Wednesday, 2 January 2013

Moist Carrot and Sultana Cake

For Christmas my husband got a brand new cooking book, "The Hairy Dieters". We saw the TV series linked to it and found it very interesting, we are constantly trying to lose weight and be healthier so he was interested enough to ask for it. Whilst flicking through we found several recipes of interest, which will be documented, but we decided to start with the Moist Carrot and Sultana Cake. 

This cake fitted our requirements as my parents are visiting today and we had 3 carrots in the fridge that needed using up, perfect!! 

The cake states that it's healthier by using oil instead of butter, it's a strange recipe because the cake basically looks like carrots when it goes in the oven. Anyway some details and substitutions, instead of using plain sultanas I used a bag of mixed fruit which also contained some mixed peel. I had this in the cupboard and thought it might add a little flavour. I didn't put any orange zest in the cake, due to adding the mixed peel I didn't think it was necessary, plus we don't have a zester!! Instead of ground cinnamon and nutmeg I used mixed spice. My husband doesn't like cinnamon so I thought this would be a good alternative. 

The cake was very easy to make, firstly I peeled and grated the carrots and placed these to one side. Then it was to make the butter substitute so you beat the eggs together and add the oil and sugar to this mix. Then add the carrot, flour, fruit, spices and some baking powder and mix it all together. At this point the cake mainly consisted of carrot and look most unappetising!! The bikers said to oil the tin rather than the usual butter so I did this too. 
Cake ready to go in the oven
The cake was placed in the oven and cooked for the specified 30mins, as always the cake wasn't done and required further time in the oven, around 20mins but after this time it was pulling away from the sides as the recipe states it should.
Just out of the oven, it's slightly pulling away from the sides
 I then carefully got the cake out the tin, unfortunately not carefully enough as the bottom of the cake had stuck to the tin and so this was left behind!! I was rather disappointed but when I investigate why it looks like the option of oil on the tin was a bad plan but also the cake could have done with a little more time in the oven as it doesn't look quite done in the centre. 
The bottom stuck to the tin :(
Once the cake was cooled we decided not to place the icing sugar on the top, I didn't really see the point and we just wanted to eat it!! This also meant that we left off the orange zest on the top too. 

Ready to eat
The cake tasted really nice and moist, the spices were subtle but strong enough to taste. My mum felt that there should have been more fruit and nuts in it, however, for me the balance was perfect. I didn't think it tasted any different being a healthy cake and I'd certainly enjoy eating it again. 

Lovely moist slice
I got my mum, husband and I to mark the cake this time and we have a slight range. I'm always the generous one and gave the cake 9/10, I thought that the recipe cooking time wasn't correct and oiling the tin didn't work. My husband gave it 8/10, he said it was borderline 9 but he decided to round it down. My mum gave it 7/10 as she thought it could have done with more fruit, as mentioned previously. 

Overall this recipe has got a very good score and is something I'll definitely add to my list, really enjoyed it.