November 13, 2009

Spiced Green Tomato Bundt Cake

Green tomatoes in a cake? That was I thought when I first saw Paula Deen's "Green Tomato Cake" on the Food Network. If you give this cake some serious thought, its isn't as surprising as at first glance. If one can make cake or bread using carrots, pumpkin or zucchini, why not with green tomatoes?
I didn't bookmark the recipe, but that cake was the first thing I thought of when I saw the first lot of this season's green tomatoes at the market!
If you follow this blog religiously, you'll know we love our green tomatoes. I have previously posted Green Tomato And Onion Curry, Green Tomato Pickle, Green Tomato Khorma, Green Tomato Relish and the journey is far from over yet. Right now it's thhe turn of green tomatoes in cake.

I trawled the net looking for a recipe that called to me and didn't really find one. Most recipes (including Paula Deen's) seemed to call for a lot of butter, sugar and eggs! So I just went along with my intuition and came up with one where the ingredients were okay for me.
I put together the ingredients for a smaller cake, for one thing. You may double these ingredients if you want a larger cake.

I reduced the butter and used just 1 egg (you can try leaving this out or substitute for it if you wish). I also used some light brown sugar but if you want your cake to have a whiter colour, please use all granulated white sugar.
Since green tomatoes are acidic, it seemed a better idea to use baking soda. I left out the walnuts as our daughter doesn't like them and instead of the usual nutmeg and cinnamom found in most recipes, I decided to use "chai/ tea masala".

My sister gave me this idea. Indian chai masala consists of a variety of spices which would be complementary to this type of cake.
I also chose not to add a frosting or glaze but duted the top with powdered sugar mixed with about 1/4 tsp of chai masala. Don't be tempted to go heavy on the masala or you could end up with a "spicy" cake instead of a "spiced" one.

When the cake is done, and you serve it, very few people will be able to tell you that what they just ate had green tomatoes in it! Surprisingly, unlike other cakes with vegetables or fruit in it, this cake is not at all dense. It is quite light, spongy and moist.


1 cup chopped green tomatoes

1/4 cup Iranian green raisins (or golden)*

50gm salted butter (unsalted is also fine) soft and at room temperature

1/4 tsp salt (only if using unsalted butter)

1/2 cup granulated sugar

1/2 cup light brown sugar

1 egg

1 tsp vanilla extract

1 1/2 cups all purpose flour

1 tsp chai masala powder

1 tsp baking soda

1/4 tsp baking powder

Powdered sugar for dusting (optional)


* Iranian green raisins are small with a greenish colour and delightfully sweet. The Indian green raisins are also pretty good. Otherwise use golden raisins or what you have on hand.
Do chop up the tomatoes rather small or you'll end getting a "crunchy" salad feel to your cake.

In a bowl, beat the butter and sugars with an electric mixer, for a couple of minutes. Add the egg and vanilla extract and beat well. Sift together 1 cup of the flour, baking soda, baking powder and chai masala powder.
Add this to the mixture in the bowl and beat, on medium speed, till well mixed.

Take another bowl and put the chopped tomatoes and raisins in it. Add the remaining 1/2 cup of flour and mix, using a wooden spoon, till the flour has coated the tomatoes well. Add this mixture to the batter in the other bowl and fold in till well mixed using a wooden spoon. The mixture will be quite thick.

Scrape this mixture into a greased and floured bundt/ tube pan (mine is small - a 4 cup bundt pan) and smoothen the top. Bake at 180C for 40 to 50 minutes still a skewer inserted into the cake comes out clean.

Cool at room temperature for about 10 minuted and unmould the cake. Cool on a rack. Cover with glaze, dust with powdered sugar and leave plain as the cake has enough flavour to not want any further additons.
This cake serves about 4 to 5.

This delicious cake goes to Meeta for her Monthly Mingle: Brunch


Palidor said...

Yup, why not? Especially when the result is as yummy as this cake!

lata raja said...

That looks indeed very delicious. I love the acidic taste of the tomatoes too.I might omit the egg and try. Should go well with a cup of chai in the evening.

Raaga said...

so pretty... like little light green emeralds

sra said...

How innovative!

What is the connection between acidic and baking soda?

Curry Leaf said...

Wow,looks great and I prefer this recipe than Paula's.Love the innovation using chai masala pdr.BTW,I echo sra's query: I thght you can avoid/reduce soda if other acidic ingredients like buttermilk (or tomatoes as in here )are there?

Nags said...

wow, tomatoes in cake? amazing!

Natashya KitchenPuppies said...

What a fascinating idea! I love the shape of the pan, too.

Pavithra said...

oh wow thats really fantastic... different combo..yummo wish to try soon.

Bong Mom said...

Would love to try that. What a genius, looks great too

Asha @ FSK said...

true.. vegetables in cake don't have residual flavor but add wonder moistness to the cake..

Btw, your cake is so gorgeous.. can distinctly see the bits of raisins and greenness.. lovely!

Cham said...

The green is very impressive. I imagine the taste of this cake with chai masala!

Supriya said...

Yummy and creative!

jayasree said...

Cake sounds interesting- green tomatoes, chai masala. It looks moist and spongy.

Tasty Eats At Home said...

Wow. I have all of these cherry tomatoes in my garden that are green, and will never ripen. I made salsa with a bunch, but there's a lot more. This would be just the thing.

Bharti said...

Such a unique recipe...never heard of this before.

Soma said...

This is the most unique of all cakes :p I have so much green tomatoes from my yard but a broken oven;-( I would have surely tried this if I could. WOW!

Julia @Mélanger said...

You had me so intrigued by the title, and was so interested in what tomatoes in a bundt would turn out like. But you are right, it's not that different to other vegetables. This looks so moist.

MeetaK said...

aparna this looks incredible delicious and moist! a perfect entry for the mingle.

A_and_N said...

Really? Wow, I saw this episode and was quite sceptical! And all of Paula Deen's recipes ask for umpteen amounts of butter.

Aparna, do we get Food Network in India now? aaah, my India trip is going to be fun!

Usha said...

What an amazing and interesting cake, I would have never thought to add either green tomatoes or chai masala to cake ! Cake looks wonderful...

Barbara GF said...

I never would have thought to use green tomatoes in a cake, Aparna, but why not, indeed? This sounds so delicious. I love the creative use of the chai-masala. I must bookmark this one.

Aparna said...

Thank you for the comments. It was the unusual use of tomatoes in this cake that got me baking it!
The chai masala just adds a lovely flavour without an overpowering taste.

P, I can confirm it is yummy!

Lata, you can definitely omit the egg as the cake is moist enough. You might need a little more leavening then as the cake could get dense otherwise.

Green emerlds? That's a good one, Raaga.

Sra and Sweatha,
baking soda is pure sodium bicarbonate and reacts with acidic ingredients (here the green tomatoes) to produce carbon dioxide which bubbles causing baked goods to rise.

I just discovered that your are the "Queen" of bundt pans, Natashya! :)

N, I find Paula Deen's recipes a little too rich for our taste!
No, Food Network isn't here yet! :)

Kevin said...

I like the sound of using green tomatoes in a cake!

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