Turmeric cake – variations on a theme


Cake is delicious with natural yoghurt and a cup of tea or coffee!A T-cake, with a difference.

I really amazed myself with this one. Honestly didn’t think it would work.

Combining a recent penchant for all things turmeric and my inveterate tendency to adapt recipes this cake at the outset possibly had a 50/50 chance of success.

Having just made another batch of Jamu (turmeric health tonic), I couldn’t bear to throw out the mulch of turmeric, ginger and lemon. I recalled a recipe JB had given me for ‘turmeric tea cake’ but could not find it, so another adaptation of the ‘Cut & Come Again’ cake has emerged.

I will say upfront that I think almond meal might be better than flour, but that experiment will have to wait for another day.

First up – make the Jamu.

This is a wonderful ‘tea’ that dear friend Annie introduced me to, and which is known in Indonesia as a daily, trusted, health tonic – best drunk first thing in the morning on an empty stomach.

Turmeric has been used for centuries in foods and many believe it has a multitude of health benefits (e.g. anti cancer due to its anti-inflammatory, detox and anti-bacterial properties); some of which have been evidenced in medical research. Curcumin is the active ingredient but by using the whole natural form, you gain from the other properties too. Google it!

I like the idea of drinking this as an anti-inflammatory treatment, instead of taking ibuprofen regularly – I think it works, but possibly in a placebo sense?

Waiver: I have taken to throwing this together (measuring by eye and adjusted to my taste), so these quantities are rough estimates – you will find plenty other recipes that differ from my version, online. It really is delicious; not ghastly as you might expect. Adapt to your own tastes and make it as sweet as you like.

Ingredients

  • 1 cup fresh organic turmeric root – roughly chopped
  • 2 inches fresh ginger, preferably organic – grated
  • half a lemon – the zest and the juice (alt. lime is good too, but stronger flavour)
  • 1 tablespoon raw honey
  • 2 cups water

Method:

I have done this in two different ways. Both seem to work equally well, but result in a different consistency of ‘tonic’. I’m not sure which is better for retaining the healthy properties.  A) By simmering the fresh ingredients first and then mulching them results in a creamy paste. B) By mulching the fresh ingredients first and then simmering, you will have a more liquid concentrate.

Here’s the A version.

  1. Place all the ingredients in a saucepan and bring to a simmer for about 20 minutes.
  2. Then use a hand blender or place everything in your blitzer/food processor, until as smooth as you can get it.
  3. Pour the mixture through a sieve or a cloth bag into a jug or jar, to remove all the fibres. (Don’t throw these away, you need them for the cake!)
  4. Store in the fridge for up to a week. (This should be just enough for one cup of tea, every day for a week).
  5. To make your refreshing wake-up tea – simply stir a tablespoon of the ‘tonic’ in a cup of hot water. Add extra honey to taste.

Wee note: turmeric stains everything yellow – just saying.

Turmeric Cake (variations on a theme)

Heat oven to 170 degrees centigrade. Grease and line a regular cake or loaf tin.

Mix together dry ingredients:

  • 140g wholemeal flour
  • 50g coconut flour
  • 50g caster sugar
  • 2 tsp baking powder
  • a pinch of salt

Mix together the wet ingredients:

  • the leftover turmeric, ginger, lemon mulch
  • 1 tbsp honey
  • 2 eggs
  • 1 cup of milk
  • 175ml light olive oil or vegetable oil

Combine the wet & the dry ingredients. Pour into the cake or loaf tin. Decorate with raw almonds and bake for 30-35 minutes.

I enjoyed this with natural yoghurt but I’m guessing it would be good with cream or ricotta too with a drizzle of honey.

Note: The cake is delicious eaten warm from the oven; equally the next day, when it will be more moist.

Variations:

  • If you substitute the flour for almond meal, use 3 eggs, separated. Mix the yolks with the wet ingredients and then into the dry ones. Whisk the eggs whites until stiff and fold into the mixture.
  • Warm lemon and honey together and drizzle over the cake.

Please let me know if you try this and how it worked out for you. Comments very very welcome.

2016-10-09-t-cake1 2016-10-09-t-cake2

Footnote

In homage to Pamela and Ross: both adored ginger, particularly Ross who felt it was good for the heart and arthuritis. Pamela also enjoyed a bit of turmeric in her scrambled egg, courtesy of Patrick’s insistence, in her last days. Pamela always advocated for organic, fresh ingredients, free range eggs, wild honey and fresh-from-the-cow dairy.

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