{Rhubarb Olive Oil Cake} – Prajitura cu rubarba si ulei de masline

rhubarb olive oil cake

It’s strawberry and rhubarb season, it’s the time of fresh flavors and delicate tastes, of beautiful colors and sunny days, it’s the season of going to the market to find inspiration. I love this time of the year for its fruits, veggies and herbs, for its great long days, for its walks in the park and market visits. It’s lovely to let yourself be inspired by all of these – it’s probably how some of the best desserts were born.

What I’m bringing you today however is not a complex or complicated cake – it’s one that relies on simplicity and great flavor, a simple cake in its core, but one that tastes amazing. The olive oil sponge is a great base to absorb flavor and that’s precisely what the strawberries and rhubarb bring – plenty of flavor and delicious juices, a lovely delicate color and a delightful texture.

This Rhubarb Olive Oil Cake is perfect to be served with a scoop of ice cream or a dollop of whipped cream. Mind you, even a dollop of Greek yogurt would complement it well. Just snuggle up on the sofa, put a movie on and enjoy a slice of cake – now that’s a great way to spend a Sunday afternoon!


{Rhubarb Olive Oil Cake}
 
Author:
Serves:: 8-10 servings
Ingredients:
Cake:
  • 4 eggs + 80g white sugar
  • 1 teaspoon lemon zest
  • ½ teaspoon vanilla extract
  • 75ml extra-virgin olive oil
  • 140g all-purpose flour, sifted
  • 1 pinch salt
  • 2 egg whites + 50g white sugar
  • 2 rhubarb stalks, peeled and sliced
  • 1 handful fresh strawberries, hulled and halved
Icing:
  • 2 tablespoons fresh strawberry puree
  • 1 tablespoon lemon juice
  • 100g powdered sugar
Directions:
Cake:
  1. Combine the eggs, 80g sugar, lemon zest and vanilla in a bowl and mix until triple in volume and light in color.
  2. Gradually pour in the olive oil, mixing well.
  3. Fold in the flour - use a spatula and try not to deflate the batter.
  4. Place the batter aside. In another bowl, mix the egg whites with a pinch of salt.
  5. When stiff and fluffy, add the sugar, gradually, and keep mixing until glossy and stiff.
  6. Fold the meringue into the batter, one spoonful at a time.
  7. Pour the batter in a 22-24cm diameter pan, lined with baking paper or greased and floured.
  8. Scatter the rhubarb and strawberries over the batter.
  9. Bake in the preheated oven at 350F - 180C for 30-35 minutes or until it passes the toothpick test.
  10. Allow to cool in the pan then transfer on a platter.
Icing:
  1. Combine all the ingredients in a bowl.
  2. Mix well, adding more sugar if the icing is too thin or more lemon juice if it's too thick.
  3. Drizzle the icing over the cake and serve.
  4. Enjoy!

rhubarb olive oil cakeROMANIAN

E sezonul capsunelor si a rubarbei – se gasesc pe toate drumurile (literalmente) asa ca ar fi pacat sa nu profitam acum de ele, mai ales ca sunt din ce in ce mai aromate si mai delicioase! Asa ca astazi va propun un tort umed, aromat ce are la baza un blat cu ulei de masline pentru un gust mai robust si un topping de capsune pentru un plus de aroma. E un tort departe de a fi complex, nici in ceea ce priveste tehnica, nici gustul, dar va asigur ca merita! Din cand in cand e bine sa ne orientam spre lucruri simple – e o ocazie excelenta sa ne imprietenim cu gustul primar al ingredientelor, sa invatam cum sa le punem in valoare fara a petrece ore in sir in bucatarie sau a depune un efort prea mare. Si pentru ca de curand am lansat si canalul de Youtube, va invit, pe langa reteta, sa urmariti si clipul realizarii acestui tort. Nu uitati sa va Abonati la canalul de Youtube!

Ingrediente:

Prajitura:

  • 4 oua intregi + 80g zahar alb
  • 1 lingurita coaja de lamaie
  • 1/2 lingurita extract de vanilie
  • 75ml ulei de masline extravirgin
  • 140g faina alba, cernuta
  • 1 praf de sare
  • 2 albusuri + 50g zahar alb
  • 2 tije de rubarba, curatate si feliate
  • 1 mana de capsune, curatate si injumatatite

Glazura:

  • 2 linguri piure de capsune
  • 1 lingura zeama de lamaie
  • 100g zahar pudra, cernut

Mod de preparare:

Prajitura:

  1. Mixati ouale intregi, 80g zahar, coaja de lamaie si vanilia intr-un bol pana obtineti un amestec pufos care si-a triplat volumul.
  2. Incorporati treptat uleiul de masline, apoi adaugati faina, incorporand-o cu o spatula. Dati deoparte.
  3. In alt bol, mixati albusurile cu un praf de sare pana devin spumoase. Adaugati treptat 50g zahar apoi mixati pana obtineti o bezea ferma si lucioasa.
  4. Incorporati bezeaua in aluatul realizat mai devreme apoi turnati-l intr-o tava tapetata cu hartie de copt sau unsa cu ulei si presarata cu faina.
  5. Puneti deasupra rubarba si capsunile.
  6. Coaceti in cuptorul preincalzit la 180C pentru 30-35 minute sau pana prajitura devine aurie si trece testul scobitorii.
  7. Lasati sa se raceasca in tava apoi transferati pe un platou.

Glazura:

  1. Combinati ingredientele intr-un bol si amestecati bine, adaugand mai mult zahar daca glazura e prea subtire sau mai multa zeama de lamaie daca e prea groasa.
  2. Turnati glazura peste prajitura.
  3. Serviti cu inghetata, smantana batuta sau iaurt grecesc.
  4. Sa aveti pofta!

rhubarb olive oil cake

{Vegan Banana Bread} – Chec cu banane – de post!

vegan banana bread2c

I get asked a lot about vegan recipes lately – do I make vegan cakes, are they tasty, are they healthy seem to be spme of the questions that I got quite often over the past few weeks. The answer is yes to all of them! Vegan cakes are not guilt free, but they surely are healthier and just as delicious as other cakes. Surprising, right?! Especially coming from a butter addict like myself. But hey, your taste buds can be thought to love things, they can be educated into enjoying certain foods and that’s what I’m doing with vegan desserts. So yes, I like them more and more and I find them to be part of a market that is expanding every day – people choose wisely what they eat nowadays and veganism is becoming more than a trend if you ask me, a no expert.

vegan banana breadc

So today I have for you the best banana bread I ever made! Yes, it’s vegan, yes, it’s delicious, yes, it’s moist and fluffy, yes, it’s packed with flavor. In fact, it has more flavor than any other butter and eggs version I ever tried. That might be the key actually – there’s no extra ingredient to wash away the banana flavor – it’s just pure banana! This vegan banana bread is perfect with a mug of hot tea or just on its own, as a sweet snack for those times you need an energy boost. Isn’t that great?! Also, check out this vegan coconut loaf cake as well – these two make a wonderful team!

{Vegan Sultanas Banana Bread}
 
Author:
Serves:: 1 loaf
Ingredients:
Bread:
  • 280g all-purpose flour
  • ½ teaspoon baking powder
  • ½ teaspoon baking soda
  • ½ teaspoon salt
  • ¼ teaspoon cinnamon powder
  • 125ml vegetable oil
  • 50g light brown sugar
  • 100g white sugar
  • 4 bananas, mashed
  • 80ml vegan milk (coconut, soy, almond or rice)
  • 1 teaspoon apple cider vinegar
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
  • 80g sultanas
Glaze and topping:
  • 2 tablespoons vegan milk
  • 100g powdered sugar
  • 1 handful walnuts, chopped
Directions:
Bread:
  1. Preheat the oven to 350F - 180C and line a bread pan with baking paper.
  2. Combine the dry ingredients in a bowl.
  3. Combine the wet ingredients in another bowl and mix well. Pour this mixture over the dry ingredients and mix quickly just until combined.
  4. Spoon the batter in your prepared pan and bake for 35-40 minutes until a toothpick inserted in the center comes out clean.
  5. Allow the bread to cool in the pan then transfer on a platter.
Glaze:
  1. Mix the milk and sugar in a bowl until well combined. If the glaze is too thin, add more powdered sugar. If it's too thick, add a few drops of milk and mix.
  2. Drizzle the glaze over the cooled bread and top with walnuts.
  3. Serve right away/

vegan banana bread3cROMANIAN

E post si parca nu v-as mai ispiti cu dulciuri decadente si torturi ciocolatose. Am inceput saptamana cu un chec cu nuca de cocos, fara lapte, oua, unt sau smantana si o continuam in acelasi ritm cu inca un chec pe care il ador – cu banane si stafide, plus multa nuca deasupra pentru un plus de gust si textura.

E un chec extrem de aromat, poate si pentru ca nu are oua ori unt care sa-l mai dilueze, asa incat ingredientul de baza ramane banana, care leaga aluatul, il pastreaza proaspat si ii da o aroma aparte. Stafidele au fost o idee de ultim moment – tocmai primisem o punga de stafide de la Lidl si parca imi facea cu ochiul, dar nu e obligatoriu sa le puneti in compozitie.

Ingrediente:

Chec:

  • 280g faina alba (sau un amestec de alba cu integrala)
  • 1/2 lingurita praf de copt
  • 1/2 lingurita bicarbonat de sodiu
  • 1/2 lingurita sare
  • 1/4 lingurita scortisoara pudra
  • 125ml ulei vegetal neutru
  • 50g zahar brun
  • 100g zahar alb
  • 4 banane mici, piure
  • 80ml lapte vegetal (nuca de cocos, soia, migdale, orez)
  • 1 lingurita extract de vanilie
  • 1 lingurita otet de mere
  • 80g stafide (optional)

Glazura si topping:

  • 2 linguri lapte vegetal
  • 100g zahar pudra, cernut
  • 1 mana miez de nuca, tocat

Mod de preparare:

Chec:

  1. Preincalziti cuptorul la 180C si tapetati o forma de chec cu hartie de copt.
  2. Amestecati ingredientele uscate intr-un bol si cele umede in alt bol.
  3. Combinati cele doua mixuri si amestecati scurt doar pana la omogenizare.
  4. Turnati amestecul in tava pregatita si coaceti pentru 35-40 minute sau pana trece testul scobitorii.
  5. Lasati sa se raceasca in tava apoi transferati pe un platou.

Glazura:

  1. Amestecati laptele cu zaharul pudra pana obtineti o glazura groasa, dar care curge, adaugand zahar sau lapte daca mai e nevoie, pana obtineti consistenta dorita.
  2. Turnati glazura uniform peste chec si acoperiti imediat cu miez de nuca.
  3. Lasati glazura sa se intareasca si feliati checul.
  4. Sa aveti pofta!

vegan banana bread4c

Mini torturi cu ciocolata si cafea sau Tiramisu my way

tiramisu

Cand ma gandesc la Italia si aromele ei, cafeaua e printre primele lucruri care imi vin in aminte, urmata indeaproape de Amaretto. Sunt doua arome care ma duc cu gandul imediat la bucataria si cultura italiana si ador sa le combin, cu toate ca nu sunt o bautoare de cafea. In mod ciudat insa, iubesc aroma cafelei proaspat facute si imi place enorm sa inspir aroma de cafea din borcanul sigilat in care isi tine mama cafeaua macinata. Si mai ales, imi place felul in care cafeaua eleveaza aroma ciocolatei, motiv pentru care am stiut din prima ce voi face cand am vazut provocarea #romacuelectrolux lansata de Electrolux. Tu gatesti un preparat de inspiratie italiana, ei te trimit la Taste of Roma in perioada 18-20 septembrie sa iei parte la workshop-uri si demonstratii interactive cu cei mai renumiti chefi ai orasului. How interesting and fun does that sound?! O provocare e bine-venita oricand si oricum, te scoate din rutina si iti traseaza un tel, te scoate din zona de comfort si se si poate incheia cu o experienta frumoasa la Roma. Nu o puteam rata!

Pe masura ce citeam articolul parca simteam in nari parfumul cafelei si imi imaginam ce gust bun ar avea intr-un desert cu ciocolata si mascarpone. Inspiratia mea pentru acest desert a fost celebrul desert italian Tiramisu – am pastrat ideea unui tiramisu in sensul in care am folosit mascarpone (nu pot exprima in cuvinte iubirea mea pentru branza asta atat de cremoasa si bogata), cafea si am elevat totul cu ciocolata si pralina fina cu alune de padure. Glazura e de ciocolata cu o aroma subtila de cafea, iar pentru decor am optat pentru o trufa de ciocolata neagra cu Amaretto si ciocolata din plin.

Intr-un fel sau altul, tiramisu nu prea mai are nevoie de introducere. E un desert traditional italian al carui gust e inconfundabil datorita combinatiei dintre cafea si mascarpone, totul acoperit cu un strat subtire de cacao. Se pare ca desertul ar fi originar din regiunea Veneto si reteta e destul de reteta, intrucat nu s-au gasit marturii ale acestui tip de desert in cartile de bucate de dinainte de 1960. Reteta originala se pare ca nu avea decat cateva ingrediente de baza: galbenusuri, mascarpone, cafea, piscoturi, zahar si cafea, fara albusuri si fara frisca, dar si fara Marsala sau alt lichior. Pornind de la aceasta reteta de baza au aparut apoi tot felul de variante, dar pentru mine tiramisu trebuie sa contina in primul rand cafea si mascarpone, fara cele doua nu putem vorbi de un astfel de desert.

tiramisu

 

Ce mi-a placut enorm la acest desert e felul in care componentele se complementeaza unele pe celelalte. Cand planific un desert si mi-l imaginez, fac schite si incerc sa imi dau seama din ceea ce am facut sau gustat anterior, daca aromele merg impreuna.. si nu aveam nicio indoiala ca acestea sunt a match made in heaven, dar mi-a depasit si mie orice asteptari. Baza e un genoise imbogatit cu putin unt, insiropat usor cu un sirop gros de cafea. Urmeaza un mousse delicat, aerat si vanilat de mascarpone, apoi un cremeux de cafea care e usor mai dens decat un mousse, dar la fel de cremos si se topeste in gura. Urmatorul strat e un mousse de ciocolata in care am adaugat o pudra fina de pralina (caramel si alune de padure). Ca fapt divers, daca continuati sa pulsati pralina in vasul robotului de bucatarie cateva minute, adaugand 2 linguri de ulei vegetal, veti obtine o pasta absolut delicioasa. Sigur, si pasta merge intr-un mousse (chiar foarte bine), dar eu mi-am dorit in acest desert si o textura crocanta, ori pudra de pralina cu bucati mai mici si mai mari de zahar caramelizat si alune de padure exact asta face.

tiramisu

Pralina

Glazura, desi ciocolatoasa, nu e atat de intensa incat sa acopere celelalte arome. Ba dimpotriva, fiind aromata cu putina cafea, e exact ce are nevoie desertul pentru a se apropia de perfectiune, mai ales ca e si atat de lucioasa si eleganta. Trufa de ciocolata neagra si Amaretto e doar cireasa de pe tort pentru acest desert de inspiratie italiana.

Cat despre chefs de la care mi-ar placea nu sa smulg cuvinte de lauda, ci critici cat mai constructive, i-as numi aici pe Luca Montersino si Gabriele Riva, ambii cu o tehnica grozava si o creativitate iesita din comun, ambii modele de urmat pentru orice tanar aspirant la titlul de pastry chef.

tiramisu-1-14b

Trufe cu Amaretto

5.0 from 2 reviews
Mini torturi cu ciocolata si cafea sau Tiramisu reinventat
 
Author:
Serves:: 8 mini-tortulete
Ingredients:
Genoise:
  • 4 oua
  • 85g zahar
  • 115g faina alba
  • 20g amidon
  • 1 praf de sare
  • 40g unt, topit si racit
Sirop de cafea:
  • 100ml cafea
  • 50g zahar
Mousse de mascarpone:
  • 150g mascarpone
  • 1 lingurita extract de vanilie
  • 4g gelatina + 20ml apa rece
  • 150g ciocolata alba, topita si racita
  • 150ml smantana pentru frisca, batuta
Cremeux de cafea:
  • 150ml smantana pentru frisca
  • 75ml cafea tare
  • 2 galbenusuri
  • 20g zahar
  • 60g ciocolata cu lapte, tocata
  • 4g gelatin + 20ml apa rece
Mousse de ciocolata cu pralina:
  • - Pralina:
  • 60g zahar
  • 30ml apa
  • 60g alune de padure
  • - Mousse:
  • Pralina de mai sus
  • 2 galbenusuri
  • 1 praf de sare
  • 50g zahar + 25ml apa
  • 4g gelatina + 20ml apa rece
  • 150g ciocolata (50-60% cacao), topita
  • 300ml smantana pentru frisca, batuta
Glazura de ciocolata si cafea:
  • 50ml smantana pentru frisca
  • 80ml apa
  • 150g zahar
  • 100g glucoza
  • 150ml lapte
  • 50g cacao
  • 1 lingurita cafea instant
  • 11g gelatina + 55ml apa rece
Trufe de ciocolata cu Amaretto:
  • 70ml smantana pentru frisca
  • 50g ciocolata 55%, tocata
  • 50g ciocolata 70%, tocata
  • 30g unt
  • 2 linguri Amaretto
  • 1 praf de sare
  • Cacao pentru a acoperi trufele
Decor:
  • Ciocolata topita
  • Foita de aur
Directions:
Genoise:
  1. Mixati ouale intregi cu zaharul cateva minute pana isi tripleaza volumul.
  2. Cerneti faina cu sarea si amidonul apoi incorporati-o in ouale batute folosind o spatula.
  3. Luati deoparte cateva linguri de blat si adaugati untul. Turnati inapoi in bolul mare si incorporati usor cu o spatula.
  4. Transferati blatul intr-o tava mare de copt tapetata cu hartie de copt (40x30cm) si coaceti 8-10 minute la 180C.
  5. Lasati sa se raceasca apoi taiat cercuri de blat pe care le montati in inele de inox tapetate cu folie de acetat. Dati deoparte.
Sirop de cafea:
  1. Fierbeti cafeaua si zaharul pentru 5 minute apoi lasati sa se raceasca.
  2. Cu o pensula, insiropati usor fiecare disc de blat taiat mai devreme. Nu exagerati cu siropul, nu vreti sa se scurga din blat, ci doar sa pastreze blatul umed. Dati formele de inox deoparte.
Mousse de mascarpone:
  1. Hidratati gelatina in apa rece pentru 10 minute.
  2. Mixati mascarpone cu vanilia intr-un bol, apoi adaugati ciocolata topita si gelatina.
  3. Incorporati smantana batuta si puneti 2-3 linguri de mousse in fiecare forma de inox, peste blatul insiropat. Dati la rece.
Cremeux de cafea:
  1. Hidratati gelatina in apa rece pentru 10 minute.
  2. Intr-un vas, amestecati smantana pentru frisca, cafeaua, galbenusurile si un praf de sare si puneti pe foc mic.
  3. Gatiti pentru 5-10 minute pe foc foarte mic pana compozitia incepe sa se ingroase.
  4. Luati de pe foc si adaugati ciocolata. Amestecati bine sa se topeasca.
  5. Incorporati gelatina topita apoi lasati cremeux sa vina la temperature camerei.
  6. Turnati cremeux-ul peste mousse-ul de mascarpone si dati din nou la rece.
Mousse de ciocolata
  1. - Pralina:
  2. Combinati zaharul si apa intr-un vas si fierbeti cateva minute, spaland peretii vasului cu o pensula imbibata in apa rece, pana incepe sa se caramelizeze.
  3. Cand are o culoare aurie frumoasa, luati de pe foc si adaugati alunele de padure.
  4. Amestecati sa le acoperiti cu zahar caramelizat apoi turnati amestecul intr-o tava tapetata cu hartie de copt. Lucrati cu grija pentru ca e foarte fierbinte.
  5. Lasati sa se raceasca complet apoi rupeti in bucati mici si puneti in vasul robotului de bucatarie. Pulsati pana obtineti o pudra fina cu bucati usor mai mari pe ici pe colo.
  6. - Mousse:
  7. Hidratati gelatina in apa rece pentru 10 minute.
  8. Combinati zaharul si apa intr-un vas pe foc mic si dati in clocot. Fierbeti 2-3 minute pana se topeste zaharul.
  9. Intre timp, mixati galbenusurile cu un praf de sare pana isi dubleaza volumul. Mixand continuu, adaugati siropul de zahar fierbinte si continuati sa mixati pana se raceste compozitia.
  10. Adaugati gelatina topita si ciocolata, apoi lasati amestecul sa vina la temperatura camerei.
  11. Incorporati frisca batuta apoi adaugati pralina.
  12. Turnati 3-4 linguri de mousse peste cremeux-ul de cafea si dati la rece peste noapte.
Glazura de ciocolata si cafea:
  1. Hidratati gelatina in apa rece pentru 10 minute.
  2. Combinati restul ingredientelor intr-un vas cu fund dublu si dati in clocot.
  3. Fierbeti 5-7 minute pana incepe sa se ingroase, avand grija pentru ca are tendinta sa dea in foc si sa se lipeasca de fundul vasului.
  4. Luati de pe foc, lasati sa se raceasca 10 minute apoi adaugati gelatina topita.
  5. Amestecati bine apoi treceti glazura printr-o sita fina.
  6. Acoperiti cu folie la suprafata si lasati sa se raceasca la temperatura camerei.
Pentru a glazura torturile:
  1. Puneti torturile la congelator cel putin 1 ora inainte de a glazura, apoi inlaturati formele de inox si foliile de acetat si puneti-le pe un gratar asezat deasupra unei tavi adanci care sa colecteze excesul de glazura.
  2. Aveti grija ca glazura sa nu fie prea calda inainte de a o turna peste prajituri.
  3. Turnati cu grija glazura peste fiecare tort si lasati sa se scurga bine inainte de a le transfera pe un platou.
Trufe de ciocolata cu Amaretto:
  1. Combinati smantana si sarea intr-un vas si puneti pe foc mic. Infierbantati bine fara a da in clocot, apoi luati de pe foc si adaugati ciocolata.
  2. Amestecati pana la topirea completa apoi adaugati untul si Amaretto.
  3. Acoperiti cu folie la suprafata si dati la rece cateva ore.
  4. Pentru a forma trufele, luati 1 lingurita de amestec si dati-i forma uneil bile. Rulati trufa prin cacao chiar inainte de a o folosi la decor.
Decor:
  1. Pentru a decora torturile, am topit ciocolata neagra, am temperat-o, apoi am intins-o pe o foaie de acetat si am infasurat-o in jurul unui inel de inox pentru a-i da forma de cerc.
  2. Foita de aur comestibila si trufele facute mai devreme sunt nelipsite.
  3. Sa aveti pofta!

tiramisutiramisutiramisu

{Blood Orange Polenta Cake} – Chec cu malai si portocale rosii

orange polenta cake

Food shopping is fun, I love it, especially when I need to re-stock on my baking ingredients. There’s nothing that excites me more than buying chocolate, cocoa powder, flour, sugar and various fruits to bake with. I usually go shopping with a list and try to buy only what’s on the list. Only try as every single time I end up buying something that’s not on the list – and exactly this is what happened with these beautiful blood oranges. The moment I grabbed them from the food aisle my mind was already imagining all sorts of desserts using them and that beautiful red color of the orange juice. I was so excited that I forgot to buy flour, no kidding!

Polenta is very common in Romania. It’s a dish we pair with many things, from steak to stews or soups or my favorite – with feta cheese and sour cream. But desserts using polenta are rare and only known in some parts of the country. In fact, I vaguely remember a polenta dessert from my childhood and I clearly never tasted one as an adult. Until now that is because I totally love this polenta cake and it really blew my mind away with its texture and delicate taste. Of course you could replace the polenta flour with all-purpose flour, but it’s not going to have  that slightly crunch when you bite into it and the color won’t be as yellow and beautiful. The blood oranges are not compulsory and could be replaced with simple oranges or maybe lemons. But look at that beautiful pink glaze! It’s only made with orange juice and powdered sugar and it looks so delicate and pretty, don’t you think?!

5.0 from 1 reviews
{Blood Orange Polenta Cake}
 
Author:
Ingredients:
Cake:
  • 250g butter, softened
  • 200g sugar
  • 4 eggs
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
  • 1 tablespoon orange zest
  • 200g all-purpose flour
  • 140g polenta flour
  • 2 teaspoons baking powder
  • 1 pinch salt
  • Juice from 2 small blood oranges
Blood orange glaze:
  • 120g powdered sugar
  • 2-3 tablespoons blood orange juice
Directions:
Cake:
  1. Preheat your oven to 350F - 180C and line a loaf pan with parchment paper. Place it aside until needed.
  2. Mix the butter with sugar for 5 minutes or until fluffy and creamy.
  3. Stir in the eggs, one by one, mixing well after each egg addition. Stir in the vanilla and orange zest as well.
  4. Combine the flour with polenta, baking powder and salt in a bowl. Mix half of the flour into the batter.
  5. Add the orange juice and fold in the remaining half of the flour mixture.
  6. Pour the batter into your prepared pan and bake in the oven for 40 minutes or until golden brown and a toothpick inserted in the cake comes out clean.
  7. When done, remove from the oven and let the cake cool in the pan for 10 minutes. Turn the cake upside down on a platter and let it cool completely.
Blood orange glaze:
  1. Combine the powdered sugar with blood orange juice and mix well.
  2. The glaze should be thick but still slightly runny. If it's too thin, add more sugar until it reaches the desired consistency. If it's too thick, add a few drops of orange juice at a time until it thins down to the consistency you're after.
  3. Pour the glaze over the chilled cake and let it set.
  4. Decorate with blood orange slices if you wish.

orange polenta cake


ROMANIAN!

Va propun astazi o reteta care foloseste malaiul nostru de toate zilele intr-un mod foarte creativ si delicios – intr-un desert. Suprinzator pentru unii, perfect normal pentru cei care au gustat macar o data mamaliga cu zahar, acest desert e aromat si atat de elegant cu aceste culori superbe – galbenul intens al malaiului si rozul perfect al portocalelor rosii. Portocalele rosii nu sunt obligatorii, desi la cat de frumoasa e glazura, nu le-as inlocui cu nimic altceva. Desigur, pana si malaiul il puteti inlocui cu faina normala, dar reteta devine un banal chec care, desi gustos, nu are nimic in plus fata de alte checuri si ii lipseste textura pe care malaiul i-o da. Va recomand sa-l incercati in varianta asta inainte de toate si apoi sa decideti daca are nevoie de alte modificari sau nu. Veti fi cu adevarat surprinsi de cat de bun este!

Ingrediente:

Chec cu malai:

  • 250g unt la temperatura camerei
  • 200g zahar
  • 4 oua
  • 1 lingurita extract de vanilie
  • 1 lingura coaja de portocala
  • 200g faina alba
  • 140g faina de malai
  • 2 lingurite praf de copt
  • 1 praf de sare
  • Sucul de la 2 portocale rosii mici

Glazura de portocale rosii:

  • 120g zahar pudra cernut
  • 2-3 linguri suc de portocale rosii
  • 1/2 lingurita coaja de portocala
  • Felii de portocale rosii pentru decor

Mod de preparare:

Chec cu malai:

  1. Preincalziti cuptorul la 180C si tapetati o tava de chec cu hartie de copt.
  2. Amestecati faina, malaiul, praful de copt si sarea intr-un bol si dati deoparte.
  3. Mixati untul cu zaharul, vanilia si coaja de portocala pentru cel putin 5 minute pana obtineti o compozitie cremoasa, fina.
  4. Adaugati rand pe rand ouale, mixand bine dupa fiecare ou, apoi incorporati amestecul de faina si la final adaugati sucul de portocale.
  5. Turnati aluatul in tava de copt si coaceti pentru 35-40 minute sau pana trece testul scobitorii.
  6. Cand e gata, lasati checul sa se racoreasca in tava pret de cateva minute, apoi transferati-l pe o tava/platou si lasati-l sa se raceasca complet.

Glazura de portocale rosii:

  1. Amestecati cele doua ingrediente intr-un bol. Glazura trebuie sa fie groasa ca o smantana. Daca e prea subtire, mai adaugati putin cate putin zahar pudra. Daca e prea groasa, mai adaugati, picatura cu picatura, suc de portocale pana capata consistenta necesara.
  2. Turnati glazura peste chec si serviti-l rece. Putina frisca sau chiar smantana acra merge foarte bine cu o felie de chec. Nu uitati de o cana de ceai sau lapte!

orange polenta cake

{Carrot Cake} – Tort cu morcovi

This must be my second time making carrot cake. The first time happened years ago and I wasn’t this experienced with recipes and ingredients so I chose a recipe that had too much vegetable oil. As you might expect, I ended up with an oily, quite dense cake that tasted like oil and sugar rather than a good cake, therefore I didn’t like it. But I decided to give it one more try today and this is what I made – an airy, moist, fragrant carrot cake with bits of crushed pineapple and walnuts, filled and frosted with a rich, smooth cream cheese Swiss meringue buttercream flavored with plenty of vanilla and a touch of orange zest. And surprise! I love it so much that I had two slices as I was taking pictures and I am incredibly tempted to have a third slice. Someone stop me now!!! This cake is addictive! If you love spices as bold flavors as much as I do, you will fall in love with this cake. I’m mainly saying this for those of you who never had carrot cake before – I didn’t until a few years ago as adding veggies to desserts is definitely something unusual for Romanians.

carrot cake

The moist layers of cake and the rich, creamy, luscious filling are a match made in heaven! The sponge truly surprised me because ever since my other try, I had no real expectations and I’ve kept delaying making this cake for that reason.  But here it is – a second try and one of the best cakes I had lately (except entremets, of course, but they are a different category). I’m seriously addicted to this stuff and I’m thinking to make one that has ginger and star anise as spices, just to be in tone with the season or maybe one that uses grated pumpkin instead of carrot. Gotta love a versatile recipe!

5.0 from 4 reviews
{Carrot Cake}
 
Author:
Serves:: 6-8 servings
Ingredients:
Carrot Cake
  • 200ml vegetable oil (sunflower oil, canola oil)
  • 200g white sugar
  • 80g brown sugar
  • 3 large eggs
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
  • 1 teaspoon orange zest
  • 280g all-purpose flour
  • 1 teapsoon baking soda
  • 1½ teaspoons baking powder
  • ½ teaspoon salt
  • 1 teaspoon cinnamon powder
  • 200g grated carrots
  • 100g shredded coconut
  • 200g crushed pineapple (drained)
  • 70g walnuts, toasted and chopped
Cream Cheese Swiss Meringue Buttercream
  • 3 egg whites
  • 130g white sugar
  • 1 pinch salt
  • 2 teaspoons vanilla extract
  • 1 teaspoon orange zest
  • 145g butter, softened
  • 300g cream cheese, room temperature
  • ¼ cup powdered sugar (optional)
  • Toasted shredded coconut to decorate
Candied Carrot Curls:
  • 2 small carrots
  • ⅔ cup sugar
  • ⅔ cup water
Directions:
Carrot cake:
  1. Preheat your oven to 350F - 175C - and line your round cake pans with baking paper. I used 2 small pans of 18cm diameter then cut the cake in half to make 4 layers, but you can use bigger pans, keeping in mind that a bigger pan won't yield 4 layers, but 2 or 3.
  2. Sift the flour with baking soda, baking powder, salt and cinnamon in a bowl.
  3. Combine the oil, sugars, eggs, vanilla and orange zest in a bowl and mix until double in volume and light in color.
  4. Gently stir in the flour, either with your mixer on low speed or with a spatula.
  5. Fold in the crushed pineapple, carrots, coconut and walnuts.
  6. Pour the batter into your prepared pans and bake for 30-40 minutes or until it passes the toothpick test.
  7. When done, remove the pans from the oven and let the cakes cool completely.
  8. Level up the cakes if needed and cut them in half lengthwise. (Remember that if you used a bigger pan, cutting in half may not be possible anymore)
Cream Cheese Swiss Meringue Buttercream:
  1. Combine the egg whites, sugar and salt in a heatproof bowl.
  2. Place the bowl over a hot water bath (make sure the water doesn't touch the bottom of the bowl) and heat the mixture up until the sugar is melted, mixing all the time.
  3. Once the sugar is melted and the mixture is frothy and hot, remove from heat and using an electric mixer, mix the whites for 8-10 minutes or until the bowl cools down completely and the whites turn into a stiff and glossy meringue.
  4. Add the butter, all at once, and mix on medium speed for 5-7 minutes. Once you add the butter, the mixture will become soupy, but keep mixing. A few minutes later, it will curdle up, but keep mixing. 2 more minutes and it will become creamy and so so delicious!
  5. Spoon the cream cheese in a different bowl and stir in the vanilla and orange zest. Mix it well with an electric mixer until creamy and smooth.
  6. Add the buttercream you made earlier, spoon by spoon and mix until well incorporated.
  7. It's done when you've incorporated all the buttercream.
  8. At this point, if you want it sweeter, you can add some powdered sugar. If not, use it to fill your cakes.
  9. Reserve about ⅓ of the buttercream to frost the cake.
  10. Once covered in buttercream, cover the sides of the cake with toasted shredded coconut or coconut flakes.
Candied Carrot Curls:
  1. Wash your carrots well then using a vegetable peeler, peel thin ribbons of carrot.
  2. Mix the water with sugar in a small saucepan and place over medium flame.
  3. Bring to a boil then add the carrot ribbons.
  4. Cook for 10-15 minutes until the syrup becomes thick and the carrot ribbons become slightly translucent.
  5. Remove from heat and let the carrot peels cool in the syrup.
  6. Drain the carrot ribbons and spread them in a baking pan lined with parchment paper.
  7. Cook in the preheated oven at 350F - 175C - for 10-15 minutes just until they begin to become slightly golden brown. What happens is that the sugar begins to caramelize. Watch them closely as they burn easily.
  8. Remove from the oven and while still warm (not hot as caramelized sugar burns easily) wrap them around the handle of a wooden spoon (or around some Chinese chosticks in my case) and let them cool completely. If the ribbons in the pan begin to harden and are difficult to curl, place the pan back in the oven for 3-4 minutes.
  9. Decorate the cake with carrot curls and serve it chilled.

carrot cakecarrot cake


ROMANIAN!

E a doua incercare de a face tort cu morcovi si abia acum pot spune ca am descoperit cat e de delicios. Prima incercare a fost oarecum ratata caci blatul mi-a iesit dens si cam uleios iar crema era mai degraba o supa decat o crema. Acum insa am tras lozul castigator cu aceasta reteta – blatul e umed exact cat trebuie, iar crema… oh, crema e minunata, m-am indragostit de aroma si cremozitatea ei. Nu e nici prea dulce, nici prea untoasa, insa e foarte cremoasa si aromata, cu toate ca necesita ceva timpi de preparare. Insa merita, va promit!

Ingrediente:

Tort de morcovi:

  • 200ml ulei vegetal (nu de masline)
  • 200g zahar alb
  • 80g zahar brun
  • 3 oua mari
  • 1 lingurita extract de vanilie
  • 1 lingurita coaja rasa de portocala
  • 280g faina alba
  • 1 lingurita bicarbonat de sodiu
  • 1 1/2 lingurite praf de copt
  • 1/2 lingurita sare
  • 1 lingurita pudra de scortisoara
  • 200g morcovi rasi
  • 100g nuca de cocos
  • 200g ananas maruntit (scurs de sirop)
  • 70g miez de nuca, tocat

Crema de branza si unt:

  • 3 albusuri
  • 130g zahar
  • 1 praf de sare
  • 1 lingurite extract de vanilie
  • 1 lingurita coaja rasa de portocala
  • 145g unt la temperatura camerei
  • 300g crema de branza la temperatura camerei
  • 2-4 linguri zahar pudra (optional)
  • Nuca de cocos pesntru decor

Morcov confiat:

  • 2 morcovi mici
  • 2/3 cana apa
  • 2/3 cana zahar

Mod de preparare:

Tort de morcovi:

  1. Prancalziti cuptorul la 175C si tapetati doua sau trei tavi de tort cu hartie de copt. Eu am folosit 2 tavi de 18cm diametru, iar blatul obtinut l-am taiat in doua astfel incat mi-au iesit 4 straturi, insa puteti folosit si tavi mai mari cu mentiunea ca probabil nu veti mai avea cum sa taiati blatul si veti obtine doua sau trei straturi.
  2. Cerneti faina, bicarbonatul, praful de copt, sarea si scortisoara intr-un bol.
  3. In alt bol, mixati ouale cu zaharul (si alb si brun), uleiul, vanilia si coaja d portocala pana isi dubleaza volumul si amestecul devine deschis la culoare.
  4. Dati mixerul pe viteza mica si incorporati faina.
  5. Adaugati ananasul, morcovii, nuca de cocos si alunele si incorporati-le cu o spatula.
  6. Turnati aluatul in mod egal in tavile pregatite si coaceti pana trece testul scobitorii, in jur de 30-40 minute, in functie de marimea tavii. Cel mai bine e sa verificati blaturile dupa jumatate de ora caci daca le coaceti prea mult vor iesi prea uscate.
  7. Cand sunt gata, scoateti tavile din cuptor si lasati blaturile sa se raceasca in tavi, apoi nivelati-le si taiati in jumatate pe orizontala.

Crema de branza si unt:

  1. Amestecati albusurile cu zaharul si sarea intr-un bol rezistent la caldura.
  2. Puneti bolul pe baie de aburi (aveti grija ca bolul sa nu atinga suprafata apei) si infierbantati compozitia, amestecand mereu cu un tel pana cand obtineti o compozitie spumoasa si fierbinte iar zaharul se topeste complet.
  3. Luati bolul de pe baia de aburi si folosind un mixer electric, mixati albusurile 8-10 minute pana obtineti o bezea ferma si lucioasa iar bolul se raceste complet.
  4. Adaugati untul, tot o data si mixati cel putin 5 minute pana obtineti o crema fina. Imediat dupa ce adaugati untul, crema va deveni aproape lichida. Nu va ingrijorati, ci continuati sa mixati. Dupa alte cateva minute, crema va arata ca si cand s-a taiat, insa nu va faceti griji caci sunteti pe drumul cel bun. Dupa inca 1-2 minute veti obtine o crema de unt minunata.
  5. Intr-un alt bol, mixati crema de branza cu vanilia si coaja de portocala pana devine cremoasa si fina. Adaugati crema de unt, lingura dupa lingura, si mixati pana obtineti o crema fina, onctuoasa.
  6. Daca doriti crema mai dulce, mai adaugati zahar pudra, daca nu, lasati-o asa, caci e perfecta.
  7. Umpleti tortul cu aceasta crema, pastrand cam o treime pentru a-l acoperi.
  8. Acoperiti tortul intr-un start subtire de crema si decorati marginile cu nuca de cocos.

Morcov confiat:

  1. Folosind un peeler de legume, taiati fasii foarte subtiri de morcov.
  2. Combinati apa si zaharul intr-un vas si dati in clocot pe foc mediu.
  3. Adaugati morcovul si fierbeti 10-15 minute pana siropul se ingroasa.
  4. Luati de pe foc si lasati morcovul sa se raceasca in sirop.
  5. Scurgeti siropul si asezati fasiile de morcov pe o tava de copt tapetata cu hartie de copt.
  6. Coaceti la 180C pentru 10-15 minute sau pana morcovul (de fapt siropul de zahar) incepe sa se caramelizeze usor.
  7. Scoateti din cuptor si cat e inca cald (dar nu fierbinte caci e periculos de fierbinte) infasurati fasiile de morcov pe coada unei linguri de lemn pentru a obtine acele spirale.
  8. Lasati sa se raceasca complet apoi decorati tortul.
  9. Serviti tortul de la rece.

 

carrot cake

 

carrot cake