Saturday, August 8, 2009
Raw Carrot Cake
Every Wednesday and Saturday I look forward to heading across the street to the West Tisbury Farmers' Market. There's nothing I enjoy more than ogling fresh, local produce and flowers (and freakishly adorable overall-clad children) and seeing all the happy people supporting local farmers and businesses. Well now there's yet another reason to schlep across the street - Raw Carrot Cake! This is my new farmers' market obsession.
The more I read about raw food the more it intrigues me. Still, it always seems like preparing raw food is really complicated and involved - soaking nuts for hours, waiting for grains to sprout, dehydrating food - who has the patience for all that? Not me! Well, this carrot cake is not only easy, it's quick! All you need is a food processor and a handful of easy-to-find ingredients. Everyone will think you're a raw food rockstar. Best of all, no oven heat to turn your kitchen into a summer inferno!
This recipe is our take on the The Kitchen Porch's famous farmers' market offering.
My mom enjoying some Raw Carrot Cake.
For the Carrot Cake
4 cups shredded carrots (about 1.5 lbs)
1 cup dates (about 16 dates)
1 cup walnuts
3/4 dried apricots
1-1.5 cups unsweetened shredded coconut
1/2 cup raisins or currants
1 teaspoon cinnamon
1/2 teaspoon nutmeg
1/2 teaspoon allspice
For the Cashew Frosting
1.5 cups raw cashews
2 tablespoons honey or agave
3 tablespoons water
Store-bought cashew butter sweetened with agave or honey to taste
Preparation - Carrot Cake
1. Grate the carrot in a food processor fitted with the grater attachment. (God bless you if you're going to grate all that carrot by hand!) Transfer to a large mixing bowl and set aside.
2. In the food processor, now fitted with the blade attachment, blend the dates, apricots, and walnuts until combined but not a paste (see photo). Add to the shredded carrots and mix.
3. Add the spices to the carrot mixture and blend.
4. Transfer the mixture to the food processor and blend in two batches until the mixture comes together and holds its shape.
5. Fold in the coconut.
6. Using a dry measuring cup (I used a 1/3 cup measure but you are your own Carrot Cake master) portion out the mixture and frost each cake with a heaping tablespoon of cashew frosting.
Preparation - Cashew Frosting
1. Whirl the cashews in the food processor, continuously scraping down the sides, until the cashews form a thick paste (a.k.a. cashew butter). This could take a while... just be patient and keep scraping! You can add a few tablespoons of water to encourage the cashews if you get impatient.
2. Add the honey (or agave) to the food processor and blend until incorporated.