Every year during the High Holidays, Finagle a Bagel helps hundreds of families across the state and New England break the fast; it is the busiest and most rewarding time of the year. Here are two recipes for High Holiday cakes—apple and honey—to break your fast with. Enjoy!

Apple Cake


Nothing says fall in New England quite like fresh apples picked from the local orchard, and that is exactly what this cake embodies. Fresh apples and the perfect amount of cinnamon will have this cake melting in your mouth. This dessert will be the talk of your holiday table. If you don’t have time to add something new to your Rosh Hashanah menu, this cake is available for order at the Finagle a Bagel Test Kitchen.

(Courtesy photo)

Finagle’s Apple Cake

Yields two cakes.


  • 1 cup butter
  • 1¼ cups sugar
  • ½ teaspoon salt
  • 2 eggs
  • 2 cups flour
  • 2 teaspoons baking powder
  • 2 apples (cored, peeled and sliced into 12 slices)
  • ½ teaspoon cinnamon
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla
  • 1 teaspoon whiskey
  • 2 tablespoons sugar (to marinate apples)


  1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees.
  2. Combine the apple, cinnamon, vanilla, whiskey and 2 tablespoons sugar; set aside.
  3. Combine flour and baking powder; set aside.
  4. In a stand-up mixer with paddle attachment, combine sugar, salt and butter and mix until sugar has dissolved into butter (approximately 3 minutes).
  5. Add eggs. When mixed thoroughly, add flour mixture in two batches.
  6. Press dough into pie shells evenly. Arrange apple slices around the pie shell on top of dough.
  7. Bake for 50 minutes. Cool completely.

Honey Cake

Like the apples and honey, and the round challah bread, honey cake symbolizes togetherness and the beginning of the new year. This cake is perfect for your Rosh Hashanah celebrations. But if you are busy preparing other meals for the festivities, stop by the Finagle a Bagel Test Kitchen and we’ll whip one up for you.

(Courtesy photo)

Finagle’s Honey Cake

Yields two cakes.


  • 2 cups flour
  • 1 teaspoon baking powder
  • 1 teaspoon baking soda
  • 1½ teaspoons cinnamon
  • ½ teaspoon ginger
  • ¾ cup sugar (separate 1 tablespoon for orange zest)
  • ¼ cup brown sugar
  • 2 eggs
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla
  • ½ teaspoon salt
  • 2 tablespoons whiskey
  • ½ cup coffee
  • 1 teaspoon orange zest
  • ½ cup vegetable oil
  • ¾ cup honey


  1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Grease two 8½ x 4½ x 2½ pans with cooking spray.
  2. Combine flour, baking powder, baking soda, cinnamon and ginger in a separate bowl and set aside.
  3. Combine orange zest and 1 tablespoon sugar in bowl of mixer.
  4. In stand-up mixer with whisk attachment, add remaining sugar, brown sugar, oil and eggs. Mix on low speed until combined.
  5. Add honey, whiskey, salt, coffee and vanilla and mix on medium-high for 1 minute.
  6. Add flour mixture and stir on low until incorporated and then on medium-high for 3 minutes. The batter should be thinner than cake batter.
  7. Pour evenly into both pans. Bake for 40-60 minutes. Once cool, wrap and store in a dry place or freeze. Best served the day after baking.

Susan Gould is the head baker at Finagle a Bagel.

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