Thursday, September 29, 2016

Kitchen Tool, Travel League

Well, well, well, a couple of years ago I bought a mango splitter from Avon but for some reason I haven't bought any mangoes since. I really didn't believe it was going to work. However, Tuesday I bought a couple of golden mangoes and Wednesday afternoon I decided to try it. Damn me it works like a charm. Split the mango beautifully not leaving too much on the seed at all. Mind you there's not a heck of a lot of flesh on a golden mango anyway.

Today we have our Travel League bowling which, being the first of the season takes place at Towne Bowl where we bowl normally. We will be lunching with many of the bowlers at The Red Lobster. Hopefully I will be able to bowl but I don't want to hold anyone up so we will see. I did go to exercise class on Wednesday and remained sitting for the whole class. However, I managed to achieve a surprising amount.

This looked and sounded scrumptious. In the original recipe it calls for agave nectar as a sweetener however, as I wasn't familiar with the ingredient I looked it up and from what I read, it isn't a very healthy sweetener as it's preparation entails boiling it which removes all the potential health benefits. I therefore have substituted fresh natural honey instead. You can, of course, make your own decisions.

Sticky Toffee Whole-Wheat Date Cake

This cake is a showstopper that a baker with rudimentary skills could pull off. The topping is a toffee glaze made with brown sugar, agave, butter and sea salt; you pour half of it over the cake while still
hot so that it saturates the cake, giving it a puddinglike consistency, then wait before using the rest as a high-gloss frosting you sprinkle with sea salt. Seemingly complicated, but surprisingly simple.

14 Tbs unsalted butter (1 3/4 sticks), at room temperature, more for the pan
8 ounces pitted dates, chopped
1 Tbs fresh lemon juice
½ cupdried currants
1 cup whole-wheat flour
½ cup plus 2 tablespoons all-purpose flour
1 tsp baking soda
1 tsp ground cinnamon
½ tsp ground cardamom
¼ tsp ground ginger
¾ tsp fine sea salt
¾ cups packed light brown sugar
2 large eggs
½ tsp vanilla extract
½ cup fresh honey
½ cup packed light brown sugar
¼ tsp fine sea salt
2 tablespoons unsalted butter
Fleur de sel

1. In a small pot, combine dates, lemon juice and 3/4 cup water. Bring mixture to a boil, then simmer gently until dates soften and start to fall apart, about 6 minutes. Add currants to the pot and set aside to cool completely.

2. While date mixture cools, stir together whole-wheat flour, all-purpose flour, baking soda, cinnamon, cardamom, ginger and salt.

3. Using an electric mixer, beat butter and brown sugar together on medium speed until light and fluffy, 3 to 5 minutes. Add eggs one at a time, mixing well after each addition and scraping down the sides of the bowl as needed. Mix in vanilla and cooled date mixture, followed by flour mixture.

4. Scrape the batter into the prepared pan, spreading evenly and smoothing the surface. Bake for 45 minutes, or until a toothpick inserted into the center comes out clean with just a few crumbs clinging to it.

5. Meanwhile, make the sticky toffee: In a small pot (you can use the same one you used for the dates), combine honey, brown sugar and salt. Bring to a simmer over medium heat, whisking to dissolve sugar. Once sugar dissolves and bubbles, remove from heat and swirl in butter.

6. When the cake comes out of the oven, spoon half the sticky toffee over it and let cool in the pan on a wire rack. (It will soak into the cake.)

7. When the cake has cooled completely and the remaining sticky toffee has thickened, spread it over the cake with an offset spatula. Sprinkle with fleur de sel and serve. Store, loosely wrapped, at room temperature for up to 2 days.

Servings: 9

Author: Jim Wilson
Source: The New York Times

Have a great day


  1. I've never heard of a mango splitter and mangoes have become one of my favourite fruit recently so I could certainly use one. I'll be having a look for one now.

    1. Glad to be of help Helen LOL. I think Amazon have them if you have access to them.

  2. I love mango but I've never bought it. Is it hard to slice then? I mean w/o the splitter? I tried agave once. Everyone's always on my butt about splenda or aspartame. It was gross. I want to like honey and maybe mixed with the other ingredients it masks the flavour, but straight on even the smell of honey makes me have the dry heaves. :(

    1. It is a bit of a pain to slice JoJo. I have only ever eaten the golden ones though.

      Must be something in your makeup JoJo because I like Splenda and I adore honey. Not only that it's so good for you, in moderation of course.

  3. I once bought a crustless bread smasher/sandwich maker. It was a fail.

    That cake reminds me of a cake my grandma would make in a cast iron skillet. It had a gooey, sugary topping on it. Add some pecans. I'm getting hungry!

    1. I have a sandwich maker which cuts off the crusts when you close it Liz. It's great.

      Your grandma's version sounds good.

  4. Mangoes are so delicious, healthy and hard to eat. You just have to stick your face right in. Growing up in mango growing country, I lived on them as a kid. We developed a knack for cutting them up :)

    1. During WWII my father was stationed in Rhodesia. He returned and often talked about eating mangoes in the bath because they were so juicy. However, Pinky, I had never tried them until maybe 10 years ago and I have only ever eaten the golden one.

  5. I love mangoes! In fact, I am about to have one right now:) this seems to be a handy tool