Carrot, Cardamom and Amaranth Cake
This decadent, moist, rich cake is not only gluten-free but is also filled with flavour and fragrance. It’s a perfect way to use up any carrots you may have lurking in the vegetable drawer of your fridge – you’ll turn them into a sublime slice of heaven. Gluten-free
200g shelled pistachios,
230g coconut sugar
125g amaranth flour
½ tsp baking powder finely grated zest of 4
1 tsp cardamom pods, toasted
and freshly ground 360g grated carrot 160ml olive oil Honey cream cheese icing 250g cream cheese, at room
125g soft unsalted butter, at
room temperature 80ml raw honey
1 tsp vanilla paste, or the
seeds from 1 pod zest of 2 limes
To decorate edible spray-free roses
Preheat your oven to 180°C. Lightly grease two 20cm springform cake tins, and line the base and sides with non-stick baking paper.
Place toasted pistachios in a food processor or blender. Pulse to grind the pistachios into evenly sized pieces, neither too fine nor too chunky. You could also chop them by hand.
Next, ideally in a stand mixer fitted with the whisk attachment, whisk the coconut sugar and eggs together until thick and fluffy and tripled in volume. This will take about 5 minutes; when you lift the whisk out of the mixture, the ribbon that runs off should sit on top of the mixture for 10 seconds before merging back in.
Place the amaranth flour, baking powder, orange zest, cardamom and pistachios in a separate bowl. Mix lightly but thoroughly. Add the carrot and mix gently, then add the oil and mix gently again.
Add half the egg mix to the flour mix, and fold together very gently. Add the remaining egg mix and continue to fold very gently until everything is just incorporated. Divide mixture between the tins. Bake for 50-60 minutes. It will look cooked before then, but will be raw in the middle. Wait at least 50 minutes before testing with a small sharp knife or skewer. If it comes out clean, the cakes are done. Turn the oven off, and with the door open, leave the cakes inside to cool until they are warm. Transfer to racks to cool fully.
To make the icing, beat the cream cheese until smooth, then add the butter and beat until thoroughly incorporated. Add the honey, vanilla and the lime zest, and beat again until you have a smooth, thick icing. This should only take a minute.
Place one cake on your cake plate and spread half the icing on top, smoothing it out with the back of a spoon. Lay the second cake on top and cover with the remaining icing. Decorate with the edible flowers. The cake will keep in the fridge, covered, for several days.