Mich Turner is the founder of Little Venice Cake Company and she is described as the ‘Queen of Couture Cakes’. She’s baked for a host of celebrities and famous faces from the Queen to David Beckham. She has also produced a number of highly successful books.
Her latest book Have Your Cake and Eat It came out on 9th March and I was sent a copy to review. The ethos behind the book is that you can still have cakes and sweet treats, but there are some things you can do to make them healthier, without compromising on flavour.
Have Your Cake and Eat It has a host of recipes covering muffins, biscuits and the layer cakes that Mich Turner is famous for. The recipes are key coded to detail which are gluten free, dairy free, egg free and lower fat or high in fibre.
There are lots of tempting things I wanted to make from this book, but I settled upon a childhood favourite, Gingerbread Cake with Cream Cheese Frosting. When I was little, we made this cake with water icing and hundreds and thousands. This version is much classier with the smoothest most delicious cream cheese frosting I’ve ever had, I topped mine with dried orange slices because I couldn’t get any fresh cranberries or redcurrants as recommended.
As Mich Turner explains in Have Your Cake and Eat It, this isn’t about demonising sugar, or banning any ingredients, it’s all about moderation and little things you can do to have your treat without feeling guilty.
The cake I have chosen is noted for the fact that molasses has no fat or cholesterol and is a good source of calcium and iron. The cake is dairy free and the cream cheese frosting topping is lighter than buttercream and only has a small amount on the top rather than in layers between.
I really highly recommend this book, there is lots that I will be baking from it and the recipes are still special enough to use for celebration cakes as well as lots of ideas for everyday baking and lunchbox treats.
I don’t know if you’ve ever had a problem with lumpy cream cheese frosting? Well I have on lots of occasions, this recipe has the best method, where the butter and sugar are rubbed together and then the cream cheese is beaten in. So no more lumps of butter in your frosting, give it a go and you’ll see what I mean!
- ***The Cake***
- Groundnut Oil for greasing
- 170ml Boiling Water
- ½ Tsp Bicarbonate of Soda
- 150g Molasses
- 170g Golden Caster Sugar
- 240g Plain Flour
- 2 Tsp Ground Ginger
- 1 Tsp Ground Cinnamon
- ¼ Tsp Ground Nutmeg
- Pinch of Ground Cloves
- ½ Tsp Baking Powder
- 80ml Sunflower Oil
- 2 Large Eggs
- ***Cream Cheese Frosting***
- 37g Unsalted Butter, softened
- 225g Icing Sugar, sifted
- 85g Full Fat Cream Cheese
- 1 Tsp Vanilla Bean Paste
- Preheat the oven to 150C/170C Fan//Gas 3. Grease and line the base of a 23cm (9 inch) springform or loose bottom cake tin.
- In a large heatproof bowl, blend the boiling water with the bicarbonate of soda. Add the molasses and sugar and whisk well until all the sugars dissolve, set aside.
- In a large bowl sift together the flour and all the remaining dry ingredients.
- Stir the oil and eggs into the molasses mixture. Tip the flour into the molasses mixture and stir with a balloon whisk until fully incorporated and smooth.
- Pour the batter into the prepared tin and bake for 30-35 mins or until a knife inserted in the centre comes out clean.
- Transfer the cake to a wire rack and leave to cool in the tin for 10 minutes. Run a knife around the tin before removing the ring. Then leave the cake to cool completely.
- To make the cream cheese frosting, rub the butter into the icing sugar until it resembles breadcrumbs. Add the chilled cream cheese and beat until smooth. Add the vanilla bean extract and beat again.
- To serve, place the cake on a plate and spread the cream cheese frosting over the top with a palette knife. Decorate with dried orange slices, or frosted cranberries.
- Store for up to 3 days uncovered in the fridge, but serve at room temperature. Not suitable for freezing.
I have been supplied with two copies of Have Your Cake and Eat It by Mich Turner (photography by Peter Cassidy) to give away to my readers, so to be in with a chance, enter using the form below.
Thanks for reading.