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Saturday, 23 May 2015

TEA FLAVORED CARROT DATES CAKE

I am never out of obsessions. Its always there in me. I am pretty obsessed with all the beautiful things around and it keeps changing with time. My recent obsession is this page. What wonderful photographs and recipes!!. Whats amazing is that author has wonderfully composed delicious recipes with awesome twists. Otherwise would you ever imagine of Carrot Halwa Ice cream? And the best part is he is Indian. Indian recipes got a superb dimension and International status in his page. There are so many awesome recipes which I have already bookmarked to try in future. Also I have committed to go through all his recipes, not missing a single one, everyday or whenever I find time. Now that is called a sincere obsession.
Speaking of his photographs there is something noticeably magic about it and it has some signature style. There is no need of adding any copyright watermarks as anyone familiar of that space can guess to whom those photographs belong.

When I came across this recipe, I did not even want to look at the ingredients and procedure, it was a definite thing I promised myself to try. The original recipe is called Masala Chai Carrot Cake (Named masala chai carrot cake as the cake batter is infused with strongly brewed tea), with the goodness of spices, tea and Carrots. Also it gives you the bonus of having tea at any time of the day.


 I made slight variations cutting off almost all the spices except Cardamom as I still cannot adapt to the idea of adding ginger to cakes and Cinnamon is something I cannot stand at times as its quite heady for me. So this recipe cannot be called Masala Chai Carrot Cake, instead its just Chai Carrot Cake.
Also, the original recipe calls for raisins which I did not have in hand and instead substituted it with Dates, which is definitely a lovely combo to Carrots in cake. So , Dates here served double purpose.

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Over to the recipe,
Ingredients

  • Strongly brewed tea- 1/4 cup ( I added approximately 4 tbsps to one cup of boiling water and let the water boil for about 2 minutes. Strain and measure 1/4 cup)
  • Carrot- 2 big
  • Dates- 1 cup, pitted and chopped
  • cardamom powder- 1/2 tsp
  • Oil- 1 1/2 cups
  • All purpose flour- 2 1/2 cups
  • Baking powder- 1 1/4 tsp
  • Baking soda- 1 tsp
  • Eggs- 4, room temperature
  • Granulated sugar- 1 1/2 cups
  • Packed dark brown sugar- 1/2 cup
  • salt-  a pinch
Pistachio cream cheese frosting:
Hung curd- 1 cup
Whipped cream- 1 cup (Beat whipping cream till stiff peaks form)
Icing sugar- 3 tbsp
Pistachio essence- 1 tsp
Pistachios- crushed- 1/4 cup, to garnish

Method:

  • Dry whisk flour, baking powder, baking soda and salt in a large bowl.
  • In a food processor, grate the Carrots. Transfer the Carrots to another large bowl.
  • Wipe the bowl of processor clean. Fit the metal blade and add sugar, brown sugar, tea and eggs. Turn on the processor and blend everything for 30 seconds.
  • With the processor on, add oil in a steady stream. Run the processor till the mixture is emulsified. This takes about 20-30 secs. (The result is a satiny smooth mixture).
  • Add the chopped dates to the flour and mix well. This ensures that dates do not sink to the bottom while baking.
  • Pour the egg-sugar mix over Carrot and fold using a silicone spatula.
  • Fold in the flour till no speck of flour is visible.
  • Pour into a greased pan. Place the pan in the middle rack of a preheated oven.
  • Bake for about 35-40 mins or until skewer inserted in the middle comes out clean. (I divided the batter into two and baked seperately to get two layers . Do not slice the cake into 2 to get 2 layers, as the cake is soft it can break)
  • Cool the cake completely.
  • Mean while prepare Pistachio cream cheese frosting.
  • In a bowl, beat hung curd and icing sugar well. 
  • Add pistachio essence. beat.
  • Using silicone spatula, fold in the whipped cream.
  • Apply half of the frosting over one layer of cake. 
  • Place the second layer of cake on top.
  • Again spread remaining half of frosting over the cake.
  • Garnish with chopped Pistachios.
  • serve and enjoy.