This one is for my dear friend Marine who for health reasons has had to change her diet and is no longer able to eat dairy or gluten. She lives on the beautiful island of Reunion (but hopefully back in London soon!) so I wanted to celebrate the tropical flavours of her home land whilst making it suitable for her new dietary restrictions.
It’s essentially a pimped up carrot cake, the pimping coming from the mango puree that gets mixed into the batter - It makes the cake so moist and fruity and ensures that the flavour carries right through the cake. The natural sweetness of the fruit also means that there isn’t need for too much added sugar, which is always a bonus.
‘Reunion’ Carrot + Mango Cake
300g Gluten free plain flour 1 tsp Ground cinnamon 1 tsp Gluten free baking powder 1/2 tsp Bicarbonate of soda 3 Medium eggs 190ml Rapeseed oil 150g Soft brown sugar 200g Carrot, grated 210g Mango puree (I blitzed a can of tinned mango slices in the food processor) 100g Chopped mango, fresh or tinned 100g Pecans, chopped
To decorate; 3 passion fruit 150-200g Icing sugar Coconut flakes, toasted Zest of a lime Handful of pecans, chopped
Preheat the oven to 180ºC and grease and line a deep 20cm cake tin with baking paper.
Sift the flour, cinnamon, baking powder and bicarbonate of soda into a large bowl then set aside.
In a separate bowl beat the eggs and oil together then add the eggs and whisk until smooth. Add the sugar, grated carrot, mango puree, chopped mango and pecans and fold in gently until just incorporated, be careful not to over mix.
Tip the batter into the prepared tin and bake for 1hr 10 - 1hr 20 minutes or until golden and a skewer comes out clean. Check after an hour and pop a bit of foil over the top if it’s browning too much. Leave to cool completely on a wire rack.
Pass the pulp from the passion fruits through a fine sieve so you are left with just the juice. Sieve in the icing sugar and stir to create a fairly thick but pourable icing. The amount of icing sugar you need will vary depending on how juicy your passion fruits are.
Once the cake is completely cool pour over the icing, letting it drip down the sides a little then scatter with the coconut flakes, lime zest and pecans.
Tip; You could also make this as a sandwich cake, simply split the batter between 2 20cm tins and bake for around 35 minutes - I haven’t tested it this way so this baking time is a guesstimate, use your intuition and check on it after half an hour or so. Fill with buttercream or a nice fruity jam then ice the top as per the recipe above.