Friday, November 16, 2007

A Farewell to Fall

Good-bye, Autumn! You leave us golden, you made them fall;
you gave a melancholic feeling to us all.

You whispered through the shimmery leaves
of the wiry, pale-faced birch.
You gracefully bowed to winter
in a time-honoured search

(for where in the cosmos do you go in the meantime?)

And you tip-toed away in a veil of
delicate lace of leaves.

How you have gifted us with cool balls of fiery rustling!


Now that I've gotten that off my chest - waxing a tad lyrical on a cold afternoon at the onset of winter...

Here's a moist carrot cake recipe I've adapted from a Canadian one (you can replace carrot with zucchini for something different and green-flecked!):

1/2 cup sunflower oil or melted butter
2/3 cup sugar
3 eggs, lightly beaten

1 1/4 cup flour
1 1/4 tsp baking powder
1/4 tsp baking soda
a pinch of salt

1 cup grated carrot (or zucchini)
1/2 cup chopped walnuts
1/2 raisins (optional)
3 tbs dessicated grated coconut

Mix together the first 3 ingredients in a large bowl. Mix the dry ingredients together and add to the egg mixture. Finally add the last 4 ingredients. (Top with pieces of white chocolate if you want an extra treat for flavour!)
Scoop into a longish cake pan (approx. 4"x9", 3" high) lined with baking paper.
Pre-heat oven to 150 degrees C. Slow bake for 45-55 minutes for a moist cake.

For the truly sweet-toothed, make a cream cheese topping:
50g softened butter
120g cream cheese
1 1/2 cups powdered sugar
vanilla flavouring

Whip it all together till smooth and well-blended. Spread on top of cooled cake.

Zucchini cake (above) naturally looks less orangey than carrot cake.

(Above) One of Small Duck's male relatives or mate (front). I found out they are Tafelente, or Table Ducks in German (!), Common Pochard in English. Behind him is a nasty-looking Eurasian Coot.

Greylag geese came again to the Cham lake park for a few days on their way south. Behind the two are lake gulls.



wonda said...

We are still half green over here and the afternoons these few days have been strange as the temperature is like late spring or early summer. Ooh! Yummy, moist carrot cake! What I like about baking carrot cake is I don't need to cream the butter and sugar.

Argus Lou said...

So you're still toasty-warm in Tokyo, Wonda!

Yes, carrot cake requires just lightly mixing by hand. But I find carrots rather difficult and messy to grate as they're hard. So the lazy me tried it with zucchini and it worked!

wonda said...

I,too, find grating carrots a hassle and messy. So I replaced it with mashed bananas using the carrot cake recipe.

Argus Lou said...

Good idea, Wonda! So can that be how Zucchini Bread and Banana Bread originated?

Lyrical Lemongrass said...

Carrot cake! Yummy. I had a rather yucky carrot cake recently, and to compensate the bad experience, my friends and I went to another cafe in the same mall for a better carrot cake. You can imagine the amount of calories we consumed that day, all because of a little bad carrot cake. Bad cake *smack*. Behave now!

Cynthia said...

I so wanted you to go on waxing as I was enjoying it very much. Seriously.

Argus Lou said...

Yes, dear lil' sis Lemongrass, you must instil discipline in carrotcakes! I wish you great carrotcake days from now on...

Thanks, Cynthia, you're very kind and generous. Do the seasons change much in your neck of the woods?

My old living-room

My old living-room
In Petaling Jaya, Malaysia

A cherished dream

A cherished dream
To live on a pale beach by a crystal clear sea. (This was taken on the east coast of Johor state, Malaysia.)