I think it’s important to do things that are good for our spirits, even if it’s simply to make ourselves feel good. My beau was away on the weekend and I was at home staying warm and doing homework, so I decided to make myself one of my all time favourite cakes: Carrot cake. It’s sweet smell filled up my apartment and I felt good baking and then indulging. However, I am careful not to over-sweeten my cakes and I use alternative flours a lot of the time so that it’s not as heavy and it stays relatively healthy.
For me, carrot cake should not be refined. I go with the idea that it’s more of a loaf, something I can eat for breakfast and not feel ill.
Here is how I do it:
1 cup almond meal
1 cup self-raising plain flour
1/2 cup quinoa
4 teaspoon mixed spice (I use cinnamon, nutmeg, cardamon, pepper, vanilla)
1 cup brown sugar (or any unrefined sugar- makes the cake so much richer and gives a taste of caramel)
2 1/2 cups of grated carrots
1 cup chopped walnuts (half of these to put on the icing)
2/3 cup of either coconut oil or ghee
3 eggs, lightly beaten
150g of natural yoghurt
For the icing:
250 g cream cheese
1 rind of lemon or lime
Preheat oven to 180°C/160°C fan-forced. Grease a 6cm-deep, 19cm cake pan. Line base and sides with baking paper.
Sift flour, almond meal, quinoa and spice into a bowl. Add sugar, carrot, chopped walnuts, coconut oil/ghee, natural yoghurt and eggs. Stir to combine. Spread into prepared pan. Bake for 1 hour 15 minutes or until a skewer inserted into centre comes out clean (cover loosely with foil if over-browning). Stand in pan for 10 minutes. Turn out onto a wire rack to cool.
To make the icing mix the cream cheese, grated rind and honey to taste. Spread over cake. Decorate with walnuts. ENJOY