Friday, 25 November 2011

Ginger Citrus Cake

I don't know why I haven't come across the Eating Well website before now - it's certainly full of recipes which suit my current style of baking. I think my baking mojo is back after a very lacklustre couple of weeks, but it's getting increasingly harder to find new recipes which are low in saturated fat ie made with oil. Which is why I found Eating Well somewhere around page 25 of a Google search! I don't understand why it doesn't come up sooner - I guess my search terms are wrong.

This Ginger Citrus Cake came from there, and was a very interesting cake. It didn't rise as much as I expected and had quite a dense, and slightly dry, texture, but the flavours were really complex.

I used the zest of a large orange and the juice of 1 lemon and half the orange in the cake, with a Spanish Citrus Blossom honey. I chopped the crystallised ginger quite small and this added a good extra flavour and texture. The honey didn't seem to make the cake as sweet as an equivalent amount of sugar would have.

Despite adding beaten egg whites, there was very little rise  - this could have been due to the relatively small amount of baking powder, or the fact that there were only two eggs in the recipe, for 200g+ of flour. This was an effort to keep the cake healthy, I suppose, although eating eggs seems to be no longer a problem for those trying to keep cholesterol levels down. This recipe was written before the health guidelines on eggs were rewritten!

My only mistake was to try to turn it into a 'tea' cake rather than a dessert. I used some of the leftover orange juice and some honey and icing sugar to make a glacé icing, and decorated with some more chopped crystallised ginger. Once the cake was cooked, however, I realised that it would have made a much better dessert, served with fruit, so that the juices could soak into the cake.

This is certainly a cake to which I will return, although I suspect I will be trying to make it a little lighter. I will be checking out more recipes on the website too - I'm just a little worried that trying to make cakes healthy sucks all the joy out of them when several aspects of healthy eating are addressed in one cake!


Foodycat said...

It may not have been entirely successful, but it is very pretty and the flavours sound excellent!

Phil in the Kitchen said...

Well, I wouldn't say that making cakes healthy sucks all the joy out of them - I think this one looks really good - but it certainly changes their nature. Making a healthy version of an unhealthy cake is especially difficult. If I try to make a healthier cake then I try to make it very different to the cakes I normally bake so that nobody can compare the two. Sadly unhealthy fats can be very comforting and pleasing - just ask the restaurant that put a bucketful of butter in my risotto yesterday.

Les rêves d'une boulangère (Brittany) said...

Gorgeous presentation of this cake!

Suelle said...

Good point Phil! What I meant was that some of the Eating Well recipes seem to tackle several health issues at once - low fat, low carbohydrate, reduced sugar, high fibre and so on - these can look a bit OTT on the changes that are made!

C said...

It looks great, and a lovely combination of flavours, but making it lighter would be interesting too. I know what you mean by them trying to tackle too many health issues with one recipe - something has to give if you're trying to reduce fat and sugar and remove gluten and etc

Glad your baking mojo is back, and that you've found another website to explore!

celia said...

I think it has potential, Suelle, you might just need to fiddle with the quantities a little. It certainly looks pretty! A little custard on the side, maybe?

Anne said...

I would rather have one slice of very naughty cake than 6 slices of 'healthy' cake Sue!

The cake does look rather lovely and has good elements to it, hope you persevere and get something you love! That honey sounds really tasty!

Shu Han said...

i don't think there's anythign unhealthy about butter at all! research is showing that saturated fat is in fact very essential for health, so we all can go ahead and enjoy ;)

Jay said...

wow...cake sounds scrumptiously tasty..
first time your space..
excellent recipe collection with nice presentation.
Am your happy follower now..;)
do stop by mine sometime..Tasty Appetite