This is the first in a new series we are calling Baboushka’s Recipes (BR for short). Baboushka, or ба́бушка in Russian, means grandmother. In this series we will explore and save the recipes our grandparents brought with them or inherited from their parents. Kosher Hubby’s family is from Ukraine and Belarus and my family is from Poland, Ukraine, and Germany… so Baboushka seemed pretty appropriate.
Okay! Here we go, our first vintage recipe. This is my great-grandmother’s Passover sponge cake recipe. I dug it out today (yes, Sunday, the day before Erev Pesach) for our dessert for the first seder. These instructions are verbatim, in my grandmother’s handwriting from her mother. I will add my commentary in italics and parentheses.
- 8 eggs, separated
- Pinch of salt
- 1 1/4 cup granulated sugar
- 1/3 cup cold water, to which you add
- 1 tsp. lemon juice (you can easily fresh squeeze this!)
- 1 tsp. orange juice (you can easily fresh squeeze this!)
- 1 tsp. vanilla extract
- 3/4 cup matzah cake flour, sifted
- Grated rind of 1/2 lemon and 1/3 orange
In a large bowl (she really does mean large…), with an electric mixer, beat egg whites, adding salt, until stiff, but not dry. Set aside.
In a small bowl, with electric mixer, beat yolks, add sugar, then liquids, and continue beating for five minutes.
With a spatula gently pour the beaten yolks on the stiff whites. Add 1/4 cup of sifted flour and fold in carefully. Continue to add 1/
4 cup of the flour, carefully folding in until all is used.
(She neglects to tell us what to do with the lemon and orange zest. I added it to the yolks before I added them to the whites. Worked great.)
Pour batter into an un-greased angel cake pan (we tried to use a 7×11 pan but it was too much batter… we used a 9×13 glass casserole dish in the end and it worked great). Place in a 350 degree oven and bake for 55 minutes.
Invert to cool, and cut out of pan when cool. (Oops… didn’t do that. Planning to cut it tomorrow at the seder.)
I tasted it, of course… had to right? It was delish. Just like anything else that is Pesachdik, it tastes like matzah meal but it’s going to be a great, parve dessert tomorrow. With a tiny corner cut out. Don’t judge. It’s a family seder.
This recipe is by my Nanny – Mrs. Abraham Cronbach (as she is credited on the recipe)… Rose Hentel Cronbach.
CHAG PESACH SAMEACH from the Kosher, She Eats kitchen! Look for our adventures with Vegan cooking after the chag. We review Mayim Bialik’s new cookbook – Mayim’s Vegan Table.