A honey of a cake

Rosh Hashana sta­ple can be a de­light­ful treat if prop­erly made

Pittsburgh Post-Gazette - - Magazine - By Arthi Subra­ma­niam

Honey cake is of­ten con­sid­ered the fruit­cake of Rosh Hashana.

It du­ti­fully makes its an­nual ap­pear­ance at the Jewish New Year feast be­cause honey, after all, is sym­bolic of the hope for a sweet year ahead. How­ever, it does not have a large fan base. Some com­plain it’s too sticky sweet while oth­ers can­not stom­ach its heaps of cin­na­mon, clove and nut­meg. Then there are those who call it too dense or over­pow­er­ing, and are thank­ful that it is made only once a year.

All that sham­ing is un­fair be­cause when the honey cake is made with the cor­rect pro­por­tions and with­out over-the-top com­bi­na­tions for Rosh Hashana, which be­gins Wed­nes­day at sun­down, it is out of this world.

Pas­try chef Ar­bil Lopez at Cafe Eigh­teen in Squir­rel Hill makes a honey cake that tastes like a slice of heaven and a whole lot more. In fact, she has it down to a sci­ence — lit­er­ally.

The 24-year-old Highland Park na­tive, whose fam­ily is from Spain, grav­i­tated to­ward pas­tries be­cause she likes the pre­ci­sion in­volved mak­ing them. She started her ca­reer as a baker at Food

An­drew Rush/Post-Gazette

A honey cake by Ar­bil Lopez.

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