Mmmmm. Need I say more?
Who knows Ottolenghi? Last May when we stayed in Islington was the first time I came across this cafe, deli, patisserie and bakery known by this distinctive name. And there are cookbooks too! This one is called simply ‘Ottolenghi The Cookbook’.
It contains recipes for exactly the kind of food I like: familiar ingredients but used in new and exciting ways. I can’t wait to buy it for myself as my dear physio who lent me this will want it back any day now!
After this post, I promise to go back to my pulses and knobbly veggies.
But this is one of the other two cakes I made for my Book Club meeting last week and judging by the reactions, I think it’s probably an excellent recipe to share.
160g plain flour
½ tsp baking powder
½ tsp bicarbonate of soda
1 tsp ground cinnamon/tarçin
¼ tsp ground cloves/karanfil
1 large egg
1 egg yolk
200g sunflower oil
270g caster sugar (in Turkey just use the regular toz şeker)
50g walnuts/ceviz, chopped
50g desiccated coconut/hindistan cevizi
135g carrot, roughly grated
2 egg whites
Pinch of salt
175g cream cheese at room temperature
70g unsalted butter
35g icing sugar/pudra şekeri
30g walnuts/ceviz, chopped and lightly toasted
- Preheat oven to 170C/Gas Mark 3. Grease a 20cm springform cake tin and line the base and sides with baking parchment.
- Sift together the flour, baking powder, bicarb of soda and spices. Lightly whisk the whole egg with the egg yolk.
- Put the sunflower oil and caster sugar in the bowl of an electric mixer and beat for about a minute on medium speed. On a low speed, slowly add the beaten egg. Mix in the walnuts, coconut and carrot and then the sifted dry ingredients. Don’t over mix.
- Transfer the mixture to a large bowl. Wash and dry the mixer bowl, making sure it is totally clean, then put the egg whites and salt in it and whisk on a high speed until firm peaks form.
- Gently fold the egg whites into the carrot mixture in 3 additions, being careful not to over mix. Streaks of white in the mixture are okay.
- Pour the cake mixture into the prepared tin and bake for approximately 1 hour; it could take longer. A skewer inserted in the centre should come out dry. If the cake starts getting dark before the centre is cooked through, cover it with foil. Let the cake cool completely and then remove from the tin.
- To make the icing, beat the cream cheese in a mixer till light and smooth. Remove from the mixer. Beat the butter, icing sugar and honey in the mixer until light and airy. Fold together the cheese and butter mixes. Spread waves of icing on top of the cake and sprinkle with the nuts.
I think my only complaint is that a lot of washing up of bowls is involved! But that’s minor when you think of the end result.