Vasilopita (New Year's Cake)
It's a Greek tradition to serve Vasilopita at midnight on New Year's Eve. This special cake is baked with a coin or charm hidden inside. Whoever receives the piece of cake with the coin will have good fortune throughout the year.
Serves: 1 cake
- 1 cup butter, softened
- 1-3/4 cups white sugar
- 5 eggs
- 2 tablespoons water
- 2 teaspoons vanilla extract
- 3 cups all-purpose flour
- 1 teaspoon baking powder
- 1/2 cup blanched slivered almonds
- 2 tablespoons sesame seeds
- Preheat oven to 325ºF (165ºC).
- In a large bowl, blend the butter and sugar together. Separate 3 of the eggs; add the yolks and the 2 remaining whole eggs to the butter mixture. Stir in the vanilla and water.
- In another bowl, sift the baking powder and flour together. Add these dry ingredients to the creamed mixture.
- Beat 3 egg whites until they are foamy. Add 1 tablespoon sugar and continue to beat the whites until they are stiff. Fold the whites into the batter.
- Pour the batter into a greased 10 x 4 inch tube pan. Wrap the lucky coin or a charm in foil, and press it down into the batter until it is completely hidden. Sprinkle the nuts and seeds on top of the batter.
- Bake the cake for about 70 minutes, or until done. Cool on a wire rack.