Many of you purchased my slim, hand-bound cookbook "Morning Tea at Sonja's Studio"
before I left Australia.
I've continued baking the cakes, puddings, slices and biscuits here in my kitchen in Essaouira, Morocco - making adjustments here and there,
and delighting in the new flavours that the
souk-bought ingredients add to the recipes.
One of the recipes, in particular, I decided to "Moroccanize"
I'm happy with the result,
so I thought I'd share it with you here.
(thank you Diane R. for the original recipe)
and has now transformed into -
Moroccan Carrot and Almond Torte
- 4 eggs, separated
- 1 cup raw sugar
- 2 teaspoons, or more, finely grated orange rind
- ¾ cup firmly packed, finely grated, carrot
- 8 chopped dates
- splash of orange flower water (don't use rose water)
- 2 cups almond meal
- 2 tablespoons plain flour combined with
- 1 heaped teaspoon baking powder
- ¼ cup, or more, chopped walnuts
- 1 teaspoon cinnamon
- 2 teaspoons raw sugar
- Icing sugar for dusting (if you like)
- Preheat oven - moderate 180˚C.
- Grease a deep 20cm round cake pan and line with baking paper. I need to triple the paper on the base, for my small oven, to stop the bottom burning.
- Beat egg yolks and sugar in a large mixing bowl until thick and creamy.
- Fold in orange rind, carrot, dates, orange flower water, almond meal, flour and baking powder.
- Beat egg-whites in a bowl with an electric mixer until soft peaks form.
- Fold into cake mixture; pour into prepared pan.
- Sprinkle top evenly with chopped walnuts, raw sugar and cinnamon.
- Place in the preheated oven for about 40-45 minutes, or until lightly browned and cooked when tested.
- Cover the top with foil if nuts are over-browning.
- Stand cake in pan for 10 minutes; turn out onto wire rack to cool.
- Serve either warm or cold. Dust with icing sugar if you like.
- You might like to add a few dollops of natural yoghurt sprinkled with cinnamon.
Buying from the carts piled with fresh seasonal produce that roll into the Medina everyday, and selecting from the baskets and bowls in the souk, are some of my simple pleasures.