Hanukkah Dreidel Surprise Loaf Cake

Hanukkah Surprise Cake
Hanukkah Surprise Cake. Miri Rotkovitz
  • 110 mins
  • Prep: 40 mins,
  • Cook: 70 mins
  • Yield: Serves 8 to 10
Ratings

Hanukkah geltsufganiyot, fried desserts and holiday-themed cookies usually get all of the attention during the Festival of Lights. But with eight nights to celebrate, there's plenty of time to try something new. Slice into this vanilla pound cake loaf to reveal an impressive surprise - a contrasting dreidel shape baked right in! Making the cake is pretty straightforward, though it does take some time. But the results have a big enough wow factor that if you're feeling crafty, this makes a fun option for DIY gift giving. 

Need a visual assist? These step-by-step photo instructions will walk you through assembling a surprise loaf cake. 

Kosher Status: Dairy

What You'll Need

  • For the Blue Dreidel Cake:
  • 1 cup all purpose flour
  • 1 teaspoon baking powder
  • 1/8 teaspoon fine sea salt (or kosher salt)
  • 1/4 cup unsalted butter (4 tablespoons, softened)
  • 1/4 cup plus 2 tablespoons sugar
  • 1 large egg
  • 1 teaspoon pure vanilla extract
  • 1/3 cup milk
  • Blue food coloring
  • For the White Cake:
  • 2 cups all purpose flour
  • 2 teaspoons baking powder
  • 1/4 teaspoon fine sea salt (or kosher salt)
  • 1/2 cup unsalted butter (1 stick, softened)
  • 1 cup sugar
  • 3 large eggs
  • 2 teaspoons pure vanilla extract
  • 1 cup milk
  • For the Lemon Glaze:
  • 1/2 cup confectioners sugar
  • 2 1/2 teaspoons milk
  • 1 1/2 teaspoons lemon juice (freshly squeezed)
  • Optional: Blue, white, and/or gold sprinkles

How to Make It

First, make the blue cake: 

  1. Preheat the oven to 350 F. Lightly grease a 9"x 9"x 2" baking pan. Line the bottom of the pan with parchment paper and set aside. 
  2. In a medium bowl, whisk together the flour, baking powder and salt.
  3. In another bowl, use an electric mixer or wooden spoon to cream together the butter and sugar. Add the egg and vanilla extract, and beat until well mixed. Alternate adding the flour mixture and milk in two or three additions, mixing well after each addition. Stir just until the batter is smooth. Add the blue food coloring a few drops at a time, stirring well and adding additional coloring until you achieve the shade you prefer. 
  1. Pour the batter into the prepared pan. Use a spatula to carefully smooth the batter to the edges of the pan. (The batter will be thick, so take care not to dislodge the parchment paper.) Bake in the preheated oven for 18 to 20 minutes, or until a tester inserted in the center comes out clean. 
  2. Transfer the pan to a wire rack to cool for 10 minutes, then remove the cake from the pan, place directly on the rack, and allow it to cool completely. (To speed the cooling process and make the cake easier to cut, place the rack in the freezer for about 10 minutes.)
  3. Place the cooled cake on a cutting board. Use a dreidel cookie cutter or a paper template, cut out as many dreidel shapes as you can from the cake. (Before you start cutting, make sure your cutter or template fits inside a 9"x 5" loaf pan, with a little room to spare at the top and bottom.) Set the dreidels aside while you mix the white cake batter. 

Next, make the white cake: 

  1. Grease a 9"x 5" loaf pan. Line the bottom with a piece of parchment paper and set aside. 
  2. In a medium bowl, whisk together the flour, baking powder, and salt. 
  3. In another large bowl, use an electric mixer or wooden spoon to cream together the butter and sugar. Add the egg and vanilla extract, and beat until well mixed. Alternate adding the flour mixture and milk in two or three additions, mixing well after each addition. 
  4. Stir just until the batter is smooth, then pour just enough into the prepared pan to cover the bottom. Arrange the cake dreidels, down the center of the loaf pan, placing them flush against each other so they fill the length of the pan.
  1. Carefully spoon the white batter into the pan, so that the dreidel "log" is surrounded and covered by batter. Place the loaf pan in the center of the preheated oven (if your pan looks full, you may want to place it on a sheet of foil to catch any drips).
  2. Bake in the preheated oven for 45 to 50 minutes, or until the cake is golden and a tester inserted near the center comes out clean. (Be sure to test the white cake.)
  3. Transfer the pan to a wire rack and allow the cake to cool for 20 minutes. Remove from the pan, and cool completely.

Lastly, make the glaze:

  1. In a small bowl, whisk together the confectioners sugar, milk, and lemon juice until smooth, adding a little more sugar if the glaze feels runny.
  2. When the cake is completely cool, drizzle the top with the glaze. Decorate with sprinkles if desired. 
Nutritional Guidelines (per serving)
Calories 442
Total Fat 24 g
Saturated Fat 12 g
Unsaturated Fat 8 g
Cholesterol 227 mg
Sodium 623 mg
Carbohydrates 48 g
Dietary Fiber 1 g
Protein 10 g
(The nutrition information on our recipes is calculated using an ingredient database and should be considered an estimate. Individual results may vary.)