Wednesday, 27 July 2011

Phanouropita

Also known as St Phanourios's Cake, and, as it will become in my non-religious household, Greek Walnut Cake. The origins of the cake is explained in the recipe at Leites Culinaria, and it's worth following the link on that page to read the author's personal quest with the cake.

I picked out the recipe because I was looking for a cake made with oil, with a different flavour to those I've tried before. I wouldn't usually use walnuts in a cake, but FB, who dislikes most nuts, is away this week. I happened to have an opened carton of orange juice to finish up, so that provided most of the juice, although I added the juice of one fresh orange to make up the volume. As I was using an orange I thought I might as well add the zest to the cake too, rather than waste it. I had to use rum instead of brandy, as that was all I had in stock. Other than that, I followed the recipe exactly, although I didn't beat the batter for 9 minutes, as I was using an electric mixer.

In my pleasure at finding a new recipe, I completely failed to notice that the cake didn't contain any eggs, until I had mixed the liquid ingredients. Too late to go back at that point! I put the cake into the oven with some trepidation, and if I had any religious leanings I might have been praying to St Phanourios that I hadn't lost my senses at that point. My only previous encounter with a cake with no eggs was a disaster that had to be thrown away, and if you've seen some of the disasters which we've still eaten, you'll realise how bad it must have been!

Thankfully all was well; the cake rose nicely and tasted much better than I expected. The richness you get with eggs and butter wasn't there, of course, and it wasn't very sweet either, but the plainess of the batter allowed the flavour of the nuts and spices to shine through. It was the kind of cake you wouldn't feel guilty about eating for breakfast!

8 comments:

Lucie said...

Such an unusual cake - glad it turned out ok in the end. Lucie x

Foodycat said...

I suppose if it is a religious cake it shouldn't be too decadent! It sounds really good though.

Chele said...

Mmmm, looks and sounds a lovely cake and its always so nice to try things you've never thought of before ... wonder if I can ship my other half off somewhere for a weekend lol

Kate@katescakesandbakes said...

The kind of cake you wouldn't feel guilty about eating for breakfast? ah, now, that is my kind of cake!

celia said...

A cake without butter or oil is a great find, Suelle! Guilt-free is a bonus! :)

Suelle said...

Not quite that guilt-free, Celia! There was oil in the recipe, but no eggs and a relatively low amount of added sugar.

Joanna @ Zeb Bakes said...

Hey that looks good ! I would love some of that for breakfast, great idea :)

Choclette said...

Oh wonderful, It's always useful to have a good vegan cake to fall back on and it sounds really nice.