I am in bed typing this post, a worn out 20 year old throw that I used since I was 5 years old comforting me and a pineapple and mango coconut crumble sitting on the bedside table. Piping hot, so much so, that you can you still see the juice bubbling. With custard on the side. Crumble with custard. ALWAYS with custard.
We have had stormy weather on and off and today is one of those days. You may have even heard on the news last week when Tanzania was issued a tsunami warning. Incessant rain, dull grey skies, a few strikes of thunder. Such a contrast to the bright blues I posted about last week.
Maryam is enthralled with this weather and glued to the window, sticking her hands out of the grill to catch a few drops every now and then, giddy with excitement. You see, Dubai has never experienced rain like this before. Capturing little sparkly drops in her tiny palms.
I am still in Dar es Salaam, having extended my trip by a week. Although I have been taking photo after photo to show you my second home, my country, I have really missed this space. This blog, writing. YOU. And so, here I am. Doing what I love.
You must be wondering then where these bright spring inspired images of strawberries have come from? It was a strawberries and pistachio cake I baked a few weeks ago before leaving Dubai. BBC Good Food Middle East did a short interview with me for their April issue and asked for a spring inspired recipe.
I knew I wanted to do a fruity dessert. Light and refreshing, oozing with fruit. And so this strawberry and pistachio cake was born. A simple cake elevated by using ground pistachio meal and raw pistachio milk. Then generously studded with tiny fragrant berries on top. The red of the strawberries and the jade green pistachios makes for a striking visual picture.
No frosting needed here- just a simple dusting of icing sugar and a warm cup of tea. And as for that crumble I mentioned earlier- well I’ve already polished that down. Slurping the last bit with creamy custard as I type. But I’m sure I’ll be making it again when I head back home. To savor the taste and the memories of home. With Tanzanian pineapples naturally that I hope to take back with me.
Catch you when I’m back in Dubai.
1 1/2 cups flour
1 1/2 tsp baking powder
1/4 tsp soda bicarbonate
1/2 tsp salt
6 tbs butter, room temperature
1 1/4 cups sugar
1/2 cup raw pistachio milk (can use normal milk)
4 tbs pistachio meal
Strawberries, hulled and cut into half (approx 1/2 cup)
Preheat the oven to 180 degrees Centigrade and grease a 9 inch cake pan with butter. In a bowl, mix together the first four ingredients. Using the paddle attachment on your stand mixer, beat the butter and sugar until creamy. Add eggs one at a time, beating well after each addition. Scrape sides of the bowl if necessary. With the mixer speed on low, add the pistachio milk alternating with the flour mixture until just mixed. Stir in the pistachio meal. Put batter into cake pan and place strawberry halves on top of the batter. Press them in very slightly into the batter. Bake for approximately 50 minutes or until skewer comes out clean. Cool on a wire rack.