Kosher-for-passover cake?
April 3, 2012 6:02 AM   Subscribe

What is your favorite kosher-for-Passover cake recipe?

I would like to make a birthday cake for a friend. His birthday is during Passover, and he will be keeping kosher. What can I make for him? My grocery story has a very small kosher-for-Passover section, so I may be able to get some specialty ingredients.
posted by kayram to Food & Drink (11 answers total) 9 users marked this as a favorite
I will try to look it up when I get home, but one of the Moosewood cookbooks (I think it's the "Low-fat" one) has a coffee angelfood cake recipe that was both kosher and friendly-to-small-grocery-stores.
posted by EmpressCallipygos at 6:07 AM on April 3, 2012 [1 favorite]

Now is the time when I share with you Grandma's Passover Sponge cake recipe! Perfect for a seemingly light but secretly cholesterol-laden dessert after an enormous seder meal, or just whenever you please because you are FREE! FREE FROM SLAVERY~

8 eggs
1 1/4 cup sugar
juice and zest of 1 orange
1 tsp lemon extract
1/4 cup boiling water
1/2 cup matzo cake meal
1/2 cup potato starch
salt (pinch! oh Grandma you hate measurements)

Separate eggs.
Beat yolks and sugar until light.
Add orange juice and zest and lemon extract.
Mix dry ingredients and add.
Add water.
In separate bowl, beat egg whites until they form stiff peaks.
Fold in whites into other half of batter.

Pour into large tube pan and bake at 350 F for 50 minutes. Hang upside-down until cool.

Serve with sliced strawberries and non-dairy whipped topping if you're my family, or loads of seasonal fresh fruit mixed with a little simple syrup and lemon zest if you're being fancy.
posted by Mizu at 6:12 AM on April 3, 2012 [1 favorite]

One thing you can do for passover is to use matzoh as the "cake" part. This one is interesting, you soak the Matzoh in some kosher wine, then make a "layer cake" using the moistened matzoh with chocolate in between.

Here are some other suggestions if you can find "Matzoh meal," which is ground up Matzoh and can be used similarly to flour: Chowhound
posted by permiechickie at 6:13 AM on April 3, 2012

My mother makes a flourless chocolate mousse cake very much like this recipe for Passover every year. It's amazing. You make the mousse, spread half of it into a cake dish and bake it, and it turns into cake. Then you put the other half of the same mousse on top. SCIENCE!
posted by Faint of Butt at 6:19 AM on April 3, 2012 [1 favorite]

While it's not quite cake, Tiramatzah might work.
posted by zamboni at 6:25 AM on April 3, 2012

this is called a "Passover Apple Pie" but in reality, is a cake in a pie pan. A family favorite since time began.

Passover Apple Pie

10 inch pie pan greased
2 and a half large apples sliced thin peeled layered in pan until half full
sprinkle 1 tbs cinnamon and 1 tbs sugar over apples

1 stick plus 1/2 stick butter (12 tbs)
3/4 cup sugar
1 egg
1 cup passover cake meal
1/2 cup finely chopped walnuts

mix as a cake and spread carefully over apples. Make sure butter is soft, because otherwise batter can be difficult to spread

bake at 350 for 40-45 minutes
posted by 41swans at 6:27 AM on April 3, 2012 [2 favorites]

Lucy Waverman's ginger-almond cake with apples.
posted by lulu68 at 6:47 AM on April 3, 2012

Before you go to all that (nice) trouble, be sure he'll eat it. It sounds like your kitchen isn't kashered for Passover, and depending on how observant he is, he might not be able to eat it. Even less seemingly religious people cn become very strict during Passover
posted by atomicstone at 6:57 AM on April 3, 2012 [3 favorites]

My favorite kosher for passover dessert is improvised from this awesome cheesecake recipe, if you're feeling ambitious.

1 bag peacans (I think it's about 12 oz)
2 tablespoons (1/4 stick) unsalted butter, melted
little bit of matzoh meal (tablespoon or so).

Preheat oven to 350°F. Wrap outside of 9-inch-diameter springform pan with 2 3/4-inch-high sides with 3 layers of heavy-duty foil. Finely pecans in processor. Add melted butter and process until crumbs are moistened. Press crumb mixture onto bottom (not sides) of prepared pan. Bake crust until golden, about 15 minutes. Cool crust completely on rack. Reduce oven temperature to 325°F.

12 ounces cream cheese, room temperature
2 8-ounce containers mascarpone cheese,* room temperature (I haven't been able to find kosher for passover marscapone--so I just use all cream cheese.)
1 1/2 tablespoons matzoh cake meal (or 1/2 tablespoon of potato starch)
1 1/4 cups sugar
1 teaspoon vanilla extract (I think there is some debate about this, because real vanilla extract is made with alcohol. more info here. I usually use a vanilla bean instead of extract, it's much tastier anyway)
1/2 teaspoon fresh lemon juice
4 large eggs, room temperature

Let all the ingredients come to room temperature first. Using electric mixer, beat cream cheese in large bowl until smooth. Add potato starch or cake meal; beat until smooth, occasionally scraping down sides of bowl with rubber spatula. Gradually add sugar and beat until smooth. Beat in vanilla and lemon juice. Add eggs 1 at a time, beating just until blended after each addition.

Pour filling over crust in pan. Place springform pan in large roasting pan. Pour enough hot water into roasting pan to come halfway up sides of springform pan. Bake cheesecake until top is golden and cake is almost set (center 2 inches will still move slightly when pan is gently shaken), about 1 hour 15 minutes. Cool cake on rack 1 hour. Refrigerate uncovered overnight. (Usually I will turn the oven off when the cake is just shy of being done and crack the oven door and let it cool down--it helps prevent cracks.

Atomicstone just beat me to it though--if your friend is keeping kosher, he might not be willing to eat something you made in your non-kosher for passover kitchen. There are all sorts of different rules for keeping kosher--here's a link about koshering utensils for passover, just to give you an idea of how involved it can be, it's much more complex that avoiding a few ingredients. (Most people I know don't even bother with this--they just have sets of kosher for passover utensils and kitchenware). You can always bring over fruit and (kosher for passover) candy and macaroons, and bake something tasty after passover is over!
posted by inertia at 7:16 AM on April 3, 2012

Here is a recipe for a divine Kosher for Passover chocolate cake requiring no special ingredients. It does not taste like birthday cake, but is delicious to anyone who like chocolate. Very, very fudgey.

Flourless Chocolate Cake (Passover)

9 oz. semisweet chocolate chips
7 tbls. Unsalted pareve margarine (use butter for a dairy cake)
6 eggs separated + 2 additional egg whites
1 tbl. Congnac, liqueur, brandy, or Kahlua (optional)
½ cup lukewarm water
Whipped topping, powdered sugar and/or berries for topping optional

Place a circle of baking parchment on the bottom of a 9-inch springform pan.
Melt chocolate and margarine in microwave. Let cool. Place egg yolks in one mixing bowl and the eight whites in another mixing bowl, let both warm to room temperature. Beat the yolks until light in color, mix in the liqueur and blend into the melted chocolate mixture. Stir in the lukewarm water. Beat the egg whites with a pinch of salt until soft peaks form and fold carefully into the chocolate mixture. Spoon into prepared pan. Bake in a 325 degree oven for about 25 minutes or until the center of the cake is barely set.
posted by reren at 9:08 AM on April 3, 2012

oh, oh, I know this one! I was born on the first night of Passover, and, so the story goes, my mother had labored so hard over the Passover desserts that, even though she was going into labor with me, she wouldn't leave the table until she'd had some of those desserts. Needless to say, I've always loved the challenge of Passover desserts. :)

I'm going to assume your friend will eat something out of your kitchen under normal circumstances. If so, you're probably ok during Passover as well, but best to check.

With that caveat: The key to awesome Passover cakes and desserts is to not use matzah meal. It doesn't taste like flour, and, of course, it doesn't have the same properties as flour (that's the point, after all!). To that end, you can make pretty much any flourless chocolate cake. I've also been making a flourless orange-almond cake lately. (There are a bunch of variations out there -- here's one I haven't tried, but from a reputable source.) Note that some rabbis now permit the use of baking powder, which opens up desserts quite a bit. As a general matter, you're looking for cakes based on lengthy whipping of eggs (e.g., sponges, angel food, genoise), where you likely will put in nuts to give the whole thing some structural integrity.

If you're willing to expand your notion of a proper birthday dessert, all manner of mousses are available, and a super-fancy ice-cream sunday can be pretty fun. (As a child, I had many a birthday party based on "ice cream sunday bars," and you can be pretty creative with the toppings.)

Finally, you might want to peruse Smitten Kitchen's collection of Passover recipes. I've made many of them, and they all turn out fabulously. She has a number of cakes in there.
posted by Nx at 10:18 AM on April 3, 2012 [1 favorite]

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