Shabbat Marble Cake With Optional Glaze

Shabbat Marble Cake With Optional Glaze

When the girls were little, I baked almost everything from scratch. As Raizel was on the Feingold Diet, I made everything with all natural ingredients, and without dyes, additives or preservatives. With time, I have collected a small repertoire of fast and easy baking recipes. Nothing fancy, but I figure, “done is better than undone.”

Ironically, the highest compliment that I usually receive from Raizel is, “this tastes as good as store bought,” rather than the other way around!

My oven is also still not working properly. To compensate,  I have started using an oven thermometer, which I am finding very helpful. 

Armed with my trusty thermometer, and with the day off for Thanksgiving, I had time to make this Shabbat Marble Cake. This is the first cake that I have baked since we moved to our new house.

For those who may not be familiar, a Shabbat cake is simple, fast and easy cake that one makes especially for Shabbat and those moments when one has a lot of cooking to do and limited time. Perfect for the time challenged cook.


2 cups sugar

4 eggs

1 cup oil

1 cup liquid – I used rice milk but juice is also good

2 teaspoon vanilla

3 cups flour: I used spelt, but you can use a gluten-free flour blend, almond flour, corn meal or any other flour too. The texture, however, may be altered slightly.

3 teaspoons baking powder

1/8 teaspoon salt (a “pinch”)

3 tablespoons cocoa powder: Add at the end to only 1/2 – 1/3 of the batter


By hand: beat eggs, and sugar. Add oil and vanilla. Alternate adding the liquid and the dry ingredients until blended.

With a food processor: Mix eggs, sugar, oil and vanilla in food process for 1 minute. Slowly add liquid until well blended. Add flour, salt and baking powder and pulse until just blended.

To assemble marble cake:

Pour ½ – ¾ of batter into a greased or parchment paper lined pan, or use a Bundt pan.

If using a Bundt pan, lightly flour the pan after it is greased to prevent sticking.

Then, with the remaining batter, add 3 tablespoons of cocoa powder. Pour over vanilla batter in stripes. Gently swirl with a knife. Do not over mix!

This can also be made as two 9″ layers, one 9″x 13″ rectangular cake or 24 cupcakes.

Bake in a preheated 350°F oven until done and when inserted toothpick comes out clean.

Optional Glaze


1 cup icing sugar

4 teaspoons of milk or liquid (I use rice milk, but lemon juice also works)


Pour icing sugar in a bowl. Add liquid 1 teaspoon at a time and stir until desired consistency.

Drizzle over cake, while slightly warm.

Since I am time challenged, I was only able to take 2 pictures:


Fresh out of the oven.

I took  this picture just before Shabbat.

Although she will never admit it, I think that Raizel is finally missing home baked goods. She said, “this is great! It is even better than store bought!

I am happy to say that between her, Yaffa, and her friend Kayla, I have only 2 pieces left. I consider that to be a ringing endorsement.




Lemon Cake In A Mug

Lemon Cake In A Mug

School started just this past week and things have been very hectic in our home.

Among our many changes, Raizel started high school in our new town. To say she has been nervous is an understatement.

Yaffa’s bus route has yet to be finalized as well. Everyday is a new bus adventure: when she will be picked up? When she will be dropped off? And, will she even be picked up at all?

All of this in a typical day, while working and managing a household. I truly feel that God is carrying me. There is no other explanation for how so much can be done with so little time.

Dolly, from suggested that we make a little celebration in honor of our new and many transitions to ease the level of tension and anxiety.

Unfortunately, I was only able to follow up with her suggestion a few hours before Shabbat last week.

With even greater time challenges than usual, it struck me as a perfect time for a microwave cake.

As I have shared before, these microwave 1 cup cakes are a perfect solution for those moments when you want something sweet, without too much fuss.

I decided to adapt the vanilla cake in a mug recipe and make it into a lemon cake instead. I substituted lemon juice for milk and added lemon zest too. I did not use lemon extract, but I think that could have worked nicely as well.

As a bonus, this cake also does not have eggs. Spelt flour can easily be substituted, for those who do not eat wheat.

I am happy to say that it came out really well!


1/2 cup flour

1/4 cup sugar

1/2 teaspoon baking powder

1/4 cup lemon juice. I used freshly squeezed

Zest from 1 lemon

3 tablespoons oil

1/2 teaspoon vanilla (1 capful)

Optional: lemon extract could be good too.

Optional: sprinkle icing sugar over the cake, after it is baked and while it is still warm.


In a large mug, combine dry ingredients until well mixed. Add oil, vanilla lemon zest, and liquid, and mix until well blended.

Microwave for 90 seconds.

If you are uncertain about the power of your microwave, start with 1 minute and increase the time as necessary.

Sprinkle icing sugar on top if desired after it’s baked, and while it is still warm.

Here are the pictures. I am happy to say that some where taken by me, others by Raizel, and one was even taken by Yaffa, with Raizel’s assistance.

Raizel guided Yaffa to take this picture. Please forgive the mess in the background, but, you get a good idea of what preparing for the Sabbath is all about.

Getting ready to mix.

Mixing it up. Raizel took the picture.

About it go into the microwave.

Final product. Voila!

Raizel says, “it’s good! In fact it’s very good. In fact, it’s delicious!”

Yaffa says, “it’s good! I like it!” In a full sentence no less.

I am happy to say that it was eaten before the night was over. It’s not chocolate, but definitely still a hit.


Potato Barley Soup


This soup is what we traditionally broke the fast with in my family growing up. Unfortunately, I am unable to continue the tradition with my family. Soup for Yaffa is more difficult to eat,  and  my husband doesn’t enjoy it either. So that leaves only Raizel and me. Soup for 2 is not as much fun.  Sigh……. 

I am posting the recipe anyway, since it is tasty and part of my culinary legacy. When my mother made it, it was a labor of love and a work of art. My sisters make it every year.


2 onions chopped 

6 potatoes pealed and cubed

1 cup barley 

Water to cover

Salt, pepper and fresh garlic, crushed 

Fresh dill at the end, if desired 


Sauté onions until translucent. Add the other ingredients and simmer until done.

This can also be made in a crockpot or  a pressure cooker. For the pressure cooker I recommend 10 minutes to pressure without the potatoes, release the pressure and then add the potatoes. Bring to pressure again for 7 minutes. Adjust the seasoning et voila, potato barley soup!

This soup is meant to be white. White is the color associated with Yom Kippur and purity. On this day we are asking to have our sins forgiven and to be returned to a higher level of spiritual purity.


Shlishkas: First Time Experiment

Shlishkas is a very traditional Eastern European Ashkenazi dish.  I have never made it before and in fact, I only just discovered what it was recently. It took me 2 weeks just to learn how to pronounce the name.  For the record, it is pronounced sh’lish-kas.

So, I asked my mother if she knew what shlishkas is, and of course she does. According to my mother, this dish is not traditional for Jews who are from Lithuania, which is where my family is from. So, that explains why I had never heard of it before.

I consider this to be Jewish gnocchi, served with toasted breadcrumbs and sautéed onions.  My friend Devorah is the one who told me about this initially. She uses dried gnocchi to make this dish. That is a definite time saver, but, I thought I would try and make it from scratch.

This recipe is from The Jewish Spice and Spirit Cookbook. This cookbook was given to me when I got married. I consider it to be one of the best cookbooks available. 

I am sure that it is possible to make this gluten-free, but for the first time, I decided to follow the recipe as it was written.



4 large potatoes, cooked and then peeled

3 cups of flour

1 egg

1 tablespoon oil

1 tablespoon salt

2 onions, chopped

1 cup breadcrumbs

1 tablespoon oil

salt and pepper to taste


Cook potatoes. I made them in the pressure cooker, 10 minutes to pressure.

Peel the potatoes, add the flour, egg, oil, and salt and then mash together.

I read somewhere that it is best to grate the cooked potatoes, and one should definitely NOT use a food processor, or else it will turn to mush. I used a regular food masher, and my shlishkas still came out OK.

Roll dough out onto long ropes onto a floured board. Cut into 1 1/2 inch pieces. Drop into boiling water for 10 minutes until they float to the top. Cook for an additional 5 minutes.

Sauté the onions in oil. When they become translucent, add the breadcrumbs and continue to sauté until the breadcrumbs are toasted and the onions are translucent.  Add the shlishkas and cook until well blended.

Raizel and my husband liked them very much. I will have to see what Yaffa thinks tomorrow.

NB: To make gluten free and kosher for Passover, I think that it is possible to use potato or tapioca starch and/or ground almonds or matza meal. For the breadcrumbs, I think that matza meal and or ground almonds or panko flakes/crumbs could also be used. I recommend using equal proportions of each. However, I would use only 1 ½ cups to start and then gradually add more, depending on the texture and the potatoes used. I suspect that there is a definite art to making this, and that there are no hard or fast rules.

I also think that for Passover, this might be just as good with sautéed onions, and pesto or even olive dip.

I also read that the shlishkas can be frozen, uncooked and then boiled later.

First I have to see how the family likes them. I also think that with practice, they get easier, but so far, the rolling out of the dough and cutting them makes this a little time consuming.

Here are the cooked and peeled potatoes:


My husband was kind enough to take of picture of me kneading the potato dough:


Dough, once it was made:


Here is the final product:

Yaffa had some today, and she liked them too. 

I showed this post to my sister, Raizel (they are both named after the same person) and she said that they are not shaped correctly. Since she is a chef, I am inclined to take her word for it. Apparently, they are supposed to have a more twisted rope-like shape. 

But, it was still a successful attempt. Two days after I made them, they were all gone. So, by my calculations, they were a hit!

This is not a recipe for the time challenged, but, it is very good and everyone liked them.

Spelt Flour Bread Machine Challah

I make this recipe often. For a long time, Raizel was not able to eat wheat.


1 1/2 cups rice milk 

2 tablespoons white sugar 

2 tablespoons canola oil

1 teaspoon salt 

4 cups spelt flour

2 1/2 teaspoons bread machine yeast


Place ingredients in bread machine in the order for your particular model.

For mine, I put liquids in first and then the dry ingredients.

I set it to the dough cycle and then braid the dough into loaves.

Brush the loaves with an egg.

Bake in 350*F or 375*F until done.

Chocolate Cake

This recipe calls for no eggs, and it works with spelt flour too, so it can be wheat free and vegan too.


1 1/2 cups flour 

1 cup sugar 

1/3 cup cocoa

1 teaspoon baking soda

1/2 teaspoon salt

5 tablespoons oil

1 tablespoon vinegar 

1 teaspoon vanilla extract

1 cup cold water 


Using a food processor, blend dry ingredients together. Add remaining ingredients and process until just blended.

Bake in greased 8×8 pan in a 350*F oven for 30 minutes or until done.

This recipe is fast and easy and can easily be made in a bowl.

Perfect for baking with children.

Also can use for trifle recipe that was just posted.