Rosh Hashanah marks the beginning of the Jewish New Year and the first of the religion’s autumnal High Holy Days. It’s a time to pause and absorb the simple pleasures of family, and, of course, to feast.
Slowly braised dishes embrace the meditative nature of the holiday, while crisp fall apples in a variety of desserts and sides conjure the sweetness of the year to come. You’ll also find lots of fish, which serves as a symbol of blessings to come. And there’s always plenty of challah on the table. Scroll down for more of our favorite Rosh Hashanah recipes.
Before frying fish, Bishara gently rubs their skin and inner cavities with salt, then rinses. This trick seasons and cleans the fish, readying them for dredging.
Get the recipe for Galilee-Style Whole Fried Fish »
Get the Recipe for Brussels Sprouts with Horseradish and Pomegranate Seeds »
Packed full of glowing winter produce—sweet roasted beets, tart pomegranate seeds—this lentil salad makes a colorful addition to the winter table. Pair it with chicken, beef, lamb, or fish, or serve it as a vegetarian main; it’s hearty enough to stand on its own.
Get the recipe for Lentil Salad with Beets and Pomegranate »
Pungent Robiola cheese can be substituted with brie, ricotta, or any other soft cheese in this simple no-cook appetizer.
Get the recipe for Robiola-Stuffed Figs with Pomegranate »
Apple and Kale Salad with Black-Sesame–Maple Cashews
This simple salad is lighter and more modern compared to traditionally heavy Norman dishes. It pairs crisp celery root—a vegetable grown in abundance in the region—with raw apples.
Get the recipe for Apple, Celeriac, and Carrot Salad »
With a streusel topping and pie-like dough, this Rosh Hashanah apple dessert is half cake, half pie.
Get the recipe for Nanny’s Rosh Hashanah Apple Cake »
Carrots are roasted before being topped with crunchy pistachios and a sweet fig vinaigrette in a simple salad from Eli and Max Sussman’s
Classic Recipes for Modern People (Olive Press, 2015). Get the recipe for Carrot and Pistachio Salad »
The apricots and currants used in this dish add just the right amount of sweetness.
Get the recipe for Apricot and Currant Chicken »
In Jewish tradition, this hearty braise of beef or chicken, root vegetables, grains, and a lightly sweet sauce is slow-cooked overnight then eaten for lunch on the Sabbath. Today, many cooks prepare their cholent this way in a slow cooker. But if you are not observing the Sabbath, a quicker, stovetop cholent can be ready to eat in a few hours.
Get the recipe for Nana Nicky’s Cholent »
Fluffy, brioche-like Challah rolls are traditionally served on Jewish holidays. During Rosh Hashanah, the top is sometimes brushed with honey.
Get the recipe for Challah Knots »
miel de lavande, the honey from Provence produced by bees that feed primarily on lavender blossoms, imparts a creamy texture and distinctive flavor and scent to a simple ice cream. Get the recipe for Lavender Honey Ice Cream »
Tender beef stew sweetened with honey and prunes is an autumn staple at Jewish holiday tables.
Get the recipe for Tzimmes »
Rolls of cabbage are stuffed with beef, covered in a tangy tomato-based sauce, and oven-braised until tender.
Get the recipe for Stuffed Cabbage Rolls (Holishkes) »
A delicious way to use leftover rye bread, this sweet pudding enhances the bread’s tangy flavor with the addition of spices and dried fruits.
Get the recipe for Maizes Zupa »
Though typically a sweet casserole, noodle kugel can go savory, too—this version is flavored with garlic and onions.
Get the recipe for Savory Noodle Kugel »
Perfumed with honey and citrus, spiced cake made with honey is a classic at Jewish holiday tables. To make this recipe pareve for meat meals, replace the butter for greasing the pan with canola oil.
Get the recipe for Lekach »
When former Saveur.com editor Helen Rosner found herself snowed in with no brown sugar, she created a chocolate chip cookie made with honey as the sweetener. A deep, spicy honey like sourwood works best, though any honey will do.
Get the recipe for Honey Chocolate Chip Cookies »
Plum preserves and walnuts are layered with pastry in a gooey, crumbly cake.
Get the recipe for Plum Strudel »
The recipe for these flaky crescent pastries was inspired by one from Karmela Balo, owner of the Cari Mama bakery in Budapest.
Get the recipe for Rugelach (Cinnamon, Apricot, and Walnut Pastries) »
This classic room temperature salad pairs sweet roasted beats against the sharpness of creamy blue cheese, bridged by a sprinkled topping of toasted walnuts.
Get the recipe for Beet and Walnut Salad »
Slightly bitter when raw, endives develop a complex sweetness when roasted. This seasonal recipe combines them with parsnips, drizzled with a sweet, grassy sauce of olive oil, butter, honey, and thyme.
Get the recipe for Honey-Roasted Belgian Endives and Parsnips »
New York City chef and author Sara Moulton taught us how to make this beautiful tart.
Get the recipe for French Apple Tart »