Have you heard the saying, “40 is the old side of young and 50 is the young side of old?” Well Martha’s son is visiting from Connecticut and turned 50 on Monday so we all met at the Cofresi Resort to wish him Happy Birthday. Wendell is also a diabetic and fond of agave for sweetening his drinks and desserts. We had to have a cake of-course and Martha asked me to do the honors of baking Wendell a cake with agave nectar.
This lime pound cake is made with 1/2 cup agave nectar instead of 1 cup of granulated refined sugar. Everyone enjoyed the cake which was luscious with the zest and juice of a large lime. I think the agave allowed the lime to really sparkle.
Icing the cake was a problem since its tropical here and there are not too many sugar-free icing recipes out there that would hold up to the heat and humidity of Puerto Rico. I found a super easy recipe video at Volcanic Nectar for agave marshmallows that really worked and definitely held up to the humidity and heat. I’ve made marshmallows before with a hot sugar syrup and egg whites and this recipe was so much easier with simply gelatin, water, agave and vanilla. The trick is to blend 2 envelopes of plain gelatin in 6 Tbsp of water and heat it for 30 seconds in the microwave before adding it to 1 cup of agave with a pinch of salt. Then beat the mixture with a handheld mixer for 8-10 minutes and add vanilla extract and beat until blended. WOW! The consistency was perfect for spreading and after a few minutes the fluff set a little more so it even worked tinted with food coloring and piped from a pastry bag.
The cake recipe makes 2 layers filled and iced with agave marshmallow fluff. If you want a traditional pound cake loaf by all means pour the batter into a standard sized loaf pan and adjust the baking time per recipe below.
I’m not going to debate the value of splenda, sweet and low, etc. versus agave nectar but to say that agave is metabolized more slowly and tolerated well by most diabetics. It is also great to cook with whereas the others are not. Give agave nectar a try the next time you want a dessert without refined sugar.
Ingredients for Agave Lime Pound Cake:
- 2 cups flour (all-purpose)
- 1/2 cup cornstarch
- 2 tsp baking soda
- 1/2 tsp baking powder
- 1/2 tsp salt
- 3 eggs at room temperature
- 1/2 cup Agave Nectar
- zest of 1 large lime
- 2 Tbsp lime juice
- 10 oz. butter (1-1/4 sticks) at room temperature
- 2/3 cup milk
- Preheat oven 350° F. Grease and flour 2 9-inch cake tins or a 4×8-inch loaf pan.
- In a medium bowl sift together the flour, cornstarch, baking soda, baking powder and salt.
- In a separate bowl cream the butter with the Agave Nectar. Use a hand-mixer or standing mixer. Add the eggs one at a time, beating after each addition. Add the lime zest and lime juice and beat another 30 seconds.
- With you mixer on slow speed add 1/3 of the flour mix and 1/3 cup of the milk (that’s half the milk). Increase the mixer speed until the batter is smooth. Add 1/2 of the flour mix remaining and the remaining 1/3 cup of milk, mix until smooth then add the remaining flour.
- Pour the batter into prepared cake tins or loaf pan spreading the batter smooth and even. Tap pans on the counter to release any air bubbles.
- Bake cake layers for 35 minutes, bake loaf for 1 hour. The cake is done when the batter pulls away from the side of the pan and a skewer or toothpick inserted into center of cake comes out clean. Be careful not to over bake.