Strawberry Loaf Cake


When I first stated baking for the synagogue, I scoured the internet for cookie recipes that would be incredible but relatively inexpensive. I wanted a citrus cookie, but as our Rabbi is allergic to lemon, I looked for an orange cookie. I found this incredible cookie, and I’ve made it numerous times over the last four or five years.

Fast forward to last year, when a request for Sprinkles Cupcakes’ recipe for Strawberry Cupcakes introduced me to that wonderful recipe, and made me want to replicate it in cookie form. I had leftover strawberry puree, and tried adapting the orange cookie recipe, but my couple of different tries didn’t hit the mark and I moved on from that quest. Continue reading “Strawberry Loaf Cake”

Syrup Soaked Orange Semolina Cake

Tray of desserts for a Jerusalem-themed event

Several years ago we had an Israeli-themed dinner at the synagogue, and I was in charge of making the desserts. A couple of weeks ago, we had a Jerusalem-themed event, and I ended up making the same set of desserts again, because I enjoyed them so much.

Another tray of desserts for a Jerusalem-themed event

One of the recipes is these Tahini Cookies from Yotam Ottolenghi, who is amazing. Another are these Kadorei Shokolad (Chocolate Balls), which my Israeli friends agree are wonderful and traditional. I rolled half of the balls in desiccated coconut and the other half in nonpareils; both are wonderful, and they give color and contrast to the cookie trays. I scoop the balls using a #60 cookie scoop [I own two different ones, I’m so addicted to cookie scoops!], a dozen or so at a time. I roll them smooth, coat in the desired coating, then put in the fridge to harden once I’ve finished the batch, otherwise they’ll be a little too soft.  Continue reading “Syrup Soaked Orange Semolina Cake”

Raspberry Swirled Heart Cookies

I found these cookies in 2012, when I was looking for Valentine’s-themed recipes for a work bake sale. They were so simple, and yet had amazing flavor, I was seriously impressed.

It took me a couple of tries to successfully tweak it, but I also started making them at my shul and they became a favorite there, too. Since 2012, I make them faithfully every year for our work bake sale (in addition to other treats) and also make them during the year at the synagogue. Continue reading “Raspberry Swirled Heart Cookies”

Whole Orange Cake

Sometimes you spy a recipe somewhere, decide you have to make it, and it becomes a favorite. Other times, you have an idea for a bake, and go searching until you find a recipe that meets your idea. This is one of those times.

While pondering what desserts to bring to my friend’s new years party, I somehow got the idea of making a whole clementine cake. I suppose it may have been influenced by Mary Berry’s recipe for a Whole Orange Cake (I’m on a major Great British Bake Off obsession right now), although I definitely wasn’t thinking directly about it. The first recipe I found was Nigella’s Clementine Cake recipe, which looked wonderful, except it used ground almonds and my friend has a nut allergy.

Continue reading “Whole Orange Cake”

Apple Honey Cake

For many of us, holidays are a combination of dishes that must be made, new dishes to try, and the sad fact that each person can only eat so much. Every year for Rosh Hashanah, my mother makes a fabulous apple cake. When I moved down here to Texas, I started making it for break-the-fast (the meal following the 25 hour fast during Yom Kippur, which is ten days after Rosh Hashanah) instead, because my friends and I weren’t cooking dinner during Rosh Hashanah. Continue reading “Apple Honey Cake”

What I’m Cooking: New Year’s Eve

Many times, I find recipes just like everyone else – the Internet. I don’t always change anything, or fuss with them in any way. I wanted a way to share some of these recipes with you all, without attaching a full blog post to something that may not need it. Hence, “What I’m Cooking.”

I have no idea how often this feature will run, but hopefully it will be a glimpse into my life, and provide links to good food. Today’s post is about the food I made to bring to a New Year’s Eve party at a friend’s. Normally I won’t bring this much, but there had been a couple of cookie recipes I’d been eyeing, and I figured this was the perfect opportunity. Unfortunately, I was rushing to get there, and didn’t make the time to take hardly any photographs, for which I apologize!

Continue reading “What I’m Cooking: New Year’s Eve”

Peach Kolaches

I can’t believe it’s been two months since I published anything! I have had a completely crazy fall – I taught 5 cooking classes for the high school students in our religious school and had other baking at the Shul (another word for a synagogue, or a Jewish “church”) kitchens almost every week. We serve lunch after our Saturday services every week, and occasionally do other meals. Our cook handles most of the meal, but I am often asked to help make “fancy” desserts for specific events or to help fill in when it’s a busy week.

Peach Kolaches

On October 30, we had a musical Friday night service with the theme “Deep In The Heart of Texas” which was followed by a Texas-themed dinner. As with all of our themed Friday night dinners, I designed a dessert menu to compliment the theme. It’s a fun challenge for me to come up with the dessert items.  For Texas night, I decided to make Texas sheet cake, pecan pie bars, grapefruit cookies (a riff on my favorite orange cookie recipe), and kolaches. Continue reading “Peach Kolaches”

Candy Corn Macadamia Nut Blondies

For the last couple of years, when Halloween rolls around, I start craving these Candy Corn Macadamia Nut Blondies. I don’t remember how or why I found that recipe, but it’s been a hit every time I’ve made them. Several times I’ve even made batches for Valentine’s Day, using the Valentines candy corn. It makes an incredibly sweet bar that is reminiscent of fudge – I’ve often described it as fudge with a bit of flour.

Candy corn macadamia nut blondies

Sometimes, though, it seems a bit TOO sweet, if such a thing can be said. This week at work, we had a Halloween-themed chili cook-off, and as with years before, I decided to make a batch of candy cane blondies. Instead of making my standard recipe, I wondered if I could make them more “blondie”-like and a little less fudge-like, thinking it might make them a bit more balanced. Continue reading “Candy Corn Macadamia Nut Blondies”