Honey cake

Honey cake

Preparation time: 20 minutes. Cooking time 55 minutes
Makes approximately 10 generous slices.

This cake is traditionally made for Jewish New Year (Rosh Hashanah) to symbolize wishes for a sweet new year. It is as dense and rich as it is delicious. Best of all it improves with age and will keep for weeks if not months. I usually enjoy this cake with a cup of hot tea or coffee and my feet up, and it certainly feels like a very special treat. Enjoy!

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160g (5 ½ oz) plain flour
1 ½ tsp baking powder
¾ tsp bicarbonate of soda
1 ½ tsp ground cinnamon
½ tsp ground ginger
¼ tsp ground cloves
¼ tsp ground allspice
75 ml vegetable oil
90 ml clear honey
25g (1 oz) brown sugar
75g (2 ½ oz) caster sugar
1 egg
70 ml tea
1tbs dessert wine, liquor or milk
35g flaked almonds, sesame seeds or ground hazelnuts
a little butter or margarine, melted, for greasing the tin


2 lb loaf tin (8.5 x 11.5 x 9 cm)


Preheat the oven to 170 centigrade.

Grease the tin with the melted butter or margarine and either line with greaseproof paper or dust with flour.

Make a cup of black tea the usual size and strength that you would make a cup of tea.

In a large bowl, sift the flour, baking powder, bicarbonate of soda and spices.

Stir in the two types of sugar with a fork.

In a separate bowl, whisk the egg until it is slightly frothy.

Make a well in the centre of the sifted dry ingredients, pour in the oil, honey, whisked egg, tea and dessert wine, liquor or milk. Stir the mixture until smooth. Pour into the tin, sprinkle with almonds/sesame seeds/ground hazelnuts.

Cover the tin with tin foil, put in to the preheated oven and cook, covered for 40 minutes and then take off the tin foil (use oven gloves as it will be hot) and cook for a further 10-15 minutes, uncovered.

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