• Rutabaga, Celery, Dill, & Smoked Chicken Soup
  • Matcha Whoopie Pies with Sakura Buttercream Filling
  • Chicken with Oyster Mushrooms, Portobellos, & Napa Cabbage
  • Mushroom Chicken Pie
  • Pistachio Wasabi Beets
  • Sichuan Chili Oil, and variety of cold-chicken-based lunches
  • Lemony Pea and Radish Salad with Mint
  • The Fort Greene
  • East African Sweet Pea Soup
  • Lazy, Rustic, Haphazard, and Amazing Sour Cherry Pies
  • Malaysian Chicken Satay
  • The Wildman’s iPhone App
  • Welsh Cakes with Dried Apricots and Candied Ginger
  • Farmhouse Pork with Black Beans and Green Peppers (and Trotter Gear)
  • Black Pepper Tofu with Pork
  • Peposo
  • Toasted Hazelnut Chai
  • Kentucky Coffee Spread
  • Banana Guacamole
  • Spicy Shrimp with Wine Rice
  • Double Ginger Chocolate Chunk Scones
  • Artichoke and Blood Orange Salad (with frisee, parsley, and cardamom)
  • Chevre Truffles
  • Clementine Sassafras Ice Cream
  • Jack is Closed (but you can vote for our pie on Sunday)
  • Our Wedding
  • Pecan Mole
  • Son-in-Law Eggs
  • Saffron Turmeric Cake with Meyer Lemon Sorbet, Argan Oil Whipped Cream, Almond Brittle, and Thyme
  • My Triumphant Return, with a Book Giveaway!

« | Main | »

Saffron Turmeric Cake with Meyer Lemon Sorbet, Argan Oil Whipped Cream, Almond Brittle, and Thyme

I’ve been meaning to post this for months! Since a few of you requested it, I may as well start with the backlog here. This was a really fun dish to throw together. The saffron turmeric cake was an adaptation of a chocolate cake recipe, where Dave started by replacing the cocoa powder with turmeric and went on from there. It is intensely flavorful and moist and one of the most perfect cakes we’ve ever developed.

You can see from the photo how vividly red the inside of the cake is. It turns out that turmeric, a bright yellow root most commonly sold as a powder here in the U.S., turns red when it reacts with alkaline substances. In fact, the red dot traditionally worn by many Indian women in the center of the forehead is made by mixing powdered turmeric with lime (not the fruit!).

I can’t remember why we decided to pair it with the thyme brittle and the meyer lemon sorbet (I’m sure it made sense at the time, and it worked really well), but I definitely recall that we added thyme because we had read that meyer lemon contains one of the same flavor compounds as thyme.

Our few sets of our muffin pans are still stained red from making rounds of these cakes, but it was entirely worth it.

Now, what you’ve all been waiting for: the winners of my CIA book giveaway! I used a random number generator to pick winners from the comments. The winners are Sandy, Kathryn, Vicki, Alison, Esme, and Red! Winners, please email me your addresses and I’ll have a book sent out to each of you pronto. Thanks to everyone for playing along!

2008: Chocolate-Whiskey Pudding Cake
2007: Rum-Drenched Cocoa-Nana Bread
2006: Saffron Dill Cappelletti Stuffed With Leeks

Saffron Turmeric Cake
1 stick (1/2 C) unsalted butter, in 1 inch cubes
1/2 C warm water
2 tbsp turmeric
1 small pinch saffron
1 C sugar
1.7 oz all-purpose flour
0.7 oz whole wheat flour
1/2 tsp baking soda
1/4 tsp salt
1 egg
1/4 c sour cream

Preheat the oven to 350 F.

Prepare muffin tins with butter and flour, and set aside.

In a large saucepan, steep the saffron in the water. Whisk the flours, salt, and baking soda together, and set aside.

Add the butter and turmeric into the saffron water, then turn on the heat and simmer until the butter melts. Remove from heat.

Whisk in the sugar, but don’t panic if it doesn’t dissolve. Whisk in the flour mixture. Whisk in the egg and then the sour cream, until the color is even.

Fill the prepared muffin tins about 2/3 full.

Bake for 20 minutes. Don’t worry about it setting fully – it will finish setting as it cools.

Makes 10 muffin-sized cakes.

Meyer Lemon Sorbet
470 g meyer lemon juice
80 g glucose syrup
80 g agave nectar
80 g sugar
100 g water
1/2 tsp guar gum (or substitute pectin or a commercial sorbet stabilizer)

Blend together. Freeze in your ice cream churner as per usual.

Argan Oil Whipped Cream
Heavy cream
Argan oil

Mix to taste and beat until whipped.

Almond Brittle
Sliced almonds
Cream of tartar

Toast sliced almonds in a dry pan on the stove until they start to brown and smell delicious. Set aside.

Heat the water, sugar, and a bit of tartar in a saucepan until it is lightly golden, a bit paler than you eventually want it to be. Stir in the toasted almonds, and spread on a silpat to cool and set.

Post a comment

You can leave a response, or trackback from your own site.

11 Responses to “Saffron Turmeric Cake with Meyer Lemon Sorbet, Argan Oil Whipped Cream, Almond Brittle, and Thyme”

  1. bonniea says:

    What’s the theory behind the 3 types of sugar?
    I’ve made sorbet once and the texture could use work, so the
    pectin sounds helpful, but I wonder does the sugar-combo also
    have an effect?

    Also, the comment box in Firefox 3 is wider than column and
    so slides under the Important Links/Categories column, making it
    so that I can’t see what I’m typing.

  2. novalis says:

    Two kinds of sugar do inhibit crystalization. But the agave nectar is mostly just because Aki and Alex did it and it seemed like a good idea.

  3. Gabi says:

    It’s good to catch up and see some of what you’ve been up to- love the spinning and all of your creativity from the post right before this one too. I am wowed by the idea of using Turmeric in place of cocoa- I would have never thought of it.
    BTW I love the save the date cards- they’re so like you.

  4. Irene says:

    I love the flavor combination in this cake! It’s East meets West and it seems to work perfectly.

  5. Tartelette says:

    Love all the flavors in this! I bet the whole combination was easy to dive into!

  6. Jodye says:

    Absolutely gorgeous!

  7. codfish says:

    It’s nice to get a little into your heads when it came to putting the recipe together–very interesting. Thyme and meyer lemons sharing a compound, maybe that’s why lemon thyme is such a good herb?

  8. jonathan says:

    Just hear the almond and lemon already enough to make me tempted. Good recipe you make! Thanks..!

  9. antongarou says:

    How many threads of saffron is “small pinch”?I am afraid of adding too much saffron and unbalancing the taste.

    And would it work without the whipped cream?I don’t think Argan oil is available here in Israel, since this is the first time I heard of it.

  10. [...] 2009: Saffron Turmeric Cake with Meyer Lemon Sorbet, Argan Oil Whipped Cream, Almond Brittle, and Thyme 2008: Chocolate-Whiskey Pudding Cake 2007: Strawberry Tarragon Sorbet 2006: Apricot Ketchup [...]

  11. Monica says:

    Wow… So good! I thought this cake recipe was a little suspect with so little flour, but it’s actually awesome! Moist and full of flavor, the turmeric and saffron seem completely natural in this cake… And the taste lingers on the tongue long after the last bite. I’ll be dreaming in tones of yellow and red tonight. Thanks for this recipe!

Leave a Reply

June 2009
« May   Jul »