Category Archives: Cakes

Walnut Cake

I have to say, this is one of the best cakes I have ever made.  It does not require any butter or baking powder.  So the egg whites that is beaten to a frothy consistency make this cake looks as if it has risen when baked.  The cake is very dense but soft.

 

 

 

 

Ingredients:

  • 6 large eggs at room temperature
  • 1 cup castor sugar
  • ½ cup all purpose flour
  • 1 ½ teaspoon each nutmeg and cardamom powder
  • 1 ½ cups ground walnuts

Method:

  • Preheat oven to 350 F. Grease a 9 inch spring form pan and set aside
  • Separate eggs. Beat eggs yolks and sugar until light in color.
  • Add flour and spice mixture and add ground walnuts and mix well.
  • In a separate dry bowl beat egg whites with an electric mixer until stiff and form peaks when the whisk is removed from the beaten egg white
  • Fold beaten egg whites to the cake batter and mix carefully until well incorporated
  • Pour into the prepared pan and bake for about 45 minutes. Cool on wire rack
  • Once the cake is completely cooled to the room temperature, to decorate place a paper doily on top of the take and sprinkle with powdered sugar. Remove the paper doily carefully not to spill over any of the remaining sugar on the paper.

Pineapple Zucchini Cake with dried Cranberries

pineapple_zuchchinicake

Who can resist a tropical pineapple flavor pared with cranberries and walnuts.  The original recipe called for shredded carrots.  I have made carrot cakes and Indian carrot sweets which had a “carroty” flavor and taste which I am not a fan of.  So I was looking for a twist and thought why not zucchini since it can be grated and there are a lot of zucchini recipes online.  So came this recipe which is so soft, moist and full of fragrant from pineapple.

Ingredients:

  • 1/2 cup canola oil
  • 1/4 cup orange juice
  • 1/3 cup castor sugar
  • 1/3 cup brown sugar
  • 1 large egg
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
  • 1 teaspoon shredded orange peel
  • 1 cup all purpose flour
  • 1 teaspoon baking powder
  • 1/8 teaspoon baking soda
  • 1/4 teaspoon salt
  • 1 cup grated zucchini
  • 1/2 cup finely chopped pineapple
  • 1/2 cup dried cranberries
  • 1/2 cup chopped walnuts

Method:

  • Preheat oven to 350 F
  • Lightly grease a 6 inch pan (I used a square pan) and set aside
  • Grate zucchini and spread on a paper towel.
  • If you are using canned pineapple, I would advice to buy the sliced pineapple since you have the flexibility to cut them into very small pieces.
  • Squeeze out the juice (if you are using canned pineapple) from pineapple and cut them into small pieces (1/4 inch)
  • In a mixing bowl whisk together oil, orange juice, sugar, and brown sugar.  Add egg and beat until batter is creamy.
  • Add vanilla extract and orange peel and mix well
  • In a separate bowl combine flour, baking powder, baking soda, and salt
  • Fold in the dry ingredients into the liquid mixture to form a batter.
  • Slightly squeeze out juice from shredded zucchini.  This makes the cake not becoming too sticky and soft
  • Fold in zucchini, pineapple, cranberries, and walnuts.
  • Pour batter into the prepared pan and bake for about 50 – 55 minutes
  • Cool to room temperature

Tropical Pineapple & Coconut Muffins

Pineapple_Muffin

It’s summer and the warm weather is making me think about all the juicy fresh fruits we get in Sri Lanka.  Pineapple is one of them.  No pineapple will come close to that we get in Sri Lanka – the sweet juicy and strong flavor.  I wanted to make some thing with pineapple and came with an idea of this pineapple recipe.  But unfortunately I have never peeled a fresh pineapple and thought to replace it with canned pineapple.  The muffins turned out really good.

Ingredients: 

  • 6 oz pineapple
  • 2 oz dried cranberries
  • 3 tablespoons mango smoothie (you can use the naked mango tango smoothie or odawella brand mango  smoothie)
  • 1/2 teaspoon rum extract
  • 8 oz flour
  • 2 teaspoons baking powder
  • pinch of salt
  • 3/4 cup cooking oil such as canola (I prefer canola since it does not have any smell or flavor)
  • 3/4 cup light brown sugar
  • 2 eggs at room temperature
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla
  • 1/3 cup coconut milk

 

Pineapple_Muffin_tray

Method:

  • Cut pineapple into small pieces and squeeze out the juice.
  • Add pineapple chunks and cranberries into a bowl and mix in with rum extract and leave it for about 15 minutes
  • in the mean time pre-heat oven to 350F
  • Line 10 muffin cups of muffin tin with paper cases
  • Sift together flour, baking powder and salt into a large bowl
  • In a separate bowl beat together butter and sugar and light and creamy.  Beat in the eggs one at a time and stir in vanilla extract and coconut milk
  • Add pineapple cranberry mixture alternating with flour into the egg mixture and mix until just combined
  • Divide batter between the muffin paper cases
  • Bake for about 25 minutes or until golden on the top
  • Let cool in tin and transfer to a wire rack and cool completely

Yields: 10 muffins.

Mango-Carrot Cake

MangoJuiceCake

I found this recipe on my favorite magazine – the “Better Homes and Gardens” magazine.  This is a totally different cake which uses mango juice.  A cake with mango juice?  I could not resist and decided to make it the day I received the magazine.  So I halved the ingredients thinking if I use the amount specified in the magazine I may have to bake twice.  But I was wrong.  Mine came a bit thin but it was delicious.  Instead of cream cheese frosting as specified in the magazine, I made butter cream.  You can definitely double this recipe.  Also I made some tweaks here and there.

Ingredients:

Cake:

  • 1 cup all purpose flour
  • 1 teaspoon baking powder
  • Pinch of salt
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla
  • 2 oz (¼ cup) butter, softened
  • ½ cup granulated sugar
  • 1 large egg
  • ½  cup mango juice (such as Odawalla Mango-Tango or Naked Mighty Mango)
  • 1 ½ cups finely shredded carrot

Butter Icing

  • 4 oz butter
  • ¾ cup butter softened
  • ½ teaspoon vanilla extract
  • ½ teaspoon orange essence

Method:

Cake:

  • Pre-heat oven to 350F.
  • Grease a 8 inch round cake pan and set aside.
  • In a medium bowl combine flour, salt, and baking powder and set aside
  • In a separate bowl beat butter and sugar until smooth and fluffy.
  • Add the egg and beat well.
  • Alternately add flour mixture and mango juice and beat on low speed until combined.
  • Stir in shredded carrot
  • Pour into prepared pan and bake for about 25-30 minutes or a tooth pick inserted in the middle comes out clean.
  • Cool in pan to room temperature.

Butter Cream:

Beat together butter, powdered sugar, vanilla extract and orange essence until light and fluffy

Spread over the cake.

Source: Better Homes and Gardens

Praline Topped Cheesecake Squares

PralineCheeseCake

I saw this recipe on Better Homes and Gardens website which is one of my favorite websites (http://www.bhg.com).  When made, most of their recipes come out extremely good and in perfect shape.  So when I saw this recipe, I kept thinking of making and this weekend was the perfect timing since my friend had a get together.  The number of cheesecake squares mentioned on the site perfectly matched the number of people got invited.  So I decided to make this cheese cake and it was a hit at the party.  I replaced pecans with walnuts and reduced the granulated sugar to ½ cup instead of 2/3 cups for the cream cheese filling.

PralineCheeseCakeWhole

Ingredients:

  • 2 ½ cups all purpose flour
  • 1 cup (2 sticks) butter melted
  • 2/3 cup finely chopped walnuts
  • 2 tablespoons powdered sugar
  • 4 eggs
  • 8 oz cream cheese softened
  • 1 14 oz can condensed milk
  • ½  cup granulated sugar
  • 2 teaspoons vanilla extract
  • 1 cup packed brown sugar
  • 1 cup whipping cream
  • 1 cup chopped walnuts
  • 1 ½ teaspoons vanilla extract

Method:

  • Pre heat oven to 350F
  • For the Crust: in a large bowl combine flour, melted butter, 2/3 cup finely chopped walnuts, and the powdered sugar.  Mix well and press mixture evenly into a bottom of a 13x9x2 inch baking pan.  Bake for about 20 minutes or until crust is set and light golden on the edges.
  • For the Filling: in a large bowl beat cream cheese until smooth.  Add eggs and beat well.  Beat in condensed milk, granulated sugar, and 2 teaspoons vanilla extract.  Pour filling over baked crust and return to oven and bake at 350F for about 35-40 minutes or until set.  Let Cool
  • For the Praline Topping: in a medium saucepan combine brown sugar and whipping cream and cook and stir over medium heat until mixture boils.  Reduce flame and simmer uncovered for about 10 minutes.  Remove from heat.  Stir in vanilla extract and chopped walnuts.  Pour topping over the baked cheesecake and spread evenly over the cake.
  • Cover and chill for 2 to 24 hours before serving.
  • Cut into squares.  Makes 48 servings

Banana Applesauce Loaf

banana_applesauceLoaf_Indiv

 

banana_applesauceLoaf

Ingredients:

  • 1 egg
  • 4 tablespoons butter melted
  • ½ cup apple sauce
  • ½ cup mashed bananas (about 1 small banana)
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
  • ½ cup castor sugar
  • ¼ cup dark brown sugar
  • 2 cups all purpose flour
  • 2 teaspoon baking powder
  • ½ teaspoon baking soda
  • Pinch of salt
  • ½ cup raisins
  • ½ cup walnuts chopped
  • 1 tablespoon rolled oats (not the quick cooking)

 

Method:

  • Preheat oven to 350 F.  Line a bottom of sides of a 9×5 inch loaf pan with waxed paper and grease with butter
  • In a bowl, lightly beat the egg.  Beat in the butter
  • Stir in apple sauce, bananas, vanilla extract and both sugars
  • In a separate bowl sift together flour, baking powder, baking soda and salt
  • Add dry ingredients into the banana mixture in three batches
  • Fold in raisins and walnuts and mix well.
  • Pour into the prepared pan and sprinkle evenly the rolled oats.
  • Bake for about an hour or until a tooth pick inserted into the center of the loaf comes out clean
  • Let stand in the loaf pan for about 10 minutes and transfer to a wire rack to cool.
  • Makes 1 loaf

Eggless Banana Cake

I have always wanted to make eggless cake.  I found this eggless banana cake recipe from  http://www.egglesscooking.com.  I modified that recipe quite a bit for my taste.  I reduced the amount of sugar and replaced castor sugar with brown sugar.  I like the taste of brown sugar since it’s not too sharp.  I also added  lot of orange juice which gives a nice flavor in combination with bananas.  Following is the recipe.

Ingredients

  • 2 cups whole wheat flour
  • 1 ½ teaspoons baking soda
  • 1 ¼ cups dark brown sugar
  • 2  oz butter melted
  • Juice and grated rind of one orange
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
  • ¾ cup mashed banana
  • ¼ cup pureed dates
  • 2 oz walnuts chopped

Method:

  • Pre-heat oven to 350F.  Butter a 9x9x2 inch cake pan and set aside.
  • Sift flour and baking powder and set aside
  • To puree date, add about ¼ cup hot water to dates and leave aside for about 15 minutes
  • Puree dates in a blender
  • Make juice from orange and add enough hot water to make 1 ¼  cups liquid.
  • Beat butter and sugar until light and fluffy
  • Now add orange juice, vanilla extract, mashed banana, pureed dates and beat on low speed
  • Add the flour and beat mix well.
  • Now add chopped walnuts and mix until all the ingredients are mixed well
  • Pour batter into prepared pan and bake for about one hour or until a tooth pick inserted comes out clean.
  • Cool on wire rack.