Just like you have Triple chocolate cakes or brownies or cookies, is there a way to have different natural sweeteners in one single cake? Tempted to pick a chocolate cake for this experiment just so that the chocolate masks the flavour if something was to go wrong?
I was tempted to do that too. But I ended up doing the reverse – I picked a cake where the natural sweeteners will shine like the heroes of the bake and there will be no way to hide their actual taste. If anything, the flavours will be more pronounced and lingering. Why did I choose to do that ?
Because let’s face it – healthy baking is not about masking the natural taste that a specific ingredient has. It is about unmasking that taste in its full glory. And so M.M. Saum’s Caramel Cake recipe from my newly acquired “The Landour Cookbook-Over Hundred Years of Hillside Cooking” is what I shortlisted.
The 3 ways in which natural sweeteners have been used are as follows – the caramel sauce is made of part white sugar and part coconut sugar. Secondly, the cake itself contains cane sugar and liquid jaggery. That makes it a 3-way delight of natural earthy sweetness.
Does it taste of cane sugar, liquid jaggery and a hint of coconut sugar – Yes it does ! And proudly so- its a cake with bold flavours. Because the first place where I read about this cake was a book called “The Help” which celebrates the courage and boldness shown by African-American maids who shared their experiences of working in white households.
Nothing else could have been a bigger tribute to a courageous book like that, except a courageous cake that draws its inspiration from its pages 🙂
3/4 cup cane sugar
2 tbsp organic liquid jaggery
1/4 cup mix of white and coconut sugars
1/4 cup water
1/4 cup butter
1/2 cup milk
1 1/2 cups wholewheat flour
1 tsp baking powder
Heat the mix of white and coconut sugars to melt it. When it turns brown, add the water to make the caramel sauce. Keep it aside to cool off. Preheat the oven at 160 degrees Celsius.
Cream the butter, cane sugar and liquid jaggery together. Add the eggs one at a time and mix well. Add the cooled off caramel sauce and mix. Add the sifted flour and milk alternately until both are incorporated well into the batter.
Put it into a greased baking tin and bake for 30-40 minutes. Cool off, slice it and serve.