Chocolate carrot/pumpkin cake

3 Aug

I like chocolate.  And cake.  And cookies.  Pretty much all the things that are nutritionally void, and laden with excess sugar and empty calories.  So, i’ve been trying to find recipes for healthy versions of my favourite treats, but more often, just converting the regular ones.

Last night, Hannah and I made a chocolate pumpkin cake loosely based on this recipe that we modified a whole lot to be way healthier.  I also didn’t have quite enough pumpkin, so I used some carrot too.  The cake turned out to be very delicious, moist, and crowd pleasing at playgroup this morning.  At least people told me they liked it…..

Chocolate carrot/pumpkin cake

Chocolate carrot/pumpkin cake:

1 1/3 cup wholemeal self raising flour (1 cup of wholemeal flour has 15.8g of dietary fibre, 63% of your daily needs, compared to a measly 3% in white flour, 14.8g of protein, and also contains calcium and potassium

1/2 cup cocoa (100% cocoa powder) (promotes cardiovascular health, reduces LDL cholesterol whilst increasing HDL cholesterol (which is the good kind), and is also an anti-depressant)

1 1/2 tsp ground cinnamon (regulates blood sugar, fights infection, combats menstrual pain, reduces chronic inflammation)

1/4 tsp ground nutmeg (fights fatigue and stress, reduces inflammation, relieves indigestion)

1/3 cup milk (full of calcium and protein, reduces symptoms of PMS)

1 TBSP fresh lemon juice (contains antioxidants, vitamin C, aids digestion)

1/2 cup cooked, mashed pumpkin (cooled) (contains lots of beta-carotene, a cancer fighting antioxidant, high in dietary fibre, rich in vitamins A and B, also contains the minerals calcium, potassium, and phosphorus)

1/4 cup cooked, mashed carrot (cooled) (lots of vitamin A and beta-carotene, reduces risk of lung, colon, and breast cancer, reduces risk of stroke)

1 TBSP pure vanilla extract, preferably the real stuff, not imitation (reduces nausea, gives the illusion of sweetness)

3/4 cup organic butter, softened (Don’t let the butter scare you. We need fat in our diets, and butter is full of vitamin A, D, E and K, contains lecithin, which is essential for metabolising cholesterol, contains antioxidants, aids in mineral absorption, it’s fatty acids have antimicrobial, anti-tumour, and anti-cancer properties.  Yes, it’s high in cholesterol, but we also need cholesterol to “produce a variety of steroids that protect against cancer, heart disease, and mental illness.”  Did you know that human breast milk contains around 50% saturated fat, the highest proportion of cholesterol then almost any other food.  The french, who consume a diet very high in saturated fat from butter and cheese, have a very low rate of heart disease.  To read more about butter, click here. I wanted to give you a link to a journal article, but you wouldn’t be able to read it without paying, so I didn’t. I can read it through my university library website.  Student privileges you see….)

3/4 cup raw organic honey (honey should not be consumed by anyone under the age of 1.  That said, raw honey is anti-viral, anti-bacterial, anti-inflammatory, and anti-fungal, it contains vitamins B1, B2, B3, B5, B6, C, magnesium, potassium, calcium, sodium chlorine, sulphur, and phosphate, strengthens the immune system.  Commercial honey has been pasteurised and had all or most of the pollen removed, and does not have all of the benefits listed above)

Stevia to taste (can be liquid, or puree the fresh leaves with your pumpkin and carrot) (Stevia is a natural sweetener that is about 300 times sweeter than sugar.  It does not elevate blood sugar levels, and hardly has any calories.  If you use too much, especially of the raw leaves, it does have a liquorice like after taste, but hey, if you like liquorice, that’s not really a bad thing.  I am growing a stevia plant in a pot outside.  You don’t need much of it, so use sparingly.

3 free range eggs (rich in vitamins, and full of easily digestible protein.  Eggs from free range chickens contain higher levels of vitamins and are more resistant to salmonella)

Method:

1. Combine dry ingredients in medium sized bowl

2. Whisk milk, lemon juice, vanilla, pumpkin, carrot, and stevia together in small bowl

3. Beat honey and softened butter together in large bowl on medium until well combined

4. Add eggs one at a time and beat until incorporated after each addition

5. Pour flour mixture and milk mixture on top of butter mixture and stir together with a wooden spoon until well combined

6. Pour cake mix into baking paper lined 10 inch round baking pan and bake at 180C (350F) for 35 minutes or until inserted toothpick comes out clean.  You can use different sized pans, just keep an eye on the baking time (smaller pans will mean the cake is thicker and will need a longer time, bigger will yield a thinner cake and require less time).

7. If you’re really on top of things, cool the cake on a wire rack, but if not, that’s ok too.  I just let mine sit in it’s pan and it was fine.

After sufficiently cool, put cake in the the fridge.  This cake tastes best cold.  Not room temperature, from the fridge cold.  Once cool, it goes all fudgey and delicious.  Of course you shouldn’t consume a large amount of the cake because despite being nutritious, it still has calories.  You can rest assured knowing that your little “treat” wasn’t just empty calories, but is providing you with lots of good nourishment.

Cut into 12 slices and each slice has 166 calories.

Close up. See how fudgey it is?  Yummmmmmy....

Close up. See how fudgey it is? Yummmmmmy….

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4 Responses to “Chocolate carrot/pumpkin cake”

  1. Chrissy August 3, 2013 at 2:50 pm #

    Now all I need to do is convert it to gluten free. Tough one. It looks yummy though.

    • Mommy Adventures August 3, 2013 at 2:56 pm #

      If you are the kind of celiac that can have oats (apparently some can, I’m told??), you can just put some oats in a really good food processor or blender and process until they are flour like and use that instead. Otherwise, I’d maybe try 1/2 almond meal, 1/2 whatever your favourite gluten free flour is. Maybe I’ll try to do a GF version and post that sometime too 🙂 I know there are a lot of people out there who can’t eat gluten.

    • LBcruiseshipblogger August 4, 2013 at 12:35 pm #

      I found a very informative blog about gluten free flours once, which is actually the only thing I have ever reblogged on my blog. The information just seemed too useful to let it slip away.
      http://mycruisestories.com/2012/04/18/gluten-free-flour-mixes/

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