Tuesday, October 03, 2006

"Auntie" Shirley's Honey Cake

Honey Cake
Rosh Hashanah is the Jewish New Year and traditionally we eat sweet things and start the year with a blessing over apples and honey. This is my favourite honey cake recipe. It’s dense and flavorful and I make it throughout the year as a great breakfast and snack cake. This recipe makes a huge batch, but it keeps well and never lasts long anyway.

Hands-on time: 20 minutes
Total Baking time: 1 hour

6 eggs
1 ½ cups sugar
1 ½ cups dark honey
½ tsp baking soda
1 cup strong tea (I let it brew for at least 5 minutes)
¾ cup vegetable oil
4 cups all purpose flour, sifted twice
3 tsp baking powder
1 cup chopped nuts (walnuts or pecans)
½ cup raisins

1. Preheat the oven to 350°F.

2. In the top of a double boiler, stir honey, tea and baking soda until the honey and baking soda are dissolved (about 2-3 minutes).

3. Beat the eggs and sugar until they are light and fluffy (3-5 minutes). Add oil. In a separate bowl combine the flour and baking powder. Alternatively beat the honey and flour mix alternately into the eggs and sugar.

4. Fold in nuts and raisins.

5. Bake in lined and greased 14”x10”x2” Ovenproof pan for 1 hour or until the top of the cake is golden and cracked in the center.

6. Let the cake cool over cake racks. Cut into squares or slices before serving.

Tips & Variations
· To test for doneness, stick a clean wooden toothpick in the center of the cake and it’s ready when it comes out dry.

· For a fancier presentation, arrange squares on a cake plate, cover with a paper lace doily or cut out initials, hearts, flowers, etc. on a sheet of parchment paper and dust with icing sugar or just sprinkle some lemon sugar on top.

· It’s a great companion to fresh fruit salad.

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