Wednesday, June 11, 2014
A Cardamom Snacking Cake
The days are never long enough as I try to get this old house and yard back in shape. Since we are gone the wettest months of the year, usually a total of seven months, that includes fall, all winter and a month or two of spring; things can get pretty overgrown. Not complaining, just saying. My goal is to have the yard and the house finished by the end of this month. Anyway, today on our morning walk Olive and I saw a few seals in the water at the Yachat's beach area where the where the river meets the ocean. It was interesting to observe them in their natural environment swimming side by side. As a couple with a dog were drawing close, away they went under the water.
Cardamom is a relatively new spice for me. I first purchased a bottle two years ago at the World Market. I love to collect new spices and this was very intriguing to me. The pods are a lovely green and there are little black seeds inside. Since that day I have made several recipes from grinding those very seeds. The flavor is strong and can taste a little spicy like ginger, there are some herbal tones and even a wisp of citrus. Cardamom can be used to compliment both sweet and savory dishes. It is also aromatic, your kitchen will smell heavenly.
Now to this snacking cake. I love snacking cakes, I mean who doesn't like the idea of cutting a little piece of cake throughout the day to snack on. This one is special, it's easy to throw together and most of the ingredients you probably have on hand. You can see little flecks of the cardamom throughout and it's packed full of flavor. Perfect with morning tea or coffee.
This recipe has been slightly adapted from Megan Gordon's website, "A Sweet Spoonful". Check there for original recipe.
20 green cardamom pods (1/2 teaspoon of Cardamom)
1 1/2 cups all-purpose flour
1/4 teaspoon salt
1 teaspoon baking powder
1/2 teaspoon baking soda
1 cup superfine sugar
8 ounces of unsalted butter (just melted)
1 1/4 cup plain Greek yogurt
Zest from 1 lemon
1/4 cup almonds (ground)
Preheat oven to 350F. Butter and flour one 9 inch cake pan.
Remove cardamon seeds from pod by lightly cracking, (I used the flat side of knife on top of pod and tapped lightly with fist to open). Then in a coffee grinder or mortar and pestle, grind seeds.
Add the ground seeds, flour, salt, baking powder and baking soda together in a small bowl, combine; set aside.
In a separate bowl add sugar and melted butter together, stir 1 minute until well combined. Add the yogurt, and mix well, then add the flour by thirds, folding carefully with a wooden spoon.
Grind almonds in food processor, or use ground almonds, add to batter along with the lemon zest. Stir until just mixed and then spoon into cake pan.
Bake 45 to 50 minutes until golden brown and cake springs back lightly. I used a regular clean toothpick to check the center for doneness and it came out clean. Cool on a wire rack. Cut into slices and enjoy. Recipe calls for adding a sprinkling of powdered sugar which I left off.