This humble bake makes the best breakfast cake – it’s sweetened with ripe pears, blitzed raisins and grated carrots. Set with eggs and ground almonds, pounded ginger and cardamom lift the spirits. Torte-like in texture, neither flour or sugar are used, which quite frankly, is a revelation.
This is a scarcely-adapted recipe from Elizabeth Peyton-Jones whose book I am greedily working my way through and is well worth digging out.
300g carrots, peeled and grated – I use organic for flavour and to swerve the pesticides.
2 ripe pears, peeled – organic as above
1 tsp baking powder – use gluten free if needs be
250g ground almonds
50g arrowroot – I source this from my local wholefood shop and it works as a thickener
2 tsp ground ginger
1 tsp ground cardamom
4 eggs, beaten
75g nuts – pecans and hazelnuts are good for sweetness, I used almonds as they came to hand.
Heat the oven to 170c/Gas 3.5
Oil and line a generous cake tin – I used a 24cm tart tatin round tin as it has deep sides.
Beat the eggs together and set to one side.
Place the remaining ingredients into a food processor and blitz together into a rough consistency – enough to breakdown the raisins but ensure the strands of carrots remain. (If you don’t have a food processor, roughly chop the nuts and raisins together before combining all together in a large bowl.)
With the motor running, add the beaten egg to the mixture until fully combined. (If you’re working by hand, simply beat the eggs into the ingredient mix).
Transfer the batter into your prepared tin and cook low and slow for 45-50 minutes – as a guide, my cake took 50 minutes. An inserted skewer may come out from the cake still a little sticky, however it’s key to allow the cake to cool completely before diving in, as this gives it time to set.
This cake would wear a cream cheese frosting well and even a demure glace icing could do the trick, but that’d take us out of the realms of breakfast and strictly into tea, which is an entirely different story..