Carrot cakes and all sort of fruit loafs are my top favourite type of sweet treat since I have cut out sugar almost completely out of my diet. All due to loosing that sweet tooth! (or to be more scientific sugar feeding bacterias living in gut that creates this irresistible craving). Anyway, what I love in these sort of cakes is they are not overly sweet or heavy so you they do not make you fill like you're going to die from sugar overload, not even being able to move from the sofa. Personally, I like to skip the lime topping (recipe below) and just use either plain oat or soy cream with a zing of lemon/lime zest and toasted coconut but I gotta say from presentation point of view, when friends or family comes around it does look a lot better with the buttercream icing and colourful mixture of nuts and dried.
2 flax seeds (2tbsp/20g ground flax seeds mixed with 90g/ml water)
360g demerara sugar
240g sunflower oil
1 tsp lemon extract
1 tsp almond extract
2 tsp ground cinnamon
45g chia seeds
500g carrots, grated
500g plain flour
5 tsp baking powder
2 tsp coarse sea salt
200g margarine, room temperature
400g icing sugar
50g toasted desiccated coconut
1 lime, zest and juice
Start from preparing the flax eggs using a small bowl. Leave to stand for a few minutes.
Preheat the oven to 200C/180C fan assisted. Grease and line two 24cm/9.5" springform cake tins.
In a large mixing bowl or a food processor blend all of the wet ingredients together until just combined (adding flax eggs to it as well).
Using a separate large mixing bowl sieve the flour, baking powder and sprinkle with sea salt then stir together.
Fold in half of the wet mixture into dry and combine well (make sure there is not flour sticking to the bottom of the bowl) then add the rest of it. Do not over mix which would push too much air into the batter
Prepared cake tins and bake for 35 mins or until a skewer inserted into the center comes out clean.
Remove the cake from the oven and set aside to cool for 10 minutes, then carefully remove the cake from the tin and set aside to cool completely on a cooling rack.
Prepare your topping by whisking margarine, sugar and lime juice together then spread half of it on the bottom cake layer, place the second one on top and use the rest of the icing.
Finish sprinkling with dried cranberries, walnuts or sliced pistachios (they give a really nice colour contrast but may be more tricky to get them) and toasted coconut.
If you would rather bake this cake in a loaf tin then below I have added the converted version (it is more or less 2/3 of the original recipe):
You can use this conversion for most of the cakes you will be making but remember that using differently shaped tin may trap more moisture in and affect the cooking time
For 1 loaf tin:
250g demerara sugar
230g sunflower oil
⅔ tsp lemon extract
⅔ tsp almond extract
1 ½ tsp ground cinnamon
13g ground flax seeds
30g chia seeds
330g carrots, grated
35g toasted, desiccated coconut
300g plain flour
3 tsp baking powder
1 ½ tsp coarse sea salt
If you got 2 similarly shaped loaf tins you can still divide the mixture into and bake at the same time instead of cutting it into two after baking. It will reduce the time of baking to around 30 minutes and there is less risk of it collapsing after taking out of the oven.