I had had my eye on this recipe for some time and eventually got around to making it for one of our last CCC meetings last year. It comes from a book called "Freeze and Easy" by Sara Lewis, who writes for magazines such as Sainsbury's magazine and has a number of other book titles published including "Gluten Free and Easy" as well as "The Complete Slow Cooker". I have cooked recipes from all of these books with great success including Sharon's Hotpot which you can see here.
The recipe suggests sprinkling pumpkin and sunflower seeds on top of the cake before baking but I didn't because I didn't have any so I just went with the chopped crystallised ginger instead. The instructions were for an oblong tin but I wanted a round cake so used a 23cm round one.
It was lovely and interesting. Beetroot cakes are not to everyone's taste as they have an earthiness which not everyone likes. I have friends and relatives who recoil from the very idea of beetroot in any shape or form but we love it. Maybe because we were brought up on pickled beetroot in salads for Sunday tea when we were small. Cheese and beetroot sandwiches (on sliced white "wonderloaf" style bread of course) are still regarded as a special treat in this house!
Anyway, it had a lovely texture with a slight purpleness to it and of course with ginger and orange in it, what's not to love?
150ml sunflower oil
175g light soft brown sugar
225g self raising flour
1 tsp baking powder
3 tsp ground ginger
1 orange, zest and juice
175g cooked beetroot (cooked without vinegar), coarsely grated
40g preserved ginger, drained and finely chopped
140g granulated sugar
Preheat the oven to 180C / 160 fan / gas mk 4. Grease and line a 23cm round springform tin with baking paper.
In a large bowl, whisk together the eggs, oil and sugar, briefly. Sift in the flour, baking powder and ginger and whisk in until just mixed. Add the orange zest and beetroot and mix until smooth.
Pour the mixture into the prepared tin and bake for 30-35 minutes until brown and done.
While the cake is cooking make the drizzle by combining 3 tablespoons of the orange juice with the granulated sugar. As soon as the cake comes out of the oven, prick all over with a skewer and spoon the syrup over the top. Dot with the chopped ginger and leave to cool in the tin.
Cuts into 8-10 slices.