It’s mango season in all the places I usually pine for. I can’t take a tropical vacation right now, so it’s a welcome sight to see mangoes at the market. A few weeks ago we brought home a case of Ataulfo mangoes; creamy and smooth, and fragrant and so sweet and juicy we ate them standing over the kitchen sink. And when we’d had our fill, we cut some up in pieces for our salad, and then made this mango cardamom cake with the rest.
I still sometimes can’t wrap my head around the fact that I live in a place without mango trees. We had mango trees all round when I was a kid. I’ll have to check with my mom, but I’m pretty sure mango was the first fruit I ever ate.
I remember the giant mango tree in front of the house when we lived out on our farm in the middle of nowhere, fruit hung from its branches like paper lanterns. We sat under that tree for shade; it was a cool and breezy spot. My little brother when he was born spent most of the time in his little crib under that mango tree.
Until I can sit under a mango tree again and catch some breeze, I’m content with bringing mangoes home from the market. This mango cardamom cake is one of my favourite things to do when mangoes are plentiful; I’ve made it a few dozen times over the years, and it’s gone through some adaptations.
I like to use very ripe mangoes, and usually Ataulfo mango (or Alphonso, if you can get it in your area) because it has buttery sweeter flesh. Sweet and spicy cardamom adds a lush layer to the mango, heightening the flavour of the cake. It has a lovely floral aroma and smells heavenly when baking. I add pieces of mango to the batter before baking to make the cake richer and fruitier.
This is a slightly dense cake, a simple snack cake, if you will. It’s moist, rich textured and luscious.
I like to make this type of cake for when we have company, or have a few other people to share it with, it unfortunately does not keep well because of the fresh fruit in it – I try not to hang on to it for more than a day. Although, I once sliced leftovers into thin pieces and slow roasted them to make crackers akin to Raincoast crisps.
- 1 tablespoon ground flax + 3 tablespoons water
- 1/2 cup or 4 oz. butter, softened
- 3/4 cup turbinado or regular sugar
- 1/2 cup mango puree (1 ripe medium-sized mango)
- 2 tablespoons apple cider vinegar + almond milk to fill up to 3/4 of a cup, left to sit for about 3 minutes
- 1 tablespoon lemon juice
- 1 tablespoon vanilla extract
- 2 cups white whole-wheat flour (regular whole-wheat or all-purpose flour works too)
- 1 teaspoon ground cardamom
- 1 teaspoon baking powder
- 1 teaspoon baking soda
- 1/2 teaspoon salt
- Zest of half a lemon
- 1 cup chopped mango pieces (1 ripe medium-sized mango)
- Preheat oven to 350 degrees f., and butter a square cake pan or your preferred baking pan
- Mix ground flax seed and water in a small cup or bowl, set aside and let mixture thicken for at least 5 minutes
- Cream butter in a mixing bowl until pale, add sugar and cream again until mixture is light and fluffy
- Add flax mixture and mango puree, beat to combine then mix in almond milk mixture, lemon juice and vanilla extract
- In another bowl, combine flour, cardamom, baking powder, baking soda and salt
- Combine the wet ingredients (mango and almond milk mixture) with the flour mixture, and mix to combine (do not overmix!)
- Add lemon zest and gently fold mango pieces in to the batter
- Pour batter into the prepared pan, and bake until top is brown and a toothpick inserted into the center comes out clean, about 45 to 50 minutes.
- Cool cake in pan on a wire rack for 5 - 10 minutes, remove from pan and allow cake to cool completely before serving
[Tweet “You’ve got to check out this luscious fragrant #vegan mango cardamom #cake, it fruity with tropical flavours! “]
What a beautiful childhood memory! I can just picture those mango trees! Your cake looks amazing, and I can’t wait to try making it later.6 June, 2016 at 6:50 am
Oooh I hope you make it! I can’t wait to see you take on it… you make everything look so gorgeous! 🙂6 June, 2016 at 4:49 pm
i rarely if ever use mangoes in baking, though i’m not sure why! pairing them with cardamom is interesting and appealing!6 June, 2016 at 8:56 am
I don’t bake that much with mangoes either, except when I get tired of eating them straight 🙂6 June, 2016 at 4:53 pm
The way you write is so descriptive I feel like I am sitting under that mango tree! We’ve got a young mango tree in our backyard with about a dozen mangoes on it (its only about 15 feet tall but growing fast) and can’t wait for them to ripen. We love mangoes and are always looking for new ways to use them – this one will definitely be on the list.7 June, 2016 at 5:12 am
Hi Elsa, lovely cake, hope you’ll bring this on over to Food on Friday: Cakes over at my house (Carole’s Chatter)!9 June, 2016 at 1:22 pm