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With the “modern era’s” smaller sizes of the pastry, the name shifted to the diminutive, “babka” meaning “little grandmother.”  As much as many folks today swear by it and swoon for it, chocolate babka seems to have been a mid-century American Jewish invention.
     BABKE
   (Butter coffee cake)

 1 cake fresh yeast ½ cup butter (l stick)
1 cup warm milk 3 eggs, beaten
¼ tsp. salt ½ cup raisins
¾ cup sugar 1 Tbsp. grated lemon rind
3 ¾ cups flour
Soften yeast in small amount of the warm milk in a small mixing bowl. Add remainder of milk, salt,
1 tsp sugar, and 1 cup flour to the softened yeast. Beat well by hand or with beaters and let rise.
When the yeast mixture has risen to at least one and one-half times its original size and is
“spongy,” cream the butter with the remaining sugar. Add the beaten eggs and the yeast mixture. 
Beat thoroughly. Add raisins, lemon rind, and the remainder of the flour. 
Mix until smooth; this should make a thick batter. Let rise until doubled in bulk.

Divide the batter in half, and place each half in a well-greased 9 inch-square cake pan.
Let rise again until at least doubled in bulk. When the cakes have risen sufficiently,
brush with melted butter and sprinkle with Streusel Topping.
Bake at 375 degrees until lightly browned about 45 minutes. Each coffee cake serves 8-10.
STREUSEL TOPPING:½ cup brown sugar, firmly packed
½ cup chopped nuts
3 Tbsp. melted butter
4 Tbsps flour
1 ½ tsp. cinnamon
Blend all ingredients to the consistency of coarse crumbs. Sprinkle over top of the babke before baking.
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The oldest known strudel recipe is from 1696, a handwritten recipe housed at the Wienbibliothek im Rathaus. Strudel was created in the Austrian-Habsburg region and was effected by the cuisines of a lot of different cultures. "Strudel" is a German word, drawn from the Middle High German word for "whirlpool".
STRUDEL
            (Party pastries)
1/4 tsp. salt
1 egg, beaten
cups flour
1/3 cup warm water
1/2 cup butter, (1 stick) melted
Mix salt, flour and egg. Add the water, mix dough quickly with a knife,
then knead on a board, stretching it up and down to make it elastic,
until it leaves the board clean. Toss on a small, well floured board.
Cover with a hot bowl and keep it warm ½ hour or longer.
TO STRETCH DOUGH:
              Have filling ready before stretching dough. Work quickly Lay dough in center of a well floured table cloth
              on table about 30x48 inches. Flour the dough. Roll into a long oval with rolling pin.
              Brush dough with 1/4 cup of the melted butter. With your hands under the dough, palms down,
              pull and stretch the dough gradually all around the table, toward the edges, until the dough
             gradually all around the table, toward the edges, until the dough hanges over the table and
             isas thin as paper. Cut off dough that hangs over and drip 1/4 more butter over surface of dough.
 
 TO FILL, ROLL AND SHAPE:
            Sprinkle on strudel filling over ¾ of the buttered, stretched dough;
             f old a little of the dough at one end over the filling. Hold the cloth at that end high
             with both hands and the Strudel will roll itself over and over, like a large jelly roll.
            Trim edges again. Twist roll into greased pan 11x16 inches or cut into 3 rolls
            and lay them side by side in pan.
TO BAKE STRUDEL:
             Brush top with more melted butter. Bake in hot oven, 400 degrees for ½ hour;
             reduce heat to 350 degrees and bake ½ hour longer, or until brown and crisp;
             brushing well with butter from time to time while baking.
            You will use altogether about 1 cup melted butter for the strudel with its fillings.
FILLING:
1 jar 16 oz. red raspberry preserves
1 jar orange marmalade
1 bag coconut flakes
1 cup nuts, finely chopped
Maraschinos cherries, chopped
1 tsp. vanilla
 
*Note: You can add raisins, chopped apples, any dried fruit, crumbled graham crackers,
lemon rind, or anything sweet that pleases you, for the filling.

*Note: If you just don't have the time, you can substitute Phylo Dough for the pastry.
It will not be the authentic traditional strudel, but still makes for a tasty pastry.

 

 

 
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Some call this delicious cookie treat, Mandelbrot (Almond Bread) and some call it Kamish Bread (almost bread).  No matter what you call it, they are delicious.  It may have been brought over from the Italian Jews when they came to the United States, because it looks so much like biscotti.
Mandelbrot
(Almond cookies)
6 eggs
1½ cups sugar
1½ cups oil
2 tsp. vanilla extract
4 tsp. baking powder
7-8 cups flour
1 tsp. salt
2 cups nuts (walnuts or almonds) chopped finely
CINNAMON MIXTURE:
             1 cup sugar
2 tsp. cinnamon
Mix together and place in a shaker
Heat oven to 350 degrees then line a large baking sheet with parchment paper or lightly oil.
In a large bowl, combine flour, baking powder and salt and set aside.
In another large bowl or mixer, beat the eggs and slowly add the sugar, then the oil and vanilla extract.
On the lowest speed, or by hand, beat in the flour mixture and the nuts until the mixture holds together.It will be soft, but not too sticky. Add a few more tablespoons of flour if needed.
Divide the dough in half or in fourths. Dampen hands lightly with oil and form each part into a
(3”x12”) log on the baking sheet, spacing 4” apart. Bake about 45 minutes or until golden brown
and firm to the touch. Remove from oven and let cool at least 10 minutes. Carefully place logs
on a cutting board and cut diagonally with serrated knife into ½ to ¾ inch slices.
Place pieces (cut side down) on baking sheets. After the pieces are in place, sprinkle generously
with the mixture of cinnamon and sugar on top of cookies. Bake another 10 minutes, then turn again
and sprinkle on other side and bake 10 minutes.
Cool completely. Store in an airtight container up to 3 months, or freeze.

 

 

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Honey is a very traditional food during Rosh Hashanah.  Its sweetness symbolizes the wish for a happy, sweet life in the upcoming year. It is common to have a Rosh Hashanah feast end with a beautiful, moist honey cake.  Challah and apple slices are also dipped into honey and served along with the honey cake.
            Honey Cake
              (LECKACH)
4 eggs
1 cup sugar
½ tsp. ground allspice
1 cup honey
½ cup strong black coffee
2 Tbsps. oil
3 ½ cups flour
¼ cup citron
1 ½ tsp. baking powder
1 tsp. baking soda
¼ tsp. ground cloves
½ tsp. ground allspice
½ tsp. cinnamon
½ cup chopped nuts
½ cup raisins
2 Tbsps. brandy
Beat eggs, and add sugar gradually, beating until creamy. Combine honey and coffee.
Stir into oil. Combine with the egg mixture. In a separate bowl, mix together flour,
baking powder, soda and spices. Add nuts, raisins, and citron to flour mixture.
Add egg mixture to dry ingredients, blending thoroughly. Stir brandy through the batter.
Line two greased loaf pans with waxed paper. Half fill each pan with batter.
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“The word “cake” is a translation of the Hebrew word “challah.” The strands or arms of the challah have many meanings, which is why you will see challahs in many different shapes and sizes.
Twelve (12) humps recall the miracle of the 12 loaves for the 12 tribes of Israel.
Round loaves, on Rosh Hashanah, symbolize “continuity”.
Ladder shapes, before the Yom Kippur fast, represents ascending to great heights.
Small triangular loaves, on Purim, represent Haman’ ears.
Two (2) oblong loaves side by side, on Shavuot, resembles the Tablets of the Law.
    CHALLAH  
(Sabbath Bread)
 
b2ap3_thumbnail_Challah600x450.jpg    
1 cake fresh yeast
¼ cup warm water
5 cups flour
1 tsp. sugar
1 tsp. salad oil
1 egg beaten
Glaze: 1 egg yolk diluted with 1 tsp. water
Poppy seed or sesame seed (optional)
Soften yeast in ¼ cup warm water. Sift together dry ingredients. Add oil and beaten egg.
Mix thoroughly; add in just enough water for smooth kneading.

Knead well. Cover with tea towel. Let stand until it “bubbles”.
Knead again. Cover, let rise until doubled in bulk.
Divide dough into three equal parts. Pull into three strips and then braid them.
Place into a baking pan and let rise until doubled in bulk.
J
ust before baking, brush with diluted egg yolk.
Sprinkle with poppy seeds or sesame seeds, if desired.
Bake at 350 degrees until golden brown--about 1 hour. 
MODERN VERSION
*Note: Use a bread maker for a quicker and easier way to make your Sabbath Challah.
            Use your bread maker's recipe.

 

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In the early 1800, Americans increasingly leavened baked goods with baking soda.  But they discovered “sour cream” provided acid to activate the alkali as well as enhance the flavor and texture of the final product.

Sour Cream Coffee Cake

b2ap3_thumbnail_SourCreamCoffeeCake490x395.jpg

(Great for Holiday breakfast)
1 cup sugar
1/4 lb. butter (1 stick)
2 eggs
1/2 pint sour cream (1 cup)
2 cups sifted cake flour
1 teaspoon baking soda
1 teaspoon baking powder
1 teaspoon vanilla
Cream the butter and sugar. Add eggs and sour cream, beat until smooth.
Sift together dry ingredients and add to egg mixture. Add vanilla; blend thoroughly.
Pour half of the batter into a small greased tube pan (9 x 3 ½ inches).
Sprinkle with half of the topping mixture. Add the remaining batter and sprinkle
with the remainder of the topping mixture.
Bake at 350 degrees for 35 minutes. Cake serves 6 to 8.
TOPPING:
¼ cup sugar
½ teaspoon cinnamon
½ cup chopped nuts
Note: Also can be made in an (8”x8”) glass Pyrex pan.
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