It might not come up so often in general conversation, but the fact of the matter is that I was raised Jewish. What sings to me of nostalgia and childhood memories is passover food, the warm and buttery tastes of latkes dipped in apple sauce alongside heavy kugels. Everything about the “high holidays” fills me with warmth and makes me smile, despite my lack of religious practice today. So when it came to celebrating Passover this year – I was not immediately on board. However, living abroad has led to developing an appreciation for what reminds me of home. That’s Jewish food. I then learned that none of my friends had ever celebrated Jewish holidays (and as an East Coaster – that was shocking). No one had ever tasted the decadent apple cinnamon cakes that haunted my childhood? Not a soul had experienced the wafting smells of food coming from the kitchen during a Passover of Hanukkah celebration. That settled it – Passover was happening.
- 1/2 cup chopped walnuts
- 1 1/2 cups sugar
- 3/4 tsp cinnamon
- 3/4 tsp nutmeg
- 3/4 tsp ginger
- 3 large eggs
- 1/3 cup vegetable cup
- 3/4 cpu matzo cake meal or 1 cup normal flour (if you aren’t observing religion)
- 5 medium apples (Golden Delicious – or sweet) – peeled, cored, halved and cut into 1/4 inch thick slices
- 1/3 cup raisins
- Start with your oven and preheat to 350F/175C, and butter an 8 inch glass baking dish (or rectangular dish. In the meantime, prepare the apples. This is the most time intensive part of the dish – so you can do this beforehand or take your time and take on the task with friends, and eat apples (thinking of all the sugar to come)
- Next, mix up the walnuts, 3/4 cup of the sugar, cinnamon, nutmeg and ginger in a side bowl. If you want to add any other ingredients, like pecans – feel free.
- Take a large mixing bowl (this should probably have an electric mixer – unless you want to gain some serious upper body strength) and whisk eggs until they are appropriately combined. Add in 3/4 cup sugar slowly until there is foam on the edge of the whisk
- Then pour in the decadent vegetable oil (try not to think about calories) and slowly add flour, a little bit at a time
- Start with half the batter and pour it in the pan, continuing by sprinkling half the spice mix on top, half of the apples (arranging them in a Pinterest worthy shape) and the raisins. Then add the rest of the batter, additional apples and sprinkle the rest of the walnut mixture.
- Place it in your oven and bake for around 1 hour and 15 minutes (check at 45 for caramelisation, depending on your oven). Take it from the oven, let it cool – or more likely don’t and eat.
- One tip is to make a sugar glaze to add on top. This is 5000000% not necessary – but warm liquid sugar makes everything a million times better, so why wouldn’t you add it?
- Enjoy 🙂