Exploring Puerto Rico

Exploring Puerto Rico
At Cafe Puerto Rico in Old San Juan

Sunday, April 11, 2010

Treat for the sweet

I know I have not written in a long time. Many of you emailed and even called. Well, I was moping and frankly being quite childish. I was really upset that none of my earlier pictures were accepted by tastespotting.com. My pictures were either not bright enough or the composition was not original enough :-( It took me over a week to get over it and tell myself "fuck'em!" So here goes! Today, I decided to explore baking with agave nectar. Agave (pronounced ah-GAH-vay) is best recognized as the plant from which tequila is made, the taste of which is comparable, though not identical, to honey. You can easily find it at regular grocery stores. I bought mine from Whole Foods for fairly cheap. $5/bottle. The end result was a wonderful tasting cake without the bitter aftertaste associated with some of the artificial sweeteners such as splenda or stevia. And believe me, with only 1/4 cup butter, one egg and a little agave, you can easily quench that sweet craving without the fear of spiking your sugar level or having those extra calories nestle on the love handles.

So here goes my friends, oatmeal cake with agave nectar

makes 8 servings
5/8 cup boiling water (that's 1/2 cup + 2 tablespoons)
1/4 cup butter
1/2 cup oatmeal (quick cooking)
3/4 cup agave syrup
1 egg
1/2 teaspoon vanilla
2/3 cups whole wheat pastry flour
1/2 teaspoon baking powder
1/2 teaspoon baking soda
1/3 teaspoon salt
1/2 teaspoon cinnamon
1/4 teaspoon nutmeg

1. Preheat the oven to 350 degrees F.
2. Pour boiling water over oatmeal and butter. Let mixture stand for 20 minutes.
3. Add agave and egg, and mix well.
4. Sift dry ingredients together, then add to wet ingredients and mix again.
5. Pour into greased and floured 9" round or square cake pan
6. Bake for 35 minutes, or until a toothpick inserted comes out clean.
7. Serve warm or cold.

Next time, thinking of adding a topping: blend some mango puree with heavy whipping cream, and spread on top of cake once cooled down.

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