Mandel Bread for Rosh Hashanah and A little Personal

Rosh Hashanah, the Jewish New Year, starts tonight. Mandel Bread is staple dessert on our holiday table. It reminds me of a biscotti-style cookie, and is fantastic for dessert or breakfast served with coffee. My sister, Julie and my sister-in-law Debby, make the most incredible Mandel Bread I have ever tried. This is one of my favorite Mandel Bread recipes from my friend, Andy’s mom, Judy Rotenstreich. I am so thrilled to be serving Mandel Bread this year at my dad’s house with 21 other people after moving less than a week ago.

To get a little personal, I moved last Monday with my 3 kids into my dads house in Birmingham. Since my mom passed away recently, this was the perfect option for him and for me. It has been wonderful this week eating breakfast and dinner with my father as well as taking a work break and making him a morning smoothie. He has been very depressed the past few months (after the death of my mother), and he already seems like a different person. He said two days ago, “The highlight of the day was when Leigh (my daughter) came to tell me goodnight.” I cried.

My friend, Sara, told me the other day, “To find blessings during tough times”, and she is so correct.

-It is a blessing for kids to get the chance to live with their grandparents.

-It is a blessing to help to your parents when they are elderly.

-It is a blessing when your kids say that they slept great.

-It is a blessing to hear my kids laugh during tough times.

-It is a blessing to see your kids relaxed.

-It is a blessing that I still have my father, but that I can feel my mothers presence.

-It is a blessing to have all of your support.

So whether you celebrate the Jewish new year or not, here’s to fresh and new beginnings and a sweet new year!


Mandel Bread

Cook Time:

55 minutes

Prep Times:

25 minutes


36 servings


4 eggs
1 cup canola oil
11/2 cups granulated sugar
2 teaspoons vanilla extract
1 teaspoon almond extract
4 cups all-purpose flour
11/2 teaspoons baking powder
1/2 teaspoon salt
2 cups chopped pecans
2 teaspoons vegetable oil


1. Preheat oven to 350F.

2. Beat the eggs in a large bowl with an electric mixer at high speed until pale yellow. Add 1 cup oil and the sugar while beating. Beat in the vanilla and almond extract at low speed. Sift the flour, baking powder and salt in a bowl. Add the dry ingredients and pecans and beat until mixed. Chill the dough, covered, overnight. Coat 2 baking sheets with nonstick spray. Add 1 teaspoon oil to each sheet and spread to coat. Divide the dough into 6 balls. Roll each ball on a work surface to a long shape. Arrange 3 logs on each baking sheet.

3. Bake in preheated oven for 15 to 20 minutes or until lightly browned and firm. Remove to a work surface and slice the logs. Arrange the slices on the baking sheet, cut side down. Bake at 250F for 35 minutes or until lightly browned. Remove to a write rack to cool. Store in an airtight container.

17 thoughts on “Mandel Bread for Rosh Hashanah and A little Personal”

  1. You make mandel bread totally approachable – my hubs would love it if I would make this for him!!

    Happy New Year!

    And I am so happy that you seem to be settled and that your dad is doing better and that in all this turmoil there are some silver linings. Hugs 🙂

  2. You and your father are so fortunate to have each other. And how wonderful that your children have an opportunity to know their grandfather so closely.

    Mandel bread is unfamiliar to me, but wow do I want to try it! Looks just delicious.

  3. Alison, this is a really lovely post, and it’s so wonderful that you, your children, and your father all have one another, and appreciate the preciousness of that. It’s a good way to start the New Year, all together. Best wishes to you and your family!

  4. Happy New Year to you and your family Alison! Having had both of my in-laws live with my family of 4 boys, I can honestly say it is truly a blessing. It is so rare these days to have elderly parents live with their kids under the same roof, but there is so much that we can all learn and benefit from the experience. My kids really got to know their grandparents and what it meant to give 100% of ourselves to each other, even during the difficult times. We had lots of laughs and memorable holidays that my kids will forever cherish as will I.

  5. Consider these personal products for your family, friends, co-workers; they.
    Kyocera phones are great for those who work outdoors
    in the elements or kids who tend to be the hardest on their mobile devices.
    If you are woman buying for one of your female friends or relatives then maybe
    some winter body care would make a good organic skin care gift.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *