I met a boy 21 years ago, the boy was 13 then. He was a slender kid with curly hair who rode around his bicycle on the dirt roads in India. He could solve math problems faster than anyone I have known. I was an emotional girl, who saw beauty in flowers and dreamt of the ocean. He read “Think and Grow Rich” while I read “Pride and Prejudice”. We were polar opposites from the beginning.
He lived in a hostel, away from his parents. I thought the reason why he wanted to be friends with me was the homemade meals he got to have at my place sometimes. He was full of big dreams; he told me he wanted to see the world and take me with him. I listened to him intently as he told me what America would be like, why we had different time zones in the world and why the western world would give us a better life. He had a picture of an airplane under his pillow, which was supposed to remind him of what was at stake when he woke up in the morning. For two small-town kids in India, these were indeed big dreams.
Over the years, I saw this boy set specific goals, layout detailed plans of achieving them, and then ruthlessly execute those plans – even when it meant hurting the emotional side of me at times. He was an Engineer at 19 and was in New York finishing his Master’s Degree within a year of that. He came to my house all alone and asked my dad for my hand in marriage, at 21. His fearlessness has sometimes made me fearful.
He was next to me when I first logged on to the Internet, and he was receiving me at the airport when I took my first flight. He taught me how to drive a car, and how to order food at a taco bell. There have been plenty of ups and downs in our journey, but it has been an exciting one! Today, this boy grows his mustache out for Movember and we are celebrating his 34th birthday in Vancouver. He still has big dreams and an even bigger appetite! I can’t wait to find out what the future holds for us! Happy Birthday, babe!
Birthday Cake – Almond Cake with Honey
3 cups almond flour
3 large eggs
1/2 cup honey
1/2 cup ghee or coconut oil at room temperature – extra for greasing
1 tbsp orange zest
2 tsp baking powder
pinch of salt
Heat oven to 350°F degrees. Grease the cake pan with ghee and set it aside.
Mix all the dry ingredients – almond flour, baking powder and salt. Put eggs, honey, ghee and orange zest in a bowl and mix well. Now add the dry ingredient mix to this bowl. Mix well and make a smooth batter.
Put the batter in the greased pan and bake for 30-45 minutes until the top is golden brown. Insert a toothpick in the middle of the cake and make sure it comes out clean. Let it cool for at least 30 minutes before removing from the pan.
1 cup raw cashews – soaked in hot water for an hour, drained.
1/4 cup freshly squeezed orange juice
1/4 cup honey
1 tsp vanilla
pinch of salt
Soak raw cashews in hot water for an hour and drain. Combine orange juice, honey, salt, vanilla and cashews in a blender and make a smooth cream.
Decorate the cake with cashew cream, fresh berries and pistachios.
Medha, your write-up is amazing. Love the story of yours. Needless to say the recipe was amazing. Waiting to try it out.
Mirjam Leslie-Pringle says
Happy birthday Anup! I am sure you had a delicious day with super duper delicious almond cake.
I am enjoying your blog Medha. amaizing writing style, photography and presentation. love it. Almond cake looks yummmmm. cant wait to eat it.
Vijay Kalyanbhai says
It made me emotional because I could realize about whom you have written all these. Preseve these sentiments, they are much more valuable than anything else.
Lan | morestomach says
this is such a sweet story! happiest of birthday wishes to your man.
how long did it take you to grind those almonds in the grinder?
Lan, I could grind 1/4 cup at a time so it took me about 15-20 minutes. You can always use store bought almond flour. I have used Bob’s Red Mill almond flour in the past, with similar results.
Beautiful story medha , lovely post … I never baked cake with almond flour 🙂 I am gonna try this cake ..
Oh, you must try baking with Almond flour. Takes the guilt from eating desserts down a notch or two 🙂
The most beautiful blog i ever read. Filled my heart with emotions. God bless u both and have wonderful birthday!
Happy Birthday to your sweetheart. What a lovely write up. Hubbies rock.
The cake looks lovely. I enjoy baking with almond flour, I believe it’s got a unique texture and flavor to it. Will try this version out.
Yes, hubbies do rock! Almond flour is my favorite for baking. I hope you try out the recipe!
Kiran @ KiranTarun.com says
Happy Birthday to your better half — loved reading about your journey and love story. So touching and filled with love 🙂
So is this cake — divine!
Love your writing Medha. Happy birthday to Anup.
your story was amazing ….. i am in office busy with work but just felt checking your website & when i read this …. i guess i was lost inspite of knowing that i am surrounded with crazy people … but i think its the best story i heard & read till now …
Careful now..we don’t want you to get in trouble with your boss! Thanks for your encouragement!
You have such a way with words… And food photos… And gorgeous cakes…. Nicely done–such a lovely story, great post!
what size cake pan did you use?
Zosia, My pan is 8″x2″. Happy Baking!
I stumbled upon your blog from a friend of mine, and when I read almond cake I was interested in reading the post, coz I am gluten free. Love the story how you met your sweetheart and the almond cake with cashew cream!
Medha! What a lovely story …..it made me so emotional …I can relate to so much of it ….and it makes me soooo happy everytime I hear of small town kids like me ( I am from Jammu ) realizing their dreams!
Happy Birthday to your husband! This is my first visit to your blog so glad I chanced upon it! your write up is so feel-good and just goes to prove we all can achieve anything we dream of!
Love the about and putting on weight and being in denial too….been there done that :))
Chancing upon your blog has made my day! And I wasnt having a particularly good day so far!!
Aditi, we have a lot in common it seems! Glad to add a little cheer to your day!
Angelina Christi says
Belated Birthday wishes & Blessings to Anup..It is amazing, truly emotional feelings in your writing ..keep it up.. May god Bless both of you..
Lillian @ Sugar and Cinnamon says
Such a beautiful story! And the cake looks absolutely delicious. I love almonds! Beautiful photos as well 🙂
You are a fabulous writer! I was ready to read a whole book about your life after that post–there seems like so much story there. And I love this birthday cake! So much more wholesome than every other birthday cake I’ve had in life. Not to mention gorgeous–I love your photography!
Thanks Erika! You have a beautiful website as well..I got a massive sweet tooth after visiting!
Dixya @ Food, Pleasure, and Health says
happy belated to your husband. you guys have a lovely story together 🙂 and the cake is just stunning.maybe I should make it for my boyfriend. he will really appreciate it.
I may need to make this for myself for my birthday! This looks so wonderful!
I put sliced apple on the bottom of the baking tin and served just warm without the cashew nut cream but with a vegan custard …excellent desert.
That sounds delicious Rachelle!
Gayatri Dave says
I got your reference through your sister Lopa. I tried this recipe and it turned out really well. I loved cake and texture. Baking with almond flour is first time experience for me. Thanks for sharing. I will definitely try your other recipe and I am sure my son also will love it.
By the way, your write-up is really superb. Keep it up.
Thanks for stopping by and I am so glad you tried the cake recipe! I hope your son enjoyed the cake!
Have you ever made these as cupcakes?
Yes, I have made cupcakes using the same recipe and they had come out great!
I’m wondering if I could make it lemon poppy seed cake. What do you think? Also, is there a way to substitute part of almond flour for spelt?
Lovely blog and I absolutely love this recipe, finding a simple cake with nutritious ingredients is damn hard!
Thanks for visiting Marta! You can substitute the orange zest with lemon zest and poppy seed. I wouldn’t recommend using the spelt flour; I think almond flour works differently than grain flour like spelt. Spelt might make your cake more bread-like in texture. But hey, if you are feeling adventurous, why not?! I play around with my ingredients when I can. If you do try it, let me know how it turns out!
Almond flour is the same as almond meal? We can just grind almonds and make it?
Yes, Almond flour and almond meal is the same. I always grind almonds with skin on to make almond meal. (Technically, flour is little more finer than a meal but they are always use as substitute of each other).
I have stumbled onto your blog and am enjoying the intriguing recipes and they way you used some of the ingredients. Can you explain more about the process of making the “cashew cream”? Do you make other sweet creams?
Thanks Dani for stopping by. Making the cashew cream is an easy process. Soak raw cashews in hot water for an hour, drain and buzz in the blender until it becomes a smooth cream. There is a recipe at the end of the post explaining in detail how to make cashew cream, hope it helps!
Deepa @onesmallpot says
Medha, I am so glad you directed me to this post! The words are so beautifully honest and straight from the heart. And another recipe for me to try!
I stumbled upon your site while looking up recipes using Amaranth on Pinterest. So glad that I did. Your story is beautiful and I am so excited to try the recipes I have found here. Thanks for sharing!
Thank you Ashley, I am glad you stopped by!
Hi Medha, awesome post and pictures..
I tried this recipe twice and it came out really well 🙂
Just one query I have: my cashew cream became somewhat off-white in colour, and not so creamy as well 🙁
Any idea why?
Sudhir Jha says
Awesome cake..so sweets..
Sudhir Jha says
My favorate cocolate cake..nice ccake