I think October might just be my favourite month of the year. With the leaves truly turning now and a crispness to the air, it is time for the full delights of Autumn cooking to come to fruition.With bold, deep flavours and colours, it is true Harvest Festival time, so this weekend we have an All Things Orange #SundaySupper to celebrate this delicious time of year. Hosted by the wonderful Pam of The Meltaways, we have a full harvest of orange delights, with plenty to share around.
There is one cake which epitomizes Autumn: Carrot Cake. Now, I know it’s tradition to smother carrot cake with cream cheese frosting, but for me, carrot cake is better when the true flavours of the cake are allowed to shine – the carrots themselves add sweetness, contrasted with deep, mellow spices. In short, Carrot Cake should taste of Autumn, and Autumn to me does not taste over-sweet.
So, instead of icing, this Carrot Cake is finished with an orange marmalade glaze and topped with a sprinkling of orange-and-spice-drenched raisins and pine nuts. It is also an almost guilt-free recipe, reasonably low in sugar, and good for those with gluten or dairy intolerances, as it is free from both, but far from being dry and crumbly, it is squidgy deliciousness.
150ml sunflower oil
3 eggs, lightly beaten
100g light muscavado sugar
175g gluten-free self-raising flour blend
1 tsp cinnamon
1 tsp nutmeg
200g carrots, grated
1 orange – 2 tsps of zest, 2 of juice.
A few pinenuts
Preheat the oven to 180C and lightly grease a round springform cake tin.
In a large mixing bowl, whisk together the oil, eggs and sugar until you have a syrupy consistency. Fold in the flour and spices, incorporating plenty of air, then add the carrots, raisins, orange zest and juice. Stir lightly until they are mixed through evenly. The mixture should be fairly runny.
Pour into the cake tin and bake on the middle shelf of the oven for 45 mins. The cake should be golden and springy. Check with a skewer: if it comes out clean, it’s done! Be careful not to overbake, you want it to be moist.
Allow to cool in the tin for 5 mins, then turn out onto a wire rack and leave to cool completely.
Warm some orange marmalade in a pan until just runny, then remove from heat. While the marmalade is warming, mix some more juice from the orange with a little nutmeg in a shallow bowl and soak a couple of handfuls of raisins in the juice.
With a pastry brush, spread the marmalade of the top of the cake and sprinkle on the raisins and pinenuts.
It is wonderful served warm with just a drizzle of fresh cream.
You cannot live on cake alone, but as the #SundaySupper group proves, you can create an entire dinner menu from all things orange! So for more orangey inspiration than you could ever need, look no further.
Sunrise (Breakfast and Brunch)
Paula from Vintage Kitchen Notes is bringing her Orange Ricotta Pancakes
Kris from In The Kitchen with Audrey and Maureen is making her Sweet Potato Pancakes
Erin from Dinners Dishes and Desserts is baking up some Pumpkin Chocolate Chip Muffins
Heather from Girlichef is bringing Pumpkin Doughnuts with Spiced Buttermilk Glaze
Nicole from Daily Dish Recipes is making Pumpkin Donut Puffs
Patti from Comfy Cuisine is bringing Classic Orange Marmalade
Claire from The Realistic Nutritionist is baking up some Spiced Low-Fat Pumpkin Biscuits
Sunithi from Sue’s Nutrition Buzz is making Spice Pumpkin Ricotta Muffins with Craisins and Walnuts
Wendy from The Weekend Gourmet is cooking up some Pumpkin Maple Oatmeal
Jamie from Mama Mommy Mom is bringing Butternut Squash Butter
Chelsea from Chelsea’s Culinary Indulgence is bringing Pumpkin Spiced Donuts with Chai Icing
High Noon (Soups, Salads and Sandwiches)
Renee from Magnolia Days is serving up some Butternut Squash Soup
Beate from Galactopdx is bringing her Carrot Ginger Soup
Jen from Juanita’s Cocina is making some Sweet Potato Salad
Megan from I Run For Wine is making Roasted Butternut Squash and Italian Sausage Soup With Adult Grilled Cheese
Sarah from What Smells So Good is filling our bowls with some Spicy Sweet Potato and Coconut Soup
Alice from Hip Foodie Mom is coming with her Roasted Carrot and Quinoa Salad
Susan from The Wimpy Vegetarian is making Spiced Sweet Potato Cider Soup
Tora from Tora’s Real Food is bringing Butternut Squash and Tomato Soup
Melanie from From Fast Food to Fresh Food is making Monty’s Pumpkin Soup
Lyn from The Lovely Pantry is bringing Pumpkin Coconut Soup
Kim from Cravings of a Lunatic is whipping up some Mandarin Chicken Salad
Sunset (Dinner and Main Dishes)
Amber from Mama’s Blissful Bites is bringing Rice and Fig Stuffed Mini Pumpkins
Sarah from Crispy Bits & Burnt Ends is offering up some Pumpkin Ravioli in Sage Butter Sauce
Pam from The Meltaways is making some Spooky Stuffed Peppers
Shelia from Pippis In The Kitchen Again is serving her Roasted Squash and Ricotta with Honey
Patsy from Famfriendsfood is bringing her Carrot Souffle
Elizabeth from The Hand That Rocks The Ladle is making Baked Sweet Potatoes with Maple Pecan Shallot Butter
Laura from Small Wallet Big Appetite is bringing Chicken and Sweet Potato Fritters
Mehereen from Chattering Kitchen is making Sichuan Orange Glazed Chicken with Toasted Sesame Seeds
Tammi from Momma’s Meals is making Hearty Pork Stew
Kristin from Kwistin’s Favorites is making Orange Chicken
Soni from Soni’s Food For Thought is cooking up some Rigatoni with Pumpkin Ricotta Sauce
Shelby from Diabetic Foodie is cooking up some Moroccan Vegetable Stew
Dara from Generation Y Foodie is bringing Butternut Squash Mac and Cheese
Brandie from Home Cooking Memories is sharing a DIY Baked Sweet Potato Bar
By The Bonfire (Sweets, Snacks and Sips)
Carla from Chocolate Moosey is making Pumpkin Tiramisu with Pumpkin Butter Caramel Sauce
Heather from Hezzi D’s Books and Cooks is offering up some Pumpkin Cake Truffles
Shelia from Cooking Underwriter is bringing Sweet Potato Bacon Beet Salsa
Anne from Webicurean is making some Drunken Pumpkin Bread
Karen from In The Kitchen With KP is making Oven Baked Sweet Potato Chips
Leslie La Cocina De Leslie is making Sweet Potato Atole
Seet Fei from My Trials in The Kitchen is bringing Sweet Potatoes Mini Balls
Bree from Bree’s Bites is bringing Peanut Butter Pumpkin Bites
Tara from Noshing With The Nolands is bringing Oranges En Suprise
Susan from The Girl in The Red Kitchen is making Pumpkin Chocolate Chip Scone with Pumpkin Glaze
Conni from Mrs. Mama Hen is making Orange Glazed Poundcake
Isabel from Family Foodie is baking up Moist Pumpkin Bread Reisipe
Cindy from Cindy’s Recipes and Writings is baking up a Vegan Pumpkin Orange Cake
Brenda from Meal Planning Magic is whipping up some Pumpkin Cream Cheese Fruit Dip
Laura from Family Spice is making some Gluten Free and Unprocessed Pumpkin Bread
Kathya from Basic and Delicious is baking up Butternut Squash and Carrot Bread
Liz from That Skinny Chick Can Bake is serving up Pumpkin Roll with Cream Cheese Filling
Stephanie from The Cookie A Day Challenge is whipping up some Pumpkin Ice Cream Sandwiches
Katie from She Like Ruffles, He Likes Truffles is bringing Pumpkin Harvest Cookies
Nancy from Gotta Get Baked is baking up some Orange Macadamia Dark Chocolate Cookies
Angie from Big Bear’s Wife is bringing Orange Soda Pumpkin Patch Cupcakes
Katy from Happy Baking Days is bringing Carrot Cake with Orange Glaze
Sandra from Midlife Road Trip is bringing Orange ya glad it’s fall! Hungarian Apricot/Walnut pastries
Remember you can join us on Twitter for a live chat at 7:00pm EST – all you have to do is follow the #SundaySupper hashtag, or you can follow us through TweetChat. We’d also love to feature your easy go to recipes on our #SundaySupper Pinterest board and share them with all of our followers, too.