Haroset (AKA charoset or halek/halaq) is a staple Passover spread or paste made with a mixture of fruit, nuts, honey, wine and spices, to symbolize the mortar that was used by Jewish slaves to make bricks in Egypt. While haroset is typically only seen on the Passover seder plate, I’ve used the flavors of my childhood haroset to inspire this cake. My haroset cake is packed with apples, honey, cinnamon, sweet kosher wine and chopped walnuts. But feel free to make this recipe your own; try substituting chopped pears for the apples, or use pecans in place of walnuts.
This gluten-free (and dairy-free!) cake is a far cry from the dry, mealy cakes of Passover’s past. I ditch dense matzah meal for rich, nutty almond flour, and keep it moist with juicy apples and a splash of kosher wine. Thanks to whipped egg whites folded into the batter, the cake stays light and fluffy. Serve with freshly whipped cream or ice cream to end your Passover seder. (It would also work well at Rosh Hashanah, particularly for those with a gluten-free diet.)
- 6 large eggs, separated
- 2 cups superfine almond flour, sifted
- ¼ cup sweet kosher wine
- 1 Tbsp baking powder, kosher for Passover
- 2 tsp cinnamon
- ¼ tsp kosher salt
- ½ cup walnuts, chopped
- 2 medium Granny Smith apples, peeled and diced into ¼-inch pieces
- ½ cup granulated sugar
- 2 Tbsp honey, to glaze
- Preheat the oven to 325°F. Grease and line an 8-inch springform pan with parchment paper.
- In a large bowl, combine the egg yolks, almond flour, wine, baking powder, cinnamon and kosher salt.
- Add the walnuts and chopped apples to the almond flour mixture, folding with a rubber spatula to combine. Set aside.
- In a large bowl, combine the egg whites and sugar. Using a hand mixer or stand mixer, whisk the egg whites until soft peaks form, about 5-7 minutes.
- Gently fold the egg whites into the almond flour mixture, ½ cup at a time, folding between each addition until fully incorporated.
- Transfer to the springform pan and bake for 45-50 minutes, or until a toothpick comes out clean.
- Remove from the oven, and use a pastry brush to brush the honey on top.
- Let cool in the pan, and slice to serve.