Archive for the ‘Cakes’ Category

Whole Wheat Rum and Raisin Cake


2010
03.15

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With all the baking I’ve been doing in the last couple of weeks, I declare – this cake is by far the best, to make with whole wheat. My best friend K, is going to love it for sure. Not only for the whole wheat, but also for the yummm dee dum pa RUM pum pum pum ;)!!

Ingredients

IMG_55822 cups whole wheat flour (I use the Pillsbury brand found in the Indian stores)
1 1/4 cup butter
3/4 cup dark rum
3 eggs
1/4 cup milk

It is essential for the butter, milk and eggs to be at room temperature

1 cup sugar
2 heaped tsp baking powder
5 -6 drops of good vanilla extract
1/2 tsp of instant coffee powder
1/2 tsp cocoa
1/3 cup raisins
1/3 cup cashew nuts chopped
1/3 cup candied mixed fruit
1/3 cup dried fig chopped (if you don’t have these, you can use pitted dates instead)
1/2 tsp salt
big pinch of nutmeg
1/3 tsp cardamom cinnamon clove spice mix
1 tsp orange zest
2 – 3 tbsp sugar to caramelize

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Directions

  • Soak the raisins, candied fruit and figs in rum, over night.
  • Caramelize 2 -3 spoons of sugar. When done, whisk in the milk, cocoa, coffee powder, nutmeg and spice mix  until smooth. Set aside to cool to room temp.
  • In a bowl, cream butter and sugar together until light and fluffy. Beat in eggs one at time, add in the vanilla, and the caramel milk mixture
  • Add in the orange zest.
  • Sift together flour, baking powder and salt using a sieve.
  • Stir in the dry ingredients into the wet, a little at a time. Don’t over mix it
  • Mix the rum soaked fruits with the nuts and fold into the batter. Keep a little of the dry fruit and nut mixture aside to sprinkle on top (purely for aesthetics).
  • Preheat oven to 350 degrees F (175 degrees C).
  • Spread batter evenly in a greased pan, dusted with flour and bake for 45 minutes or until a tooth pick inserted comes out clean.
  • Allow to cool to a warm temp.
  • Serve immediately or wrap in aluminium foil when still warm (prevents drying) to store for later.
  • Whole Wheat Chocolate Cake


    2010
    03.05

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    Why is there just a tiny piece of cake in the picture? Because, that’s all there is left from what I baked last night!
    I confess, I ate most of it, my little boy some of it ,and my husband didn’t touch it. R, has a small problem, for a lack of a better word, when it comes to food. He’ll eat anything as long as he is oblivious to what’s in it. The moment you tell him what it is made of, and especially if they are healthier alternatives for the actual ingredients of the recipe, he will find a million reasons for why it doesn’t taste as good. In this case, the fibrous whole wheat apparently scoured his sensitive throat while he tried to gulp it down, or at least that is what I assumed, was happening when he said, he found it hard to swallow *eyes rolling*.

    My experiments with whole wheat flour for cakes, began for my best friend K, who lives in Boston with her 2 adorable boys and husband (he’s adorable too). She has been an avid reader of my blog, and though she is a thorough vegetarian, and the recipe balance of this site leans with obvious partiality towards the carnivores, she maintains her loyalty as a big fan. She does it all for love of course. The fact that I would kill her with guilt if she didn’t mark this site as her home page, or that I could surprise-call her at any hour of the day with trivia questions about the web site,  has nothing to do with her allegiance ;).

    K, ‘likes’ to make healthy choices when it comes to food and asked me one day if she could substitute wheat flour in my cake recipes. I had never baked with wheat until then and thought it as a nice excuse to do some research and experimentation myself.
    Here’s what I found from all the baking I did  since then. My sole humble opinion only- Whole wheat flour is not suitable for all kinds of cake. I made a plain vanilla cake with wheat and though it didn’t reach the sea, I wouldn’t post that recipe ;). While baking with whole wheat, it is safer to stick with richly flavorful cakes like chocolate, plum, coffee or the spiced up fruit and nut kind. The whole wheat gives a conspicuous nutty taste to the cake and you need the right kind of pairing, to compliment that. To prevent my site from being black listed, if this is your first time baking with whole wheat, I’d suggest that you reduce the below proportions to half or quarter. If you don’t like it, there is not much damage. If you do, you can easily whip up a next batch.

    Ingredients

    13/4 whole wheat flour (I use the Pillsbury brand found in the Indian stores)
    1 1/4 cup butter
    1 cup sour cream (you can use one cup of milk or one cup of butter milk instead)
    3 eggs

    It is essential for the butter, sour cream and eggs to be at room temperature

    13/4 cups sugar
    3/4 cup cocoa powder
    3  tsp baking powder
    5 -6 drops of good vanilla extract
    1 tsp of instant coffee powder

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    Directions

  • In a bowl, cream butter and sugar together until light and fluffy. Beat in eggs one at time. Add in the vanilla and sour cream.
  • Sift together flour, baking powder, coffee powder , cocoa powder and salt using a sieve.
  • Stir in the dry ingredients into the wet, a little at a time. Don’t over mix it.
  • Preheat oven to 350 degrees F (175 degrees C).
  • Spread batter evenly in a greased pan, dusted with flour and bake for 45 minutes or until a tooth pick inserted comes out clean.
  • Allow to cool.
  • Serve immediately or wrap in aluminum foil while still slightly warm (keeps it moist) to store for later.
  • Hazel Caramel Chocolate Twist


    2009
    12.31

    This mouth watering cake is very similar to my chocolate cake except that I folded caramel sauce into the batter and stuck in toasted hazelnuts into the frosting. This slight twist made a world of difference to the taste and texture of the cake.

     

    Hazel Caramel Chocolate Twist

     

    Ingredients for the Cake

    13/4 cups of all purpose flour
    1 1/4 cup butter
    1 cup milk
    3 eggs

    It is essential for the butter, milk and eggs to be at room temperature

    13/4 cups sugar
    3/4 cup cocoa powder
    3 heaped tsp baking powder
    5 -6 drops of good vanilla extract
    1/2 tsp salt
    1 tsp of instant coffee powder

    Ingredients for the frosting

    3/4  cup  butter
    2/3 cup Cocoa powder
    2 cups powdered sugar
    1/2 cup milk
    5- 6 teaspoon vanilla extract
    1/2 tsp instant coffee powder
    1 cup finely chopped toasted hazelnuts

    Ingredients for Caramel Sauce

    1/4 cup of sugar
    2 – 3 drops of vanilla extract
    3 Tbsp butter
    1/4 cup heavy whipping cream

    Directions for the Caramel Sauce

    • Heat sugar on high heat in a heavy-bottomed pan with a few drops of water. As the sugar begins to melt, stir vigorously with a whisk.

    Never leave the stove while making caramel as it takes just a second to burn up on you!

    • When the sugar turns dark amber in color , put off the flame and add in butter and vanilla extract and continue to whisk.
    • When all the butter is melted, incorporate the cream slowly and continue whisking until the mixture is smooth.
    • Set the sauce aside to cool.

    Directions for the cake

  • In a bowl, cream butter and sugar together until light and fluffy. Beat in eggs one at time. Add in the vanilla.
  • Sift together flour, baking powder, coffee powder , cocoa powder and salt using a sieve.
  • Stir in the dry ingredients into the wet, a little at a time. Don’t over mix it.
  • Fold in the caramel  sauce into the batter.
  • Preheat oven to 350 degrees F (175 degrees C).
  • Spread batter evenly in a greased pan, dusted with flour and bake for 45 minutes or until a tooth pick inserted comes out clean.
  • Allow to cool.
  • Directions for the frosting
    • In a bowl, cream melted butter and sugar together until light and fluffy. Stir in cocoa, coffee and vanilla extract. Add in milk a little at a time until you get the right consistency .
    • Spread immediately on cooled cake.
    • Pad with toasted hazelnuts all over.

    Rustic Naked Chocolate


    2009
    12.31
    My best friend V doesn’t do cake in any other form but chocolate. Though she lives thousands of miles away she insisted I bake a chocolate cake for sure. And like I always do for her ;), I complied  and whipped up my Naked chocolate delight in her honor.
    This one is for the God Mother of my son-
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    Rustic Naked Chocolate

     

     

    Ingredients for the Cake

    13/4 cups of all purpose flour
    1 1/4 cup butter
    1 cup milk
    3 eggs

    It is essential for the butter, milk and eggs to be at room temperature

    13/4 cups sugar
    3/4 cup cocoa powder
    3  tsp baking powder
    5 -6 drops of good vanilla extract
    1 tsp of instant coffee powder

    Ingredients for the frosting

    3/4  cup  butter
    2/3 cup Cocoa powder
    2 cups powdered sugar
    1/2 cup milk
    5- 6 teaspoon vanilla extract
    1/2 tsp instant coffee powder

    Directions for the cake

    • In a bowl, cream butter and sugar together until light and fluffy. Beat in eggs one at time. Add in the vanilla.
    • Sift together flour, baking powder, coffee powder , cocoa powder and salt using a sieve.
    • Stir in the dry ingredients into the wet, a little at a time. Don’t over mix it.
    • Preheat oven to 350 degrees F (175 degrees C).
    • Spread batter evenly in a greased pan, dusted with flour and bake for 45 minutes or until a tooth pick inserted comes out clean.
    • Allow to cool.
    Directions for the frosting
    • In a bowl, cream melted butter and sugar together until light and fluffy. Stir in cocoa, coffee and vanilla extract. Add in milk a little at a time until you get the right consistency .

    Spread immediately on cooled cake.

    Fruit and Nut Cake


    2009
    12.31

    Since I began my baking a full week ahead of Christmas, it gave me plenty of time to  try out a few different kinds of cakes this time around.Of course I ‘had’ to  begin with my mom’s all famous ‘fruit n nut’ cake. Most of the cakes I bake follow the basic cake recipe and just a few additional ingredients give them their own identity.

    Here’s to you ma, blogging my very first recipe of your cake.

    Simple to make, hard to resist, crunchy and munchy cake.

     

    fruit n nut cake

     

    Ingredients

    2 cups of all purpose flour
    1 1/4 cup butter
    2/3 cup milk
    3 eggs

    It is essential for the butter, milk and eggs to be at room temperature

    1 1/4 cup sugar
    2 heaped tsp baking powder
    5-6 drops of good vanilla extract
    1/2 tsp of instant coffee powder (optional)
    1 tsp cocoa powder (optional)
    1/3 cup of raisins
    1/3 cup of cashewnuts
    1/3 cup of mixed candied fruit
    1 tsp orange zest
    1/4 tsp nutmeg
    2 – 3 spoons caramelized sugar

    1/2 tsp salt

    Directions

  • Caramelize 2 -3 spoons of sugar. When done, whisk in the milk, cocoa, coffee powder and nutmeg until smooth. Set aside to cool to room temp
  • In a bowl, cream butter and sugar together until light and fluffy. Beat in eggs one at time, add in the vanilla, and the caramel milk mixture
  • Add in the orange zest
  • Sift together flour, baking powder and salt using a sieve
  • Stir in the dry ingredients into the wet, a little at a time. Don’t over mix it
  • Mix the dry fruits and nuts together and fold into the batter. Keep a little of the dry fruit mixture aside to sprinkle on top (purely for aesthetics).
  • Preheat oven to 350 degrees F (175 degrees C).
  • Spread batter evenly in a greased pan, dusted with flour and bake for 45 minutes or until a tooth pick inserted comes out clean.
  • Allow to cool to a warm temp.
  • Serve immediately or wrap in aluminium foil when still warm (prevents drying) to store for later.
  • The above is an exact of my mother’s recipe, I improvised it a little and soaked the raisins overnight in 1/2 cup of rum to give it that extra zing 😉 and called it the ‘rum n raisin’ cake instead 😀


    Tutti Frutti Cake


    2009
    12.31

    cake Got this recipe from my neighbor J, who is an amazing cook herself. She’d made this for my friend L’s birthday and I just couldn’t get enough of it. I improvised it a tad bit and voila the cake is something that really calls for a cry of “A-wop-bop-a-loo-bop-a-lop-bam-boom!!!!!”

    Tutti Frutti is essentially candied papaya. It gives a nice bite when folded into the cake. In India you get them as sachets of multicolored fruits in any bakery. In the US however, they were hard to find until, I stumbled upon them in my local Chinese market.  They tasted exactly like the ones in India did, but were chunkier and plain orange in color. The color didn’t matter to me and I just diced the chunks into smaller bits for the cake. So, if you are having trouble finding it, ask your Chinese grocer for candied papaya and I’m sure he would find you some.

    Ingredients
    2 cups of all purpose flour
    1 1/4 cup butter
    2/3 cup milk
    3 eggs

    It is essential for the butter, milk and eggs to be at room temperature

    1 1/4 cup sugar
    2 heaped tsp baking powder
    5- 6 drops of good pineapple extract

    you have to use pineapple and not vanilla to do justice to the cake

    1/2 cup tutti frutti
    1/2 tsp salt

    Directions

  • In a bowl, cream butter and sugar together until light and fluffy. Beat in eggs one at time, add milk mixture and pineapple extract
  • Sift together flour baking powder and  salt using a sieve
  • Stir in the dry ingredients into the wet, a little at a time. Don’t over mix it
  • Fold the tutti frutti into the batter. Keep a little aside to sprinkle on top (purely for aesthetics).
  • Preheat oven to 350 degrees F (175 degrees C).
  • Spread batter evenly in a greased pan, dusted with flour and bake for 45 minutes or until a tooth pick inserted comes out clean.
  • Allow to cool to a warm temp.
  • Serve immediately or wrap it in aluminium foil when still warm (this helps retain the moisture) to store for later