This year, Rosh Hashanah begins Sunday night, September 9, and if you’re putting together a Rosh Hashanah menu (or two) to celebrate the Jewish New Year with family and friends, we can help.
Like so many holidays, Rosh Hashanah brings with it some delicious food traditions. Like…apples! And honey! (Really, they should add those to any holiday if you ask us.) So take a look at these fantastic Rosh Hashanah dinner menu ideas and find inspiration— even if you don’t celebrate.
Any one of these dishes would be a fantastic addition to your fall table whatever the occasion.
This post is adapted from a previous post and has been updated for 2018
A Rosh Hashanah Menu: Appetizers
Honey and apples are traditional Rosh Hashanah foods meant to represent a sweet new year. Amy, the author of What Jew Wanna Eat, uses both to make a simple, delicious appetizer, Apple, Honey, and Goat Cheese Crostini. Check out her site for simple, step-by-step directions and some great tips on her favorite apples to use. Best of all, you can whip up these sweet bites in just 15 minutes,
For some of us, there’s no such thing as a Jewish holiday meal without opening one of Joan Nathan’s cookbooks. If you’d like a Rosh Hashanah menu appetizer that’s a little heartier, we’re obsessed with Joan Nathan’s French Potato Pancakes with Apple Compote. How amazing does that look? Besides, there’s an unwritten law that nothing topped with crème fraîche can be bad. Find the recipe right on her website.
Of course if your family is all about the matzo ball soup for any Jewish holiday menu, Joan Nathan’s Matzo Ball Soup recipe on the NY Times is a great place to start. Hers tweaks the classic with delicious results, thanks to nutmeg and a bit of grated ginger to bring a little more fall warmth to the flavor. Even the Times commenters are fans — and traditional Jewish cooks have strong feelings about matzo balls!
A Rosh Hashanah Menu: Salad and Sides
This laid-back Red Cabbage Apple Salad at Tori Avery pairs apples with walnuts and blue cheese, always a delicious combination of ingredients. It pairs nicely with any simple roast meat. Also, since the leafy part of the salad is crisp cabbage and not delicate lettuce, you can make this ahead which is always a bonus. (If you like your slaw a little soft, dress it ahead of time.)
If you don’t want to go all-apple with your menu, I hear you. Change up the source of sweetness this Roasted Beet and Barley Salad from Emma Christensen at the Kitchn. The combo of yellow beets, crumbled feta and lemon make it the right balance of salty, sweet and savory, and the pearl barley make it hearty enough for any vegetarians to devour a double portion as a main course.
A Rosh Hashanah Menu: The Main Course
Brisket is the go-to for so many families on Rosh Hashanah, and the first place I thought to look was Tori Avery’s inspired website. Not just because her recipes are so good, but she’s always such a fun read, weaving in culture and history into every dish she presents. Sure enough, she’s hooking us up with a Savory Slow Cooker Brisket complete with onion, garlic and spices — all made in a crock pot. Because there’s no sweeter start to a new year than not slaving over a hot stove all day.
Not into brisket? No problem! You can’t go wrong with a delicious, perfectly cooked chicken for a Rosh Hashanah menu, and this Honey Herb Roasted Chicken recipe, also from Tori Avey, is calling my name. She drizzles it with honey white wine sauce for both flavor and aroma and I’m sold. I’m also grateful for her very specific cooking instructions — and encouraged by the five-star rating from her readers.
A Rosh Hashanah Menu: Desserts (of course!)
When you have apples and honey to work with as your main ingredients, there’s no shortage of dessert ideas to choose from. I’m drawn to anything with “easy” in the recipe title TBH, and this Easiest Apple Tart from See and Savour looks like it would please even my picky eaters on Rosh Hashanah. It doesn’t get more simple than puff pastry right out of the freezer, topped with apple slices tossed with a few simple ingredients.
Our post on 10 delicious twists on apple pie recipes was published a few years ago, and I’ve had these these, light, simple Skinny Apple Pie Wontons on my mind ever since. Created by The Merchant Baker, you can find instructions for making them as cups or turnovers. Either way, I just love giving each guest their own little personal pie or two — complete with a scoop of good vanilla ice cream on the side, of course if less worried about the “skinny” part of the recipe. L’shana tova!
Top image: Chloe Benko-Prieur via Unsplash