President Obama and the American Jewish Community

Recipe in Spotlight – Bebe’s Honey Cake

Editor’s note: This post is part of a series highlighting recipes used by the White House Staff for the Jewish High Holidays.

Honey cake typically eaten on Rosh Hashanah symbolizes the sweet year ahead. Some believe that the raisins and almonds added to the batter signify all the good things that will happen over the coming year. My grandma, Bebe, passed away last summer. Her baking and cooking were a source of pleasure for her whole family.

  • 3 cups all-purpose flour
  • 1 Tbsp cinnamon
  • 1 Tbsp baking soda
  • 1 tsp baking powder
  • 1/2 c. shortening
  • 1 cup sugar
  • 3 large eggs
  • 3/4 cup honey
  • 1 cup triple-strength coffee
  • 1/4 cup raisins
  • 1/2 cup slivered almonds
  • Grated rind of one orange

1. Sift together first 4 ingredients.

2. Beat the shortening and sugar together until light and fluffy.

3. Add the eggs, one at a time, alternately with the honey.

4. Add the sifted dry ingredients, alternately with the coffee, beginning and ending with the flour. Do not overbeat.

5. Fold the raisins, almonds and grated orange rind into the batter.

6. Turn the batter into a greased 10" tube pan.

7. Bake in a 325* oven for 1 hour until the cake tests done with a toothpick.

8. Cool about 30 minutes on a rack. Remove the cake from the pan to complete cooling.

9. Honey cake is an excellent dunker when stale.

Eli Levine is a Presidential Management Fellow for Public Engagement at the White House Council on Environmental Quality

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