is all buckled in and on his way to a white-noise nap. You gotta love Jetblue!

I really wanted to get in this last post before Sukkot because I started a trend a couple of years back where I post a STUFFED recipe in honor of Sukkot and the harvest festival. Traditionally, holipches/holishkes (stuffed cabbage) is served up on Sukkot because we want to celebrate the abundance of the harvest season. Fall is when farmers harvest their wheat in Israel, and stuffing vegetables with filling symbolizes their desire for a year of overflowing harvest. Any stuffed recipe is well suited to honor this custom, including my “ratatouille” mechshie, savory eggplant mechshie, globe zucchini mechshie and of course, stuffed cabbage!

This year, I really wanted to take it up a notch, and since stuffing eggplant is one of my favorite things, I decided to give stuffed sous vide eggplant a try. I recently met a talented chef who was touting the benefits of sous-vide vegetables, and when he told me that sous-vide eggplant is literally soft as butter, I just had to give it a try! I had just got my new Sous Vide Supreme and what better way to use it than to test this technique!

Truth be told, my first try at sous-vide eggplant was an #epicfail. The eggplant was tough and not altogether cooked and after some research, I learned that since veggies tend to float in the water bath, you need to weigh them down to ensure proper cooking. My second try was successful and the results were soft-as-butter-delicious!

Now if you’re going to sous-vide eggplant, you have to have a sophisticated stuffing to match the modernist cooking technique. Roasted eggplants stuffed with Israeli salad is a regular in my house, as well as my
roasted eggplant parmesan, but as delicious as those recipes are, they are still homey comfort foods that wouldn’t do justice to my sous vide eggplant. I really wanted the eggplant to be the star, so I wanted to accessorize it, but not fully outfit it, to borrow some fashion terms :)

If we’re talking food fashion, there’s nothing more fashionable than nut and seed blends right now, so pistachio dukkah was just the thing! I recently did a #myspicerack spice roundup on my Instagram feed, and when I posted about the pistachio dukkah that my sister sends me all the way from Aussie, I got lots of recipe requests! I decided to make my own version from scratch with fresh cumin and coriander seeds from Holon, my favorite Middle Eastern market in Brooklyn. The results were incomparable to the blend my sister had been sending me. It was just so amazingly fresh, crunchy and and nutty, I don’t know why it took me so long to make my own! And you don’t even need a fancy spice grinder, a simple food processor works just fine!

Now that my pistachio dukkah was done, I needed a creamy sauce to bring it all together, but just plain old tahini wouldn’t do the trick. After visiting the amazing tahini store in Shuk Machneh Yehudah in Jersualem, I knew that you could mix so many things into tahini – both savory and sweet, so I decided to go with tamarind. Tamarind paste is both sweet and sour, so it’s a great balance to the salty dukkah spice and sweet pomegranate seeds. Top it off with some chopped parsley and you’ve got it all – color, texture, and balance, just the way food should be. Happy Stuffing!



This post was sponsored by Sous Vide Supreme. All opinions are my own. 

Other Eggplant Recipes:

Roasted eggplants stuffed with Israeli salad
roasted eggplant parmesan
roasted eggplant parmesan with feta
za’atar eggplant chips with harissa whipped feta
miso-glazed eggplant

Other Stuffed Recipes:

“ratatouille” mechshie
savory eggplant mechshie
globe zucchini mechshie
stuffed cabbage!

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Bourbon Honey Cake Balls

Sunday, September 20th, 2015

OK so truth be told, I may be one of those people that has big eyes. When I’m in a restaurant, I always order way more than I can possibly eat. And no matter how much food I have planned on my menu, I’ll walk past that extra special ingredient in the store and I just have to have it. It’s foodie FOMO and I’m guilty. as. charged.

So when honey cake season rolls around, I always make my amazing honey cake recipe, but then I pass by the honey muffins and all the assorted honey cake flavors in the bakery, and I’m all, “Oh, the kids would just love this!”. Which is precisely what happened when I saw the chocolate honey cake two weeks ago. I bought it, the kids loved it, and the next week, I bought it again. Except by then, we were all honey-caked-out, and the cake just sat on my counter for days.

I hate throwing things away, so I thought about re-purposing it in a trifle, or even an apple and honey cake bread pudding, but it just seemed too typical. I thought of all the foods you would make using leftover cake, and it hit me – rum balls! Rum balls are made using leftover brownie or chocolate cake, with added rum for a spiked chocolate truffle. I had to put my own twist on it, and since honey and bourbon marry well together, I decided to go with that.

To take my bourbon honey cake balls to the next level, I dipped them in melted chocolate and finished them with pink Hawaiian salt, because I love some salt with my sweet. The results were fudgy and reminiscent of a rumball – exactly as I had imagined.

The thing to keep in mind with this recipe is that it’s not quite a recipe at all – more like an idea. Since every honey cake is different (some are more moist and some are more dry), and everyone has a different amount of leftover cake, use your own judgement to put these together. If you’re honey cake is not so sweet, you might want to add additional honey, and if it’s especially dry, maybe even a bit of melted butter might help. Whatever you do, have fun, and don’t get too drunk on that bourbon!


Wishing you an easy fast and a Chag Sameach!

Related Recipes:

Parsnip Honey Cake
honey cake with caramelized apples
gingerbread truffles
Tu B’Shvat truffles

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Something Sweet Review & Giveaway

Thursday, September 17th, 2015

I can’t remember the last time I was this excited about a cookbook. OK maybe I do. It was Ottolenghi’s Plenty More. But other than Ottolenghi books, I don’t usually count the days until a cookbook comes out. It’s different when that cookbook is written by a friend and fellow kosher blogger, and when it’s jam-packed with mouthwatering desserts. Only desserts. 

The talented Miriam Pascal of OvertimeCook has been giving me (and all her readers!) sneak peeks into her cookbook for months now. As a foodie friend and fellow food photographer, I got a behind-the-scenes look at Miriam’s amazing photography, and I couldn’t wait to see it in print. Miriam and I started our blogs around the same time, back in 2011. We both had little experience with photography, but as our blogs grew, our photography improved and so did our traffic. As a food blogger, Miriam takes the cake (literally) for the most amazing desserts that she posts on her blog, as well as in her food column for Ami Magazine. I’m not much of a baker, but when I actually feel like shlepping out my kitchenaid, I turn to Miriam for delicious, no-fail recipes every time. I’m so proud of her achievement, that I even filled in for her, guest posting on her blog while she was busy putting the finishing touches on this book.

Leave it to Miriam, I just knew there would be no stone left unturned in her cookbook. She has literally covered all the bases, from a baking guide, to ingredient substitutions, kitchen equipment, baking tips and a holiday guide. I love the range of desserts she covers, including cookies and bars, cakes and cupcakes, muffins and pastries, pies and tarts, desserts and party treats, candy and chocolate, drinks and frozen treats and finally, frosting and toppings. That last one seriously has me drooling. I am a frosting addict.

Now not only did Miriam cover pretty much every dessert you can think of, she also listened closely to her reader’s requests, and developed recipes like no-margarine chocolate chip cookies, no-margarine sugar cookies, healthy muffins, egg-free chocolate mousse and even a coconut oil pie crust (I truly appreciate this one!). The best part about the recipes in Something Sweet is that they are truly accessible. Nothing is over-the-top fancy and all the recipes use basic ingredients that we can all find in our pantry.

Many of my followers know that I’m not a big baker, so I truly appreciate the clearly written recipes, thoughtful variations and plan ahead options. I don’t think there’s a single recipe in Something Sweet that overwhelms me, and that says a lot! Some of the recipes I’ve got my eye on include the bourbon pecan snowball cookies, gingerbread biscotti, oatmeal cookie wedges, honey sour cream pound cake and cinnamon cheese buns.

It doesn’t get more perfect than gorgeous photos, great recipes and an all-around well-written book. Congrats to Miriam on this tremendous achievement!

I’m excited to be giving away a copy of SOMETHING SWEET just in time for the holidays! To enter:

  1. Comment on this post and share your favorite “something sweet” (it can be food or dessert).
  2. For an extra entry, follow Busy In Brooklyn via Facebook, Twitter, Instagram or Pinterest. Just be sure to leave a note in the comment letting me know where you follow.

Giveaway is open to U.S. residents (for international entries, prize can only be shipped in the U.S.). Winner will be chosen at random at 10:00 AM EST on Monday, September 21st, 2015.

Purchase Something Sweet on Amazon

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Trio of Sweet Challah Dips

Wednesday, September 9th, 2015

Some people make challah every Shabbos, but I am not one of them. Challah is a huge deal for me. It’s just such a mess and between the kneading, rising and shaping, it’s a whole day affair. That’s why, I make challah once a year. You got it. Just once. My yearly challah baking happens a few weeks before Rosh Hashanah. I whip up lots of sweet varieties, and pack the freezer with enough sweet bread to last us throughout the chagim. My favorite Rosh Hashanah flavors are sweet crumb and marzipan, but I also make some raisin, cinnamon, honey-glazed and of course, chocolate chip. I always make a few za’atar loaves, since it’s my favorite spice of all time.

Now I love sweet challah, but I don’t love dipping it into savory dips. Chocolate chips and garlic just don’t work for me, so I started to make sweet dips to go along with the sweet challah variations. It’s such a fun change from the typical savory dips that we eat during the year, and it makes the Rosh Hashanah meal even more sweet and special.

Now that you have your challah and dips set, what about the other food? I know it’s crunch time, so I put together my (tentative) Rosh Hashanah menu to give you some inspiration!

Sunday Night:
homemade honey challah with assorted toppings
sweet Challah dips
salmon en croute
simanim salad (recipe variation in the video)
roasted butternut and apple soup
honey roasted zaatar chicken
saffron rice
braised leeks
parsnip honey bundt cake with mulled apple cider

Monday:
honey challah with assorted toppings
sweet Challah dips
breaded gefilte fish
pomegranate coleslaw
roasted beet salad
tzimmes roast
lokshin and cabbage
braised leeks
honey hasselback baked apples with ice cream (minus the brie)

(continued below)

Monday Night:
assorted new fruits
honey challah with assorted toppings
sweet Challah dips
simanim ceviche
rainbow slaw
whole roasted chicken
honey mustard roasted potatoes
sauteed beet greens
mini pumpkin pies (I use this filling in mini pie shells)
parsnip honey bundt cake with mulled apple cider

Tuesday:
honey challah with assorted toppings
sweet Challah dips
fig salmon
roasted eggplants with tahini & pomegranate seeds
arugula waldorf salad
pomegranate molasses roast
mini pumpkin pies (I use this filling in mini pie shells)
cranberry green beans
sticky date pudding

What great dishes are you making for Rosh Hashanah? Share them with me in the comments below!

Related Recipes:

Honey Challah with Assorted Toppings

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Parsnip Honey Cake with Honey Cream Cheese Frosting & Rainbow Carrot Chips

Thursday, September 3rd, 2015

I’m not a baker. Let me start with that. Sure I can follow a cake recipe. And I’ve even made the occasional Elmo and Barbie cake for my kids birthdays. But I don’t “bake”. Especially not cakes like THIS.

I don’t know what it is. The whole layering thing. And the frosting. It’s just such a MESS. Case in point: I decided to defy all logic and attempted to layer my cakes without trimming them first, so that they were flat. Of course the layers started slipping and sliding, so I had to separate them, post-frosting and then do the trimming. Mess is not the word. My kids were pretty happy though. They got to enjoy the best part of the honey cake (the sticky top layer), all smothered in frosting.

Now since this IS a honey cake, trimming the best part off the layers is such a sin. So I highly recommend you follow this technique so that the layers bake flat. Wish I had followed my own advice but I just get lazy when it comes to baking.


Case #2 in point, I let my frosting sit out after whipping it, and it got kinda warm and runny, but instead of refrigerating it so that it would hold up nicely, I just wanted to stack the cake already. THIS is why I don’t bake. No patience. Baking is all about precision, patience and organization, and while I do possess those qualities, baking does not exactly bring them out in me. Maybe it’s because I just want to get it done so I can dig in to the cake already!

So why this cake? Well, I came up with this crazy cool concept of doing a carrot cake/honey cake hybrid. And if that wasn’t enough, I had to switch up the carrots for parsnips, and take it over the top with FRIED RAINBOW CARROTS STRIPS. It’s go big or go home. Especially if I am about to make a layered cake!

I developed this recipe in honor of Rosh Hashanah, when it is traditional to eat honey cake, for a Sweet New Year. Since many people have a custom not to eat nuts on Rosh Hashanah, I knew I couldn’t garnish my cake with chopped pecans, which would have been my first choice. Shredded coconut is another great option but I wanted a little hint to the surprise inside the cake – the parsnips!

Honestly, I can’t say this cake tastes like parsnips. It tastes like honey cake. But when you get a couple of shreds of parsnip in your mouth, you get a little hint of flavor. If you want more of a parsnip flavor, add some more shredded parsnips to the cake. It’s as simple as that :)

I honestly could not be happier about the way this cake came out. I totally winged the recipe, and not understanding the science of baking, it could have been a complete flop. I was almost not expecting the cake to work but it came out so unbelievably moist! And my kids kept running downstairs wanting to know what smelled so INCREDIBLE.


I KNOW this cake is good for one reason and one reason only. The world’s most pickiest taste testers LOVED IT. My kids gobbled up the cake, licked their fingers, and said OH MY G-D between fork fulls. I kid you not. This is a home run. Kid tested. Mother approved.

Related Recipes:

honey cake with caramelized apples
carrot muffins
couscous with thyme, honey roasted parsnips, carrots & beets
pumpkin whoopie pies with maple cream cheese frosting

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Honey Hasselback Baked Apples
with Brie & Pecan Streusel

Tuesday, September 1st, 2015


I heart brie. I never thought I could be a semi-moldy-cheese kinda girl but here. I. am.


When Natural & Kosher Cheese asked me to go all Rosh-Hashanah-out on their brie, I was only too happy to oblige. I knew I had to do something with apple & honey, because besides being the symbol for a Sweet New Year, fruit and honey just go so well with brie! Case in point: these dried fruit brie bites. Mmm mmm good.

If moldy cheese and fruit sound gross to you, let me tell you this: I did a cheese demo a few months back, and I had a room full of people who thought the same. Many of them had never tried brie before, and they had no plans to. But after watching me make my brie en croute with homemade fig jam, they warmed up to the idea of melted gooey cheese smothered in sweet fruit. A few bites later they were all over it, stinky cheese and all!


If you’re still on the fence, let me assure you that when I say stinky cheese, I don’t mean bleu-cheese-style. I would NEVER go near that stuff! Brie has an edible white rind that, yes, does have mold in it, but it is oh so mild. You can always cut it off if you want to get to the gooey interior of the cheese minus the (slight) funk.

Now that we’ve (hopefully) got you passed the brie, can we please discuss the hasselbacking? Y’all know I’m kinda obsessed with hasselback anything. And after this hasselback salami, now you all are too! I promised myself I’d be hasselbacking lots of other foods, and after seeing this video on cookinglight, I was all over hasselbacking my apples! How gorgeous are they? Gosh, I have so many hasselback ideas up my chef sleeve, I can’t wait to share them with you!


Now if you want to skip the brie on these and just go pareve for a fantastic dessert, feel free to leave out the cheese and use margarine or coconut oil in place of the butter. Top it off with some ice cream and you’ve got yourself a golden dessert for your holiday meal! (Or, do yourself a favor and stick to the cheese, and serve this up for a special Rosh Hashanah breakfast!).


This post was sponsored by Natural & Kosher Cheese. Follow them on FacebookTwitter, Pinterest, Instagram, YouTube, Google+, or via their Blog

Related Recipes:

apple and honey tart
hasselback sweet potatoes with apples
dried fruit brie bites

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