Saturday, April 6, 2013

Nourishing Traditions Carrot Cake

Recently I've been experimenting with making baked goods out of whole grain flour soaked in an acidic medium.  Supposedly soaking grains breaks down antinutrients, making the grains more nutritious and digestible.  We tried the Carrot Cake recipe from Nourishing Traditions, with some alterations, and found it fairly tasty- although it would be a big change from someone used to using refined sugar and white flour, which are much lighter and sweeter.

The icing was delicious- I love cream cheese frosting and I couldn't even tell that it was made with honey!

Here is the recipe with my changes:

2 1/2 c freshly ground spelt, kamut or whole wheat flour- I don't have a wheat grinder, unfortunately, so I used organic stone ground red wheat flour
1 c piima cream or créme fraiche
1 c whole yogurt- instead of these two ingredients I used 2 c. buttermilk left over from making butter
1 c butter, softened
1 1/4 c rapadura- I used coconut sugar, which I have been using a lot in baking and cooking recently.  I works well but is not nearly as sweet as white or brown sugar.
4 eggs
2 tsp vanilla extract
2 tsp baking soda
1 tsp cinnamon
1 tsp sea salt
1 8-oz can crushed pineapple, water packed- I didn't have any on hand so I left it out, I do think it would add to the sweetness and moistness of the cake, however.
2 c finely grated carrots
1 c dried unsweetened coconut meat
1/2 c
crispy pecans, chopped- used walnuts instead

Icing: (the best part, in my opinion!!)
2 c cream cheese, softened- I only used one package
1/2 c butter - used 1/4 c.
1 Tbsp vanilla extract
1/2 - 3/4 c raw honey- we use Howland's Honey which is locally produced/used 1/4 c.

Mix flour with yogurt and cultured cream.  Cover and leave for 12 to 24 hours in a warm place.    Line a buttered 9" by 13" Pyrex pan with buttered parchment paper and coat pan and parchment paper with flour.    Cream butter with Rapadura.  Beat in eggs, baking soda, cinnamon, vanilla, and salt.  Gradually add flour mixture.  Fold in pineapple with juice, carrots, coconuts and nuts.  Pour into pan and bake at 300 degrees for about 2 hours.  (I found it took 1.5 hours in our convection oven, and that was a bit overdone).  Let cool slightly and turn onto a platter or tray.

To make icing, place cream cheese, butter, vanilla and honey in food processor and blend until smooth.  Generously ice the top and sides of the cake. 

Arabella had lots of fun 'helping' me with the cake (more like taste testing!)  It was her first time having any sort of dessert like batter.

Daniel was quite happy playing with the playgym, which he loves!

Afterwards we went for a walk outside.  Despite all of the snow it was the first 'warm' day we've had in a long time!  It was also Arabella's first time walking outside, as it has been much too cold and snowy for her.  She loved walking/running around and even didn't mind slipping and falling in cold puddles.

Another outing Arabella (and Mama) love is the library, which we visit every week.  We are all avid readers! 

1 comment:

  1. Carrot cake sounds yummy! Yes, cream cheese icing is wonderful! Arabella looks so sweet toddling about and Daniel has grown so much! Imogen smiles just like Arabella is in the baking picture, so sweet. What's her favourite book? XX