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Butter - 200 gms
Castor sugar - 200 gms
Flour - 175 gms
Eggs - 4
Baking powder - 1 tsp
Ground almonds - 90 gms
Buttermilk - 100 ml
Almond flakes - 4 tbsp

For Butter cream:
Butter - 100 gms
Icing sugar - 140 gms

For Plum and Gin syrup:
Dark Plums - 3-4
Gin - 100 ml
Grenadine syrup - 50 ml
Golden castor sugar - 30 gms


  • Heat the oven to 170 C.
  • Cream the butter and sugar until they are light and fluffy, then beat eggs one by one, adding 1 tbsp flour after the first egg.
  • Fold in flour, baking powder and ground almonds followed by buttermilk.
  • Spoon the mixture into two buttered and lined 18 cm loose based sponge tins and sprinkle flaked almonds over the top of the mixture.
  • Bake for 30-35 minutes or until the cakes are risen and golden.
  • Cool on wire racks.
  • Meanwhile, for the buttercream, beat butter until its light and creamy and beat in icing sugar.
  • Tip wedges of dark plums into a pan with gin, grenadine syrup and golden castor sugar and cook until the plums just soften but hold their shape.
  • Scoop out and cool the plums.
  • Reduce the liquid to a syrup.
  • Sandwich the cakes together with some of the syrup and the butter cream.
  • Decorate with the plums, a few more almonds and a drizzle of the syrup.
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Dondakaya Masala (Gherkins Masala) curry

Dondakayalu - 250gms
Onions - 2
Oil - 2 tbsp
Cumin seeds - 1tsp
Tamarind juice - 2 tsp
Turmeric - 1/4tsp
Salt to taste

For Masala paste:
Peanuts -1 tbsp, Red Chillies - 3 no.'s, Gingely seeds - 1tbsp, Coriander seeds - 1 tbsp, coconut powder - 1tbsp,  cumin seeds - 1 tsp

Cut the onions into small pieces. Slit the dondakayalu into 4 long pieces. Dry roast all the masala ingredients and grind to make fine powder. Heat the oil add jeera when it crackles add onions. Fry onions for 5 minutes add dondakayalu, turmeric and salt. Cook for another 5 minutes the add the masala powder, tamarind juice and some water. Cook the curry till the oil floats. This curry goes well with rice and roti.