Carrot, banana and date cake

Healthy carrot cake

I've held back from putting up a carrot cake recipe here, partly because it just seemed a bit too obvious, and partly because calling carrot cake a healthy option is a bit misleading - it's usually packed full of sugar and butter. And then I found this recipe, for a healthier carrot cake from the lovely Green Kitchen Stories blog. It is sweetened with bananas and dates, and uses a little bit of oil rather than butter. This is my version of their delicious cake, altered to fit with what I had in the cupboards at the time. We made this for grandma's birthday and it was enjoyed by all - health conscious grown ups and cake loving little people.

3 large eggs
2 ripe bananas
6 dates, chopped
6 tbsp oil
180g wholemeal self raising flour
1.5 tsp baking powder
1/2 tsp nutmeg
3 tsp cinnamon
50g walnuts, chopped
50g sultanas
50g ground almonds
3 large carrots, peeled and grated

200g cream cheese
3 tbsp honey
Juice of half a lemon
Chopped pecans to decorate (optional)

Preheat the oven to 180°C. Grease and base line a 20cm round cake tin. Whisk the eggs in a medium sized bowl. Using a hand held blender (or pour into a blender) mix together the bananas, chopped dates and oil until you have a thick cream.

Sift together the flour, baking powder, cinnamon and nutmeg and stir it together with the eggs and the banana mixture. Stir in the grated carrot, almonds, walnuts and sultanas until it all comes together.

Pour it into your cake tin and bake for about 40 minutes until a skewer or toothpick inserted in the centre comes out clean. Let it cool.

Beat together the cream cheese, honey and lemon juice. Spread the frosting over the top of the cake and decorate with pecans if desired.