Recipes for a sweet Rosh Hashana

Pstry Chef Malki Adler and the author pick four great Rosh Hashana desert recipes.

Honey and chocolate cake (photo credit: GADI OHAD)
Honey and chocolate cake
(photo credit: GADI OHAD)
No holiday meal would be complete without a proper dessert, and of course Rosh Hashana is no exception. In fact, the first meal of the New Year is a wonderful time to express how we hope the upcoming year will be as sweet as honey.
I chose to share with you this week recipes from Malki Adler, a wonderful pastry chef whom I met at a lecture I was giving to women in Bnei Brak. She came up on the stage and prepared attractive and tasty desserts in individualized cups with ease. Since that day, our paths have crossed a number of times, and we always enjoy sharing ideas about new and unique pastry creations.
Adler is an accountant by profession, and after 20 years in the field she discovered her love for baking purely by accident. She decided to expand her horizons and so she signed up to take a professional pastry course. Because she keeps kosher, she refrained from tasting anything during her classes. But when she got back home, she spent hours adapting the recipes for the kosher kitchen, some of which she makes parve so they can be eaten after meat meals.
Within no time at all, Adler had turned her hobby into a profession, and not long after opened her new business, Chocoladler, in which she offers pastry workshops for amateur and professional chefs.
Adler and I recently sat down together to pick four recipes that would be appropriate for Rosh Hashana. We’ve listed the level of difficulty for each dessert, so everyone can pick something that’s right for them. Wishing everyone a happy – and sweet – New Year!
Translated by Hannah Hochner.
Level of difficulty: very easy • Makes 3 rolls.
■ 450 gr. date spread
■100 gr. almonds, coarsely ground
■ 100 gr. coconut
■ 3 Tbsp. raw tehina
■ 1 Tbsp. cocoa
■ 50 gr. cranberries or raisins, optional
■ 150 gr. marzipan
■ Powdered sugar, for sprinkling on work surface
Put all ingredients for filling in a bowl and mix well.
Form three rolls with a 2-cm. diameter. Place on a tray, cover with plastic wrap and freeze for three or four hours.
Sprinkle some powdered sugar on your work surface and roll out the marzipan into a sheet that is 5 mm. thick.
Cut it into three equal-size pieces. Next to each piece of marzipan, lay a roll of frozen filling and then wrap it up inside the marzipan. Do the same for other two rolls.
Then cover each roll with baking paper and plastic wrap and store in freezer until ready to serve.
Slice the roll into 5-cm. pieces. Can also be served in cupcake holders.
Honey and chocolate cake
Level of difficulty: easy • Makes 2 loaf pans
■ 335 gr. (2¹⁄3 cups) flour, sifted
■ 2 tsp. baking soda
■ ½ tsp. cinnamon
■ 4 medium eggs
■ 250 gr. (1¼ cups) sugar
■ 125 gr. (¹⁄3 cup) honey
■ 125 gr. (¹⁄3 cup) silan (date syrup)
■ 225 gr. (1 cup + 1 Tbsp.) oil
■ 185 ml. water
Chocolate Chantilly cream:
■ 70 gr. milk chocolate
■ 100 gr. sweet cream
White chocolate Chantilly cream with cinnamon:
This cream is used for decorating the cake and as filling for the cream puffs in the next recipe.
■ 320 gr. sweet cream
■ 150 gr. white chocolate
■ ¼ tsp. cinnamon
For decorating: In a baking accessory supply store, you can purchase chocolate pieces for decoration in the shape of pomegranates or apples. Alternatively, you can make them yourself. Just melt 100 grams of white chocolate, add a drop or two of food coloring, mix and then form a thin layer on a piece of plastic. Let harden. Using a cookie cutter, cut out apples or other desired shape.
In a bowl, add the flour, baking powder and cinnamon. Mix. In a separate bowl, whip eggs (whites and yolks) and then gradually add sugar. Mix until light and fluffy. Reduce speed and add the honey, silan, oil and water and mix lightly. Gradually add flour mixture at low speed.
Pour into greased pans, spread to edges and bake in preheated oven (150°) for 30-40 minutes. Take out and let cool.
To prepare the Chantilly, place the chocolate in a bowl. Pour the cream into a pot and bring to a boil. Pour cream over the chocolate and blend with a hand blender until smooth. Cover with plastic wrap and place in fridge overnight.
Mix chocolate cream mixture with an electric mixer until light and fluffy.
Spoon into decorating bag. Pick the appropriate decorating tip and then decorate cake according to desire.
To prepare cinnamon Chantilly, pour cream into a pot and bring to a boil. Place the chocolate in a bowl and pour the hot cream on top. Add the cinnamon and mix until smooth. Cover with plastic wrap and leave in fridge overnight.
Mix cream mixture with the balloon whisk attachment of electric mixer until light and fluffy. Spoon into decorating bag. Pick the appropriate decorating tip and then use as decoration next to chocolate Chantilly that you already used on the cake. Decorate with chocolate pieces in the shape of the Seven Species or other holiday symbols.
Cream puff (Paris-Brest)
Level of difficulty: medium • Makes 15 pieces
Pâte à choux (light pastry dough):
■ 150 ml. milk
■ 80 gr. butter
■ Pinch of salt
■ 1 Tbsp. sugar
■ 120 gr. (1 cup + 1 Tbsp.) flour, sifted
■ 3 medium eggs
White chocolate Chantilly with cinnamon:
Prepare according to honey cake recipe above.
Caramelized apples:
■ 4 apples, peeled and cut into small cubes
■ 2 Tbsp. lemon juice
■ 150 gr. (¾ cup) sugar
■ 50 gr. butter
■ 50 raisins (optional)
■ ½ tsp. cinnamon
For decorating:
■ ½ cup powdered sugar
In a pot, add milk, butter, salt and sugar. Bring to a boil and cook until butter is completely melted. Make sure pot has a cover so that the liquid does not evaporate while boiling.
Add all flour at once and mix quickly until dough separates from sides of pot. Turn off flame. Cool mixture for 10 minutes and transfer to electric mixer bowl. Mix with dough hook of an electric mixer, and while mixing add one egg after another until well mixed.
Transfer mixture to a decorating bag with a 13-14 mm. diameter attachment.
Place a sheet of baking paper on a tray and make 6-7-cm. diameter equally spaced rings with dough.
Bake in a preheated oven (160°) for 30 minutes. Note: Do not open door of oven during baking. Remove and let cool. Prepare white chocolate Chantilly with cinnamon according to recipe above.
To prepare apples, mix apple cubes with lemon juice. In a medium-size bowl, melt sugar and prepare caramel.
Add the butter and mix until melted.
Add the apples, raisins and cinnamon.
Continue cooking until softened. Drain and cool.
To assemble the Paris-Brest, cut it into two and fill inside with 2-3 teaspoons of apple filling. On top of this, spread some cinnamon Chantilly cream, and then close sandwich. Prepare all the rest in the same way. Keep in fridge until ready to be served. Just before bringing cream puffs to the table, sprinkle them with powdered sugar.
White chocolate mousse with pomegranate jelly
Level of difficulty: advanced • Makes 8 servings
Pomegranate jelly:
■ 70 gr. sugar
■ 200 gr. natural pomegranate juice
■ 3 gr. gelatin, dissolved in 18 ml. of water
White chocolate mousse:
■ 60 ml. (¼ cup) sweet cream
■ 60 ml. (¼ cup) milk
■ 20 gr. (1.5 Tbsp.) sugar
■ 2 egg yolks
■ 240 gr. white chocolate
■ 3 gr. gelatin, dissolved in 18 ml. of water
■ 200 gr. sweet cream
Velvet spray:
■ 120 gr. white chocolate
■ 90 gr. cocoa butter
■ White food coloring (can be purchased in baking accessory store)
For a creamy texture, use an electric paint-spray gun that can be purchased in a hardware store. If you don’t have a spray gun, you can prepare the following icing instead.
White chocolate ganache:
■ 150 gr. white chocolate
■ 50 gr. sweet cream
■ 20 gr. soft butter
For decorating:
■ Thin strips of red colored chocolate
■ ¾ cup pomegranate seeds
In a medium pot, add sugar, and heat over low flame. Stir until turns into caramel (make sure not to let it burn). Remove from flame.
In the microwave, heat the pomegranate juice and then add the caramel.
Mix and continue to cook until smooth.
Add the dissolved gelatin and mix. Let cool a few minutes.
To make white chocolate mousse, pour cream, milk, sugar and yolks into a pot. Cook and mix until thickens. (If you have a thermometer, cook until it reaches 84°.) Put white chocolate and gelatin in a bowl and add the cream mixture and the egg yolks. With an immersion blender, blend until smooth. Let cool to 35°.
In an electric mixer, whip cream and fold gently into cooled mixture.
Pour mixture into silicone cupcake holders (leave some of the mousse in the bowl to use for touch-ups later) and put in the freezer for two hours. Using a melon baller, cut out a hole in the top of each mousse cup and then fill the hole with the pomegranate jelly and put back in freezer for one more hour. Remove from freezer and cover jelly with a little more mousse which you had reserved.
Return to freezer overnight or at least eight hours.
To make the velvet spray, melt the ingredients in a bain-marie and then fill the spray gun. Remove the mousse desserts from the silicone cupcake holder and place on a work surface or a cake platter that turns. Spray the white chocolate on each one.
If you don’t have a spray gun, use the white chocolate ganache.
Place chocolate and cream in a bowl and melt them in the microwave. Heat in increments of 30 seconds at a time until melted.
Stir until smooth. Add the butter and mix.
Line a tray with the frozen mousse desserts and decorate with thin strips of colored-red white chocolate and pomegranate seeds. Keep in fridge until ready to serve, or put back in freezer to serve another time.