Chocolate Tahini Cake with Tahini Frosting


Adapted from Molly Yeh, this easy cake has the unique flavouring of tahini (sesame) in both the cake and the frosting.


For the Cake:

1 ¾ cups unbleached all-purpose flour
1 ¾ cups granulated sugar
1 cup unsweetened cocoa powder
1 ½ tsp. baking powder
1 ½ tsp. baking soda
½ tsp. kosher salt
1 cup almond/coconut/soy milk
½ cup tahini
¼ cup grapeseed oil
1 tbsp. pure vanilla extract
2 large eggs, at room temperature
¾ cup brewed coffee, at room temperature

For the Frosting:

2 sticks (1 cup) pareve margarine, softened
½ cup tahini
2 cups confectioners’ sugar
1 tsp. pure vanilla extract
½ tsp. ground cinnamon
¼ tsp. kosher salt


Preheat the oven to 350F and line a 9×13-inch baking pan with parchment paper sprayed with cooking spray.

In a medium bowl, mix together the flour, sugar, cocoa, baking powder, baking soda, and salt.


In the bowl of a food processor fitted with the steel blade, combine the milk, tahini, oil, vanilla, eggs, and coffee. Process until smooth.


Add the flour mixture and pulse until just combined. Transfer the batter to the baking pan and bake for 28 minutes.


Allow the cake to cool while preparing the frosting.

IMG_2905.jpgIn the bowl of an electric mixer fitted with the paddle attachment, combine the margarine and tahini and blend until creamy.


Slowly add the confectioners’ sugar, followed by the vanilla, cinnamon, and salt. Spread the frosting over the cake and chill just before serving.


Limoncello Whip


This delicious and light dessert can be modified for Passover by omitting the cream of tartar in the meringue topping, by substituting the cornstarch with potato starch, by using exclusively kosher for Passover ingredients and by substituting the limoncello with a kosher for Passover liqueur. The limoncello can be substituted with lemon extract to make this non-alcoholic. Feel free to divide this recipe in half to serve fewer people. Pipe your serving sizes as large as you want from small shot glasses to martini glasses. Layer with fresh berries if you like.


Ingredients for Limoncello Whip:

2 cups unsalted pareve margarine
3 1/3 cups granulated sugar
Zest of 6 lemons
8 large eggs, at room temperature
2 cups freshly squeezed lemon juice
2 tsp. cornstarch
6 tbsp. limoncello or 2 tsp. lemon extract
4 cups Nutriwhip


Melt the margarine, sugar and lemon zest in a saucepan over medium heat until the margarine melts fully. Whisk the eggs, lemon juice and cornstarch together and whisk this into the pot.

Continue to whisk the curd over medium heat until it thickens and just begins to bubble, about 8 minutes.


Take the saucepan off the heat. Add the limoncello/lemon extract, then pour the mixture through a strainer and cover the surface of the curd with plastic wrap.


Cool to room temperature and then refrigerate until ready to use. This will keep up to 2 weeks sealed in the refrigerator. Makes approximately 6 cups of lemon curd.
When ready to assemble, whip the Nutriwhip and then fold the lemon curd into the Nutriwhip until combined.


Transfer to piping bag fitted with a star shaped tip and pipe into dessert glasses.

Ingredients for meringue:

6 large egg whites, room temperature
½ tsp. cream of tartar
1 1/2 cups granulated sugar

Directions for Meringue:

Preheat oven to 250F. In the bowl of an electric mixer fitted with the whisk attachment, beat the egg whites and cream of tartar until frothy.

Slowly add the sugar and beat on high speed until thick glossy peaks form.


Divide the mixture between 2 parchment lined cookie sheets and spread to 1/2-inch thickness roughly 9-inch circles. Bake for 90 minutes. Once cooled, crumble meringue into small pieces and top the limoncello whip in each of the dessert glasses.

Building Block Biscotti


I gave this cookie the name, “building block,” because the fillings can be modified to suit your taste.  The versions below are nut-free.  They are dairy-free if pareve white chocolate chips are used.


2 ½ cups all-purpose flour
1 tsp. baking powder
½ tsp. salt
1 ½ cups granulated sugar
½ cup (1 stick) unsalted pareve margarine, room temperature
2 large eggs, room temperature
1 tsp. pure vanilla extract
1 cup white chocolate chips/semisweet chocolate chips
1 cup dried berries/toasted flaked coconut/toffee pieces
1 egg white


Preheat oven to 350F.  Line 2 baking sheets with parchment paper.  Combine flour, baking powder and salt in medium bowl; whisk to blend.

In the bowl of an electric mixer fitted with the paddle attachment, beat margarine and sugar until light and fluffy. Add eggs, one at a time, followed by vanilla and beat until smooth.


Mix in flour mixture, then chips and berries/coconut/toffee.  Cover the dough with plastic wrap for 2-24 hours.



Divide dough into 3-4 logs each approximately 6×2.5 inches (15x7cm) long.   The logs will expand during baking.

Whisk egg white in small bowl until foamy; brush egg white glaze on top and sides of each log.


Bake logs until golden brown about 35 minutes.


Cool for 10 minutes, then slice logs on diagonal into ½-inch wide slices.  Bake for 10 more minutes.  Allow biscotti to cool.  Makes approximately 40 biscotti.


Cast Iron Skillet Cornbread

This recipe is a little different from the usual. I’ve been making cornbread for a couple years now as a delicious pairing to chilli. It’s crispy on the outside and crumbly on the inside, made perfect by using a cast iron skillet. Give it a try as an addition to chilli or another side dish. I made this non-dairy so it could be more versatile.


1 1/4 cup almond milk
1 cup cornmeal
1 cup all-purpose flour
4 tsp baking powder
3/4 tsp kosher salt
2 eggs, beaten
1/4 cup unsalted margarine, melted
1 tsp vegetable oil


Preheat oven to 425˚F. Place 9 inch was iron skillet in oven to warm it.

Mix almond milk and cornmeal – let soak for 10 minutes.


Mix flour, baking powder, salt in large bowl.


Add cornmeal and almond milk mixture, eggs, and melted margarine. Mix until smooth.


Remove skillet and pour vegetable oil into the skillet. Brush around with a silicon brush or paper towel.


Pour batter into skillet and bake for 18-20 minutes.





Adapted from Giada De Laurentiis, this classic dessert involves no baking.



9 egg yolks, room temperature
5 tbsp. granulated sugar
474 g plus 237g (1 ½ containers) mascarpone cheese, softened
2 ½ cups strong espresso, cooled
3 tbsp. Italian espresso liqueur, divided
2 ½-3 boxes of package large lady fingers
Cocoa/bittersweet chocolate shavings, for garnish


In the bowl of an electric mixer fitted with the whisk attachment, beat egg yolks and sugar until thick and pale, about 5 minutes.



Add mascarpone cheese and beat until smooth.


Add 1 tbsp. of espresso and mix until thoroughly combined.

In a small shallow dish, add remaining espresso and liqueur.


Dip each ladyfinger into espresso for only 5 seconds.  Place each soaked ladyfinger on the bottom of a 9×13-inch baking dish. Spread evenly ½ of the mascarpone mixture over the ladyfingers.


Arrange another layer of soaked ladyfingers and top with remaining mascarpone mixture.


Cover with plastic wrap and refrigerate for at least 2 hours.  Before serving, sprinkle with cocoa and/or chocolate shavings.


Special Passover Edition (A Collection of Recipes)


Passover Chocolate Hazelnut Ganache Cake With Macaroon Crust

Thank you to Chanie Apfelbaum of Busy in Brooklyn for this game changing Passover dessert.  I modified it to accommodate a 9×13-inch pan.




14 oz. unsweetened coconut flakes
35 pitted dates
4 cups hazelnuts
14 oz. can (400 ml) coconut milk, full fat
2  8 oz. bags chocolate chips
2 tsp. vanilla
Pinch of kosher/sea salt


Toast the hazelnuts by placing them on a baking sheet for 12 minutes at 400F.


Try to remove as much of the skins as possible by rolling them in a clean dish towel.  Set aside. Toast the coconut by spreading the flakes on a baking sheet for 10 minutes at 350F.


Place the coconut and dates in the bowl of a food processor fitted with the steel blade.  Blend until the “dough” starts to come together. Spread the mixture on a parchment paper lined 9×13-inch baking pan and refrigerate until ready to use.


Place the hazelnuts in the clean food processor bowl and blend until nut butter forms.

You will need to scrape down the sides of the bowl. This process will take 10-20 minutes as the nuts go from ground, to pasty, and finally to creamy.


Add the coconut milk, chocolate chips, vanilla, and salt and blend until smooth.


Spread the chocolate hazelnut ganache over the date/coconut crust and refrigerate until set.  Cut into squares.


Passover Chocolate Fudge Cake

This one bowl, gluten-free, Passover friendly recipe comes from Chef Chaya. Anything that involves one bowl at this time of year will be welcome in our kitchen.  IMG_2784.jpg


9 large eggs
2 ¾ cups granulated sugar
1 ½ cups olive/coconut/grapeseed oil
1 ½ cups potato starch
1 cup unsweetened cocoa
1 tsp. baking powder (kosher for Passover)
1 tsp. baking soda


Preheat oven to 350F and spray a 9×13-inch baking pan with cooking spray. In the bowl of a stand mixer fitted with the paddle attachment, mix together ALL of the ingredients until well combined.



Transfer to the baking pan and bake for 60 minutes.


It will be jiggly still in the middle when it comes out of the oven. Allow to cool to room temperature before slicing.


Passover Rocky Road Brownie Cake

This recipe adapted from Daniella Silver and Norene Gilletz uses one bowl only in its preparation.


4 large eggs
1 ¾ cups granulated sugar
1 cup potato starch
¾ cup unsweetened cocoa
Pinch kosher salt
4 cups mini marshmallows (kosher for Passover)


Preheat oven to 350F and spray a 9×13-inch baking pan with cooking spray. In the bowl of a stand mixer fitted with the paddle attachment, combine the eggs, sugar, potato starch, cocoa and salt.


Blend until well combined and transfer to the pan.


Bake for 35 minutes.


Remove from oven and cover with all of the mini marshmallows. Bake for 5 more minutes, then remove to cool to room temperature.


Passover Grain-Free Granola

This Passover friendly granola from Busy in Brooklyn is an easy low maintenance recipe that requires no flipping/tossing of the granola once it’s in the oven.



1 ¼ cups whole raw pecans
1 cup whole raw walnuts
1 cup whole raw almonds
½ cup shredded unsweetened coconut
¼ cup coconut oil
1/3 cup pure maple syrup
2 tbsp. brown/coconut sugar
½ tsp. kosher salt


Preheat oven to 250F and line a baking sheet with parchment paper. In the bowl of a food processor fitted with the steel blade, pulse the pecans until they are chopped into small-medium pieces. Remove from bowl. Repeat with each of the walnuts and almonds. Combine the nuts (total 3 cups, chopped) in a bowl.


In a small saucepan over medium heat, combine the oil, maple syrup, sugar and salt until completely dissolved and pour over the nuts.


Toss until well combined and coated then spread on the baking sheet. Bake for 1 hour without mixing.


Allow to cool to room temperature before transferring to a sealed container.

Ginger Molasses Cookies


These spiced cookies smell and taste great any time of year.


2 ¼ cups unbleached all-purpose flour
1 tsp. baking powder
¼ tsp. kosher salt
1 tsp. ground ginger
1 tsp. ground cinnamon
½ tsp. ground cloves
1/8 tsp. ground nutmeg
¾ cup (1 ½ sticks) unsalted pareve margarine, room temperature
1 cup packed brown sugar
1 large egg
1 tsp. pure vanilla extract
¼ cup molasses
½ granulated sugar, to roll the cookie dough in



Preheat oven to 375F. Line 3 baking sheets with parchment paper.

In a medium bowl, combined the flour, baking powder, salt, ginger, cinnamon, cloves and nutmeg.

In the bowl of an electric mixer fitted with the paddle attachment, beat together the margarine and sugar until creamy.



Add the egg, vanilla and molasses and beat, scraping down the bowl as necessary.


Add the flour mixture slowly and beat on low speed until just combined.


Chill the dough for 1-24 hours.


Using an ice cream scoop, form balls and roll in granulated sugar.  Bake for 10 minutes.

IMG_2028 2.jpg


Vegan Cranberry Orange Shortbread Cookies


This recipe is originally from Mom on Timeout and is absolutely delicious. I swapped the almond extract for vanilla extract and change the butter to be margarine – making these a great vegan treat.


1/2 cup dried cranberries
1/4 + 1/2 cup sugar
2 1/2 cups all purpose flour
1 cup margarine, cut into small cubes
1 tsp vanilla extract
zest of one orange
2 tbsp fresh orange juice
additional sugar for coating


Put cranberries and 1/4 cup sugar in a food processor and pulse until cranberries are chopped into smaller pieces.


In a large bowl combine flour and other 1/2 cup sugar. Cut margarine into small cubes, add to dry ingredients and combine with a pastry cutter.


Add vanilla, zest, and orange juice. Combine with your hands until forms a dough.



Roll dough into a log (2 inches in diameter). Roll in plastic wrap and refrigerate for 2 hours and up to 3 days.


Preheat oven to 325˚F.

Cut slices of cookie dough into 1/4 inch thick. Coat cookie slices in additional sugar.


Bake for 12-15 minutes. Let cool and use royal icing if you wish.


Cookies can be stored in a container on the counter or frozen for later.

Lemon Crinkle Cookies


Adapted from How Sweet Eats/Jessica Merchant, these cookies both look and taste great.  A terrific combination of tart lemon and sweet sugar.


2 cups unbleached all-purpose flour
½ tsp. baking soda
¼ tsp. kosher salt
½ cup grapeseed oil
1 cup granulated sugar
1 large egg
1 large egg yolk
2 tbsp. freshly squeezed lemon juice
Zest of one lemon
1 tsp. pure vanilla extract
1 tsp. lemon extract
Powdered sugar for coating


In the bowl of an electric mixer fitted with the paddle attachment, beat together the oil and sugar until smooth.


Add the egg, egg yolk, lemon juice, lemon zest, vanilla and lemon extracts and beat until well combined.


In a small bowl, combine the flour, baking soda, and salt.  Transfer the flour mixture to the mixer and blend until just combined.


Cover with plastic wrap and refrigerate for 2-24 hours.


Preheat oven to 325F and form 21 cookies by using a 1 ½-inch (4cm) ice cream scoop and shaping into balls. Coat them in the powdered sugar then bake on 3 baking sheets covered with parchment paper for 12 minutes.


Coffee Cake



This is an adapted nondairy nut-free version of a recipe from a late patient of mine from many years ago, Mrs. JB, who was a kind, sweet, nurturing Bubby to her adoring family.  I always think of her when I bake this cake.  In addition to being called Bubby B’s Coffee Cake, it also became known as the Anniversary Cake when I was able to help “save” my friend BF on one July 1 many years ago when he did not have a gift in hand for his very special wife until I pulled one of these out of the freezer.



¾ stick unsalted pareve margarine (6 tbsp)
1 cup granulated sugar
2 large eggs, room temperature
1 cup Tofutti sour cream
½ tsp. pure vanilla extract
1 ½ cups cake and pastry flour
1 ½ tsp. baking powder
1 tsp. baking soda


½ cup brown sugar
1 tbsp. ground cinnamon
1 tbsp. unsweetened cocoa powder


Preheat oven to 350F and spray a 9-x by 5-inch loaf pan lined with parchment paper.

In the bowl of an electric mixer fitted with the paddle attachment, cream together the margarine and sugar until creamy.


Add the eggs, one at a time and scrape down the bowl.


Add the sour cream and vanilla and blend again until well combined.


In a separate bowl, combine the flour, baking powder and baking soda.


Add the flour mixture to the mixer and blend on low until just combined.


Combine the brown sugar, cinnamon and cocoa in a small bowl.


Place half of the batter in the loaf pan and sprinkle with half of the filling.



Cover with the rest of the batter and then cover this with the rest of the filling.



Swirl the batter gently with a sharp knife.


Bake for 55 minutes.