A Touch of Honey

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Infuse the taste of a sweet New Year into your High Holiday menus with these tantalizing recipes.

The Jewish New Year brings hope for the future, but there’s also a red flag. Everyone wants the next year to be sweet. That’s why during Rosh Hasha­nah and the High Holiday season emphasis is placed on the sweetest of foods: honey. You can never have too much honey on Rosh Hashanah.
 
Here’s a Rosh Hashanah menu from Jamie Geller’s book, Joy of Kosher: Fast, Fresh Family Recipes.
 
Garlic Honey Brisket
(Meat)
This recipe gives you the chance to add honey to brisket. It’s a tender, rich entree for the holiday, but not overly sweet. Leftovers? Stuff slices of brisket in warmed pita bread with chopped crisp lettuce and drizzle with sauce.
 
1 cup honey
1⁄2 cup Dijon mustard
8 garlic cloves, minced
1⁄4 cup fresh orange juice
1 Tbsp. fresh lemon juice
1⁄2 tsp. red pepper flakes
1⁄2 tsp. dried thyme
1 tsp. kosher salt
1⁄2 tsp. freshly ground black pepper
1 brisket (4 lbs.)
2 Tbsps. olive oil
1⁄2 tsp. all-purpose flour
 
Combine the honey, mustard, garlic, orange and lemon juices, red pepper flakes, thyme, salt and pepper in a medium bowl, whisking to blend well. Place the brisket in a resealable plastic bag. Add the marinade, seal and refrigerate at least 1 hour or up to 24 hours.
 
Preheat the oven to 350.˚ Remove the brisket from the refrigerator 30 minutes before cooking to allow it to come to room temperature.
 
Heat the olive oil in an ovenproof Dutch oven over medium heat. Remove the brisket from the marinade, reserving the marinade. Add the brisket to the oil and sear it until nicely browned, about 5 minutes per side.
 
Pour the reserved marinade over the brisket, cover, place it in the oven and bake for two hours. Remove the lid and continue to cook until tender, 30 minutes to 1 hour more.
 
Transfer the brisket to a cutting board and let rest at least 15 minutes before slicing against the grain.
 
Return the Dutch oven to the stovetop and bring the pan juices to a simmer. (Skim off some fat if there’s more than 1 to 2 tablespoons in the pan). Whisk in the flour and simmer until thickened, 3 to 5 minutes. Pour the gravy over the sliced brisket and serve.
 
Serves 8.
 
Raw Root Vegetable Salad
(Pareve)
 
1⁄4 cup extra virgin olive oil
1 Tbsp. toasted sesame oil
1 Tbsp. soy sauce
2 tsps. honey
grated zest and juice of 1 lime
1 tsp. grated fresh ginger or 1 pinch of ground
1 carrot, peeled
1 fennel bulb, trimmed
3 radishes, trimmed
1 medium golden beet, peeled
1 medium red beet, peeled
2 Tbsps. coarsely chopped hazelnuts
2 Tbsps. coarsely chopped pistachios
freshly ground black pepper
 
To prepare the dressing, whisk together the oils, soy sauce, honey, lime zest and juice, and ginger in  large bowl. Transfer 2 tablespoons of the dressing to a small bowl and set both bowls aside.
 
Thinly slice the carrot, fennel, radishes and golden beet on a mandoline. Transfer the large bowl and toss with the dressing. Thinly slice the red beet on the mandolin and toss with the dressing in the small bowl.
 
Arrange the red beet slices on a platter or divide them among plates. Top with the remaining vegetables. Sprinkle with the chopped nuts and pepper to taste.
 
Serves 6 to 8.
 
Holiday Carrot Honey Cake
(Pareve)
It’s a tradition to make honeyed foods for Rosh Hashanah and this dessert is one of them. The nuts are a bit controversial. Sephardic Jews eat them on Rosh Hashanah, but Ashkenazim don’t. So to be safe, use the coconut flakes when serving this for the holiday and the nuts when entertaining year-round.
 
cooking spray
1 Tbsp. instant coffee granules
1 cup hot water
3 large eggs
3⁄4 cup canola oil
1 1⁄2 cups honey
1⁄2 cup packed light brown sugar
2 tsps. pure vanilla extract
1 jar (4 oz.) carrot baby food
1⁄2 cup fresh orange juice
3 1⁄2 cups all-purpose flour
2 tsps. baking powder
2 tsps. baking soda
1 tsp. ground cinnamon
1⁄2 tsp. ground nutmeg
1⁄2 tsp. ground cloves
1⁄2 tsp. ground allspice
1⁄2 tsp. kosher salt
2 cups shredded carrots (optional)
1 cup confectioner’s sugar
1⁄4-1⁄2 cup slivered almonds, chopped pecans or walnuts, or coconut flakes
 
Preheat the oven to 350˚. Spray an 8- to 10-inch Bundt pan with cooking spray.
 
Combine the coffee and hot water in a small bowl, stir until dissolved.
 
Combine the eggs, canola oil and honey in the bowl of an electric mixer and beat at medium speed until well blended. Stir in the dissolved coffee, sugar, vanilla, carrot baby food and juice.
 
Whisk the flour, baking powder, baking soda, cinnamon, nutmeg, cloves, allspice and salt in a large bowl. Gradually add to the egg mixture, beating at low speed until blended. Fold in the shredded carrots (if using) and pour the batter into the prepared pan.
 
Bake until a toothpick inserted in the cake comes out clean and the cake springs back when touched, 45 to 50 minutes. Allow the cake to cool 10 minutes in the pan, then invert onto a wire rack and let cool completely, about 1 hour.
 
Once the cake is cooled, prepare the glaze. Whisk the confectioner’s sugar with 1 to 2 tablespoons of water until a pourable glaze consistency is achieved.
 
Drizzle the glaze over the cake. Top with the nuts or coconut. Store the cake on a cake platter with a lid or in a container with a tight-fitting lid.
 
Serves 10.

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