Rosh Hashanah, the Jewish New Year, begins at sundown on Sunday, Sept. 16 and goes until sundown on Tuesday, Sept. 18. This is the year 5773 on the Jewish calendar, and every year Jewish families gather to celebrate the occasion with traditional foods. I am sharing my grandmother’s very popular, savory noodle kugel recipe as well as a recipe for apple cake. Eating apples and honey are a traditional way of bringing in a sweet New Year, so the honey glaze on the apple cake makes it perfect for Rosh Hashanah. B’tayavon!
Mama Betty’s Noodle Kugel
(serves 8 as a side dish)
Mama Betty is my paternal grandmother and was the very personification of the notion that food = love. This is one of my absolute favorite foods, and it tastes as good on day two as it does fresh out of the oven.
- 12 oz. package of wide egg noodles, cooked al dente
- ¼ lb. (one stick) butter, cut up into tablespoons
- 3 eggs, separated
- 1 pt. sour cream
- Salt to taste
- 4 Tbsp. butter, cut into small pieces
- Preheat oven to 400°F
- Mix ¼ lb. butter with hot noodles.
- Add egg yolks, 3 Tbsp. sour cream, and salt.
- Mix well.
- Beat egg whites until they form stiff peaks and gently fold into noodle mixture.
- Grease 2 qt. dish and pour in noodle mixture.
- Spread with remaining sour cream.
- Dot with remaining butter.
- Bake for 1 hour at 400°. Kugel should be crispy on top and around edges.
*Cool for at least 10 minutes before serving to allow kugel to set completely
Apple Cake with Honey Glaze
This recipe was inspired by recipes from Paula Deen and one featured in Desserts Magazine. It has, without a doubt, the thickest batter of any cake I’ve ever made. Be sure to use your spatula to level the batter in the pan to get it into all of the nooks and crannies of the Bundt pan. And get all of your ingredients ready to go – mise en place- BEFORE you peel and chop the apples to avoid as much browning as possible.
- 3 cups all-purpose flour
- 1 teaspoon baking soda
- 1 teaspoon salt
- 1 cup (white) sugar
- ½ cup firmly packed light brown sugar
- 1 ¼ cups vegetable oil (I used canola)
- 3 eggs
- 4 cups peeled Granny Smith apples, cut into a medium-sized dice (this is about 3 large apples)
- 1 cup lightly toasted, chopped walnuts or pecans
- 2 teaspoons vanilla extract
- 2 teaspoons ground cinnamon
- 1 cup confectioners’ sugar
- 2 tablespoons honey
- 2 tablespoons milk (note: If you want to make the glaze parve, use non-dairy creamer or find a glaze recipe that does not use milk)
- Preheat oven to 325°F.
- Lightly grease (I used baking spray) a Bundt pan.
- In a medium-sized bowl, sift together flour, baking soda and salt.
- In the large bowl of a stand mixer or in a large bowl and using a hand mixer, beat the white and brown sugars, oil and eggs.
- Gradually add in the dry ingredients and mix thoroughly.
- In a third bowl, mix the apples, nuts, vanilla and cinnamon.
- Fold the apple mixture into the cake batter and make sure it is completely integrated.
- Spoon the batter evenly into the prepared Bundt pan and even it out with the back of the spoon or a spatula.
- Bake for 1 hour and 15 minutes or until the top starts to crack and a toothpick or cake tester inserted into the middle of the cake comes out clean.
- While the cake is baking, make the glaze: mix the confectioners’ sugar, honey and milk until smooth.
- After it is done baking, remove the cake from the oven and allow it to cool in the pan for about 1 hour.
- When cake is cooled, place plate on top of Bundt pan and turn cake over onto plate. If it seems like it is not coming out easily, hold plate and Bundt pan together and give a few gentle taps on the counter (I cover my counter with a towel to avoid breaking either the plate or the counter).
- Drizzle honey glaze over cake and serve.
*Cake can be covered tightly and refrigerated for up to 5 days, but if it has been glazed the glaze WILL stick to the plastic wrap. So if you plan to serve the cake later, refrigerate the glaze and cake separately.