Thursday, September 20, 2012

A Bright New Year

It's holiday time already.  It seems to have come much too fast this year.  Perhaps that's because the High Holidays are now inextricably intertwined with Thatbaby's birthday.

Last year, Rosh Hashannah was about a week later.  I was ever so pregnant and we decided to forgo our annual trip up to Thatmom's home.  And I had Thatbaby a few days after the holiday.  Thatboy and I spent the day at home, relaxing, with a trip to the beach for our own Tashlict service.

This year, we resumed our old traditions, heading up to Orange County where we attended services with my family.  We had dinners where we sat and laughed, and this year, Thatbaby came with us to Tashlict.

 Although he didn't quite get it.  In general he is a fabulous food thrower.  But when we handed him bread to throw in the water he decided it was too delicious to part with.

The traditional Jewish New Year foods include apples and honey - to symbolize the harvest and a sweet new year.  Instead of apples and honey, I present you with something else that symbolizes a sweet new year - cake.  A cake with walnuts and raisins.  A cake with a sweet filling and perfectly white frosting.

New Year Cake
1/4 lb butter
1 1/4 cups dark brown sugar
2 tsp orange extract
4 eggs, 2 of them separated
2 cups flour
3 tsps baking powder
1/2 + 1/8 tsp salt
2/3 cup milk
1/2 cup raisins
1/2 cup chopped walnuts
2 Tbsp minced candied orange peel 
juice and grated rind of 1 lemon
2 1/2 cups sugar
1 cup shredded coconut 
1/4 tsp cream of tartar
2 tsp vanilla

  1. Preheat the oven to 325.  Spray two 8-inch cake pans with baking spray.  Cream the butter with brown sugar until light and fluffy.
  2. Add the orange extract and the eggs and beat well.
  3. Mix the flour, baking powder, and 1/2 tsp salt and stir into the first mixture.
  4. Add the milk and beat until smooth.
  5. Fold in the raisins, walnuts, and orange peel.
  6. Spoon into the pans and bake for 25-30 minutes.  Cool in the pans for 5 minutes before tuning out onto racks.
  7. Make the filling - Mix the lemon juice, rind, 1 cup sugar, and 2 egg yolks in a saucepan and cook over moderate heat, stirring, until smooth and thickened.
  8. Remove from heat, stir in the coconut and cool.  When both the cakes and the coconut mixture are cool, use this as a filling by placing it between the two layers.
  9. Make the frosting - Mix the remaining sugar, cream of tartar, 1/8 tsp salt, egg whites and 1/4 cup of water in a pot or bowl over simmering water.  Beat steadily over low heat with a hand mixer until the frosting stands in peaks - 7 minutes. 
  10. Remove from heat and continue to beat until thick enough to spread.  Add the vanilla. Use this to frost the cake.


  1. Happy New Year to you and your family!


  2. What a way to celebrate! This looks fantastic!

  3. The cake looks very elegant! Happy New Year to you and your family!

  4. Delicious! Wishing your family a very Happy Holidays!!
    On a side note--I had a dream the other week that you and I were getting ready to have an important Skype session. I think it must have been my brain telling me it has too long since I've checked into my Google reader "friends". :)

  5. Catching up and wishing you a very belated Shanah Tovah! How cute and funny to see tashlicht done on the beach :)