It was a special week with my baby Kavya niece turning 10 months – she’s lit up our house with laughter and naught-iness that was lacking in our corridors. She’s also managed to melt her grandmother completely and might I add, it gives me great triumphant joy to see Kavya bend her backwards to her tantrums. Finally, someone who’s barely a couple of feet tall can take the mickey out of my mother!
She’s now old enough to take a few licks of our food, and her mother, with a dreadful sweet tooth wanted a cake she could eat too. Kavya is a vegan along with her mother, and is sensitive to quite a few food items – she really knows how to test all of us!
I developed a suji cake – with a bit of whole wheat flour, and jaggery, all items she can have. I’m using the oil and water combination to replace the eggs, and for her mother, I swirled in just a little bit of cocoa powder. I’ve also add orange extract for a more refined flavour – so what if she’s 10 months only, it’s never too early to develop a palate.
Since semolina is a bit of a tough grain, I like to keep it soaked into the batter for a while – but without the raising agents as this doesn’t bode well for the batter.
The taste of this cake is rather brilliant – you couldn’t find the lack of eggs or dairy – and also has a texture of a cross between halva and shiro.
This picture may not look so good, and lacks the fanfare of usual food photography, but this is a recipe that I am proudest of – you know how they say, everything made with love tastes the best?
- 1 cup semolina (ravo / suji)
- ½ cup whole wheat flour
- 2 heaping tsp of cocoa powder, unsweetened
- 1 tsp baking powder
- ½ tsp baking soda
- ½ tsp salt
- ½ cup jaggery
- ½ cup vegetable or olive oil
- ¼ cup water, room temperature
- 1 tsp vanilla extract
- 2 tsp orange extract or ¼ cup orange juice
- Preheat the oven to 190C
- Prepare a small cake tin
- Whisk the all dry ingredients except the semolina together and set aside
- In a large mixing bowl whisk the oil and water and white
- Then add the extracts and/or juice, and jaggery and whisk to combine
- Add the semolina, combine, and set aside for 3-5 minutes to soften
- Then add the rest of the dry ingredients and combine, ensuring no lumps
- Pour into the cake tin and bake for 30-35 minutes
- Allow the cake to cool completely
- Optional: pour melted chocolate on top and garnish with sprinkles