Thursday, September 29, 2011

Rosh Hashanah -- Happy New Year

Last night at sunset marked the first night of Rosh Hashanah and the beginning of the High Holy Days.  Now we are not a religious family, and truth be told my family grew up with such a blend of traditions that it was nothing short of confusion.  That being said, I like to mark some of the holidays in a special way, even if that special way is just making a particular food.

Obviously I'm not a very observant Jew --
but I did light a candle (of a sort) at sunset.
Most cultures have some sort of special food that they eat at the beginning of the new year to bring luck, fortune, or ward off the Evil Eye.  For Jews, on Rosh Hashanah we eat honey -- or better yet, some combination of honey and apples -- to symbolize hopes for a sweet year.  Most often, this consumption comes in the form of apples dipped in honey or a honey cake.  Now, I am allergic to raw apples, so the first option is out, and many honey cakes are actually really dry and not that appetizing, so I wondered what to do...until I found this recipe at Smitten Kitchen.  It is delicious.  I only modified two things -- all the sugar I used was brown sugar (I like that better than a combination) and I replaced half a cup of the oil with applesauce so that this recipe would contain honey and apples.  I cooked it in a bundt cake and it baked perfectly and was a huge hit with the family.

And so, dear reader, I would encourage you to try this.  After all, tonight's the second night of Rosh Hashanah and everyone wants a sweet new year.

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