SPECIAL TREAT CAKE RECIPE
This cake recipe is one we've used at home for at least 10 years. It's originally my husband's creation (he's great at baking bread and cakes). He wanted a sweet treat that was free of artificial additives and high in dietary fibre but that also had good keeping qualities. Here is the result:
1. The fat content of the cake seems high at first glance because of the 4 eggs plus the butter. However, the recipe makes a substantial cake and one small slice is very filling. So you will only be taking in very low amounts of fat at any one time. It is also a very healthy high fibre mix that should have a good prebiotic action.
2. Spelt wheat is nearly always better tolerated than regular wheat so is well worth trying even if you have a sensitivity to ordinary bread, cereals, biscuits etc. It's available from health food shops and some supermarkets but if you can't locate it, use ordinary wholegrain brown flour.
3. This recipe can be made without the brazils, almonds and walnuts. It is not suitable for anyone who has a nut allergy unless ALL the nut ingredients are avoided.
4. Because of the high fibre content, this recipe should be suitable for diabetics as long as the sugar is removed.
5. At one slice per day, this cake will last for at least ten days.
Dried fruit and nuts:
8oz/225gm mix of currants, raisins and/or sultanas
3oz/75gm dates - remove stones and cut dates in half
2oz/50gm Crystallised ginger cut up into small pieces
4oz/100gm chopped mixed nuts. This can include walnuts, brazil nuts & almonds
The zest of a lemon can be added to give extra flavour but isn’t essential
(For the moment, place all dried fruit, ginger, lemon zest and nuts in large bowl, mix well and set aside.)
If you're not sensitive to ordinary wheat products, then the cheapest option is to use 100% wholewheat flour but we try to keep it to a minimum. I find that too much wheat in the diet causes all kinds of problems including bloating, upset bowels, indigestion etc. What we usually do is include 50% spelt flour, 25% of oat flour and 25% of rice flour. However, oat and rice flour are not always available so another option is to use 75% spelt flour and then to make up the remaining 25% with your own oat ‘flour’ by grinding porridge oats in a coffee grinder or food processor until they are fine milled but not so fine that they are dusty. We have also sometimes used ground almonds to replace some of the flour although, of course, this is a more expensive option.
Spelt wholewheat flour
4oz/125gm unsalted butter
A maximum of 2oz/50gm brown sugar (or a tablespoon of good quality honey)
1 level teaspoon mixed spice
1 tablespoon of brandy or water or lemon juice
Place flour, sugar and spice into a food processor and blend well.
Add butter in small pieces and blend until mixture is crumbly.
Add the four eggs and blend. Add the brandy, water or lemon juice until the mixture is smooth.
Pour the mix into the bowl of dried fruit that you set aside earlier and stir the whole lot together until fruit is evenly distributed in the mixture.
If you think the mix is a little too dry, add a small amount of soya milk or water. If it seems too wet, add a few porridge oats to soak up the extra moisture.
Turn out into a suitable baking tin, sprinkle a little brown sugar on surface if liked.
Bake in a preheated oven at 160o C for approximately 70 minutes. Test with a thin bladed knife or knitting needle into the centre of the cake. If it comes out clean, it’s cooked.
If this recipe is mixed by hand without the use of a food processor, it’s best to cream the butter and sugar in the traditional way, adding the eggs one at a time with a little flour to prevent curdling and then to mix in the remaining ingredients. If you are using this recipe without the sugar, then it really is best to use the food processor method.
If you prefer to avoid wheat, then use half oat flour and half rice flour, leaving out the wheat flour.
If you find the mixture a little too wet, add a tablespoon of ordinary fine porridge oats.
If you think it’s too dry, add soya milk, lemon juice or water.
© Kathryn Marsden 2009