Etrog Cake


By Ellen Kassoff Gray

What to do with those leftover Etrogs? Well this is perfect! And if you would like to make this cake when you do not have an etrog, the traditional Sukkot fruit, it also works well with lemons.


2 etrogs (or 2 lemons)
1 tablespoon freshly squeezed lemon juice
1 tablespoon freshly squeezed lime juice
2 3/4 cups all-purpose flour
1 tablespoon baking powder
1/2 teaspoon salt
4 tablespoons unsalted butter (1/2 stick), or parve margarine, softened
1 3/4 cups sugar
3 large eggs
1 1/4 cups freshly squeezed orange juice (3 to 4 juice oranges)
3 tablespoons orange-flavored liqueur
Orange and blood orange segments for garnish (optional)


Make a citrus seasoning mixture. Grate the zest of the etrogs with a rasp or citrus zester, being careful to get all the zest off of the citrus without cutting into the pith below the skin. Whisk together the lemon juice and lime juice in a small bowl; whisk in the etrog zest. Set aside 1 tablespoon of this mixture to use later for the glaze.

Mix the batter. Preheat the oven to 350°F. Spray a 4- by 8-inch loaf pan with nonstick cooking spray and line the bottom with parchment paper or rub the pan with butter or margarine, and dust it with flour, shaking out the excess. Sift together the flour, baking powder, and salt. Using an electric mixer on medium speed, cream the butter or margarine with the 1 1/4 cups of the sugar in a medium bowl until light and fluffy. Add the eggs one at a time, beating until smooth and scraping down the sides of the bowl with a rubber spatula after each addition. Beat in the non-reserved portion of the citrus mixture. Add a third of the flour mixture, beating just to combine; then add 1/2 cup orange juice, followed by another third of the flour mixture, another 1/2 cup orange juice, and finally the last of the flour, mixing only until just combined after each addition.

Bake the cake. Pour the batter into the prepared pan and bake until a toothpick inserted in the center comes out clean—45 to 55 minutes. Cool the cake in the pan on a wire rack for about 20 minutes, then turn out onto the rack to cool completely.

Make the glaze. Meanwhile, stir together the remaining 1/2 cup sugar, remaining 1/4 cup orange juice, and the reserved tablespoon of the citrus mixture in a small saucepan. Heat over medium heat, stirring frequently, just until the sugar is completely dissolved. Remove the pan from the heat. Stir in the orange liqueur. Let the glaze cool.

To serve, slice the cake and place on dessert plates; drizzle the glaze decoratively over each portion—we like to use a ladle to do this. Garnish each plate with a few orange segments if you wish.


This recipe makes one 4- by 8-inch loaf or 8-inch round cake.
Recipe: Kosher, parve or dairy, dessert