Loaf cake, with raisins and walnuts

A classic loaf cake is by far my favorite type of cake nice for breakfast, afternoon tea and easy to bake. I realize there are so many varieties out there but this one – with raisins and walnuts – is an extremely good combination and my recipe here makes a light and fluffy cake. I have tried a gluten-free version of this cake by replacing the regular flour with Bob’s Red Mill gluten free all-purpose flour. The cake did not get as fluffy but everything else was just about perfect! 

Ingredients

  • 2 cups all-purpose flour.
  • 2 eggs.
  • 1 cup raw cane sugar.
  • ¼ cup + 1 tbsp. cup softened unsalted butter.
  • 1 cup milk.
  • 2 tsp baking powder (make sure the baking powder fresh – six months is the maximum shelf age)
  • 1/2 tsp salt.
  • 1 tsp cinnamon.
  • I cup raisins & walnuts mix.
  • 1 tbsp. ground pistachio for topping (optional).

Method:

Preheat oven to 350 F. Line your baking pan so it hangs from two sides.

Sieve flour, baking powder, salt and cinnamon together. 

Mix butter and sugar in a separate bowl and beat in the eggs one at a time just for a couple of minutes. I use a fork not an electric mixer.

Gradually fold in the dry sieved ingredients and continue folding and mixing. Finally add walnuts and raisins and gently fold till everything is nicely mixed.

Your batter is going to be thick so use a scrapper to fully transform it in to the cake pan.  Bake for 70 minutes. But test at 60 min. to make sure you are on the right track.

At the end of the baking process, a toothpick inserted in the middle of the cake should come out clean.

Take the cake out, sprinkle ground pistachio on top while it is still hot. Transfer on a rack and let cool.

Cover after a few hours.

Enjoy!


Spicy Pan Kebab, kabab tabeh کباب تابه 

Living in the minus double digits for a few months by this time of the year, I miss so many things including my charcoal burning barbecue and all the goodies that get roasted and cooked on it during the summer evenings in company of good friends and lots of cool drinks!  I specially miss our kebab making rituals around it although to tell the truth my family eats red meat now, only once in two weeks or so.

If, like me, you crave kebab koobideh, and are ready to settle for a pot version of it, this post is for you.  The basic idea is the same as in original koobideh, only we spread the big meatball instead of dividing it into small balls and then skewering them. This means you will not need to worry about kebab holding on to the skewers while being roasted which means, in turn, we can play around with the ingredients.  You will note that in my new recipe for Pan kebab koobideh below, I have added lots of spices in addition to the grated tomatoes and garlic to the ground beef.  I believe with this kebab what lacks in ambiance, it definitely makes up in the taste! Read the rest of this entry »


Pomegranate soup, Aash-e anar, for Yalda

Once again Yalda, one of Iranian’s much loved and cherished celestial moments and rituals is round the corner. We celebrate Yalda on winter solstice on Dec. 20th  as the longest and darkest night of the year by getting together, reciting poetry and feasting over a colorful spread of dried fruits and nuts, aajil, specific fruits namely pomegranate, persimmon and watermelon, cozy heartwarming dishes and lots of light, hope and energy to get through the long but increasingly brighter winter ahead. See my precious posts for Yalda night here and here.

The Persian “Pomegranate Soup” or ash-e anar آش انار, will forever resonate with me the excellent culinary fiction by the same name written by Marsha Mehran, an eloquent Iranian-Irish author who passed too soon but whose novels depicted Persian cuisine enchanting as a fairy-tale full of texture, fragrance and mystery always ready to haut, charm and welcome those unfamiliar with it. Read the rest of this entry »


Aash Sabzi Shirazi (herb aash)

My non Iranian friends may already be familiar with Persian aash, especially from my post on Aash-e reshteh.  Nevertheless, I am going to take you through some fun introductory notes on aash in general and aash sabzi Shirazi آش سبزی شیرازی in particular, using experts from e-book, A sip, A bite, A mouthful: A memoir of food & rowing up in Shiraz.  

As reluctant as I am to use the term “soup” to describe aash, for fear of undermining its significant position within Iranian cuisine and culture, I nevertheless find a comparison between the two the most efficient way to describe the dish to new appetites.  To this end, aash could be said to be an “honorable soup”–rich, thick and laborious to prepare. Depending on the type of aash, it is made of specific varieties of herbs, vegetables, fruits, grains and dairy products; with or without beef or lamb. Read the rest of this entry »


Sum of Summer in My Garden


Almond cookies: 3 ingredients, gluten free

This super easy and super fast cookie is …well, super Yummy!  No butter or oil is required not even to grease the baking sheet.  Yet the cookies are crisp chewy, a bit heavy yet tender  – and with my recipe not too sweet either.  I love them with my evening tea and sometimes with my morning coffee.

Ingredients Read the rest of this entry »


Pomegranate Faloodeh: Persian iced dessert

Recently, on a hot humid days in Montreal, I was privileged to entertain a large group of my family with good food, scented shades on the porch, open heart, and most impressive of all, with homemade faloodeh  Shirazi (pomegranate faloodeh in this case).

Faloodeh or paloodeh فالوده، پالوده is a refreshing iced dessert, a summer savoury, made of frozen cornstarch, water, sugar and rosewater.  Like Salad Shirazi, Faloodeh Shiraz is a speciality of my old hometown Shiraz.  The dessert is of course popular nationwide and is almost always made from the scratch in ice-cream stores and sold in small washable or disposable cups. In Shiarz alone faloodeh is enjoyed with few drops of either flower syrup or lime juice sprinkled on it; everywhere else people eat it with or without lime juice. Read the rest of this entry »