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Symbolic New Year Foods
Source : AJU Miller Intro to Judaism

For Ashkenazi Jews, the primary symbolic food of Rosh Ha-Shanah is apples dipped in honey, a way of wishing for a sweet new year. Before eating apples and honey, say the following blessings:

Barukh atah Adonai Eloheinu melekh ha'olam borei pri ha-eitz.
Blessed are You, God, Ruler of the universe, who creates fruit of the tree.

Yehi ratzon lifanecha, Adonai Eloheinu, v'Elohai avoteinu, she'te'hadesh aleinu shanah tovah u'metukah.
May it be Your will, Adonai our God, to grant us a good and sweet year.   

Symbolic New Year Foods

For centuries, Sephardi Jewish families have gathered to celebrate a special Rosh Hashanah ceremony with a plate or meal of symbolic foods. Each food is eaten after requesting a specific kind of Divine blessing that sounds like the name of that food in Hebrew. 

Before eating dates ( tamar ):
May it be your will, God, that hatred will end. ( Tamar resembles the word for end, yitamu. )

Before eating pomegranate:
May we be as full of mitzvot as the pomegranate is full of seeds.

Before eating apple:
May it be Your will, God, to renew for us a good and sweet year.

Before eating black-eyed peas or string beans ( rubia ):
May it be Your will, God, that our merits increase. ( Rubia resembles the word for increase, yirbu. )

Before eating pumpkin or gourd ( k’ra ):
May it be Your will, God, to tear away all evil decrees against us, as our merits are proclaimed before you. ( K’ra resembles the word for tear and proclaimed, likroah. )

Before eating spinach or beet leaves ( selek ):
May it be Your will, God, that all the enemies who might beat us will retreat, and we will beat a path to freedom ( Selek resembles the word for retreat, yistalku ).

Before eating leeks, chives, or scallions ( karti ):
May it be Your will, God, that our enemies be cut off. ( Karti resembles the word for cut off,  yikartu. ) 

Since Rosh Hashanah means the head of the year, we eat foods that symbolize our wish to be heads, not tails in the year to come. Traditionally, families ate the head of a fish or sheep. You may want to instead enjoy a head of lettuce, or a more whimsical option involves gummy fish. 
May it be Your will, God, that our heads remain clear and focused on creating a better world this year.

Symbolic New Year Foods

Finally, time to begin eating! Challah is a yummy egg bread eaten on most Jewish holidays. On Rosh Hashanah the challah is in the shape of a circle, to symbolize the circle of time, and the fullness of the year that is coming. Many people eat raisin challah on Rosh Hashanah, and drizzle honey on top of it, for extra sweetness. Yum!

בָּרוּךְ‭ ‬אַתָּה‭ ‬יְיָ‭ ‬אֱלֹהֵֽינוּ‭ ‬מֶֽלֶךְ‭ ‬הָעוֹלָם
‬הַמּֽוֹצִיא‭ ‬לֶֽחֶם‭ ‬מִן‭ ‬הָאָֽרֶץ

Barukh ata Adonai Eloheinu melekh ha’olam,
hamotzi lekhem min ha-aretz.

Blessed are You, Adonai our God,Ruler of the universe,
Who brings forth bread from the earth.

Symbolic New Year Foods
Beet and Citrus Ensalada

Beet and Citrus Ensalada
Symbolic silka dish by Liliana Fuchs (Colombia)

​​2 roasted, peeled, and sliced golden beets 
2 roasted, peeled, and sliced red beets 
2 avocados, pitted, peeled, and sliced into quarters 
2 oranges 
2 blood oranges 
¼ cup roasted pistachios, chopped 
Extra virgin olive oil 
Sea salt flakes
Fresh basil leaves 

Prep | 2.5 h (beet roasting)
Ready in | 20 m
Duration | 5 days
Yields | 4 portions

Preheat the oven to 350°. In a small baking dish, rub the beets with olive oil. Add water and cover tightly with foil and roast for 2.5 hours, or until tender when pierced with a knife.
When cool, peel the beets and slice them. Transfer to a large bowl.
Peel oranges with a paring knife to remove any pith. Slice oranges crosswise into 1/4" rounds.
On a serving plate, arrange beet, orange, and avocado slices. Drizzle with olive oil and sprinkle with sea salt. Tuck a few basil leaves into the salad. Enjoy!

Symbolic New Year Foods
Source :
Red-Pepper and Walnut Dip with Pomegranate

Yields 1 1/2 Cups


4 Pitted Dates

3 Chopped Roasted Red Peppers

1/2 Cup Pomegranate juice

1/2 Cup toasted walnuts

1/2 teaspoon red-pepper flakes

2 Tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil

Coarse salt and freshly ground pepper

Pomegranate seeds

Toasted whole-grain pita bread

Soak dates in hot water until softened, about 10 minutes; drain. Pulse dates, red peppers, pomegranate juice, walnuts, and red-pepper flakes in food processor until smooth. With machine running, slowly add olive oil until thoroughly combined. Season with salt and pepper. Dip can be stored in refrigerator in an airtight container up to 3 days. Garnish with pomegranate seeds and serve with pita bread.

Symbolic New Year Foods
Source :

Black-Eyed Pea Stew (Lubiya)
Adapted from Gilda Angel’s Sephardic Holiday Cooking

Black-eyed peas are a traditional food for Rosh Hashanah in Sephardi communities, as well as in African-American homes, as symbols of abundance, wealth and fertility. Katherine Romanow adapted two of Gilda Angel's recipes to create this stew for the Jewish Women's Archive. 

3 tablespoons vegetable or olive oil
2 small onions
1 clove garlic
1 teaspoon salt
1 teaspoon paprika
½ allspice
½ cinnamon
1 can (15 ounces) black-eyed peas
4 tablespoons tomato sauce
A few tablespoons tomato paste if you feel the stew needs thickening
2 cups vegetable broth or water

Sauté onion and garlic in oil. Add salt, paprika, oregano, cinnamon to the onions and garlic. Add peas, tomato sauce and broth or water.

Bring to a boil and cook for 5 minutes.

Lower the heat and simmer for 15 minutes.

Symbolic New Year Foods
Source :
Za'atar Roasted Carrots & Green Beans


  • 1 pound carrots peeled & sliced vertically

  • 1 pound green beans trimmed

  • 1/4 cup olive oil divided

  • 2 tablespoons za'atar divided

  • 1 teaspoon salt divided

  • 1/2 teaspoon pepper divided


  • Pre-heat oven to 425 degrees and have two large baking sheets ready to go.

  • Using two large bowls or resealable plastic bags, fill one with carrots and one with the green beans.

  • Drizzle each bowl with half of the remaining ingredients: olive oil (two tablespoons for each), za'atar (one tablespoon each), salt (1/2 teaspoon each) and pepper (1/4 teaspoon each.)

  • Toss both batches to coat and spread on to even layers in two separate baking sheets.

  • Place carrots and green beans in the oven and roast until nicely browned: 15-20 minutes for the green beans and 20-25 minutes for the carrots.

  • Remove from the oven and serve separately or in one dish.

Symbolic New Year Foods
Source :

Lilya's Summer Beet Borscht 

Liz Alpern, Co-Founder of the Gefilteria introduces this recipe: One summer day, Jeffrey and I headed to Little Odessa in Brighton Beach, Brooklyn. We were visiting our business partner Jackie’s ninety-two-year-old Russian-born great-aunt, Lilya. She had immigrated to Brighton Beach from the Soviet Union in 1989. Lilya was known for her borscht, and she’d invited us to spend time with her while she salted and seasoned three varieties of the soup. 


2 pounds whole beets, scrubbed but unpeeled
2 carrots, unpeeled and coarsely chopped
2 celery stalks with leaves, coarsely chopped
2 medium onions:
1 quartered, 1 diced
5 garlic cloves: 2 left whole, 3 minced
2 dried bay leaves
2 tablespoons kosher salt
2 tablespoons whole black peppercorns
2 tablespoons caraway seeds
4 cups cold water
2 tablespoons olive oil
3 tablespoons honey
3 tablespoons apple cider vinegar
Sour cream, store-bought or homemade (page 24), or crème fraîche, for garnish
Chopped fresh dill, for garnish

1. Preheat the oven to 400oF. Wrap 1 pound of the beets individually in aluminum foil and set on a baking sheet. Roast until they can be easily pierced with a fork, 40 minutes to 1 hour, depending on the size of the beets (larger beets take longer). The skin should peel off easily under cold running water. Dice the beets into bite-size pieces and refrigerate until serving.

2. While the beets are roasting, in a large soup pot, combine the remaining 1 pound beets, the carrots, celery, quartered onion, whole garlic cloves, bay leaves, salt, peppercorns, caraway seeds and 9 cups of water. Bring to a boil, then reduce the heat to low and simmer for 1 hour. Remove from the heat.

3. Fill a large bowl with water and ice. Remove the boiled beets from the pot and place them in the ice-water bath. When cool, peel and coarsely chop them. Strain the broth through a fine-mesh strainer into a large bowl, discarding the solids.

4. Rinse and dry the soup pot and set it over medium heat. Add the olive oil and diced onion and sauté until the onion is fragrant, about 3 minutes. Add the minced garlic and sauté for 3 to 5 minutes more, until the onion begins to turn golden. Add the beet broth and coarsely chopped boiled beets to the pot and simmer over low heat, covered, for about 20 minutes.

5. Remove from the heat and puree the soup in the pot using an immersion blender. (Alternatively, transfer it in small batches to a standing blender and puree—just be careful!) Add the honey and vinegar and simmer over very low heat for 5 minutes.

6. If serving hot, place 2 tablespoons of diced roasted beets in the bottom of each bowl and then ladle the hot soup over them. Garnishing with sour cream and chopped fresh dill. If serving chilled, remove from the heat and let the soup cool completely and then refrigerate overnight. Be sure to stir the soup well and taste immediately before serving. Once cooled, many soups require a touch more salt. If necessary, add more salt, a teaspoon at a time. As with hot borscht, place 2 tablespoons of the roasted beets at the bottom of the bowl and ladle the soup on top. Serve garnished with sour cream and chopped fresh dill.


Excerpted from the book THE GEFILTE MANIFESTO by Jeffrey Yoskowitz & Liz Alpern. Copyright © 2016 by Gefilte Manifesto LLC. Reprinted with permission from Flatiron Books. All rights reserved. Photography by Lauren Volo.

Symbolic New Year Foods
Source : The Gefilteria

Carrot Ginger Roasted Vegetable Tsimmes

Jeffrey Yoskowitz, Co-Founder of the Gefilteria, introduces this original recipe: Tsimmes is generally known as a sweet vegetable stew quite commonly prepared by eastern European Jewish cooks for the high holidays in the fall. The tsimmes I grew up with as a kid was usually drenched in a sugary syrup. It didn’t feel healthy nor look particularly appetizing. I wanted to change that, since there’s so much color and flavor in these vegetables, and therefore, so much potential. Think of this version of the dish as more of a roast vegetable side, perfect for the Jewish high holidays, Thanksgiving or anytime in the fall or winter. Much of the sweetness comes from the carrots, sweet potatoes and plums, though there is honey added, as well. And there’s a little kick from the ginger and the optional addition of red chili flakes.

Serves 4

3 Tbsp. grated fresh ginger
3 Tbsp. honey
2 Tbsp. vegetable oil
Kosher salt
Pinch red pepper flakes (optional)
1 tsp. lemon zest
1 lb. carrots, cut into 1/2" rounds (about 3 cups)
1 large onion, halved and sliced thin
1 large sweet potato, peeled and chopped into 1/2" pieces
1/2 lb. pitted prunes, chopped coarse (about 1-1/2 cups)
1/2 cup orange juice
Chopped fresh parsley, for serving

Heat oven to 400 degrees. In a small bowl, mix together ginger, honey, 1 tablespoon oil, 1/2 teaspoon salt, red pepper flakes (if using), and lemon zest to make a glaze; set aside.

In a large oven-safe skillet, heat remaining 1 tablespoon oil over medium heat until shimmering. Add carrots and onion and cook, stirring occasionally, until they begin to soften, 3 to 5 minutes. Add sweet potato and prunes and cook, stirring occasionally, until vegetables just begin to soften, about 10 minutes.

Stir in orange juice, scraping up bits of vegetables that have stuck to the bottom. Add reserved glaze to skillet and stir to coat.

Transfer skillet to oven and bake until carrots and sweet potatoes are fork-tender, about 30 minutes. Season with salt to taste, sprinkle with parsley, and serve.

The Gefilteria:

Symbolic New Year Foods
Source :
Mizrahi and Sephardic Rosh Hashanah Recipes from JIMENA

JIMENA  was created in 2002 by former Jewish refugees from the Middle East and North Africa, and work for Jewish diversity and inclusion for people often left out of the narrative of Jewish life. 

Enjoy their carefully curated collection of authentic Rosh Hashanah recipes and food articles from our favorite Mizrahi and Sephardic food bloggers and editors.  The list includes Moroccan fish, pumpkin bourekas, Tunisian couscous, quince stew, Persian upside-down cake with dates and pistachio biscotti. 
Read it here:

Symbolic New Year Foods
Source :

Roast Chicken with Barley & Vegetables

Liz Alpern, co-founder of the Gefilteria introduces this recipe: This dish makes for a fragrant meal that is unique enough for Friday night and simple enough for a weekday evening. While roast chicken is a classic centerpiece on the contemporary Jewish table, the earthiness of the mushrooms and barley in this recipe give it a decidedly Old World feel.


¾ cup pearl barley
1 dried bay leaf
3½ teaspoons kosher salt, plus more as needed
4 scallions, coarsely chopped
1 pound mixed fresh mushrooms, coarsely chopped
3 tablespoons olive oil or schmaltz (page 35)
2 garlic cloves, minced
¼ teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
2½ to 3 pounds chicken pieces, cleaned and patted dry
¼ cup coarsely chopped fresh parsley, plus more for garnish
1 tablespoon apple cider vinegar

1. In a medium pot, combine the barley, bay leaf, and 1 teaspoon of the salt. Add enough water to cover the barley by 2 inches. Bring to a boil, then reduce the heat to low and simmer for 18 to 20 minutes, until the barley is half cooked but still al dente. Strain and remove the bay leaf. Toss the barley with the scallions, mushrooms, and 2 tablespoons of the olive oil or schmaltz. It may seem like too many mushrooms, but they will shrink in the oven. 

2. Preheat oven to 425ºF. 

3. Combine the remaining 2½ teaspoons salt, the garlic, and the pepper. Rub the mixture on the chicken pieces, getting it between the skin and the flesh if possible. Place the chicken pieces on a baking sheet, skin side up. Drizzle with the remaining 1 tablespoon oil or schmaltz. On a separate baking sheet, spread out the barley-mushroom mixture in an even layer. 

4. Transfer both baking sheets to the preheated oven and roast for 25 to 30 minutes, until the barley is cooked through and the chicken is evenly colored when sliced in the thickest part. You can also test the internal temperature, which should register 165ºF when done. 

5. Transfer the chicken to a plate and pour any juices from the baking sheet onto the barley-mushroom mixture. Add the parsley and vinegar to the mixture and stir to combine. Taste and season with additional salt if necessary. Serve the chicken pieces with a heaping portion of the barley-mushroom mixture. Garnish with additional parsley.

Excerpted from the book THE GEFILTE MANIFESTO by Jeffrey Yoskowitz & Liz Alpern. Copyright © 2016 by Gefilte Manifesto LLC. Reprinted with permission from Flatiron Books. All rights reserved. Photography by Lauren Volo.

Symbolic New Year Foods
Source :
Japanese-Style Apple and Honey Roll Cake for Rosh Hashanah

When I was growing up, my Mom would always serve seasonal fruit after dinner. When she would occasionally forget, my siblings and I would sit at the table longer than usual wondering where our nightly serving of fruit was. Because we expected fruit every night instead of a sweeter dessert like cakes or pies, none of us really developed much of a sweet tooth. 

On very special occasions, we would pick up a cake from the Japanese or Chinese bakery nearby. I love Asian cakes because they often incorporate fruit and have just a hint of sweetness. When we got older and would go to friend's birthday parties, American sweets were a shock to the palate. To this day, I don't care for most American sweets! I sometimes wonder if my Mom knew exactly what she was doing.

The most famous dish of all on Rosh Hashanah is perhaps the simplest; apples dipped in honey, an edible prayer for a sweet year. Here's my updated take on a classic apple and honey cake for dessert: Light and airy Japanese sponge cake with whipped cream, spiced apples and honey rolled in. The end result is an unexpected take on a classic with a beautiful presentation and just a touch of sweetness to last all year.

Serves: 6

Total Prep Time: 1.5 hrs

Total Cook Time: 4 hours

Ingredients – For the cake:

  • 4 large eggs (separate yolks from whites and place the whites in the refrigerator)
  • 3/4 cup cake flour
  • 1/2 teaspoon baking powder
  • 3/4 cup organic white sugar
  • 2 tablespoon heavy whipping cream at room temperature

Ingredients – For the cream:

  • 3/4 cup heavy whipping cream, chilled
  • 1 tablespoon white confectioner's sugar

Ingredients – For the apple filling:

  • 4 tablespoons unsalted butter
  • 4 fuji apples, cored, peeled and chopped into roughly 1/2" pieces
  • juice of 1/2 of 1 lemon
  • 1/3 cup honey
  • 1/2 teaspoon cinnamon
  • 1/4 teaspoon cardamom
  • 1/4 teaspoon allspice


  1. Preheat the oven to 350°F. Line a 9"x 13" baking sheet with parchment paper.
  2. Toss the apples with lemon juice.
  3. In a medium pan, melt the butter over medium heat. Pour in the honey and stir constantly until the honey and butter are incorporated. Reduce the heat to low and slide the apples in, along with the spices. Cook for about 5 minutes or until the apples have softened and are cooked through.
  4. In the bowl of a standing mixer with a whipping attachment, whip the refrigerated egg whites at medium speed and 1/4 cup sugar. Once that's incorporated, add another 1/4 cup of the sugar until stiff peaks form. Scrape down the sides of the bowl and whip again until everything is well-incorporated and stiff peaks have formed.
  5. In a separate bowl, whisk the egg yolks and the last 1/4 cup of sugar until it's an airy, custard-like consistency. It should double in volume and become thick and lighter in color. Add the cake flour a little at a time and stir until just incorporated.
  6. Add the yolk mixture into the egg white meringue mixture and stir very carefully with a spatula until just combined. You want to stir carefully so as not to deflate the mixture.
  7. Pour the batter into the prepared baking sheet (the sides of the baking sheet should be at least 1" high). Spread the mixture out evenly and bake for 10-12 minutes or until cooked through (use a cake tester or toothpick).
  8. Place another piece of parchment over the cake, then place another baking sheet on top of that. Using oven mitts while the cake is still hot, flip the cake over. The bottom side of the cake should be facing up underneath the parchment paper. Gently remove the parchment paper (that the cake was baked in). Place the cake on a large cutting board and slice one edge of the cake at a slight diagonal (just slice a thin sliver of the short end of it- so if it's in landscape orientation, slice a bit off the short end). Gently roll the cake up and wrap it in a clean cotton towel on a cooling rack to dry. This will help the cake hold its shape later.
  9. While the cake is cooling, whip the heavy cream with the sugar until it's the consistency of whipped cream (light and fluffy), being careful not to over-mix (it will start to visibly break down). Reserve about 1/2 cup of whipped cream, in case you would like to use it to frost the top of the cake as pictured. Fold in the apple mixture to the whipped cream.
  10. After about 15-30 minutes (or whenever the cake has mostly cooled), remove the cake from the kitchen towel and unroll it. With the bottom side still facing up, spread the whipped cream and apple mixture on the cake with an offset spatula. Leave 1/2" on all sides of the cake unfrosted, and use a little less frosting as you approach the end of the cake.
  11. Carefully but tightly roll the cake back up (roll it away from you, with the length of the cake going away from you). The angled cut you made should be on the opposite end of the cake from where you are standing (the end of the wrap). Wrap another piece of parchment around it, twisting each of the sides shut. Refrigerate the cake for at least 2 hours.
  12. Frost the top of the cake if you'd like. I also added crushed freeze dried apples and pistachios to my cake for crunch and color. Enjoy!
Symbolic New Year Foods
Source : Deborah Missel

Majestic and Moist Honey Cake
Adapted from Smitten Kitchen by Deborah Missel

3 ½ cups all-purpose flour
1 teaspoon of baking powder
1 teaspoon of baking soda
½ teaspoon of kosher salt
4 teaspoons ground cinnamon
½ teaspoon ground ginger
½  teaspoon ground cardamom
½ teaspoon ground allspice
1 cup vegetable oil
1 cup honey
1 ½ cups granulated sugar
½ cup brown sugar
3 large eggs, room temperature
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
1 cup warm strong coffee or tea, prefer Chai
½ cup fresh orange juice
Zest of 1 orange
¼ cup rye, whiskey, or spiced rum
½ cup slivered or sliced almonds, optional
½ cup dried cranberries, optional

Preheat oven to 350F. Grease and flour baking pans. 

Toss cranberries in 1 tsp flour and set aside. 

In a large bowl, whisk together the flour, baking powder, baking soda, salt, and all four spices. Make a well in the center and add oil, honey, white and brown sugars, eggs, vanilla, coffee/tea, orange juice, orange zest, and liquor. [If you measure your oil before the honey, it will easier to get all the honey out.] Using a strong wire whisk or in an electric mixer on low speed, stir together making a thick, well-blended batter. Make sure no ingredients are stuck to the bottom. Fold in cranberries. 

Spoon batter into well-greased and floured pans. Sprinkle top of cakes evenly with almonds, if using. 

Place baking pans on one or two baking sheets. This will help evenly distribute heat and prevent the bottom of the cake from baking faster than the top and center. Place cake pans in center of oven or spaced evenly between racks to ensure even baking. Bake until cake tests done and the cake springs back when gently touched in the center.

Baking Time By Pan Size
Angel food and tube cake pans – bake 60 – 75 minutes
Loaf pans  - bake 45 – 55 minutes
Sheet cake pan – bake 40 – 45 minutes
Muffins – bake for about 20 minutes
Mini-bundt pans (4) – bake 30 – 35 minutes
Mini-loaf pan (4) – bake for 20 minutes, rotate and bake for another 25 minutes 

Symbolic New Year Foods
Source : Jewtina Y Co
Pomegranate Mojito

Pomegranate Mojito
Symbolic rimon dish inspired by Femina Travel (Cuba)


¼ cup pomegranate seeds
4 cups pomegranate juice
2 cups of lemonade
3 cups of white rum
A big bunch of mint
2 limes, quartered, plus slices to garnish

Prep | 10 m
Ready in | 20 m
Duration | 3 days
Yields | 6-7 cups

A day before the gathering, freeze some pomegranate seeds along with water in an ice cube tray.
Setting aside half the mint for garnish, tear the rest into a large jug with the lime quarters. Muddle the mint and lime to release the flavors.
Pour the pomegranate juice, lemonade and white rum into the jug. Put ice cubes into each glass, strain the pomegranate mix through a sieve. Garnish with lime and mint.

Symbolic New Year Foods
Source :

The first night of Rosh Hashanah begins with a special meal that features traditional foods and blessings. Over time, the tradition grew to include more symbolic foods, with various dishes becoming popular in different Jewish communities around the world.

Symbolic New Year Foods
Source :

Recipe by Paige Erlich

I love cooking and hosting events so much that I’ve turned it into a side hobby, sharing my favorite recipes and hosting tips on Instagram at @PaigePlates. When hosting Shabbat dinner or picnicking in the park with my friends, I’m particularly fond of sharing charcuterie or cheese boards, which are fun to both make and eat. And while they’re so beautiful that they always look impressive, they’re fairly easy to assemble – especially with a little bit of forethought and planning.

I always like to choose a theme for my cheese boards, and as it turns out, Rosh HaShanah is a built-in theme! Traditional holiday foods like apples, honey, dates, figs, and pomegranates are all perfect for cheese boards, and each pairs nicely with various cheeses.

Here’s how to go about creating your own Rosh HaShanah cheese board, whether to serve as a holiday appetizer or a lunchtime indulgence during the  Yamim Noraim.


First, choose your cheeses. Lots of varieties of cheese pair well with apples and honey, so you have plenty to choose from. I'm no expert, but I recommend choosing three to four types (depending on the size of your cheese board) that vary in degrees hardness and softness.

I chose three cheeses, two hard and one soft: manchego, which is popularly paired with honey; white cheddar, which complements the crisp tartness of apples; and Brie, a soft cheese that goes well with just about everything. You may wish to use goat cheese, blue cheese, gouda… truly, the combinations are endless, and the good news is that all of them will taste great.  


Jewish cooking expert Tina Wasserman explains, “Apples and honey: For Ashkenazi Jews, these words are an inseparable pairing. We dip a slice of apple in honey to express our hopes for a sweet and fruitful year.”

For your cheese board, choose whatever kind of apples you like best or find in season – or even pick your own at an orchard! I went with my favorites, Red Delicious, and arranged them in a long, swirling design as the vibrant centerpiece of my cheeseboard.


I put a small bowl of honey on my cheese board, complete with a little honey stick, both for show and for functionality. I recommend getting creative with different types of honey, mixing up the kinds (wildflower, raw, etc.), flavors (spicy, lavender, etc.) and even the hues.

Another special treat, and one that I love using on cheeseboards, is honeycomb, which is completely edible, oozes with honey, and lends an interesting, chewy texture. I purchase mine from a local company (with thanks to Busy Bees NJ) for a special Rosh HaShanah touch on my holiday cheese boards.


I wanted to add a few other Rosh HaShanah and fall-themed food elements to my cheeseboard, so I turned to figs and pomegranates.

At Rosh HaShanah, we eat “new fruits,” those that have just ripened with the coming of the season. Figs are one such fruit, only in season for a short amount of time in late summer and early fall. They’re delicious and look beautiful on a cheese board board, adding color and texture; importantly, they also pair well with both cheese and honey.

Pomegranates are commonly associated with Judaism because they are thought to contain 613 seeds, the same number of mitzvot (commandments) we find in the Torah. Chris Harrison writes, “This allegory encourages us to fulfill mitzvot and live righteous lives.” Cut open a pomegranate to add color, texture, and sweet, juicy bursts of flavor to your holiday cheese board.

I didn't use dates on my cheese board, but they're often found on the Sephardic seder plate this time of year, and they're another possible addition.  Tamar, or “date” in Hebrew, is similar to the word  yitamu, which means “to end.” In addition to its sweetness, the date wishes an “end” to those who wish us ill will. Sweet dates make for a great, textured addition to your Rosh HaShanah cheese board.


Cheese and fruit both pair well with a variety of nuts, which fill up space on your cheese board and add a little bit of protein. When the rest of my board elements were in place, I filled up the remaining nooks and crannies with walnuts.

Sephardic Jews often enjoy  tispishti, a walnut cake with sweet syrup, to celebrate the Jewish new year, which make walnuts a nice and traditional choice for a Rosh HaShanah cheese board. You can also try pecans, almonds, pistachios, or anything else that sounds good to you.


While I chose to feature honey as the star of my  cheese board, other condiments like jams, jellies, preserves, and chutneys can make for a tasty addition, too.

To stick with the Rosh HaShanah theme, consider options like fig jam, apple butter, quince paste, pomegranate spread, or even homemade  dulce de manzana  (apple preserves). If you want to go in a more Sephardic direction, you can incorporate flavors like pumpkin ( k’ra ), traditionally consumed at the start of the new year – and also very much in keeping with the autumn season!


Don’t forget to add some crackers to your cheese board to make it easy to create tiny, handheld bites. Simply choose whatever cracker(s) you like best! I went with round multigrain crackers, but you can also add any other type of cracker, pretzel crisps, pita chips, bagel chips, dried fruit- and nut-studded crisps…… whatever suits your fancy.

You can also set out a traditional round challah to use instead or in addition to crackers. 


Once you’ve chosen all of the elements of your cheese board get to work assembling it in a way that’s creative and beautiful – and then go wild creating your own small bites with various combinations of ingredients. Here are a few I love:

  • Pile a fig with manchego, some walnuts, and a little bit of honey on top.
  • Top a slice of Brie with a small piece of honeycomb and an apple slice.
  • Layer a cracker with an apple slice, a cheddar slices, and a few pomegranate seeds.

What combinations will you choose? If you create your own Rosh HaShanah masterpiece, be sure to tag us on social media (we’re @ReformJudaism on Twitter, Facebook, and Instagram) so we can ooh and ahh over your creation!

Symbolic New Year Foods
Source : Shannon Sarna:
Balsamic Apple Date Challah by Shannon Sarna

Balsamic Apple Date Challah by Shannon Sarna

Shannon Sarna, of The Nosher, introduces this recipe: This is one of my absolute favorite challah recipes and it is featured in my book Modern Jewish Baker. When you bake these sweet loaves the entire house smells like a big warm hug of spice and deliciousness. And it simply screams Rosh Hashanah. The middle is stuffed with a homemade apple date and wine filling. But if you’re short on time or simply don’t feel like making the filling, try using an apple butter or date jam instead. You can stuff it round, or stuff it into a three strand challah as well. Any way you bake or slice it, I know you’ll love this flavor as much as I do.


For the challah dough:

    4 1/2-5 cups King Arthur bread flour
    ½ cup sugar
    ½ Tbsp salt
    2 tsp vanilla
    1 tsp cinnamon
    ¼ tsp nutmeg
    ¼ cup vegetable oil
    1 ½ Tbsp yeast + 1 tsp sugar
    1 ¼ cups lukewarm water
    2 whole eggs

For the filling:

    3 gala apples, peeled and diced
    1 cup pitted dates, chopped
    ½ tsp salt
    1 cinnamon stick
    ¼ cup water
    ¼ cup red wine
    2 Tbsp balsamic vinegar
    1 Tbsp sugar

For top of challah:

    1 egg, beaten + 1 tsp honey
    thick sea salt (optional)
    cinnamon sugar (optional)

1) In a small bowl, place yeast, 1 tsp sugar and lukewarm water. Allow to sit around 10 minutes, until it becomes foamy on top.
2) In a large bowl or stand mixer fitted with whisk attachment, mix together 1 1/2 cups flour, salt, sugar, honey, vanilla, cinnamon and nutmeg. After the water-yeast mixture has become foamy, add to flour mixture along with oil. Mix thoroughly.
3) Add another cup of flour and eggs until smooth. Switch to the dough hook attachment if you are using a stand mixer.
4) Add another 1 1/2 cups flour and then remove from bowl and place on a floured surface. Knead remaining flour into dough, continuing to knead for around 10 minutes (or however long your hands will last).
5) Place dough in a greased bowl and cover with damp towel. Allow to rise 3-4 hours.
6) To make the filling, place apples, dates, salt, cinnamon stick, water, red wine and sugar in a medium saucepan and bring to a boil. Continue to simmer on medium heat until the mixture is reduced. Add the balsamic vinegar and simmer another 2-3 minutes. The mixture will cook around 10-15 minutes in total.
7) Remove from the heat and allow to cool 5 minutes. Remove cinnamon stick.
8) Place mixture in a food processor fitted with a blade attachment and pulse until smooth.
9) After the challah is done rising, cut the dough in half. To be as precise as possible, use a scale to measure the weight.
10) Roll the first ball out using a rolling pin into a rectangle. Spread around half, perhaps slightly less, of the apple-date mixture in an even layer, leaving 1/2 inch all around without filling. Working quickly, start rolling up the dough towards you. Try and keep the roll relatively tight as you go. Pinch the end when you finish.
11) Create a pinwheel shaped-challah by snaking the dough around and around in a circle around itself. When finished, tuck the end under the challah neatly and pinch lightly. This doesn’t have to be perfect – remember, as long as it tastes good, almost no one (maybe except that judgmental great aunt) will care what it looks like.
12) Repeat with other half of dough.
13) Preheat the oven to 350 degrees.
14) Allow challahs to rise another 30-45 minutes, or until you can see the the size has grown. Beat 1 egg with 1 tsp of honey. Brush liberally over each challah. Top challah with thick sea salt and cinnamon sugar if desired.
15) Bake for 25-30 minutes, or until middle looks like it has just set, and the color is golden.

Shannon Sarna:

Symbolic New Year Foods
Source :
Kabocha Pumpkin Challah

Besides the occasional pumpkin pie on Thanksgiving, I didn’t grow up eating a lot of pumpkin-flavored dishes. Instead, the women in my Japanese American family made stewed kabocha at this time of year. Whenever I see kabocha at the store, it takes me back to the delicious aroma of sweet kabocha stewed with soy sauce...

When I got to college and started cooking for myself, I tried my hand at the pumpkin soups, pies and baked goods I’d see in magazines at this time of year. Each time, I felt disappointed by the relatively mellow and mild flavor. Even the shade of orange was mellow and mild. 

This year, I decided to make a kabocha challah for fall Shabbat dinners. The color is beautifully vibrant and the flavor has more depth and is more complex (savory and sweet at the same time!) than that of its sugar pumpkin cousin. You’ll have extra puréed kabocha and can use it to make this kabocha soup.

Makes: 2 large challahs
Total Cooking time: 5 hours
Active Cooking time: 1.5 hours

Tools Needed:
Kitchen Aid Mixer with whisk and dough hook attachments*
Large mixing bowl
Food processor or immersion blender
Candy thermometer
Plastic wrap
Pastry scraper
Cookie sheet
Parchment paper
Small bowl
Small whisk
Pastry brush
*can be made without Kitchen Aid mixer

2 packages active dry yeast
1 cup lukewarm water
1/3 cup white cane sugar
1 egg, at room temperature
6 egg yolks, at room temperature
2/3 cup honey
2 tablespoons vegetable oil
2 teaspoons salt
2 teaspoons cinnamon
1 teaspoon nutmeg
2 cups kabocha squash puree
8 cups bread flour

Egg Wash:
2 egg yolks, at room temperature
1 tablespoon water

3 tablespoons everything bagel mix
3 tablespoons white sesame seeds
3 tablespoons black sesame seeds

Take 9 eggs out of the refrigerator. 

To make the kabocha purée, boil a big pot of water with a generous dash of salt. While the water is boiling, cut and seed the kabocha, removing the bottom and stem (if it has one). Cut it into about 2” squares and cut the green skin away, discarding it. Place the kabocha squares into the pot of boiling water and turn the heat to low. Simmer for 20 minutes, checking with a fork to see if it’s finished cooking. It should be easily pierced through the middle without much resistance, but not fall apart. Purée in a food processor or with immersion blender. Reserve 2 cups for the challah.

In the bowl of a stand mixer, pour 1/2 cup of the lukewarm water into a large mixing bowl.
Using a candy thermometer, check to make sure it is about 110°F. Pour in the two packets of
dry yeast and 1 tablespoon of sugar (from the 1/3 cup) into the bowl. Stir gently to dissolve
everything into the water. Set the bowl aside for 15 minutes. 

Your yeast mixture should look foamy at the end of the 15 minutes. If it does not, you need to get new yeast and start over or your challah will not rise. Better to find out now, rather than later!

Now that your yeast is activated, add the remaining lukewarm water to the bowl, then the
remainder of the sugar, egg, 6 egg yolks, honey, oil, salt and spices. Whisk on medium speed.

Once everything is evenly incorporated, add your kabocha puree and keep whisking.

Once the mixture is smooth, thick, and bright orange, change out your whisk for a dough hook. 

Add each cup of flour slowly on low speed. With a rubber spatula, scrape the bottom and sides
down with each addition. When you’re on the 7th or 8th cup, the dough will become too
thick for your mixer. At this point, you can start to knead with your hands. When you’re done,
the dough should be smooth and stretchy but not super sticky. If you need to, add a bit more
flour until you reach this consistency.

Oil the entire inside of a large mixing bowl with vegetable oil. Place dough in this bowl and cover it with plastic wrap. I like to put my dough in my oven (but not turn it on).

After 1 hour, punch the dough back down to remove the air and let it rise again for another

After another hour, punch the dough down again and knead it into a smooth ball on a floured
countertop. Cut the ball in half with a pastry scraper. 

Line two large baking sheets with parchment paper. Beat the egg yolks and water in a small
bowl with a small whisk.

Now it’s time for braiding! There are many different ways to braid challah, and I prefer the look of the 4-strand braid because it’s simple but still looks impressive! I like to use Tori Avey’s 4-Strand Braided Challah tutorial.

Preheat your oven to 375°F. Using a pastry brush, generously apply egg wash to each of your challahs. Generously sprinkle them with everything bagel mix, black and white sesame seeds in sections (see photo). Alternatively, you can also just season it generously with everything bagel mix and let them rise for 30 more minutes. 

Bake challah for 40 minutes, but set your timer for 30 minutes. At this point, check on your
challah to see if it needs to be rotated. If it’s browning quite quickly, you may need to cover it
with foil for the remainder of the cooking time. Shabbat Shalom!

Symbolic New Year Foods
Source : Smitten Kitchen:
Apple & Honey Challah from Smitten Kitchen

Apple and Honey Challah from Smitten Kitchen 

I’ve adapted my challah formula over the years from Joan Nathan’s, and I find her tips about three risings (which won’t take as long as it sounds, promise) and two brushes with egg wash spot on. If you’re looking for a basic challah recipe, here you go. But this one is especially fun for right now, as apples and honey are traditionally eaten together on the Jewish New Year, which begins tonight. And can you imagine how awesome the leftovers will be for French toast?

I didn’t put any cinnamon in this; I was hoping it would taste foremost like apples and honey but if you’d like cinnamon in there, you could toss the apple chunks with a teaspoon of it. The apples will bake down into almost sauce-like puddles and they manage to remain a little tart. The honey flavor isn’t aggressive, mostly because I didn’t want the challah to be overly sweet (we serve it at dinner, not dessert) but you can always increase the level or just serve it with more honey. I was dubious about the sugar on top of the loaf at first, but ended up enjoying the way it brought out the subtle sweetness of the bread.

One tip: If you measure your oil in your 1/3 cup measuring cup first, and then your honey, the honey will slide right out.

Makes 1 round woven challah

2 1/4 teaspoons (1 standard 1/4-ounce packet) active dry yeast
1/3 cup (79 ml) plus 1 teaspoon honey
1/3 cup (79 ml) neutral oil, plus more for the bowl
2 large eggs plus 1 large yolk
1 1/2 teaspoons (8 grams) table salt
4 1/4 cups all-purpose (530 grams) or bread flour (578 grams), plus more for your work surface

Apple filling
2 medium baking apples (I love baking with MacIntoshes), peeled, cored and in 1/2- to 3/4-inch chunks
Squeeze of lemon juice, to keep them from browning

Egg wash
1 large egg
Coarse or pearl sugar for sprinkling (optional)

Make your dough: Whisk yeast and 1 teaspoon honey into 2/3 cup warm water and let stand until foamy, a few minutes.

With a stand mixer: In the bowl of a stand mixture, whisk together yeast mixture, oil, remaining honey (1/3 cup), eggs and yolk. Switch to dough hook and add 4 1/4 cups flour and salt. Use dough hook on a moderate speed until it pulls all of the flour and wet ingredients together into a craggy mass. Lower the speed and let the dough hook knead the dough for 5 minutes, until smooth, elastic and a little sticky.

By hand:: In a large bowl, whisk together yeast mixture, oil, remaining honey (1/3 cup), eggs and yolk. Add flour and salt all at once and stir with a wooden spoon until you get a craggy mass of uneven dough. Turn dough out onto a floured counter and knead it into a smooth, elastic dough, about 5 to 8 minutes. Try to use as little flour as necessary when kneading the dough; you don’t want to toughen the bread. A bench scraper can make it really easy to remove it from the counter if it gets stuck in a spot. [More bread tips here.]

Both methods: Transfer dough to large oil-coated bowl, cover with plastic wrap and set aside for 1 hour, or until almost doubled in size.

Add apples to dough: [See photos in post.] Turn dough out onto a floured counter and gently press it down into a flat, oblong shape. The shape does not matter so however it goes, it goes. Spread 2/3 of apple chunks over 1/2 of the flattened dough. Fold the other half over the apple chunks and press the dough down around them, flattening the now lumpy dough. Spread the remaining 1/3 apple chunks over half the folded dough. Fold the other half over the apples, pressing the dough down again. Your dough packet will likely be square-ish. Fold the corners under with the sides of your hands and form the dough into a round. Upend your empty bowl over and set it aside for another 30 minutes.

Weave your bread: [See photos in post.] Divide dough into 4 pieces. Roll and stretch each one as carefully as you can into a rope — don’t worry about getting it too long or thin, just 12 inches or so should do. If any apple chunks fall out as you form the ropes or at any other time in the forming of the loaf or risings, just poke them back in with your finger.

Arrange two strands in each direction, perpendicular to each other, like a plus sign. Weave them so that one side is over, and the other is under, where they meet. So, now you’ve got an 8-legged woven-headed octopus. Take the four legs that come from underneath the center and move them over the leg to their right, i.e. jumping it. Take those legs that were on the right and again, jump each over the leg before, this time to the left. If you had extra length to your ropes, you can repeat these left-right jumps until you run out of rope. For me, this was enough. Just as you had with the folded packet of apple dough above, tuck the corners/odd bumps under the dough with the sides of your hands to form a round.

Transfer the dough to a parchment-covered heavy baking sheet or baker’s peel (if you’ll be using a bread stone). Beat egg until smooth and brush over challah. Let challah rise for another hour but 45 minutes into this rise, preheat your oven to 375 degrees.

Bake your loaf: Before baking, brush loaf one more time with egg wash and sprinkle with coarse sugar if you’re using it. Bake in middle of oven for 40 to 45 minutes. It should be beautifully bronzed; if yours (like mine, except I didn’t catch it in time) starts getting too dark too quickly, cover it with foil for the remainder of the baking time. The very best way to check for doneness in any bread but especially on like this where the wetness of the apples can slow down the baking time a bit, is with an instant read thermometer — the center of the loaf should be 195 degrees.

Cool loaf on a rack before serving. Or, well, good luck with that.

Smitten Kitchen:

Symbolic New Year Foods
Source : gfJules:
Gluten-Free Challah Crown By gfJules

Gluten-Free Challah Crown by gfJules

This popular recipe works very well with gfJules Flour. All gluten-free flour blends work quite differently, and this one has been specifically written to be at its most beautiful and delicious with the gfJules Flour blend. 

    1/2 cup + 2 Tbs. warm water
    1 package rapid rise gf yeast 
    1 tsp. granulated cane sugar
    1 cup vanilla dairy or non-dairy yogurt, at room temperature 
    2 tsp. apple cider vinegar
    5 large egg yolks at room temperature (slightly mixed)
    1/3 cup sunflower oil, non-GMO canola oil OR extra virgin olive oil
    4 Tbs. honey, agave nectar or molasses
    4 cups (540 grams) gfJules all-purpose gluten-free flour
    3 Tbs. + 2 tsp. granulated cane sugar
    1 1/4 tsp. kosher salt
    1/2 tsp. baking soda
    2 tsp. baking powder
    1 large egg, mixed
    poppy seeds, sesame seeds, raisins, or other topping or mix-in (optional)

Preheat your oven to 200º F, then turn it off; if you have a warming drawer, you may set that to low/moist setting instead. Prepare a baking sheet by lining it with parchment paper.

In a small bowl, mix together 1/3 cup (5 Tbs) warm water, yeast and 1 teaspoon of sugar to proof the yeast; set aside.

In the bowl of your stand mixer, add the remaining wet ingredients (including 2 more tablespoons warm water) and mix until combined. Whisk together the dry ingredients in a separate bowl.

After 5 minutes of proofing, stir in the yeast-water mixture into the wet ingredients (note: if your yeast isn’t bubbling at this point, throw it out and start again with fresh yeast). Gradually stir in the dry ingredients until fully integrated, adding more warm water by the tablespoon as needed to get the dough soft and so that the dough is not tight or stiff — you should be able to pull the dough gently without it feeling tight or like it would bounce back — if it’s stiff, then add more warm water then mix 1-2 minutes more on medium speed.

Using either method, once the dough is combined, divide it in half and divide each half into three equally-sized balls. The dough will be sticky, so use extra flour on your hands and rolling surface (I like using a bench scraper to help me cut and roll the sticky dough).

Roll each ball out into an 18-inch coil or log on a clean, flat surface dusted lightly with flour. Pinch together one end of each coil, wetting them slightly with water to help them join together at the top, then braid them, finishing by connecting them to the top of the other end in order to form a crown, or circular shape, or simply leave as a long braid.

Gently transfer it to the parchment-lined baking sheet. Repeat for the second set of three balls. In the alternative, you can simply divide the dough in half, roll out into a flattened coil, then twist upon itself and join at the ends to form a circular loaf; repeat with the other half of the dough ball.

In a small bowl, mix the extra egg together and brush over each loaf well, coating the entire top surface. Sprinkle the seeds or any toppings at this point, then place the tray (covering the loaves with wax paper sprayed with cooking oil) in a warming drawer set to low heat, or into a warm location for 20 – 30 minutes. (Don’t expect the bread to rise much at this stage).

Once risen slightly, place the uncovered tray in an oven preheated to 350º F (static) or 325º F (convection) for 20 minutes or until a toothpick inserted into the center of the bread comes out dry, or with some crumbs attached but no wet dough.

Remove to cool on a wire rack.


Symbolic New Year Foods
Source : Spruce Eats:

Maple-Glazed Vegan Challah by Miri Rotkovitz on Spruce Eats 

For the Challah:
1 1/4 cups lukewarm water
2 1/2 teaspoons active dry yeast
6 tablespoons sugar
1/4 cup oil (neutral-flavored such as grapeseed or canola, plus additional for oiling the bowl)
4 to 4 1/2 cups all-purpose flour
2 teaspoons salt (kosher salt or pink Himalayan sea salt)

For the Glaze:
1 1/2 teaspoons pure maple syrup
1 1/2 teaspoons soy milk (or other non-dairy milk substitute)


Hand or Stand Mixer Method   
Place the warm water in a large bowl or stand mixer. Add a pinch of the sugar to the bowl and sprinkle with the yeast. Set aside in a warm place for 5 to 10 minutes, until the mixture is foamy. (If your yeast doesn't proof properly, discard the mixture and start again with fresh yeast).

With a hand whisk or the mixer's whisk attachment, mix in the sugar, oil, 2 cups of flour, and salt. Switch to a sturdy wooden spoon or the mixer's dough hook, and add the remaining flour 1 cup at a time, mixing well after each addition until a shaggy dough forms and begins to pull into a ball. (You might or might not need the last 1/2 cup of flour. If the dough is very wet or sticky, add it. If not, use some of it to dust your work surface.)

Turn the dough out onto a lightly floured work surface. With clean, floured hands, knead the dough until it is smooth and elastic, about 5 to 10 minutes. Allow the dough to rest for a few minutes while you clean and dry the large mixing bowl. Grease the inside of the bowl with a bit of oil. Place the challah dough in the bowl and turn to coat with the oil. Cover the bowl with a damp tea towel or plastic wrap and set aside in a warm place until the dough has risen to at least double its bulk, about 1 hour and 45 minutes.

Punch the dough down. Lightly grease one or two baking sheets or line them with parchment paper. Shape or braid the dough as desired. (The recipe will make 1 large challah, 2 medium challahs, 1 medium challah plus 6 challah rolls, or 12 challah rolls.)

Place the shaped challah and/or rolls on the baking sheet(s) and cover with clean, dry tea towels. Allow to rise until doubled, about 45 minutes to 1 hour.

Heat the oven to 350 F. While the oven is heating, make the maple wash by whisking together the maple syrup and soy milk. Brush over the challah with a pastry brush. Bake the challah until the crust is a deep golden brown and the loaf sounds hollow when tapped, about 30 to 35 minutes for a large challah, 20 to 25 minutes for a medium challah, and 15 to 20 minutes for rolls. Cool on a wire rack.

Bread Machine Method

Place the ingredients in the bread machine in the order recommended by the manufacturer. Select "Dough Cycle." When the cycle ends, remove the dough from the machine.

Shape as desired and transfer to prepared baking pans. Allow the challah to rise, covered lightly with a clean, slightly damp tea towel, for 30 minutes to an hour or until doubled in size. Brush with the maple mixture.

Bake in a heated 350 F oven until the crust is golden and the loaf sounds hollow when tapped, about 30 to 35 minutes for a large challah, 20 to 25 minutes for a medium challah, and 15 to 20 minutes for rolls. Cool on a wire rack.  

Spruce Eats featuring Miri Rotkovitz:

Symbolic New Year Foods
Source :
How to Shape a Round Challah

A round challah is one of many ways that we make regular foods extra special in celebration of the New Year. This year, kick your challah-making game up a notch with step-by-step instructions on how to shape them. This video tutorial by Tina Wasserman will show you two different methods of shaping your challah dough into a round loaf.

Symbolic New Year Foods
Source :
Recipe: Cake-Like Round Challah

Round Challah 
By Tina Wasserman 

Normally, two loaves of elongated challah are served for Shabbat, but for the High Holidays a round challah, sometimes containing raisins, is customary. The round challah is fraught with meaning. It is symbolic of the crown of God, our Sovereign; it represents a year filled with neverending good. A ladder of dough placed on top represents the question of who will ascend or descend in health or wealth in the coming year. A lesser known custom is to bake the challah in the shape of a bird, based on Isaiah 31:5, “As hovering birds, so will the Eternal protect Jerusalem.”

Moist, cake-like challah is a big hit at my Rosh HaShanah open house. Divide the dough into two-thirds and one-third to make two loaves, but never use all the dough to make one giant crown, or the center will surely be raw after the normal baking time is reached.

Makes 2-3 loaves 


7–8 cups bread flour, divided use
2 packages rapid rise yeast
1 1/2 cups water
2 sticks pareve margarine, butter, or 1/2 cup oil and 1 stick margarine
1/4 teaspoon yellow food coloring
3/4 cup sugar
2 tablespoons poppy seeds (optional)
1 tablespoon salt
4 large eggs
1 cup raisins (optional)
Egg wash: 1 egg mixed with 1 tablespoon water


  1. In a large mixer bowl combine 6 cups of the flour and the yeast. Stir to combine.
  2. Heat the water, margarine, food coloring, sugar, poppy seeds, and salt in a saucepan until very warm (140°F). Water should be uncomfortably hot to your finger but not hot enough to burn you. (It will feel like hot tap water.)
  3. Add the warm liquid mixture to the flour while the mixer is on low. As the liquid is being incorporated, add the eggs. Mix thoroughly.
  4. Gradually add the remaining flour only until a fairly firm dough is formed. This process should take about 7 minutes whether you are using the dough hook on your mixer or are kneading it by hand. The mixture will be satiny smooth.
  5. Preheat your oven to 400°F for 1 minute. Lightly grease a bowl with some oil, and turn the dough in the bowl to oil all sides. Cover with plastic wrap and place in the turned off oven until doubled in size, about 30–45 minutes.
  6. Punch down the dough and divide in half or in thirds. Roll each piece into a rope about 15 inches long. Hold one end 2 inches above the work surface and wrap the rest of the dough around it to make a large coil. Pinch the ends together to prevent unraveling while baking. Place the formed breads on parchment-lined or greased cookie sheets, and let rise in the previously warmed oven until light and doubled, about 25 minutes.
  7. Remove loaves from oven and reduce to 375°F. Brush the tops of the loaves with the egg wash and bake for 25–35 minutes, depending on the size of the loaves. When the bread is done, it will be golden brown and have a hollow sound when tapped.
Symbolic New Year Foods
Source : Susie Fishbein,
Hot Pretzel Challah

The ballpark meets the Shabbos table! Hot pretzel taste in challah form, it does take a bit of care to get this large challah boiled, but it is worth it.  Or go ahead and make small loaves or rolls.

Makes 2 full loaves


  • 2 tablespoons bread machine yeast or active dry yeast
  • 1 tablespoon sugar
  • ½ cup lukewarm water
  • 3 tablespoons sugar
  • 2 cups water
  • 1½ teaspoons fine sea salt
  • ¼ cup canola oil
  • 6 cups bread flour 
  • 8 cups water at room temperature
  • ⅔ cup baking soda
  • Pretzel salt, kosher salt, or sesame seeds
  • Mustard, optional for dipping


1. In a medium glass or Pyrex bowl or measuring cup, place the yeast, 1 tablespoon sugar, and ½ cup lukewarm water. Proof the yeast: it should show signs of life by expanding, slightly bubbling, or moving. If none of these things happened, your yeast is dead. Spill it out and start again.

2. Meanwhile, in the bowl of a stand mixer fitted with a dough hook, on medium-low speed, mix the 3 tablespoons sugar, 2 cups water, fine sea salt, and oil. This can also be done by hand with a whisk.

3. When the yeast has been “proofed” and shows signs that it is alive, beat the yeast mixture into the mixing bowl. With the mixer at a low speed, add the flour. Raise speed to medium and knead for 4–5 minutes until a nice, smooth, satiny dough forms. It will have almost a matte finish. If you are kneading in the flour by hand, it may take a few minutes longer to get a good smooth texture. Cover the bowl of dough with a kitchen towel and allow the dough to rise in a warm place for 11/2 hours or until doubled in size.

4. Preheat oven to 350˚F. Line a jelly roll pan with parchment paper. Set aside.

5. Remove the dough to a lightly floured surface. If the dough is sticky, knead in flour, a little bit at a time, until the dough is easy to roll. Divide the dough in half. Divide each half into 3 balls and roll each into a long strand. Braid each challah using 3 strands of dough. Place on prepared cookie sheet. Set aside to rise while you prepare the next step.

6. Bring the 8 cups water and baking soda to a boil in a pot with the widest opening. Gently and carefully, lower one challah into the baking soda solution. Using 2 wooden spoons, carefully turn the challah so both sides get a good exposure to the water or bathe the top of the challah with spoonfuls of the solution. After 30 seconds remove the challah to the parchment-lined pan, using the 2 spoons to support it. Repeat with the second challah.

7. Once both challahs are back on the pan, brush with the water from the pot and sprinkle with salt or sesame seeds.

8. Bake for 30 minutes. Best served warm or rewarmed. Serve with mustard.


Unlike most challah recipes, this one can’t be frozen because the challah will get soggy when it is defrosted and reheated. In fact, it is best made fresh or at most one day ahead, but cool completely before putting in a plastic bag and rewarm before serving. You can order pretzel salt from the internet or save the packets from boxes of store-bought frozen hot pretzels. A selection of mustards, such as spicy brown, coarse grain, and honey-mustard, will make this a home run.

From Susie Fishbein on

Symbolic New Year Foods
Source : Carmel Tanaka -
Jewpanese Maple KaboChallah

Recipe by Carmel Tanaka. Photo credit:  Lauren Schreiber Sasaki of Jewish& 

At the ripe old age of 27, I learned to bake my first challah. My teacher was none other than the late Robbie McConnell, former Publisher of the Montreal Gazette. Using his recipe as the foundation for my challah, join me in adding kabocha (Japanese pumpkin), courtesy of the one and only Kristin Eriko Posner of Nourish Co., and a splash of 100% “True North strong and free” maple syrup! My friend and fellow member of the Jewpanese tribe Lauren Schreiber Sasaki of Jewish& took this vibrant yet delicate dough that celebrates my multiple identities and gave it her own little extra zazz by making them pumpkin shaped, inspired by Rebekah Lowin. May the Jewpanese community cooking continue to grow! Chag Sukkot Sameach :)

Ingredient List

Maple syrup
Neutral-flavoured oil (i.e. corn, grape seed, etc.)
Kosher salt
Unbleached all-purpose flour
Poppy seeds, black or white sesame seeds (preferably already toasted, can be found in Asian supermarkets)
Maldon sea salt flakes


Kabocha Purée

1. Cut kabocha in half
2. Scoop out seeds
3. Brush with oil
4. Bake at 350 F until soft when you can poke your fork through easily and when you see it begin to caramelize around the edges. 
5. Let cool. 
6. Scoop out 1 cup’s worth of the orange flesh into a food processor. It’s easier to add part of the egg mixture so that it blends more smoothly. Make sure kabocha has cooled, otherwise you’ll cook the egg!
7. Snack on the rest of the roasted kabocha while you prepare the following!

Chef’s note: If you are unable to find kabocha in your local grocer, you may substitute with another gourd of your choice, sweet potato, chestnuts or even canned pumpkin - be prepared to add more flour to compensate for added moisture.

Robbie’s Challah:

7/8 cup warm water
1/4 cup honey (or maple syrup or a combination of the two)
1 tbsp yeast
3 large eggs, warmed (add a 4th egg if adding 1 cup of kabocha purée)
1/4 cup oil (neutral-flavoured oil is best; olive oil is OK, but the bread will maintain some of its taste)
1 tbsp kosher salt
3 1/2 cups unbleached all-purpose flour (add roughly 1-1.5 more cups of flour to compensate for the 1 cup of kabocha purée and extra egg, humidity in the air, etc.!)


1. Heat the water kettle, and pour boiling water to warm up the bowl of your food mixer.
2. Warm up your eggs in a warm water bath.
3. Lightly coat the measuring cup with oil, then fill with honey/maple syrup (easier to get every last drop of it if it has an oil coating!).
4. In that same food mixer, stir honey/maple syrup into water (mix well).
5. Add yeast; let sit until yeast is dissolved and starting to work.
6. Roughly beat the eggs and add to bowl (or add to kabocha purée), reserving enough egg for a wash.
7. Add oil, salt and flour.
8. Mix until dough is shaggy and still a little moist, adding small amounts of flour or water if necessary. (Likely more flour, if you are adding kabocha and more egg).
9. Cover dough and let rise for two hours. (If your oven has a bread proof setting, mazal tov! If you don’t, heat your oven to 200 F when you are getting all of your ingredients onto the counter and turn it off once you’re about to start mixing, otherwise you can cook your dough while it’s rising.)
10. Turn dough out onto a floured counter or sheet of parchment paper (bigger is better so you have room to work – you can always trim the paper before the loaf goes into the oven).
11. Braid the loaf. For 6 strands, check out this video (higher quality, it’s Jamie Geller!) or this video (better instruction and viewing for learning). To turn into little pumpkin challahs, check out this blogpost.
12. Cover loaf with a slightly damp-ish cloth and leave to rise for 30 minutes.
13. Set oven for 350 F. If you’re using a baking stone, put it in now to preheat; if it’s a baking sheet, 5 minutes before baking time is enough.
14. When the bread has risen, add a few drops of water to the reserved egg and brush the wash onto the entire surface of the loaf. 
15. Sprinkle on poppy seeds, black or white sesame seeds and some Maldon sea salt flakes for extra crunch, then slide the bread into the oven, using a cutting board or other flat surface as a transfer vehicle if necessary.
16. Bake for 25-30 minutes.
Cool, admire, bless and enjoy!


Carmel Tanaka (pronouns: she/her) is a queer Jewpanese woman of colour from Vancouver, BC, Canada and a Community Engagement professional. Her mother is Ashkenazi Israeli and her father is Japanese Canadian. She founded JQT Vancouver, (pronounced "J-Cutie") Vancouver's Jewish queer trans nonprofit, Genocide Prevention BC and was recently named one of Be'chol Lashon's 7 LGBTQ+ Jews of Color you should know. She also spearheads a monthly Zoom call for Jewpanese and their families from all over the world, so if you know any Jewpanese people in your life, please get in touch and we’ll connect you!

Symbolic New Year Foods
Source : Jewtina Y Co


One of the seven fruits of Israel, the pomegranate, or rimon in Hebrew, is believed to also have 613 seeds, symbolizing the 613 Mitzvot, or deeds, we are commanded to achieve in our lifetime. With this blessing, we ask for a year of good deeds.

Una de las siete frutas de Israel, la granada, o "rimon" en hebreo, tiene 613 semillas, simbolizando las 613 "Mitzvot", o hechos, que se nos ordena lograr en nuestra vida. Con esta bendición, pedimos un año de buenas obras.

יְהִי רָצוֹן מִלְּפָנֶיךָ ה' אֱלֹהינוּ וֵאלֵֹהי אֲבוֹתֵינו שֶׁנִּהְיֶה מְלֵאִים מִצְוות כרִימון
Yehi ratzon milfanecha Adonai Eloheinu v’elohei avoteinu, she’nihiyeh m’lei’im mitzvot ka’rimon.
Yeji ratzón milfaneja Adonai Elojeinu v'elojei avoteinu, she’nijiyeh m’lei’im mitzvot ka’rimón.

May it be Your will, Eternal our G-d and the G-d of our ancestors, that we be filled with mitzvot like a pomegranate (that is filled with seeds).

Que sea Tu voluntad, Dios Eterno y Dios de nuestros antepasados, que seamos llenos de mitzvot como una granada (que está llena de semillas).

Symbolic New Year Foods
Source : Jewtina Y Co


The Aramaic word for beet, silka (or selek in Hebrew), is related to the word silek (to retreat). With this blessing, we ask that we be freed from those who wish us harm.

La palabra aramea para beteraga, "silka" (o "selek" en hebreo), está relacionada con la palabra "silek" (retirarse). Con esta bendición, pedimos que nos liberemos de aquellos que desean hacernos daño.

יְהִי רָצוֹן מִלְּפָנֶיךָ ה' אֱלֹהינוּ וֵאלֵֹהי אֲבוֹתֵינוּ שֶׁיִּסְתַּלְּקוּ אוֹיְבֵינוּ וְשׂוֹנְאֵינוּ וְכָל מְבַקְשֵׁי רָעָתֵנוּ
Yehi ratzon milfanecha Adonai Eloheinu v'elohei avoteinu, she'yistalku oyveinu v'soneinu v'kol m'vakshei ra'ateinu.
Yeji ratzón milfaneja Adonai Elojeinu v'elojei avoteinu, she'yistalku oyveinu v'soneinu v'kol m'vakshei ra'ateinu.

May it be Your will, Eternal our G-d and the G-d of our ancestors, that our enemies, haters and those who wish evil upon us shall depart.

Que sea Tu voluntad, Dios Eterno y Dios de nuestros antepasados, que nuestros enemigos, odiadores y aquellos que desean el mal sobre nosotros se vayan.

Symbolic New Year Foods
Source : Jewtina Y Co


The Hebrew word for carrot gezer is similar to ligzor, to decree, so we ask that God judge us with a positive decree.

La palabra hebrea para zanahoria "gezer" es similar a "ligzor", decretar, así que le pedimos a Dios que nos juzgue con un decreto positivo.

יְהִי רָצוֹן מִלְפָנֶיךָ ה' אֱלֹהֵינוּ וֵאלֹהֵי אֲבוֹתֵינוּ שֶׁתִּרְגֹז עָלֵינוּ גְזֵרוֹת טוֹבוֹת
Yehi ratzon milfanecha Adonai Eloheinu v'elohei avoteinu, she'tirgoz aleinu g'zeirot tovot.
Yeji ratzón milfaneja Adonai Elojeinu v'elojei avoteinu, she'tirgoz aleinu g'zeirot tovot.

May it be Your will, Eternal our G-d and the G-d of our ancestors, that you decree for us good outcomes.

Que sea Tu voluntad, Dios Eterno y Dios de nuestros antepasados, que nos decretes buenos resultados.

Symbolic New Year Foods
Source : Jewtina Y Co

Dip de Zanahoria Asada
Symbolic gezer dish inspired by Carmen Pérez (Venezuela)

2 pounds of carrots, peeled 
3 cloves garlic
1 tablespoon olive oil
¼ teaspoon salt
¼ cup tahini
Juice from 1 lemon
1 teaspoon cumin
2-3 tbsp almond milk or water
Optional garnish

Prep | 10 m
Ready in | 20 m
Duration | 3 days
Yields | 2 cups

Preheat the oven to 375 degrees F and cut the carrots into 1 inch sized chunks, toss them in olive oil and salt and place on a baking sheet along with the garlic cloves. Bake in the oven for approximately 20 minutes until the carrots are tender and lightly browned on the edges.
In a food processor combine the cooked carrots, garlic, tahini, lemon juice, cumin and liquid and blend until smooth.
Serve sprinkled with a pinch of smoked paprika, parsley or pomegranate seeds.

Symbolic New Year Foods
Source : Jewtina Y Co


While you may be accustomed to dipping apples and honey for Rosh Hashanah, any sweet food can represent the wish for a sweet year to come.

Si bien puede estar acostumbrado a comer manzanas y miel para Rosh Hashaná, cualquier alimento dulce puede representar el deseo de un año dulce por venir.

יְהִי רָצוֹן מִלְּפָנֶיךָ ה' אֱלֹהינוּ וֵאלֵֹהי אֲבוֹתֵינוּ שֶׁתְּחַדֵּשׁ עָלֵינוּ שָׁנָה טוֹבָה וּמְתוּקָה כַּדְּבָשׁ
Yehi ratzon milfanecha Adonai Eloheinu v'elohei avoteinu, she't'chadesh aleinu shanah tovah u'metukah ka'devash.
Yeji ratzón milfaneja Adonai Elojeinu v'elojei avoteinu, she't'jadesh aleinu shaná tová u'metuká ka'devesh.

May it be Your will, Eternal our G-d and the G-d of our ancestors, that You renew for us a year good and sweet like honey.

Que sea Tu voluntad, Dios Eterno y Dios de nuestros antepasados, que nos renueves un año bueno y dulce como la miel.

Symbolic New Year Foods
Source : Jewtina Y Co
Semita de Piña

Semita de Piña
Symbolic sweet dish inspired by Solomon Dueñas (El Salvador)


1 fresh pineapple (30 oz.)
2 cups of brown sugar
1 stick cinnamon
6 cloves
3 tablespoon cornflour
¼ cup water
⅓ cup warm water
2¼ teaspoons of active dry yeast
¾ cup milk warm
½ cup butter melted
¼ cup white sugar or raw
3 cups of plain flour
1¼ teaspoon salt
3 eggs beaten
1 egg beaten
2 tablespoon white sugar

Prep | 5 m
Ready in | 15 m
Duration | 4 days
Yields | 4 portions

Remove the skin and core from the pineapple. Discard the trimmings and purée the flesh. Transfer the flesh to a saucepan, add the brown sugar, cinnamon and cloves. Heat the saucepan over medium heat, bring to the boil, then reduce to a simmer. Cook the pineapple for 1 hour, stirring until it's thick like apple sauce.
Remove cinnamon and cloves and discard them. Dissolve cornflour in the water and mix it well through the cooked pineapple. Turn off  heat and set aside until cooled completely before storing in a sealed container in the fridge.
Combine warm water, yeast and 1 teaspoon of the sugar. Stir well and set aside for 5-10 minutes.
In a separate bowl, dissolve the remaining ¼ cup of sugar into the warm milk and butter. Set aside.
In a large mixing bowl, combine flour and salt and whisk to aerate. Make a well in the centre then pour in the yeast mixture, milk mixture and 3 beaten eggs. Stir ingredients together, transfer dough to a lightly floured surface, then knead for 5-10 minutes until smooth and elastic.
Wipe out the large mixing bowl, lightly grease it with oil, then put the dough into it. Cover with plastic and set aside in a warm place until doubled in size. It could take up to two hours.
Preheat the oven to 180°C. Line a flat or shallow tray with baking paper and set aside.
Take risen dough, punch it down and cut it in half. Roll one of the halves into a rectangle about 7 mm thick. Transfer rolled pastry onto the lined baking tray. Trim sides so that they're straight, reserving the trimmings.
Spread the pineapple jam evenly over the rolled pastry, leaving about 2 centimeters of space on the edges. The jam needs to be about 5 mm thick.
Lightly brush a little of the remaining beaten egg on the edges of the pastry. Roll the other half of the dough to the same size as the first, carefully lay it over the first half of the pastry and jam, then trim the sides to match the first layer of pastry. Add the trimmings to the reserved ones.
Using a fork, press down the edges to seal. To make a cross pattern - Knead  remaining offcuts of pastry together, then roll to the same length as your baking tray. Cut the pastry into 5 mm strips. Brush the top of the prepared semita with the beaten egg, then carefully lay the strips of pastry diagonally over the top, pressing them down gently and trimming to size as needed.
Lay more strips on top, this time to cross over in the other direction to form a diagonal lattice. Press these down gently, then lightly brush the strips with beaten egg. Scatter over remaining sugar and bake for 30 minutes, or until golden.
Cool completely in the tray before cutting into portions. Store the semita in a sealed container. If storing for a couple of days, do so in the fridge.

Symbolic New Year Foods
Source :
Lime in Chicken Soup by Rebecca Lehrer

Lime in Chicken Soup

Rebecca Lehrer, co-founder & CEO of the Mash-Up Americans, introduces this twist on a classic: My whole life I thought that putting lime and cilantro in chicken soup was a Jewish thing. Because lime and cilantro are super common in Germany and Poland, right? It turns out that it is Salvadoran. I only realized this a couple of years ago when I was with my family at a marketplace in San Salvador. We ordered chicken soup, lime came with it, and then basically my brain exploded. All I knew is that my Mami did it this way. So while it may not be traditionally Jewish it’s certainly my Mash-Up Jewish tradition!

1 whole chicken
1/4 cup chopped cilantro (more depending on your cilantro preference)
1/4 cup chopped flat leaf parsley
6 cloves of garlic whole or quartered, your choice
1 cup of rice (optional)
3 Bay Leaves
1 tablespoon of salt + more to taste
20 black peppercorns
5 allspice berries
4 limes, cut in half
2 large potatoes (or 6 small potatoes), chopped to 1/2 inch cubes
2 medium onions, chopped to 1/2 inch cubes
2 carrots, chopped to 1/2 inch cubes
4 stalks celery, chopped to 1/2 inch cubes
2 guisquiles (chayote), chopped to 1/2 inch cubes
3 small zucchini or yellow squash, chopped to 1/2 inch cubes
1 turnip, chopped to 1/2 inch cubes
1/4 lb of green beans (ejotes), cut in half
Good substitutes: corn, cabbage, yucca root

Put the whole chicken (with giblets, if that’s your thing) and all chopped vegetables in a large pot. Add salt + bay leaves, peppercorns, allspice berries, garlic, cilantro and parsley. Cover with water. Bring to a boil.  
Bring down to a gentle simmer and add rice (optional). Cook for 1.5 hours at gentle simmer, adding water as needed to keep everything covered. After 1.5 hours chicken should fall apart with touch of a spoon.  Break chicken apart in the pot.  Leave the bones, people can pick them out of their bowls. Salt and pepper to taste.
The longer you cook it, the better it gets, but it can be served after 1.5 hours. Serve with half a lime, and pass more sliced limes and thick Salvadoran tortillas.
Let your soul be satisfied. Enjoy!

Rebecca Lehrer of the Mash-Up Americans:

Symbolic New Year Foods
Source :
Curry Pumpkin Corn Soup

By Shannon Sarna for The Nosher

When you think of pumpkin and spices, your mind likely jumps to pumpkin pie spices like ginger, cinnamon, clove and nutmeg. But did you know that pumpkin and curry also pair perfectly?

A quick google search for pumpkin curry will reveal an array of recipes such as pumpkin curry empanadas (does someone want to make these for me?), pumpkin curry with chickpeas and slow cooker vegan pumpkin curry. If you have never cooked with curry before, this is a great introduction, since it really combines the familiar flavors of pumpkin and corn with the slightly exotic taste of curry. You will wonder why it’s taken you so long to combine these delicious flavors.


1 small onion

2 garlic cloves

olive oil

1 Tbsp curry powder

1 cup fresh or frozen corn

3 cups pumpkin puree (fresh preferably, but canned is fine too)

1 quart vegetable or chicken stock

1 1/2 cups coconut milk

salt and pepper


1. Heat olive oil over medium heat in a large pot. Add onion and corn and saute until onions are translucent, and corn looks plump and yellow. Add curry powder and garlic and continue cooking another 2-3 minutes, until curry is toasted and fragrant.

2. De-glaze the pot with 1/2 cup vegetable broth, scraping bottom of pan until all bits have been cleaned off. Add pumpkin puree and continue to stir until smooth and heated through. Add vegetable broth.

3. Bring to a boil and then reduce heat to simmer for 20 minutes. Add coconut milk and salt and pepper to taste.

Symbolic New Year Foods
Source :
Quick Gyoza Kreplach (Dumpling Soup) for Sukkot

This year, the autumnal equinox took place the day before, the Feast of Booths (Sukkot) in Judaism. We’re commanded to eat outside in the sukkah for eight days; soaking up the last bit of the golden summer sunshine while dining alfresco. This is a commandment I can easily get behind!

There aren’t many traditional foods eaten over Sukkot, though chicken soup, kugel and challah are mainstays on my Ashkenazi Jewish husband’s family’s holiday table. Other than that, Sukkot menus are designed around harvest-related produce.

To start, I’m making a comforting bowl of chicken kreplach (dumpling) soup. I’ve read that kreplach is a symbolic new year food in some Jewish communities, because the filling is sealed in the noodle like judgement is sealed in the Book of Life on Yom Kippur. But my first thought as a Japanese American Jew was: “It sounds like gyoza soup!”

The word gyoza comes from the Chinese word jiaozi, a kind of stuffed dumpling. In my gyoza kreplach soup, the inside of the dumpling is Japanese in flavor though I’ve swapped the ground pork for ground chicken. The soup on the other hand, is a standard European-style chicken broth.

Kreplach soup has been known to be very time-consuming. My addition of store-bought gyoza wrappers cuts the time more than in half, so you can spend more time outside with your family and friends.

Serves: 8 (2 gyoza/person)

Total Prep Time: 30 minutes (not including broth, if you like to make your own)

Total Cook Time: 10 minutes (not including broth)


  • 1 lb ground chicken thigh meat (highly recommend thigh over breast meat for this)
  • 1 tablespoon sake
  • 2 finely chopped green onions, ends removed
  • 1 tablespoon peeled and grated ginger
  • 1 finely minced garlic clove
  • 1 egg
  • 1 teaspoon toasted sesame oil
  • 1 teaspoon sea salt
  • 3-1/2” diameter round gyoza wrappers
  • Small bowl of water for sealing the gyoza
  • 2 medium carrots, peeled and cut into Japanese rangiri (chopping technique) pieces
  • Dill for garnish
  • 6 cups chicken broth


  1. Mix first seven ingredients together in a medium-sized mixing bowl.
  2. Bring chicken broth to a boil over medium heat, (while you begin assembling the gyoza) then lower it to a low simmer.
  3. Place about 1 ounce of the meat filling in the center of a gyoza wrapper. Seal the outside edges with water completely seal into a triangle shape (see below image). Make sure there are no holes in the seal so the filling doesn’t seep out.
  4. Place carrots in broth, simmer for five minutes.
  5. Place each gyoza carefully in the broth, making sure they don’t stick to the bottom of the pot. Turn up the heat to medium low and allow the dumplings to cook for five minutes, or until the filling feels firm.
  6. Serve each guest equal amounts of carrots and two gyoza each.
  7. Garnish with dill and serve immediately.

**Be careful not to let the gyoza sit in the soup too long. The wrappers are quite delicate and can start to break down if they are left too long in the broth.

Symbolic New Year Foods
Source :
Beef and Barley Stuffed Cabbages with Lentil Variation

Source: The Gefilteria

Stuffing cabbage is best around the table with loved ones. A tight wrap is the goal, with a uniform amount of filling in each leaf. Slowly braise these cabbage rolls in a mushroom stock, until the cabbage is soft enough to slice with a spoon. For the sauce? We turn to dried porcini mushrooms and some white wine. You can find dried porcinis in most specialty stores in the US, if you haven’t smuggled them back by the pound from Poland (ahem). This simple sauce is hardly a reflection of difficult times; in fact, we see it as a new path forward, a Polish and Jewish future we can all get behind.

Keep in mind that the filling and sauce in this recipe can be loosely interpreted, based on what you have at home. Substitute rice instead of barley, try a different kind of lentil, skip the sauce altogether. Lean into the shtetl mindset and cook with your kishkes, but leave a couple of hours since this slightly epic recipe is no quick weeknight meal. But it’s ideal for this moment of elongated days at home.


  • 1 large head cabbage
  • 4-5 quarts vegetable or mushroom stock, for cooking barley, braising the cabbage rolls, and cooking lentils (if making vegetarian filling)


  • 3 Tbsp vegetable oil
  • 3 small onions (diced)
  • 1 pound mixed mushroom (cleaned and roughly chopped)
  • 1 cup dried french lentils (1 cup dried lentils yields 2 cups when cooked)
  • ¼ cup dried pearl barley (1/4 cup dried barley yields ⅔ cup when cooked)
  • 2 eggs
  • 2 Tbsp chopped fresh dill
  • 2 Tbsp chopped fresh parsley
  • 2 Tbsp matzo meal or breadcrumbs
  • 1 1/2 tsp kosher salt
  • hearty pinch of pepper


  • ¼ cup pearl barley
  • 3 Tbsp vegetable oil
  • 2 large onions (diced)
  • 1 pound mixed mushroom (cleaned and roughly chopped)
  • 1 pound ground beef
  • 2 Tbsp chopped fresh dill
  • 2 Tbsp chopped fresh parsley
  • 2 eggs
  • 3 Tbsp breadcrumbs
  • 1 ½ tsp kosher salt
  • Hearty pinch of ground black pepper


  • 2 Tbsp olive oil
  • 3 small onions
  • ⅓ cup white wine
  • 1 ½ ounces dried mushrooms (hydrated in 1 cup boiling water)
  • 1 tsp sherry vinegar
  • Salt and pepper to taste
  • 1 lemon, for serving


  1. Prep Cabbage Leaves
    Bring a large soup pot of salted water to a boil. Chop off the core. Place the cabbage in the boiling water. After a moment, the outer leaves will become loose and translucent. Using tongs, remove the translucent outer leaves and set aside. Repeat again and again, continually peeling off the outer leaves, being careful to keep the leaves from ripping. When leaves are slightly cooled, use a paring knife to trim off the toughest part of the leaf, which will make them easier to fold later.

  2. Prep Fillings
    The process begins the same whether you’re making the meat or lentil filling: combine 1 cup stock and ¼ cup pearl barley in a small saucepan, bring to a boil, then reduce heat and simmer on very low heat until the barley is cooked but still al dente, about 25 minutes or until most of the liquid has been absorbed. Meanwhile, saute onions in oil in a large frying pan until they are caramel in color. Remove onions and set aside. In the same pan, adding extra oil if needed, saute mushrooms until shrunken and browned adding salt along the way. Set sauteed mushrooms aside.

    If you are making the beef filling, use the same skillet to brown the ground beef. Heat skillet over medium heat and stir the meat until it is cooked through, adding more salt and pepper throughout. For the lentil filling, use a separate pot to combine the lentils with 2 cups of stock. Bring to a boil, cover and simmer until lentils are cooked through. Once ingredients are all assembled, combine cooked barley, onions, mushrooms and either the beef or lentils. Stir in the egg, bread crumbs and fresh herbs.

  3. Assemble, Cook
    Lay a leaf flat and scoop a scant ½ cup of the filling into the center. Fold up the “bottom” of the leaf (where the core was attached) and lift it over the filling, about halfway up the cabbage leaf. While holding down the first fold with one hand, use the other to take the left side of the leaf and lay it over the first fold. Roll the leaf all the way to the right side and keep it tight. The top of the roll will be untucked. Push it down into the roll, forcing the top into the opening with your thumb or forefinger, which will form a tight little bundle. As you finish them, place the rolls into the baking dish. Pack them tightly, in a single later and pour in enough stock to cover the rolls. Cover the baking dish and braise for 2 to 2 ½ hours. Stuffed cabbage is ready when the rolls feel completely soft when pressed with a finger (careful, they’re hot). Remove from the oven.

  4. Prep Sauce:
    While stuffed cabbage is baking, heat a small pan and add oil. Saute the onions until they are translucent and beginning to turn caramel in color. Pour in the wine, quickly stirring up the onions with a wooden spoon to scrape up all the bits. Add a couple pinches of salt, and let the onions cook in the wine until most of it is absorbed. Add the dried mushrooms and the hydrating water, again leaving the broth to cook down for a few moments until about half of the liquid has evaporated. Remove from heat and blend mixture in a blender or with an immersion blender. Stir in sherry vinegar, adjust salt and pepper.

  5. Serve:
    Serve immediately or prepare up to 2 days in advance and reheat in the oven before serving. Serve the cabbage rolls hot, on a bed of sauce, garnished with a generous dose of chopped parsley and dill and a squeeze of fresh lemon.

Symbolic New Year Foods
Source :
The Best Tzimmes We've Ever Tasted

By Shannon Sarna for The Nosher


4 lbs sweet potatoes
2 lb Russet potatoes
1 lb pitted prunes
1 lb baby carrots, or whole carrots cut into 1 inch pieces
3 lbs flanken
3/4 cup brown sugar
1/2 cup fresh lemon juice


  1. Place one or two pieces of flanken on the bottom of the casserole. Scatter half of the sweet potatoes, white potatoes, prunes and carrots over the meat.
  2. Sprinkle half the brown sugar and lemon juice over this layer. Place the remaining flanken on top and cover with all remaining ingredients.
  3. Fill the casserole with water until the ingredients are barely covered. Bring to a boil on top of the stove and then reduce heat to a simmer.
  4. Cover casserole. Simmer ingredients for 90 minutes. Remove from heat and cool.
  5. Carefully, remove meat, potatoes, carrots and prunes from the gravy. Arrange them in an oven to table serving dish. Pour gravy in another container. Place both in fridge overnight.
  6. The next day, preheat oven to 375°F. Remove casserole and container of gravy from fridge. With a slotted spoon, remove the thick layer of fat that will have formed over night. Taste gravy. Add more brown sugar and/or lemon juice depending on your taste. Pour gravy over meat and vegetables.
  7. Place casserole in oven and bake for 2-3 hours uncovered. Baste constantly until gravy has thickened and glazed the Tzimmis. If the top layer begins to brown too much, cover the casserole lightly with foil and continue to cook.
  8. Serve hot. This recipe can be cooled completely and frozen.
Symbolic New Year Foods
Source :
Spiced Lamb and Butternut Squash Burekas

By Shannon Sarna for The Nosher

Burekas are an easy appetizer to throw together using store-bought puff pastry. If you don’t like ground lamb, substitute ground beef. You can also make a vegetarian version by using tofu or feta cheese with the squash. You can make burekas ahead, freezing them once they are assembled, but before the egg wash.

Before the holiday or when ready to bake, glaze with egg wash and pop in the oven per directions below. They also reheat well in the oven at a low temperature and can even be served at room temperature.


2 sheets store-bought puff pastry, left to thaw at room temperature around 30 minutes

½ lb ground lamb

2 cups cooked pureed or mashed butternut squash (can also use sweet potato or frozen butternut squash)

1 Tbsp olive oil

1 small onion

½ tsp ground cumin

½ tsp ground coriander

¼ tsp cinnamon

Pinch red pepper flakes

¼ tsp salt

1 egg beaten for glaze

Sesame seeds, nigella seeds or poppy seeds (optional)


1. Heat olive oil in a sauté pan over medium heat. Sauté onion until translucent. Add spices to pan and cook until toasted, around 1 minute. Add ground lamb and cook until no longer pink, breaking up into small pieces with a wooden spoon as you cook. Remove from heat and allow to cool slightly.

2. Combine butternut squash and lamb mixture in a medium bowl.

3. Preheat oven to 375 degrees.

4. Roll out each sheet of puff pastry. Cut each sheet into 9 even squares. Using a rolling pin, roll out each square slightly.

5. Scoop one heaping tablespoon into the corner of each square. Fold puff pastry over filling, forming a triangle.

6. Using the tines of a fork, crimp the edges.

7. Repeat with second sheet of puff pastry.

8. Brush each bureka with beaten egg. Top with sesame seeds, nigella seeds or poppy seeds if desired.

9. Bake 18-22 minutes, until golden on top.

Symbolic New Year Foods
Source :
Stuffed Vegetables Recipes for Sukkot

Sukkot is a harvest holiday, which means it’s all about the food. (Really!) While there aren’t necessarily specific foods we eat during the holiday, many dishes revolve around fruits and vegetables with a harvest theme, including vegetables that are stuffed. And, let’s be honest, stuffed foods are just, well, fun! Here are 11 recipes that will keep you, ahem, stuffed, this season.

From your traditional stuffed cabbage to stuffed cabbage and artichokes, meat filllings to veggie, this delicious collection of stuffed vegetable recipes from Jewish Boston has something for everyone!

Symbolic New Year Foods
Source : Reform Judaism
Pumpkin Mousse

All the good taste of pumpkin pie without the crust! It can be made with nondairy creamer for a  pareve  dessert that can easily be transported outside to the sukkah during Sukkot.

Makes 6 servings


2 teaspoons unflavored kosher gelatin

2 tablespoons dark rum

1 cup canned unsweetened pumpkin

1/2 cup sugar

1 egg yolk

1/8 teaspoon nutmeg

Pinch of allspice

1/2 teaspoon cinnamon

1/4 teaspoon ginger

1 teaspoon vanilla

1/4 teaspoon salt

1 cup heavy cream or nondairy whipped topping mix


  1. Sprinkle the gelatin over the rum in a small glass custard cup and let it soften for a few minutes.
  2. Combine the remaining ingredients except the heavy cream in a medium bowl.
  3. Place the custard cup with the rum and gelatin in a frying pan that contains 1/2 inch of simmering water. Stir the rum mixture until the gelatin is dissolved.
  4. Whisk the hot gelatin mixture into the pumpkin mixture until thoroughly combined.
  5. Whip the cream in a small bowl until it forms soft peaks and fold it carefully into the pumpkin mixture.
  6. Spoon into six 4-ounce ramekins and refrigerate until set, about 3–4 hours.

Additional Notes:

  • Soaking the gelatin in the rum helps it swell so that when it is warm it will melt and be evenly distributed in the mousse.
  • If a frozen, pre-whipped dairy or pareve topping is available, you may substitute 2 cups of that already whipped product for the 1 cup of whipping cream, however, the taste will be slightly different. 

Source: Reform Judaism 

Symbolic New Year Foods
Source :
Sparkling Etrog Jam Cocktail

Sukkot, the Jewish harvest festival (Feast of Booths or Tabernacles) has begun! Sukkot is traditionally an agricultural festival held in part to celebrate the harvest season. 

During this time, many Jews around the world build a sukkah, a temporary, hut-like structure with a roof of fronds. It is symbolic of the homes that Jews lived while wandering in the wilderness after the exodus from Egypt. Like the wedding chuppah, the temporary structure of the sukkah reminds us that life is fragile. After some serious atoning on Yom Kippur, Sukkot is a time for us to be with family and community, in thanksgiving for all that we have. Some Jews share meals and even sleep under the chuppah during this eight day festival!

While we have yet to construct our own sukkah (fortunately, we have access to a few), this year I wanted to create a celebratory Sukkot cocktail. Etrog (citron) is the fruit most associated with this holiday, and serendipitously we happen to have an etrog tree in our backyard! A single, kosher (blessed) etrog from Israel typically can run from anywhere between $30-$100. Since they are grown for ceremonial use, they look perfect but are laden with pesticides so it's not recommended to cook with them.

If you don't happen to have access to fresh, "organic" etrogs like us, I recommend using organic Meyer lemons for this simple jam cocktail. Or, if you don't have time to make jam there's nothing wrong with purchasing a beautiful jar of organic citrus marmalade! 

If used strictly in the cocktails, the recipe below can serve up to 75. However, it can also be used with a dollop of ricotta on toast. The sparkling wine can be swapped out for soda water for mocktails.

1 etrog or two Meyer lemons

Rinse the fruit and cut it lengthwise, then in half again lengthwise. Remove any seeds. Slice  fruit thinly and weigh it. Write down the weight in a safe place. Soak the fruit overnight in water and make sure to fully cover it.

Strain the water from the fruit the next day. Place it in a medium heavy-bottomed pan with equal amounts sugar (written down the day before) and 3/4 the amount of water. Bring mixture to a boil, then reduce heat to low for one hour. Check on it regularly during this time until it takes on a jam-like appearance. 

To check if it's ready, place a small plate in the freezer for a few minutes. Drop a tiny spoonful of the mixture onto the cold plate, then place it back in the freezer for five minutes. This will zap the heat from the jam. Using your finger, move the jam- it should wrinkle a bit and appear thickened. If not, simmer for a bit longer until ready. 

*Makes one cocktail

1 teaspoon etrog or other citrus jam
2 sprigs of thyme
1 glass of chilled sparkling wine

Place jam in the base of a Champagne flute, add thyme sprigs fill to the top with sparkling wine. Stir well with a cocktail stirrer. 

Enjoy and Chag Sameach!

Symbolic New Year Foods
Source :
Lemon Etrog Cupcakes for Sukkot

Sukkot Lemon “Etrog” Cupcakes 
By Micah Siva

This recipe for Sukkot Lemon “Etrog” Cupcakes is a fun way to learn about the harvest holiday’s etrog and lulav. They’re designed to be made with young children, but we’re sure just about everyone will enjoy making or eating them.

Sukkot celebrates a bountiful harvest, and we celebrate by spending time with loved ones in a sukkah, a 3-walled shelter with a roof traditionally made of natural materials, like leaves, bamboo and branches. During Sukkot, we say blessings over an Etrog (citron) a lulav (palm fronds), myrtle and willow (learn all about why here). Sukkot is a fun and interactive family holiday whether or not you’re an experienced sukkah-builder or it’s your first time celebrating. You can spend time making an outdoor structure with a branch and thatched roof, decorate it with family-friendly crafts and enjoy meals as a family inside.

This year, enjoy these citrusy “etrog” cupcakes with a sprig of rosemary on top, symbolizing the lulav and lemon zest for the etrog. Take this opportunity to learn about these symbols as a family. And while everything is perfectly edible, your littles may prefer picking the pretty toppings off before digging in!

We’ve outlined sample tasks that children aged 18 months and up can help get involved with, but every child is different, so feel free to adapt it to whatever works best for your family. 

Makes 12 cupcakes


  • 1 ½ cup all purpose flour
  • 1 ½ tsp. baking powder
  • ¼ tsp. sea salt
  • 1 stick, ½ cup unsalted butter, at room temperature
  • ¾ cup white sugar
  • 2 large eggs
  • 1 tsp. vanilla extract
  • 1/2 cup sour cream
  • Zest of 2 lemons 
  • 1 Tbsp. lemon juice

Frosting (if you and your family love icing, feel free to double this recipe!)

  • 1 stick butter
  • 1 ½ cup icing sugar
  • 1 Tbsp. lemon juice
  • 1 Tbsp. lemon zest, plus some for garnish
  • Fresh rosemary, to garnish

Visit 18Doors for instructions on baking.