January 27, 2012

chilled almond milk-drunk cake


There is a constant  staple of  apps on my iPhone that I use daily. Besides checking my email and text messages, I constantly use my Pandora station. It is sometimes hard to imagine how I ever traveled without my constant musical companion. My dependence on technology these days appears to be getting all encompassing and I am not sure what I would do without constant internet access. I have no complaints though, I enjoying every minute of being connected. Its made me some wonderful friends along the ways especially through this blog.


Its finally the end of the week and time for dessert. Mostly that's how I think weekends should be redefined, in terms of dessert. Almond milk is probably the best kind of milk substitute. It is naturally sweet and rich in proteins and healthy fats. Almond nuts by themselves are very popular in Indian desserts and even make a great garnish to some rice and meat dishes in Indian cuisine. 


This particular cake was inspired by the Latin American Tres Leche and a couple of ingredients common to Indian desserts - cardamom and almonds. Cakes can make everyone happy, even the biggest sourpuss on the planet (or so I'd like to think) and I've been wanting to make this for a while. I added a bit of ground cardamom and slivered almonds to the cake. While this cake bakes in your oven, the aromas will breathe a new flavor of freshness in your kitchen. There is nothing better than the scent of toasted almonds in a room. Unlike the tres leche which uses three different types of milk to soak the cake, this cake has the milk replaced by almond milk. A new marriage in heaven was created when I heated the almond milk with some freshly ground cardamom seeds. I admit to keeping a little of the lightly sweetened milk aside to "taste for personal reasons". There is no need for whipped cream when you have crunchy and toasted almonds on the cake's soft crust. Try this unique chilled almond milk cake and it will surely make you a very, very happy trooper!


You might have notice in this particular post, I have "overused" the little silver cup in my photographs. I wanted to test and see how much I could stretch my imagination with this prop for a single post by keeping the cake the subject of each photograph and everything else secondary.


chilled almond milk drunk cake

yields: 10-12 servings

ingredients

a little extra butter and flour to grease the pan
1 1/2 cups all-purpose flour
1 tablespoon ground almond powder
1 teaspoon baking powder
1 teaspoon almond liqueur / extract
1 cup butter, cubed at room temperature
1 cup sugar
5 large eggs
1 teaspoon ground cardamom
1/4 cup slivered/sliced almonds 
3 cups unsweetened almond milk
1/2 cup sugar

1. Preheat the oven to 350F. Gently grease and lightly dust a 9" X 13" baking pan with a little butter and flour.
2. Sift the flour, almond powder, and the baking powder twice and keep aside. In the mixing bowl of a stand mixer, cream the butter and the 1 cup of sugar together using the paddle attachment on medium-high speed. 
2. Beat the eggs into the creamed mixture, one at a time till completely blended. Beat 4 tablespoons of the sifted ingredients to the creamed mixture each time, until all of the flour mixture is completely blended. 
3. Fold in the almond powder, almond extract and half  of the cardamom. Pour the cake batter into the prepared pan and gently spread the batter evenly with an offset spatula. Sprinkle the top of the cake with the slivered/sliced almond and bake for about 30 mins or till a knife comes out clean from the center. Remove the cake and let it cool to room temperature in the pan. 
4. Heat the almond milk, rest of the cardamom and sugar till it comes to a gentle simmer on a low flame. Using a butter knife cut the cake in the pan into equal squares. Gently poke the surface of the cake with a fork to make holes for the almond milk to seep through. Pour the milk mixture on to the surface of the cake evenly and cover the pan with a lid and let the cake chill for at least 4 hours (8 hours is best) before serving. Serve chilled.

Note: While sifting the almond flour, you may get a couple of tiny grains of ground almonds (depending on how fine you grind them) left back in the sieve, just toss them back into flour mixture. 

22 comments:

  1. When I hit your homepage and saw that first page my reaction was "Wow - that looks good!" I bookmarked it before looking at the recipe.:) This is definitely moving to the top of my recipes to try list! Beautiful pictures!

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  2. Mmmm... I want to face-plant into that cake!! So drool-worthy :D

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  3. that looks like one delicious cake! i love the almond milk soak.. yumm!

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  4. wow that looks seriously good! have been wanting to try tres leches cake but this might be better. Nice to meet you and your blog!

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  5. Absolutely gorgeous ... the recipe, the prop and the photographs! Wow!!

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  6. This looks simply awesome, feel like having it right now.

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  7. I love Pandora and have it both on my phone as well as my ROKU...tech junkie indeed :) This cake is amazing, and your photos are stunning! I love the way you played around with this prop...they all look fantastic :)

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    1. Thanks! I have a hard time without Pandora if I am traveling. I am terribly addicted to technology. Thanks for your feedback, always appreciate it

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  8. I don't know about anything else, but "milk-drunk" is already sounding like something I want to sink my teeth into! The combination of almonds & cardamom is so Indian that you're making me miss home. I'm Bengali and your cake reminds me of sweetmeats we get in Bengal that are drenched in saffron-steeped malai...its super difficult to come across any dessert in London that makes a decent effort of tasting authentically Indian.

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    1. Amrita, that is so true! Some of the Indian desserts here are either stale or just terrible. I think cardamom can be so delicately fragrant and delicious in milk of any kind. Thank you for dropping by!

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  9. wait- I'm confused, when does the flour mixture get mixed in entirely? Do you mix it into the egg/butter mixture 4 tbsp at a time until completely mixed in?

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    1. Thanks for pointing that out gateaulove, sorry I thought I wrote that there but it must have slipped my mind. I sifted the almond flour with the regular flour and baking powder. If any grainy particles did not pass through the sieve, I just tossed them back into the flour.

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    2. oh great! That makes way more sense- thanks!

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  10. wow, this looks absolutely heavenly! The texture and milk drenched pics are too tempting. Is the liquor optional? Anyways, glad to meet you Nik!

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    1. Its great to hear from you as well! The liquor is optional, almond essence is another way to about it, if you really want a little bit of additional almond fragrance and taste.

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  11. Thanks for the prompt response and hopping over to say hello Nik! I'm so waiting to try this :)

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  12. Beautiful is all I can say. I am glad you dropped a comment on my blog and now I got to see your gorgeous space. Love this recipe and will be trying it soon and will let you know how they came out :-)

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  13. I think a slice of this drunken cake would make me happy right now!

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  14. I would love this very much! It's going on my TO DO list ASAP. Thanks for sharing!

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  15. This cake reminds me of the Tres Leches cake very popular in latin cultures. It's my favorite, this one looks like it could turn into one of my favorites.

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  16. Looks wonderful, Nik. Glad you stay connected...and I love the little silver cup. Keep it coming in future posts.

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