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Recipe Collection

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Prep time: 15-20 mins

Cook time: 50-60 mins

Yield: 2 loaves

This moist cake includes two symbolic Rosh Hashanah foods: honey and dates. We eat honey in hopes of a sweet new year, and dates are part of the Sephardic Rosh Hashanah Seder. The Hebrew word for date is tamar, which is related to the word tam (to end). Eating the dates, we ask God to bring an end to our enemies and those who wish evil upon us. You can find pressed dates and silan (date syrup/molasses) at Middle Eastern and kosher markets, like Yekta and Moti’s Market in Rockville.


  • Cake
  • 13-ounce package pressed dates
  • 1½ cups boiling water
  • 1 cup plus 2 tablespoons neutral oil (I use corn oil)
  • 1¼ cup sugar
  • ¾ cup honey or silan (date syrup/molasses)
  • 3 eggs
  • 2¼ cups flour
  • 3 tablespoons cocoa powder
  • 1½ teaspoons baking soda
  • Pinch of salt
  • Topping
  • ½ cup sugar
  • 5 ounces dark (pareve) chocolate, chopped
  • ½ cups walnut, chopped


  • Preheat oven to 325 degrees. Grease and line two loaf pans with parchment paper. Put the pressed dates in a bowl and pour the boiling water over them. Let sit until the water cools a bit. Puree the dates with the water to a soft paste. Mix the oil, sugar, honey and eggs in a medium bowl. In another bowl combine the flour, cocoa powder, baking soda and salt. Add the oil mixture and the dates to the flour mixture and mix well. Divide the batter between the pans. Mix the topping ingredients and sprinkle on top of the cakes. Bake for 50 minutes or until a toothpick poked into the center comes out clean.
  • Recipe originally published online at

One Response

  1. I made this cake according to directions, except that I used Coconut oil. I even ordered date syrup and it is very YUM. After 50 minutes, the middle was like water. I cooked it 10 more minutes on 350. It still was not done and was burned a little on the top. It still was not done. Then I cooked it 20 more minutes at 300. The toothpicks finally came out clean. The good news is that this loaf cake is the BEST I have every made. Even though the loaf cake was not cooked and I took it out of the oven and put it back, it still tastes so rich and good and not too sweet. I just had to have another piece. The texture is perfect. It’s a GREAT loaf cake. I will keep practicing on the time and temperature. Thank you.

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