So if I was a good Mennonite girl, I’d be making paska for Easter. But, to be totally honest, I don’t got time for that! I’ve actually never made paska before, but I have been fortunate enough to enjoy some each year. You can check out my mom’s recipe here if you are brave enough to try making it. Laurel has continued on the tradition and she does a great job of it…and it usually means that she shares some with me! Or if you are local, you can place orders in advance at Oldhand Coffee, Tracycakes or Lepp Farm Market.
A couple of weeks ago, Mac asked me to make this Orange Cake (more about that later). It’s super easy to make and looks very pretty baked in a bundt cake pan and sprinkled with icing sugar. And it reminds me of the flavour of paska as it also has orange zest in it. Top with a bit of whipped cream and you have the perfect Easter dessert!
- 3 cups flour
- 2 teaspoons baking powder
- 2 cups sugar
- 1 cup butter
- 1 teaspoon vanilla
- 5 large eggs
- 1 cup orange juice
- 2 teaspoons orange peel
- All ingredients should be at room temperature.
- Place dry ingredients in a bowl.
- Mix the butter, sugar, vanilla, the eggs, one at a time.
- Add the dry ingredients and alternate with liquid.
- Bake in the oven at 350 degrees, 60 minutes.
Ok, here’s the backstory behind this cake. Every year at Shawnigan Lake School where Mac goes, they have a Holocaust Symposium, where they bring in different speakers . One of the speakers this year, Alex Buckman, was a child survivor of the Holocaust and this cake was his aunt’s recipe. In his words, “While in the barracks at Ravensbrück concentration camp, Rebecca Buckman Teitelbaum (his aunt) smuggled scraps of paper from the factory where she worked and transcribed recipes from all the women in the camp. These conversations and sharing of recipes gave them some solace in one another’s company. Rebecca collected 110 pages of recipes which she compiled into a cookbook. She later made two additional copies of the book. The women read aloud from these small volumes and the books represented the women’s memories of happier times and their hopes of being reunited with their families.”
This orange cake recipe was recorded by Rebecca Teitelbaum in the Ravensbrück concentration camp in Germany in 1943.
Remembering their favourite recipes provided hope and comfort to the victims of the Holocaust concentration camps. And for me, remembering the love and sacrifice of Jesus on the cross and His resurrection bring me complete hope and comfort. Wishing you and your families a very Happy and Hopeful Easter!