A couple of days back, I got a big packet of betel leaves and was looking for recipes to incorporate it. I got a lot of suggestions to try betel leaves cake. So I thought let me try a paan flavoured cake incorporating betel leaves, gulkand and fennel seeds. This is a simple yet delicious cake. The ingredients used are very basic which is most often available in our pantry. Also, the cake requires no special equipment or technique to be followed. This paan cake can be made even by a beginner in less time.
For those who have eaten meetha paan, you would definitely agree that it’s a burst of flavours. I would say this cake has almost similar flavours if not the same. For anyone who loves the paan flavour, you would definitely love this cake. This paan flavoured cake is subtle, not too overpowering yet extremely flavourful.
This is a soft, moist cake. The cake needs no frosting and is perfect as a tea time cake.
Points to note
1) If you don’t have gulkand , you can use rose essence or rose flavoured jam.
2) I did not have betel nuts in hand, but if you have them, do use one tsp of it. Adds extra flour to the cake.
3) You can replace all purpose flour with whole wheat flour for a healthier version. Also, the cake is a little bit on the sweeter side because of sugar and gulkand. You can reduce a little bit of sugar if you want a not-so-sweet cake.
4) The nice green colour comes from green food colour. If you skip it, you will not get a green colour with just the betel leaves.
5) You can add cherries, tutti frutti etc to the cake too.
- 4 Betel Leaves
- 1&1/4 cup All Purpose Flour
- 1/2 cup Milk
- 1/2 cup Butter
- 2 Eggs
- 3/4 cup Sugar
- 1/4 tsp Salt
- 1 tsp Baking Powder
- 2 tsp Gulkand
- 1 tsp Saunf / Fennel Seeds
- 2 tbsp Pistachios for topping
- Green Food Colour
- Preheat oven to 180C or 350F
- Grease and line a 7 inch cake pan and keep it ready.
- Tear the betel leaves into small pieces.
- Grind it to a paste using little water.
- Pour this into a strainer and remove the extract.
- Add this extract to the milk kept for making the cake. Add needed amount of food colour and mix it well.
- In a bowl, cream together butter and sugar until smooth.
- Add in the eggs and mix till combined.
- Add fennel seeds, gulkand and mix till combined.
- In another bowl, mix together the flour, baking powder and salt.
- To the bowl of gulkand egg mixture, add in the strained milk and flour mixture alternatively.
- First add a little portion of milk. Next, add the flour. Keep adding aternatively till everything is well combined.
- Make sure the batter is smooth and well combined.
- Pour this into the prepared baking pan.
- Top it with sliced pistachios.
- Bake it for 40 mins or until fully done.
- Once done, let the cake cool down for few mins.
- Then invert it onto a wire rack.
- Cut and serve once it comes to room temperature.