Tuesday, 6 December 2011

Celebrating Love with "Love Cake" and the 100th Post"

.....yes love is in the air...its Christmas in a couple of weeks, my baby is almost one,  the love of my life Clem has been the best dad and partner ever........ and its the much awaited 100th blog post......yes I am on a high!!...Praise God...:) I would like to take this opportunity to thank all my readers, bloggers and friends who have appreciated my work and encouraged me through my first blog century. All your lovely comments and encouragement has made this blogging journey meaningful and worthwhile :)

Every year I go down the route of soaking fruits to make the much loved Christmas cake....this year too I will be making a Traditional Christmas cake (recipe coming soon) 
and  the Award winning Carribean Fruit Cake. And because this year is so special there is going to be an extra special festive cake, one that comes from across the globe where it is usually made at Christmas, New Year's, weddings and birthdays.

This cake is fragnant, aromatic and moorish. Made with 10 eggs ( the Chinese believe the no.10 to be "perfect" so "Perfect Love"..and other ingredients like honey, rose water, cardamom, cinnamon, nutmeg, cashewnuts .......wooohooo....let the party begin :) 

The recipe for love cake  is adapted from Portuguese cuisine, probably from the 16th century, when Portugal dominated the spice trade and controlled a portion of the island once known as Ceylon. The recipe's cashewnuts and cardamom grow on the island and are used by the native Sinhalese The use of rose water may trace to the Ceylon Muslims 

What's behind the name??
As this cake landed on the Srilankan shore during the Portuguese rule and was instantly adopted by the grandmothers, aunts and mothers ... and they decided this cake was so incredible, amazing and such a beautiful cake they named it love cake. They decided if you fed it to the boy who you wanted to marry your daughter, they would fall instantly in love.".hmmm......are all you mums and dads with daughter's of marriageable age listening ;)

The cake becomes richer in flavour and denser in texture with time. Love Cake keeps well for 2-3 weeks in a tightly covered tin, stored in a cool place but not refrigerated. The cake tastes best after two days.

Recipe Adapted from-The Cake Mistress 
To make this lovely cake you will require:

250g Semolina
125g Unsalted Butter, room temperature
10 Eggs, separated
500g Caster Sugar
185g Cashew Nuts, chopped finely
2 tablespoons Rosewater
2 tablespoons Honey
1/4 teaspoon ground Nutmeg
1/4 teaspoon Lemon Rind
1/2 teaspoon ground Cardamom
1/4 teaspoon ground Cinnamon
1. Warm semolina in a dry pan over medium heat until fairly hot to the touch, being careful not to let it brown.
2. Put in a bowl and while still a little warm, mix in softened butter using a wooden spoon. Add lemon rind, spices and salt. Mix well, cover and set aside two to four hours.
3. Separately, mix cashews with rose water, almond extract and vanilla. Cover and set aside.

4. Grease 9-by-13-inch pan and line with three thicknesses of wax paper. Butter well the top layer of paper.

5. In a large bowl, beat yolks and sugar until they have doubled in bulk and become thick, creamy and very light in color.

6. Beat in the semolina-butter mixture, a little at a time. Add the honey and beat. When well beaten, fold in cashew mixture.

7. Beat egg whites with lemon juice until they hold firm peaks. Fold into the cake mixture.

8. Spoon the mix into the prepared pan and bake in a preheated oven at 150C for 50-60 minutes. If the top starts to brown, cover with aluminium foil. Do not use the skewer test to check if it’s ready as this cake is very moist. Instead, lightly jiggle the cake tin and make sure there is no runny batter. 

9. Do not remove cake from pan. Let cool completely. While still in pan, cut into small squares.



Shireen said...

Congrats on your 100th post Caysera!! What a coincidence, my friend sent me the recipe of the Srilankan love cake last week..I will be trying it soon! Nice story revolving the origin! And thanks so much for the awards dear, will collect & display it once the Xmas recipe madness is over :) tc!

igloo cooking said...

como me gusta la canción de love is in the air... casi tanto como tus 100 post !! enhorabuena!! vaya cake más ricooo! Besitos

Carol Pereira said...

Thanks Shireen...you are welcome :)

Carol Pereira said...

@igloo cooking
gracias nieves! Espero que volver por más :)... besos xxxx