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Wholesome Carrot Cake with Labne Yoghurt Icing
This recipe is one of my all time Faves.
I know I’ve made something loved when I put in the fridge at 10pm & wake up the next morning to the plate pictured in the centre. If it’s loved by my family this much, It’s being shared in the hopes so that maybe other families (or solo legends) can enjoy.
All of my recipes are gluten & dairy free (with the exception of butter as it’s more easily digested), and they will continue to be gluten free given the increasingly inflammatory potential of gluten containing grains in our modern diets. However today, I have been interested in re-introducing small servings of dairy back into my diet on the occasion, in particular – the fermented kind found in Labne, Yoghurt & Kefir. While it will still be very minimal in my cooking, The fermentation process of dairy makes it more easily accessible to our digestive tract and helps to balance the ecology with probiotics + the amino acid profile being diverse. Protein and probiotics are essential for a healthy mood. Quitting dairy for a couple of years was a personal turning point for my skin and hormone health. After a long elimination, I’m able to have the occasional serving without the hiccup to my skin.
Enter a Labne craving. Labne is a traditional Lebanese Sour yoghurt with the consistency of cream cheese but the sourness of greek yoghurt. Labne is a historical staple for the Lebanese community served with olives, mint, za’atar & cucumber. I remember as a child labne hanging up in a piece of fabric from my grandmothers kitchen undergoing the slow and loving traditional fermentation process that typifies superfoods today.
Today, I’m using Labne in a wildly untraditional and surprisingly sensational way : as CAKE ICING.
Here me out my Lebanese listeners… give this a chance. You might be, pleasantly surprised!
This cake is refined sugar free, gluten free, wholesome and nourishing.
2 carrots shredded (set aside a tablespoon of shredded carrots for the garnish sprinkle)
2 cups of almond meal
1/3 cup maple syrup
3 tablespoons of dessicated coconut
1 teaspoon of baking powder
2 tablespoons of melted butter
1/2 cup of almond or walnut milk
1 cup of chopped walnuts (set aside a tablespoon of chopped walnuts for the garnish separately)
2 heaped tablespoons of tapioca flour
2cm of crushed ginger (I used a traditional mortar and pestle)
1 flat teaspoon of cinnamon
1/4 teaspoon of nutmeg
2 tablespoons of raisings
Step 1: Preheat the oven to 160 degrees celsius
Step 2 : Mix all the ingredients (excluding the frosting ingredients) above into a bowl.
Step 3: Line a springform 20cm pan with either melted butter or coconut oil
Step 4: Pour the mixed ingredients (I used a wooden spoon but a spatula would be fine also!)
Step 5 : Spread the mixture evenly accross the pan & place the pan into the oven for 20 – 30 minutes to cool.
Step 6: Once cooked take the cake out of the oven and wait for the cake to cool. You will know that it’s cooked when the edges are a light caramel colour and the middle has a bounce.
Step 7: Once cool take the cake out of the springform pan by releasing the valve, and place the cake carefully into a place, or leave it on the pan bottom to avoid a landslide hehe
Step 8: Making the icing: Mix 3 heaped tablespoons of laben with 5 teaspoons of xylitol (add more if you need more sweetness) + 1 teaspoon of tapioca flour (to thicken). Mix with a spoon or a spatula. If the labne needs more time to harden, you can always keep it in the fridge for an hour or so but labne has a thick enough consistency that it will spread well on a cool cake.
Step 9: Garnish to your hearts content! A suggested Garnish is with 1 tablespoon of walnuts, 1 tablespoon of grated carrot & a sprinkle of cinnamon.
Step 10: Refrigerate for an hour or so … but if your family can’t wait, slice and enjoy! It’s perfect anyway.
Sahtein friends xx