Rosh Hashanah celebrates the Jewish New Year not just in terms of the Hebrew calendar, but in how we think and act. It is a time to reflect upon our shortcomings over the past year, seek forgiveness from those we have wronged and start fresh with a clean slate. We are reminded not to repeat the same mistakes in the coming year and are given a beautiful opportunity to improve ourselves and in turn, the world.
Eating symbolic foods such as apples dipped in honey evoke a “sweet new year.” Honey cake is a traditionally served dessert, but is often dry, overly spiced and overly sweet. This wholesome cake, slightly adapted from The Sprouted Kitchen by Sara Forte, is perfectly moist with an earthy nutty flavor and just the right amount of sweetness.
- 3 eggs
- 1 vanilla bean
- 1/4 cup honey
- 3/4 cup Greek yogurt
- 3 tablespoons coconut oil
- 3 tablespoons unsalted butter, melted and cooled slightly
- 2 cups almond meal
- 1/2 cup sprouted spelt flour or gluten-free flour
- 1/3 cup coconut sugar
- 1/4 teaspoon almond extract
- 1 tsp baking soda
- 1/2 tsp baking powder
- 3/4 tsp Sea salt
- 1 cup heavy cream
- 1 tablespoon natural cane sugar, or more as needed
- 1/2 tablespoon pure vanilla extract
- 1/2 cup mascarpone cheese
- Pinch of Sea salt
- 4 apples, peeled and sliced
- 1/2 cup maple sugar
- 1 teaspoon ground cinnamon
- 1/4 teaspoon ground nutmeg
- 2 tablespoons water
- 1 tablespoon coconut oil
- Toasted sliced almonds
Preheat over to 325°F. Grease a 9 inch round cake pan and line the bottom with parchment paper.
In a bowl, whisk the eggs well. Halve the vanilla bean lengthwise and scrape the seeds into the eggs. Discard the bean or save for another use. Add the honey, yogurt, and butter and whisk again. In another bowl, sift together the almond meal, flour, sugar, nutmeg, baking soda, baking powder and salt. Mix the wet ingredients into the dry and pour the batter into the prepared cake pan. Bake until a toothpick inserted into the center of the cake comes out clean, 22 to 25 minutes. Set aside to cool completely, then invert onto a cooling rack.
While the cake is baking, prepare the cinnamon apples. Toss together sliced apples, brown sugar, cinnamon and nutmeg in a large bowl to coat apples. In a medium saucepan, cook apple mixture with 2 tablespoons of water and 1 tablespoon butter over medium heat. Stir occasionally, 8 to 10 minutes or until apples are tender and set aside.
Next, whip the cream with a handheld electric mixer until it begins to thicken, then add the sugar and vanilla and continue to beat until fluffy. In the final minute, beat in the mascarpone and a pinch of salt. Taste and whip in more sugar, if you like.
L’Shana Tova and a good, blessed year!