4 Apr 2016

Butternut Squash, Pecan and Chocolate Cake

I said I would not stay quiet, and then I did just that. I am sorry, but I had a good excuse: I am pregnant!
I am really lucky and am enjoying what can be considered as an easy pregnancy so far. 

Sure, I had some morning sickness. 
I do need an enormous amount of sleep which limits the extravaganza of my social life quite a bit. 
My back hurts and at the end of the day I feel as big and heavy as an old truck with a flat tire.
But, I'm also having a blast. 

I can go for days without washing my hair and it still looks great.
I don't have most of the horrible sounding pregnancy side effects that I read about regularly.
I was able to cycle to work and back home until my 27th week of pregnancy. Since then, I've swapped cycling for a bit of walking, but I am still in pretty good shape.
Every kick and turn in my belly, however painful it may be, brings me a ridiculous amount of joy.  
Yes, in the end I'm one of these annoying, glowing pregnant ladies who walk around with an almost constant silly smile on their face.

Butternut squash, 
Pecans and Chocolate cake

I discovered with this cake that butternut squash are like carrot in the carrot cake. It does not bring masses of flavour to a cake, but a lovely moist texture.
This cake is simply delicious. Give it a try!

For the cake
150 g pecan nuts
300 g plain flour, sifted
1 tsp baking powder
2 tsp ground cinnamon
4 large eggs
275 g light muscovado sugar
250 ml groundnut oil
1 tsp vanilla extract
250 g peeled, deseeded butternut squash, coarsely grated
100 g dark chocolate, chopped

For the chocolate icing:
200 g dark chocolate
200 ml double cream
50 g icing sugar

1/ Preheat the oven to 180°C. Grease 2 x 20cm sandwich tins and line the bases with baking paper.

2/ Bake the nuts for 8-10 minutes. Tip the flour, baking powder and cinnamon into a food mixer. Mix in the eggs, sugar, oil and vanilla. Stir in the squash and chocolate. Chop the nuts and add to the mixture.

3/ Divide the mixture between the tins and bake for 35-40 minutes. Cool for a few minutes, then turn on to a wire rack and leave until cold.

4/ For the icing, break the chocolate into pieces in a bowl. Heat the cream and sugar, stirring, until just below simmering point. Pour the cream on to the chocolate; stir to melt. Cool, then chill the icing for 20 minutes.

5/ Sandwich the cakes with the icing. Sprinkle the top layer with a dust of icing sugar.

Recipe from Homemadebyyou.co.uk