Nothing gives me a better high than experimenting in the kitchen. The whole excitement of doing something new to a trusted old recipe and waiting in anticipation to see how it turned out gives me a strange kind of kick. I always buy new interesting ingredients I have never worked with before mainly for this reason.
Some time back when I went to the opening of a new organic store called ‘i2cook’ here in Bangalore, I picked some very interesting ingredients I had never seen earlier. One of it was a pack of ‘Coconut Sugar’ or ‘Coconut Sap’. I had heard/read a lot about this amazing natural sweetener before so I was thrilled to finally get my hands on it. What’s better, this wasn’t even an expensive imported product! It was made right here in Pondicherry.
If you don’t know much about coconut palm/sugar you can read a lot about Coconut sugar online. Let me tell you a few quick facts about this wonderful sweetner, which I have basically compiled from everything I have read about it online.
- No points for guessing that it’s made out of coconut! It is a sugar produced from the sap of cut flower buds of the coconut palm.
- No, it’s not ‘one of those new fads’, it’s been a traditional sweetener for thousands of years in South East Asian Countries.
- It’s a lot better than newer more popular sugar alternatives because it’s not very processed.
- It’s low glycemic.
- It’s not just empty calories like white sugar! Coconut sugar is high in mineral content and actually nutritious.
- It’s considered safer for people with diabetics.
- Above all, it tastes really really good!
Coconut sugar has a very strong caramel like sweetness. It tastes earthy and slightly bitter. I think you either love it or hate it. Of course I love it. I can’t get enough of it’s caramelly goodness!
To celebrate it’s beautiful flavor, I decided to bake a simple cake with coconut sugar as the main flavor. I kept things simple. It’s wholesome and filling with whole wheat flour, coconut oil, coconut milk and coconut sugar. I loved the gorgeous deep earthy sweetness of the sauce and the mild fluffy texture of the cake. The rich beautiful color for the caramel sauce makes it look like chocolate and tastes a little like coffee with bitter undertones.
It’s quite sweet but a caramel sauce as to live up to it’s name.
I have made the cake with just 100% stone ground whole wheat flour by Navadarshanam. Replace 1/2 cup of the whole wheat flour with refined white flour for a lighter cake.
Double the sauce if you want extra to drizzle on top whole serving.
Increasing the coconut oil from 1/4 cup to 1/2 cup can result in a MUCH softer and moist cake.
- 1 ½ cups of whole wheat flour
- 1tsp baking powder
- 1/2 tsp baking soda
- A pinch of salt
- 1/2 cup coconut sugar
- 3/4 cup coconut milk
- 1/4 cup coconut oil
- 2 tbsp vinegar
- 1 tbsp flax seed powder + 3 tbsp water
- 1 cup coconut sugar
- 1 tbsp coconut oil
- 1/2 cup water
Pre-heat the oven at 150 degree Celsius. Combine the flax seed powder with water, stir well and leave aside. In a big bowl, combine all the dry ingredients and mix well. Make sure there are no lumps of baking soda or baking powder. In a separate bowl mix all the wet ingredients and the flax seed mixture. Pour the wet into the dry and fold everything together. Try not to over mix. It’ll be a thick batter but the cake will turn out fine. Pour the batter into a greased cake pan. Smoothen the surface with a spatula and place it in the pre-heated oven. Bake for 45 to 50 minutes, or till a toothpick inserted comes out clean.
For the sauce- mix the coconut sugar and water in a small pan and bring it to a boil. Simmer for 5 to 10 minutes in a very low flame. When it slightly thickens add the coconut oil and continue to simmer for another few minutes. The sauce will be fairly thin at this stage but it’ll continue to thicken as it cools down.
After the cake and sauce are both ready, wait for both to cool completely. Pour the sauce over the cake. Cake will actually soak up all the sauce slowly.
If you have made extra sauce serve the cake drizzled with some extra sauce on top.
I have a little request today…
I have been nominated as ‘The Best Vegetarian Food Blogger’ by FriendsEAT.com. A lot of my readers and friends are finding it hard to vote. So I thought i’ll write a little not about ‘How to Vote’
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Click on the following link – http://friendseat.com/
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