So, when we were last together, I was telling you the story of the Laurie Colwin book "Home Cooking" and how I came to find out about this remarkable woman. I have since finished that book and look forward to obtaining her others. But in the meantime, although I had wanted to start with her Cranberry pie recipe, I found this recipe while searching online and thought it sounded too good not to try..and it was!
It's called Nutmeg Cake or Spice Cake and it uses freshly grated nutmeg and lots of it. There is also yogurt in the mix and I think this gives the cake it's almost spongy consistency which keeps it light. The crust is similar to a shortbread and the combo of that crust with the warm mellow spices of the cake is just perfect. All you need to finish it off is a dollop of whipped cream!
And as the photo below shows, I tried to do my part to pay homage to her low-tech beliefs by using my large pot, because I didn't have a mixing bowl large enough to hold all the contents!
And I found a springform pan at the same flea market where I found her book..for the low price of one dollar!
So let's begin.
Combine the butter, cut into small pieces, with the flour and dark brown sugar into a large bowl ( or pot!).
Cut butter ( I used my fingers) into flour and sugar til mixture resembles fine meal. I was tempted to use my food processor, but resisted.
Measure out 2 1/2 cups of this mixture and dump it into your prepared springform pan.
Press the mixture evenly over the bottom only of the pan.
1/2 cup ( 1 stick) cold butter
Sprinkle the baking soda over the mixture and gently but thoroughly stir in..I know, I thought the same thing..kind of an odd thing to do! But it works.
Sprinkle the top with the nuts.
1/2 cup ( 1 stick) cold butter
2 cups AP flour
2 cups firmly packed dark brown sugar
4 tsp. freshly grated nutmeg
1 tsp. cinnamon
1/4 tsp. cloves
1 cup yogurt( recipe didn't specify. I used vanilla. I didn't use low fat or non fat)
1 tsp. baking soda
1/2 cup coarsely chopped walnuts
Preheat oven to 350. Butter sides only of a 10" springform pan.
1. In large mixing bowl, combine butter, cut into small pieces, with flour and dark brown sugar.
Cut butter into flour ( I used my fingers and I'm guessing a food processor might work, too)
and sugar til it resembles fine meal.
2. Measure out 2 1/2 cups of this mixture and place it into the prepared pan. Press mixture evenly, using your hands, into the bottom of the pan.
3. Add spices to remaining dry ingredients and mix well.
4. In a small bowl or measuring cup, stir egg and yogurt and mix well.
5. With wooden spoon, stir the wet mixture into the dry mixture.
6. Sprinkle baking soda over the top of the mixture and stir in gently but thoroughly.
7. Spread the batter onto the crust and smooth out with a spatula.
8. Sprinkle the nuts on top.
9. Bake 50 - 55 minutes. Or til toothpick inserted into center of cake comes out clean and sides have pulled away from pan sides.
10. Cool cake in pan 5 minutes, then slide a thin knife along the outer edge to be sure none of the cake is sticking.
Remove side of pan and cool completely.