Monday, 27 September 2010

Chocolate courgette cake and lime courgette muffins

This is a my take on a recipe from BBC Good Food's website for chocolate courgette cake. I had a look at their recipe and decided to add a few tweaks here and there. For a start I decided wholemeal flour would be a better bet. I often use wholemeal flour in recipes which use fruit or veg as I find it mops up the extra moisture better than ordinary plain flour. If you don't like the bran bits, sieve them out. I also reduced the sugar a little, changed the oil and left out the nuts. It takes about ten minutes to mix up and about an hour to bake.

  • 350g plain wholemeal flour
  • 2 tsp baking powder
  • half a tsp bicarbonate of soda
  • 50g Green and Blacks cocoa powder (you can use other brands, but this is the best for this cake)
  • 175ml sunflower oil
  • 350g golden caster sugar
  • 3 eggs
  • 2 tsp vanilla extract
  • 500ml (by volume, measured in a jug) grated courgettes

  • Combine the flour, baking powder, bicarb and cocoa powder in a bowl and whisk with a fork.
  • Beat the oil, sugar, eggs and vanilla together and add the courgettes.
  • Mix the wet into the dry and pour into a greased and base-lined 24cm cake tin.
  • Bake at Gas mark 4/180 degrees C for 55 to 65 minutes. (Check after the first 45 mins to see how it's doing - your oven might be faster than mine.)

The original recipe tops it with a chocolate ganache which would be lovely but it's nice just sliced and served with a cup of coffee.

Lime Courgette Muffins

These are based on Flora's Famous Courgette Cake from Nigella's How to Be a Domestic Goddess. As usual I can't bear to follow a recipe to the letter and sometimes muffins are more convenient than a cake. I made these to hand around at a picnic at St Anne's Lighthouse this summer.

  • 60g sultanas
  • 250g grated courgettes, drained in a sieve
  • 2 large eggs
  • 125ml sunflower oil
  • 150g golden caster sugar
  • 225g self-raising flour
  • half a tsp bicarbonate of soda
  • half a tsp baking powder

  • Mix the eggs, oil and sugar in a bowl and beat until creamy.
  • Sieve in the flour, bicarb and baking powder and beat again.
  • Add the courgettes and the sultanas.
  • Spoon into muffin cases in a muffin tin and bake at gas mark 4/180 degrees C for 15 to 20 minutes.

  • Mix icing sugar and lime juice (I use the ready squeezed stuff from a bottle that I always have in the fridge) to a thick paste.
  • As soon as the muffins are done spoon on dollops of icing while they are still hot from the oven.
  • If you have an actual lime to hand, grate over a little of the peel onto the tops of the muffins.