Nik Sharma, author and photographer behind the blog A Brown Table, has made a name for himself by creating recipes using ingredients that reflect flavors of his native India — combined with techniques from his American home with tasty success. The Date and Tamarind Loaf recipe we’re sharing from Nik this week exemplifies his approach to food. It is from his debut cookbook, Season: Big Flavors, Beautiful Food. This could finally be the fruit cake that people look forward to receiving for the holidays! Try it out and let us know! —Kristina
Why Nik loves this recipe: This cake is my take on the spice cakes of the west that we love to bake and eat during the cooler months of the year. I find tamarind to be one of the most wonderful ingredients to work with, either in savory or sweet recipes. It brings back many memories of the two large trees that stood in front of my childhood home in Bombay. Tamarind is usually accompanied by spice in curries or chutneys, savory or sweet, so I wanted to play on that idea and construct a cake that emphasized those features. In this loaf cake, the sweetness of the dates and the fruity acidity of the tamarind go beautifully together.
For a chance to win a copy of Season, respond to the following question in the comments section below by October 17th, 5PM. What single ingredient are you absolutely obsessed with? When did you first encounter it? Tell us the story! The winner will be announced in the comments section, so be sure to check in again.
About Nik: Nik Sharma is the writer, photographer, and recipe developer behind A Brown Table, an award-winning blog that has garnered best-ofs from Saveur, Parade, Better Homes & Gardens, and the International Association of Culinary Professions. His weekly column, A Brown Kitchen, appears in the San Francisco Chronicle and he has written for many other publications. Nik lives in Oakland, CA with his husband and two pets. You can find Nik on Instagram at @abrowntable and find his previous recipe in our archives here.
Image above: Removing the parchment from the loaf
Image above: Cover of Season. All photography by Nik Sharma
Image Above: Nik Sharma
Image above: The loaf before glaze
Image above: Nik pours glaze on the loaf