Sometime between Christmas and New Year, S and I were invited to a dinner party. For us, it was an impromptu invitation. Until about 5 or 6 in the evening, we had no idea that there was a party nor that we were invited to it. And I usually can't think of what to take, especially at such short notice. Since I had some rum soaked fruits handy, I decided to make this easy date and fruit cake. I was told it was tasty (by S' colleagues). I didn't get a chance to sample this cake at all. I baked two of them in aluminium take away containers. I took one to the party and S took the other to work the next day.
1 cup Flour
1/4 cup Sugar
2 tsp Baking Powder
1/4 tsp Baking Soda
a Pinch of Salt
1/3 cup Date Syrup (mixed with 1/3 cup warm water)
2-3 tbsp Oil
1 tsp Vanilla
1/2 cup Dry Fruits (soaked in rum, optional)
1 Egg, beaten
Sift all the dry ingredients for the cake together into a food processor jar with the dough blade. Pour in all the liquid ingredients and run the processor for 2 minutes. Blend in the dry fruits.
Prepare an 8 inch round cake tin by first smearing a little butter all over the tin and then dusting it with flour. Pour the batter into the tin and bake for 30 minutes at 350 F.
The cake has a Christmas Cake sort of appeal without any of the fuss. It is also quite healthy, low in sugar and fat, with the goodness of dates and other dry fruits. It is the perfect cake to celebrate Appa's birthday. By the time you see this post, my parents will be with us. I have tried very hard to be with my family every year in his birthday. (I used to make it a point to be there for Amma's birthday, until in 2001, she went to Bombay to attend a wedding about a fortnight or so before Appa and I had planned to go.I missed her birthday then, and somehow have not been very regular since. I still try. The only time I missed being with Appa on his birthday was in 1984, when he was in the U.S. and our visas took ages to come, so we joined him only later that year.) We shall celebrate the day in the best posible manner.
Happy Birthday Appa!