Wednesday, January 12, 2011

Syrian Nutmeg Cake

I made this cake recently and shared some with our Iraqi friends and it was well-liked. They do not typically like very rich desserts. Often, they will have some cake and tea (chai) for breakfast. This cake is unlike any other cake I have ever made in the way it was assembled. This is a wonderful moist cake that has a slightly crunchy crust/crumb bottom. The nutmeg is not overwhelming, as I was initially thinking it might be. All in all, it is a very nice cake for tea/coffee time. As an added bonus, it is quite easy to make.

Serves 9

  • 2 cups flour
  • 1/2 tsp salt
  • 1 tsp ground nutmeg
  • 2 cups brown sugar
  • 1/2 cup butter
  • 1 tsp baking soda
  • 1 cup sour cream (I used my homemade yogurt, which turned out well)
  • 1 egg, beaten
  • 1/2 cup chopped nuts (almonds, cashews, walnuts, pistachios)
  • Sift the first 3 dry ingredients into a mixing bowl and add the brown sugar and butter. 
  • Blend until mixture is crumbly. 
  • Grease 9 inch square cake pan. Spoon in half of crumb mixture and press lightly into the bottom of the pan. 
  • In another smaller bowl, stir baking soda into sour cream or yogurt. Mix this into remaining crumb mixture along with the beaten egg. 
  • Pour batter over crumbs and sprinkle with nuts. 
  • Bake at 350 degrees for 40-45 minutes or until toothpick put in the center comes out pretty much clean. Serves 9.

*Recipe by Mary Casciato from the Elmira College Cookbook 1971.

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