Hope you all had a wonderful Christmas, inspite of all odds this year and wishing you all a very very happy, healthy and peaceful year ahead. Hope the new year will mark the beginning of a fresh spirit putting an end to all the sufferings that we left behind. May this new year bring many pleasant surprises with it for all of us🙂. Although we are not in our happiest state now, as many of us had went through a lot of distress this year, however celebrations are just celebrations and we cannnot ignore them as they give us a fresh lease of life and some respite from the grim conditions in our life and moreover we are eagerly looking forward to a better, brighter and a happier new year ahead. So, this merrymaking time from Christmas to New year has just begun and we need to live it to the fullest. Christmas is the only festival in India when most of the households indulge in some sort of baking. We can feel that warmth and aroma of the bakeries and confectioneries everywhere surrounding us during this season. I am very fond of all these cakes and cookies. A bite of warm, aromatic,freshly made cake with a hot cup of coffee in a cozy wintery evening accompanied by your loved ones can truly define happiness in the simplest way and I eagerly wait for this season of the year as this christmas to new year time is the perfect time to relish your baking creations and celebrate those moments of joy.
Sattu which is the key ingredient of my cake here is usually nothing but roasted & ground chickpea floor . However, Sattu can be of various kinds which are prepared by dry roasting either grains or grams, most often barley or bengal gram (chickpea) or by dry roasting cashew, almond, millet, barley and chickpea and grinding together to a fine flour. Sattu is quite popular in the Indian states of Telangana, Uttar Pradesh, Madhya Pradesh, Bihar, Jharkhand, West Bengal, Orissa, Rajasthan and the Punjab region. The traditional way of preparing Sattu involves the use of an iron vessel in which the grains or grams are roasted in sand and are then sieved and ground into a fine flour. In Bihar State, Sattu is like a staple which finds a notable place in their cuisine. Sattu has been a nutritious instant food since ancient times in the Indian subcontinent, South and West Asia, the Arabs and Tibet. It has been always popular as a travel food or a staple wartime meal for the armies. Lately, it has also been labelled as a superfood due to its innumerous health benefits like being low on glycemic index, regulating your body temperature during intense heat waves etc. Sattu is a high-protein high fiber, very nutritious food and has very little fat, with iron, calcium and vitamins. Being high in fibre, Sattu helps fight constipation. Along with sattu, I have also used another healthy stuff like the flax seeds which are again considered a super food like the Sattu due to their low calory, high fiber, high protein, and high omega 3 and 6 fatty acid contents, which also served as a binding agent and egg replacer for my cake. Altogether, it can be a healthy gluten-free alternative to the regular flour cakes.
Though I am not at all an expert in baking but I still like trying my hands in baking whenever I get time especially during this season and love to relish my own creations though not always perfect. This sattu cake is also just an attempt of creating a healthy version of my cake without compromising on the taste and it came out quite well. The texture of sattu cake that I made was little dry and not spongy but soft and tastes quite good, so I hope the next time I will be able to improvise upon it to make a better version of the same. Also I seek suggestions from all the baking experts who will surely be able to standardize a perfect recipe for this healthy version of eggless cake. Please do try and share your experiences & valuable suggestions. Here is the recipe below
A. Dry Ingredients:
- Sattu (roasted chickpea flour/gram flour ) – 1 and 1/2 cup.
- Besan (chickpea/bengal gram flour) – 1/2 cup.
- Baking powder – little more than 1 tsp. ( 1.34 tsp.)
- Baking soda – little more than 1/2 tsp. ( 0.67 tsp)
- A pinch of salt.
B. Wet Ingredients:
- Flax seeds powder (raw & grounded) soaked into 2 and 1/2 tbsp. water for 5 minutes.
- Refined Oil – 8 tbsp.
- Milk – 1 cup.
- Vinegar – slightly more than 1 tsp. (1.34 tsp.)
- Powdered sugar – 8 tbsp. Note: You may also substitute sugar for jaggery to make it healthier
- Vanilla essence – 1/2 tsp.
- Cashews (chopped) – as much you like,
- Dates (deseeded & cut into small pieces) – 5-6
- Tutti Frutti – as much you like.
A. Grease your cake mould with oil. Dust with a fine layer of flour and keep it aside or else you can use butter paper or parchment paper.
B. Preparation of wet ingredients:
- Add vinegar to 1/2 cup of milk and let it rest for 5 minutes for allowing the milk to curdle or you can use buttermilk or curd instead.
- In a large mixing bowl, beat the sugar and oil together for making a frothy mixture by adding the remaining wet ingredients one by one. (Oil + Sugar + Flax seeds + Milk with vinegar + Vanilla essence)
C. Preparation of dry ingredients :
- In a separate bowl, sieve the flours one by one along with baking powder and baking soda.
- Add a pinch of salt to the mixture.
D. Now, mix both wet and dry ingredients together by adding the dry mixture in 2-3 batches and mix them gently in one direction.
E. Add chopped cashews and tutti frutti to the mixture, mix and pour the mixture in your previously greased cake mould. Garnish with some cashew and tutti frutti on the top.
F. Place the cake mould in pre-heated pressure cooker filled with a bed of salt or sand in the bottom, over a ring or frame to avoid the burning of the base of your cake.
G. Remove the whistle and close the lid.
Note : You may also use a wok or kadhai and cover with a lid instead of a pressure cooker.
H. Let it bake for 1 hour & 10 to 15 minutes over a low flame.
I. Open the lid, check by pricking with a toothpick onto its top. If the toothpick comes out clean then it is done, otherwise cook it for few more minutes to bake it completely.
J. Take it out and let it cool down in open.