My favourite passtime is getting into a bookstore like Crossword or Landmark and spending hours browsing around. No marks for guessing which my favourite section is. Nowadays bookstore chains in India encourage to you to browse, sit down, relax, read as much as you want, without anyone bugging you. The Oxford bookstore at Churchgate (downtown Bombay) has a Cha Bar in the store, where you can order from an impressive variety of teas and the all time favourite potato wedges or fries (they serve fries as rings). They don't even mind you taking their books to your table and eating over a good read as most of us like to do at home. How they manage the 'greasy' situations in the event of ketchup or chai or just oil getting on their pages is something I haven't figured out.
Last week, I was loafing around at the Crossword bookstore. This 'big fat' book of 'low-fat' baking (what an irony!) by Linda Fraser, caught my eye. Linda Fraser has this other very popular book on Vegetarian cooking.
Coming to this book, the size of it prohibited me from buying as cooking from a really huge book can be pretty cumbersome. One either has to copy out the recipe on the page or occupy half your counter space. While flipping through the pages, I saw this must-try carrot cake recipe. Memorising the ingredients and process seemed to be a good way to give my memory some exercise.
After reaching home, I tried to pull out the list of ingredients from my memory. The result of the memory test would be out only after we had tasted the cake. With my mom's help, all the necessaries were laid out, assembled and baked into a truly yummy carrot cake. The only effort was in using my rusted memorising skills and ofcourse beating the eggwhites into stiff peaks. The rest of it was a breeze to make and delicious to eat. As Anupama put it, it is a 'homely' kind of cake. Oh, and i did pass the test.
Low Fat Carrot CakePreparation time: 20 minutes
Baking time: 45 minutes
Makes 16 slices
Category: Cake, Low fat, Healthy baking
Recipe source: Low Fat Baking by Linda Fraser
1 cup all-purpose flour
1 cup whole wheat flour
3 tsp baking powder (it is 3 tsp, no mistake here)
1 tsp cinnamon powder
1 tsp all - spice powder (Optional, but if you have it, use it)
2 medium carrots - grated (to make roughly 2 cups)
Handful of raisins
4 tbsp cooking oil
4 tbsp milk
4 tbsp orange juice ( I used 8 tbsp milk as I didn't have orange juice)
3/4 cup sugar or more depending on sweetness of carrots
2 eggs - separated
Pinch of salt
Preheat oven to 180 C. Grease a 9" round pan with oil.
Microwave the grated carrot for 2 minutes and cool. (Optional)
Sift the two flours with the baking powder, salt and spice powders.
In a large bowl, beat the sugar with the yolks, oil, milk and orange juice until well blended.
Mix in the grated carrots and raisins. Gently mix in the dry ingredients. Do not overmix.
Whisk the egg whites with a tiny pinch of salt for 4-5 minutes, until you get stiff peaks.
With a rubber spatula, fold the egg whites gently into the flour mixture, such that all the air in the egg whites is incorporated into the cake. If you don't fold with a light hand, you will let all the air out, and the cake may not be as soft as it can be.
Empty the mixture into the greased cake tin, smoothen with the spatula and bake for around 40 minutes or until a skewer comes out clean.
Cool for atleast 15 minutes. Unmould and cut into slices of desired thickness. Serve warm with a glass of milk!
This is not a very fluffy cake. The carrots and raisins do make it dense but the baking powder and egg whites give it the springy texture. The spices balance out the bland sweetness of the carrots. I would recommend using orange juice for that slight tart taste.
Technorati tags: Carrot cake, healthy baking, low fat cake