I got this lovely recipe out of “Sarah Brown’s Vegetarian Kitchen”, a book I bought seriously years ago. It has been languishing in the drawer in the kitchen for a while (most of my recipe books, are actually taking up a cupboard’s floor space (and some) in my bedroom…) and I decided last week to try something a little bit different instead of coffee & walnut cake, and this was one of them.
- ½lb (225g) Plain Flour (this can be normal, wheatmeal or wholemeal)
- 1 tablespoon Cinnamon
- 1 teaspoon Nutmeg
- ½ tablespoon Baking Powder
- 4oz (110g) Butter (or Margarine)
- 4oz (110g) Honey
- 4oz (110g) Sugar
- ½lb (225g) Carrots, peeled and finely grated
- Preheat the oven to Gas Mark 3 (325°F, 170°C, 150° (Fan));
- Grease a 1lb (450g) Loaf Tin;
- Mix all the dry ingredients together in a bowl (flour, cinnamon, nutmeg and baking powder);
- Put the butter, honey and sugar in a saucepan and melt over a low heat;
- Pour this mixture into the bowl with the dry ingredients and mix well until everything is combined;
- Stir in the finely grated carrots;
- Pour the mixture into the tin and pop in the oven;
- Cook for 60-80 minutes until the mixture feels firm to the touch and a skewer, when inserted into the centre of the cake comes out clean;
- Leave the cake in the tin for 10 minutes, the turn out onto a cooling rack;
What happened when I did it!
- Well, the first thing, is I clearly didn’t read the recipe clearly enough (must use my glasses more often) as I only added ½ teaspoon of baking powder, not ½ tablespoon – that could be the reason it felt very ‘heavy’!
- I also always use light brown sugar instead of caster sugar. I also think that if you want to use fruit sugar, it would work just as well just remember to only use 2/3 of the amount).
- I didn’t have any nutmeg in the cupboard – or rather I did but it was seriously out-of-date, so it got binned – so I replaced this with 1 teaspoon of ginger.
- 1 tablespoon of cinnamon does make for a very heavily spiced cake – so if cinnamon is not a particular favourite, you could always use half the cinnamon and replace the remainder with mixed spice, or ginger! Cinnamon does have an enormous range of health benefits, so this could be said to be a ‘healthy cake’ – would one of those really exist?
- An alternative – which is the route I took – was to top the cake with an orange buttercream frosting (recipe below). This actually helped to cool down the spiciness of the cinnamon, and it tasted great 😉
Orange Buttercream Frosting
- 35g Butter (or margarine)
- 20ml Milk
- 1 teaspoon orange extract (or orange juice)
- 166g Icing Sugar
These are approximate guidelines, as I reduced a recipe by a third!
Chuck everything into a bowl and mix with an electric beater – or a spoon, until smooth and creamy 😉