Here’s the low-down on these low-GI, delicious moist carrot cakes:
• Low-GI food provides a constant supply of energy; high-GI food causes a sudden surge in energy followed by a sharp drop. Following a low-GI diet in combination with a low-fat diet can assist with weight loss, reduced cholesterol and a reduced risk of heart disease.
• The glycaemic index ranks food based on its immediate effect on your blood glucose level. Food with a high number enters the bloodstream faster than food with a lower number.
• Food that requires a lot of effort to chew and digest usually has a lower GI value, for example whole grains like wheat, brown rice, barley and oatmeal.
• Processed food usually has a high-GI value. Cooking also makes food easier to digest, which raises its GI value.
• Food containing soluble fibre, such as oatmeal, peas, lentils and soft fruit, has a lower GI value. • Find a list of food plus their glycaemic index values on www.gifoundation.com.
Moist carrot cakes
- 230g low-fat, smooth cream cheese
- 15ml (1 tbsp) castor sugar
- 10ml (2 tsp) vanilla extract
- 5ml (1 tsp) ground cinnamon
- 180g dark brown sugar 2 large eggs
- 120ml avocado oil
- 200g wholewheat flour
- 5ml (1 tsp) baking powder
- 7ml bicarbonate of soda
- 15ml (1 tbsp) mixed spice
- zest of 1 orange
- 200g carrots, peeled and grated (about 2 large carrots)
- 180g dates, pitted, finely chopped and dusted with flour
- juice of 1 orange juice of ½ lemon
- 30ml (2 tbsp) soft brown sugar
Preheat the oven to 180°C. Lightly grease 6 large moulds with a capacity of 200ml each and line them with baking paper.
For the topping, mix all the ingredients together until light and fluffy using an electric beater. Chill until needed.
For the cake, whisk the sugar, eggs and oil in a large mixing bowl with an electric beater.
In a separate bowl, sift together the flour, baking powder, bicarbonate of soda and mixed spice. Add the bran left in the sieve back into the mixture.
Stir the egg mixture into the flour mixture and fold in the zest, carrots and dates.
Fill the moulds about two thirds full with the mixture. Place the moulds on a baking tray and bake until a skewer inserted into the centre of the cakes comes out clean, about 35 minutes. The cakes will still be moist.
For the syrup, combine all the ingredients in a small saucepan and heat slowly until the sugar has dissolved. Using a spoon, pour the syrup over the cakes while they are still hot.
Let the cakes cool completely in the moulds, then turn them out. Spread the topping over and serve.
To drink: Match these cakes with the orange flavour of Grand Marnier. Go over the top and serve a decadent double shot over crushed ice in a martini glass.