Spicy Chai Apple Cake + Lemon Ginger Frosting

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I love making birthday cakes, especially when they’re for me. So this morning I spent some time making food for the party potluck extravaganza. I started with Tikka Masala, using stew meet from the grass fed cows we raised at our ranch. This all went into a crockpot with lots of extra butternut squash and spices. As that simmered, I made the spicy chai apple cake. It made my house smell like gingery-chai-cake heaven as it baked. The last thing I made was coconut ice cream with candied ginger, fresh ginger and lemon. For the cake I used the recipe on Meats and Sweets, but changed a few of the ingredients as I tend to do. I’ve included my version of the recipe on this post. My birthday was an incredible reminder of how lucky I am to be alive and 25 on the 25th day of April under the light of the full moon surrounded by friends and family and treats.

 Spicy Chai Apple Cake + Lemon Ginger Frosting

1 cup whole milk
2 black chai tea bags
1/2 tsp sea salt
1 tsp baking soda
1 tsp baking salt
2 tsp cinnamon
2 tsp cardamom
1 tsp ground cloves
1 1/2 tsp ground ginger
1/4 tsp ground black pepper
2 1/2 cups white whole wheat flour
1 stick butter, soft
1 1/2 cup coconut palm sugar
2 eggs
1 tsp ground vanilla
2 apples, diced
1/4 cup candied ginger flakes

Lemon Ginger Frosting
1 stick butter
Grated zest of a lemon
grated fresh ginger, about 3 inches of ginger root
3 cups powdered sugar
2 tsp lemon juice + milk

Method:

Oven 350*
Combine the dry ingredients in a bowl and set aside. Gently heat milk over medium high heat, when warm, add the tea bags and brew a strong chai. Mix the butter and sugar together until light and fluffy, then add the eggs one at a time, mixing well after each addition. Mix in the vanilla powder. Mix the wet and dry ingredients together taking care to not overmix, then add the chai milk, the apples and the candied ginger flakes. Line a cake pan with parchment paper and bake about 35-45 minutes.

Candied Kumquat Coconut Ice Cream

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Kumquats are one of my favorite types of citrus. I’ve had them lately as snacks, in salads and in salsa so it was just a matter of time until they made it into my ice cream. I just returned home from Santa Cruz where I completed my Wilderness First Responder course. The course was amazing, with a great crew and inspiring and engaging instructors. Whenever I’m in Santa Cruz I visit Penny’s Ice Creamery and enjoy their amazing ice cream. And so, even though today is windy with scattered snow I decided it was the kind of day that needed ice cream. When you make this recipe you should definitely save the leftover kumquat syrup. I made granola and used some of the syrup to sweeten and add flavor to the mix giving it a tangy citrusy taste.

 Candied Kumquat Coconut Ice Cream

 Candied Kumquats
3 cups kumquats, diced with seeds removed
1 cup water
½ cup sugar, ¼ cup maple syrup

Method:

In a small saucepan heat the water, sugar and syrup until they come to a soft boil. Add the diced kumquats and simmer for about 10 minutes. Strain the kumquats over a bowl, separating the fruit from the syrup.

Ice Cream:

Candied kumquats and syrup
1 ½ cans coconut milk
1 tsp vanilla, I used the kind that comes as powder
¼ cup coconut palm sugar
Drizzle of maple syrup
1/8 tsp salt
1/8 tsp cayenne pepper
Raw cacao nibs

Method:

Add the coconut milk, vanilla, coconut palm sugar, maple syrup and salt to your ice cream maker while it runs. Then spoon in most of the candied kumquats, saving a few spoonfuls for garnish. Using a spoon, ladle in some of the syrup, about ¼ cup of so. Taste the ice cream and decide if you want to add more syrup. Sprinkle the cayenne in last and make sure the contents are well mixed. Process according to your ice cream manufacturers instructions. To serve add a small spoonful of the leftover candied kumquats, a drizzle of the syrup and a sprinkling of cacao nibs.