River Cottage Canteen in Axminster is featuring a couple of root vegetable cakes on its current menu. Which set us wondering…
It might sound a bit of a non-starter to mix something as prosaic and worthy as root vegetables with something as indulgent as cake. Still, carrot cake, and its richer variant Passion Cake, have long been favourites in our family.
Of course root vegetables are packed with natural sugars, which means they work well for sweet as well as savoury. And the fibre provides an interesting texture, producing cakes that are velvety and rich without being too heavy.
Here are some we have enjoyed:
Carrot and banana cake (aka Passion Cake)
There are lots of variations, but this one approximates the recipe we use, which comes from Julie Duff’s collection of traditional cakes. We use pecan nuts rather than walnuts, which gives added sweetness, and our icing is just cream cheese and icing sugar with a teaspoon of orange juice to make it runnier.
Nigel Slater beetroot chocolate cake
Great texture and taste.
Hugh Fearnley-Whittinstall’s beetroot and chocolate brownies
Equally rich and moist but snack-sized.
In case you are wondering, Little Foxley is the name of our one-bedroom holiday cottage in Charmouth, near Axminster. If you are looking for a summer Dorset break, visit our website, www.littlefoxley.co.uk.