I keep on finding recipes to adapt and I get more and more audacious (although at some point, I think I will conclude there are only so many elements you can replace if you still want to call it a cake). I first made this all-in-one carrot cake as a regular version (slightly adapting a Donna Hay recipe), but it turned out the free-from version was even tastier, so definitely a winner this time! Not that I will be sharing recipes of flops of course … Anyway, here’s how to bake it:
Preheat oven to 160 C fan. Place 400 g carrots in a food processor and process until finely chopped (or grate them by hand). If you are making a regular version (so not gluten-free), add 120 g pecans to the food processor as well (or finely chop them). Add 115 g rice flour, 110 g chestnut flour (or 225 g plain flour for the regular version), 1 and 1/2 tsp bicarbonate of soda, 175 g brown sugar, 110 g caster sugar, 1 tsp cinnamon, 1 tsp mixed spice (if you don’t have mixed spice, just add more cinnamon), 2 tsp vanilla bean paste (or vanilla extract), 125 ml vegetable oil, 2 eggs (or no-egg equivalent) and 70 g yoghurt (use sheep or goat yoghurt for the lactose-free version), and process or mix until combined.
Pour the mixture into a 22 cm round springform cake tin lined with non-stick baking paper and bake for 55–60 minutes or until just cooked when tested with a skewer. Allow to cool in the tin.
To make the cream cheese frosting, place 250 g cream cheese, 1 tbsp lemon juice, 50 g ricotta, 55 g icing sugar and 1 tsp vanilla bean paste in a food processor and process until smooth (or mix with a hand-held mixer. Spread the frosting over the cooled cake to serve. For the dairy-free version: mix 200 g goat’s cream cheese with 210 g icing sugar, 1 tbsp lemon juice and 1 tsp vanilla bean paste (or vanilla extract). Enjoy!