Tuesday, 19 February 2013

Sri Lankan Love Cake

For Christmas our sister-in-law got us spice packets from The SpiceryMy husband received 2 savory spice kits and I received 2 sweet spice kits.  We had the Ethiopian dora wat kit for supper a couple of weeks ago and it was delicious (took a while, but worth it!)  

So for Valentines Day I decided to try the Sri Lankan Love Cake for a desert that was a little unexpected and different than traditional chocolate and strawberries or red velvet cakes. It was quite appropriate as well considering it was a traditional gift from Portuguese women to their sweethearts when coastal Portugal was the gateway to the spice route and we just returned from Portugal. 

The recipe says 30 minutes prep time plus 40 for cooking.  It took me about 2 hours prep time.  It was not for my incompetance, quite the contrary.  It was so cold in our house I could not get the butter to cream.  I had to microwave it to get it soft enough to cream.  This alone took about 10 minutes as I was doing it in 10-20 second bursts on the defrost setting so as not to melt the butter.  As soon as I got it going, my phone rang.  After a 40 minute phone conversation with my mom, I went back to the ketchen and the butter (and flour mixture) was hard as a rock again.  I eventually had to put it in front of our space heater and leave it for about 20 minutes before it was workable.  At least at this point I was able to finish the cake and it was ready in time for my husbands return from work.  
I was concerned the rose would overwhelm the cake but the balance was lovely.  The cinnamon and cardomom worked very well together with the rose.

I did not have cashew nuts, but had almonds.  Also, I didn't cut them very small.  I put them in the food processor and got a mix of ground almonds and chunky whole bits of almonds.  This gave the cake a lovely crunchy texture. 

Because of my concerns about the rose, i did not steep the rose petals in the syrup for the glaze very long.  there was just a hint of floral notes with the spices and we absolutely loved the cake.  

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