Grandma’s Seed Cake

A traditional British cake, it has a very distinctive flavour. You might think this is dated or old-fashioned but once you taste it, then you will definitely give it a thumbs up.

The caraway seeds give it an amazing aroma and taste. It’s just scrumptious!

It’s interesting to note that there is no raising agent in this recipe. The beating of the mixture makes the cake light and moist. The result is a very rich cake.

This recipe has been adapted from the original one by Muriel Downes.

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PREP: 10 minutes COOK TIME: 11/2 hours

Ingredients

  • 227 gms butter
  • 390 gms caster sugar
  • 227 gms flour
  • 5 eggs
  • ¼ tsp salt
  • 3 tsp caraway seeds

Instructions

Grease a loaf tin with butter and flour it.

Preheat the oven to 160C.

Sift the flour with the salt.

Cream the butter and add the sugar. Beat the mixture until it is light and airy. Add the eggs one at a time, beating thoroughly between each one. Fold in the sifted flour, a third at a time. Finally, add the caraway seeds and stir lightly to mix. Spoon the mixture into the prepared loaf tin and bake for 11/2 hours in a very moderate oven.

Vegan Zucchini Frittata

I made this frittata for my daughter who’s turned vegan for some years now. A light and tasty dish – it’s ideal for a light summer lunch or supper. It can also be served cold. A refreshing tomato salad would be perfect to go with it.

The oatmeal gives this frittata a moistness and the addition of some spices and herbs makes it delicious. The vegan cheese works wonderfully well on this frittata.

You can also substitute the zucchini with other vegetables such as Broccoli, Cauliflower, Mushrooms or a combination of mixed vegetables.

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PREP: 30 minutes COOK TIME: 50 minutes SERVES: 4

Ingredients

  • 2 zucchinis, sliced thinly
  • 1 cup spinach, chopped
  • 2 onions, chopped
  • 2 green chillies, chopped
  • 1 tsp cumin seeds
  • 2 cloves garlic, minced
  • 2 tbsp vegetable oil
  • 3/4th cup chickpea flour
  • 3/4th cup oatmeal
  • ½ tsp asafoetida powder
  • 1 tsp turmeric powder
  • 1 tsp red chilli powder
  • ½ tsp baking soda
  • 1 cup greek yoghurt
  • 3 tbsp fresh coriander, chopped
  • 2/3rd cup vegan cheese (optional)
  • Salt to taste

Instructions

Grease a round 8” pan or line with parchment paper. Preheat the oven to 180 C.

Grind the oatmeal in a food processor or blender. Transfer to a mixing bowl.

Heat the oil in a large pan and add the cumin seeds. Add the garlic, onions and green chillies. When the onions are transparent, add the spinach and salt. Do not cook the spinach. Mix well and remove immediately. Set aside.

Mix the chickpea flour with the ground oatmeal and add the asafoetida, turmeric, chilli powder, baking soda and yoghurt. Add salt to taste and enough water to make a thick batter as for pancakes. Add the fresh coriander and the spinach mixture to this batter and mix well.

Line the zucchini slices in the buttered pan and spoon in the prepared batter on top. Bake in the oven for 30-40 minutes until a toothpick inserted in the centre comes out almost clean. Sprinkle the cheese on top (if using) and grill until the cheese melts. Remove from the oven and let it sit in the pan for 30 minutes. Invert gently on to a serving plate.

 

 

 

Moist Zucchini Bread

Zucchini is one of my favourite vegetables. It’s so easy to prepare and it’s so versatile. It can be used in a variety of cakes and other baked goods. It doesn’t alter the taste and it’s super healthy and so moist.

When I saw this recipe from King Arthur Flour, I decided that I must try it. The result was so good and the best part about it is it’s so easy. It was chock full of walnuts and raisins and very moist. The top tends to be a bit soft, but as long as the toothpick comes out clean, the bread is done.

Since it contains zucchini, it doesn’t keep for very long. It can be stored in a container for several days or frozen if you want to keep it for a longer period. But I must tell you, it doesn’t last that long!

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This recipe yields an 8 ½” x 4” loaf.

PREP: 15 minutes COOK TIME: 50 minutes

Ingredients

  • 3/4th cup brown sugar
  • 2 tbsp milk
  • ½ cup vegetable oil
  • 2 large eggs
  • 1 tsp vanilla extract
  • ¼ tsp baking powder
  • ½ tsp baking soda
  • 1 tsp salt
  • 1 ½ tsp ground cinnamon
  • 1 3/4th cup all purpose flour
  • 2 cups grated zucchini
  • 3/4th cup walnuts, chopped
  • 3/4th cup golden raisins
  • 2 tbsp brown sugar for sprinkling on top

Instructions

Preheat the oven to 350 F. Lightly grease an 8 1/2”x 4” loaf pan.

Beat the brown sugar, milk, vegetable oil, eggs and vanilla in a large mixing bowl until smooth.

In a separate bowl, mix the baking powder, baking soda, salt and cinnamon into the flour. Mix the dry ingredients with the liquid ingredients until creamy and smooth.

Stir in the zucchini, walnuts and raisins.

Scoop the batter into the prepared loaf pan, smoothing the top as required and sprinkle the brown sugar on top.

Bake for 50 minutes until a toothpick inserted in the centre comes out clean. Remove the bread from the pan after it has cooled for 10 minutes. Turn it out on to a rack to cool completely. Slice the bread after it has cooled completely.

Mango Upside-Down Cake

In India, summer heralds the mango season. It’s just exhilarating – so many varieties of mangoes! The heady perfume of the mangoes fills the kitchens, market places and the whole environment. I dive headlong into the juicy and luscious taste of the mangoes and experiment with various recipes.

Mangoes go so well with sweet treats – cakes, desserts, sweets such as halva and preserves like juices, chutneys and sherbets go down very well with my family and friends.

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Mangoes should feel tender but not squashy and should have a well balanced flavour and flesh which is succulently tender.

This cake is just divine. The mangoes come through beautifully and it’s just perfect served with a dollop of cream and fresh mangoes. It’s very moist and not too sweet.

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PREP: 20 minutes COOK TIME: 30-45 minutes Serves:6

Ingredients

  • 1 large mango, sliced
  • 2 tbsp apricot jam
  • ¾ cup butter, softened
  • ½ cup castor sugar
  • 2 eggs
  • 1 cup flour
  • 1 tsp baking powder
  • ½ tsp vanilla extract
  • 2 tbsp milk
  • ½ cup fresh cream
  • 3 tbsp castor sugar

Instructions

Heat the oven to 180 C.

Prepare a pan by using a little butter to grease the bottom and sides. Sift some flour over it and tip off the excess so that the entire pan has a nice coating of flour. Alternatively, you can use a non-stick pan.

Melt the jam with ¼ cup butter in a small saucepan and pour into the base of the pan. Overlap the mango slices over the jam in the base of the pan. (I used a bundt pan).

Cream the remaining butter and sugar until light and fluffy. Gradually beat in the eggs and fold in the flour with the milk to a soft consistency. Add the vanilla essence and spoon the batter into the prepared pan. Level the surface with a knife. Bake for 30-45 minutes until the cake is well risen and golden brown. Use a knife to test the cake.

Cool the cake for about 10 minutes and turn out on to a plate.

Beat the cream with the sugar until it becomes thick or stands in soft peaks. Chill.

Serve the cake with a dollop of the sweetened cream.