Sunday, 17 April 2016

My no sugar (ok almost) no sugar carrot cake

I made this tasty cake a few weekends ago now using a traditional carrot cake recipe as the base and then making a few substitutions. The result of pretty great really and I'm proud to say I managed to make it taste a good amount of sweetness with only 1/4 cup of brown sugar!

Carrot cakes are an ultimate favourite cake for me (up there with chocolate!) so it's important that even if its a 'healthier version' it still tastes really good.

This one is definitely one of those recipes...

For the cake:

1/4 cup of brown sugar (the original recipe had 2 cups!)
1 1/3 cups vegetable oil
3 extra-large eggs, at room temperature
1 teaspoon pure vanilla extract
2 1/2 cups of wholemeal flour (the original recipe used white flour)
2 teaspoons ground cinnamon
1 teaspoons baking soda
1 teaspoon baking powder
1 cup raisins
1 cup chopped walnuts (I didn't put these in because my friend doesn't like walnuts).
1 cup of carrots, grated
1/2 cup diced fresh or canned pineapple

Method

Beat the sugar, oil, and eggs together in the bowl of an electric mixer fitted with the paddle attachment until light yellow. Add the vanilla. In another bowl, sift together 2 1/2 cups flour, the cinnamon, baking soda, and baking powder.

Add the dry ingredients to the wet ingredients. Toss the raisins and walnuts with 1 tablespoon flour. Fold in the carrots and pineapple. Add to the batter and mix well.

Divide the batter equally between the 2 pans. Bake for 55 to 60 minutes, or until a toothpick comes out clean. Allow the cakes to cool completely in the pans set over a wire rack.
I decorated mine with cream cheese icing and some pumpkin seeds, poppy seeds and diced dried apricots. 

Lemon poppy seed muffins

A couple of weekends ago I made a these delicious lemon poppy seed muffins because I realised that I had a huge bag of poppy seeds to use up! Did anyone else know that poppy seeds can go rancid in as little as 3 weeks?! Not me... Anyway it was a good reason to try out a new recipe.

I really liked these muffins but they weren't lemony enough for my taste, I think 3 tablespoons of lemon zest (instead of 2) would be just right for next time.

I used my trusty friend "Allyson Gofton" for the recipe she never steers my wrong. Her website was recently revamped and their are HEAPS of great recipes online now so you don't even need to buy the books.

 It was actually a loaf recipe by I just put it in muffin tins instead and cooked it for 25 mins.

Ingredients

  • ¾ cup milk
  • ½ cup poppy seeds
  • 150 grams butter, softened
  • ¾ cup castor sugar
  • 2 eggs
  • 1¾ cups flour
  • 1 tsp each baking power and baking soda
  • ¼ cup lemon juice
  • 2 tsp grated lemon rind

Method

  1. Heat the milk in a small saucepan and when hot but not boiling, stir in the poppy seeds. Set aside to cool for 30 minutes.
  2. Beat the butter and sugar until light and creamy. Beat in the eggs, one at a time.
  3. Sift the flour with the baking powder and baking soda and fold into the creamed mixture, alternately with the poppy seeds and milk. Lastly fold in the lemon juice. Turn into a greased and paper-lined 22cm x 12cm loaf tin.
  4. Bake at 180ºC for 1 hour or until a skewer inserted comes out clean.. Allow the loaf to stand for 20 minutes before turning out onto a cake rack to cool.



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