Rosh Hashanah: a not-too-sweet cake for a sweet New year!

When in need of a creative take on old standards, count on Melissa Clark from the New-York Times (Dining Section, August 28, 2013) to whip up something delicious, just on time for the Holidays. A sweet Jewish New Year’s foremost ingredient is honey and SWEETTABLESCAPES made that clear with our sugar cookies:
but for a family feast, you need more than cookies, so we tried the Red Wine and Honey Cake with Plums.
It delivered on its promise: wonderfully moist and interestingly “spiced”, made even more palatable by its accompaniment of plums, it was indeed a hit on the Eve of Rosh Hashanah at our house. We highly recommend it. It’s easy to prepare:  no need to take out the big mixer or to soften butter (olive oil is the preferred fat here) and truly delicious.
You’ll need:
  • Grease or nonstick spray, for the pan
  • 300 grams all-purpose flour (2 1/2 cups), more for the pan
  • 10 grams baking powder (2 teaspoons)
  • 3 grams baking soda (1/2 teaspoon)
  • 3 grams salt (1/2 teaspoon)
  • 2 grams cinnamon (1 1/2 teaspoons)
  • 2 grams cardamom (1 teaspoon)
  • 2 grams ground ginger (1 teaspoon)
  • 3 large eggs
  • 200 grams granulated sugar (1 cup)
  • 1 1/4 cups olive oil
  • 1 cup plus 2 tablespoons good quality honey, more to taste
  • 3/4 cup dry red wine
  • 2 teaspoons grated fresh ginger
  • 1 1/2 pounds ripe yellow plums
  • 1 tablespoon chopped lemon thyme leaves, or regular thyme leaves, plus branches for garnish


Place a rack in the middle of the oven; heat to 350 degrees. Generously grease and flour a 10-inch Bundt pan, including center tube.IMG_4361                      
In a large bowl, whisk together flour, baking powder, baking soda, salt and spices.
In another large bowl, whisk eggs well. Whisk in sugar, oil, 1 cup honey, the wine and the fresh ginger until well combined. Whisk in dry ingredients until smooth.IMG_4367IMG_4369IMG_4370IMG_4371IMG_4372IMG_4375IMG_4376IMG_4377IMG_4378IMG_4380
Pour batter into pan and bake until springy to the touch and a cake tester comes out clean, 45 to 50 minutes. Transfer pan to a wire rack to cool for about 20 minutes, then unmold the cake and let cool completely.IMG_4385IMG_4389
Meanwhile, pit and quarter plums. In a medium bowl, toss plums with remaining 2 tablespoons honey and the thyme. Add more honey to taste and let macerate for at least 30 minutes. Serve cake sliced and garnished with plums and thyme branches.IMG_4387IMG_4388IMG_4390
10 to 12 servings
  • NOTE

    Measurements for dry ingredients are given by weight for greater accuracy. The equivalent measurements by volume are approximate.

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