Courgette Praline Cake
Moist and dense with a hint of cinnamon, this courgette cake with maple icing and salted almonds is an indulgent way to use up a courgette garden-glut.
- 3 eggs
- 240 ml vegetable oil
- 300g courgette, grated
- 400g granulated sugar
- 2 teaspoon vanilla extract
- 1 teaspoon bicarbonate of soda
- 400g plain flour
- 0.25 teaspoon baking powder
- 1 teaspoon salt
- 1 tablespoon cinnamon
- 240g light brown sugar
- 225g butter
- 60 ml milk
- 1 teaspoon maple syrup
- 220g icing sugar
- 70g almonds or pecans, coarsely chopped
Preheat the oven to 160C/140C fan/325F/gas mark 3. In a medium bowl, stir together the eggs, oil, courgette, sugar and vanilla extract until well blended.
In a separate bowl, combine the flour, bicarbonate of soda, baking powder, salt and cinnamon. Add the dry ingredients to the courgette mixture and stir until just combined.
Divide the batter evenly into three 23cm cake tins (well greased or nonstick). If you don't have three pans, bake the cake in batches. Bake until the cake is light brown and set in the middle, or for 22-25 minutes. Turn the cakes out on to a rack to cool.
In a medium saucepan, combine the brown sugar and butter. Cook on a medium heat, stirring constantly, until the butter melts and the sugar has dissolved – about 2-3 minutes.
Pour in the milk. Continue to stir and bring to a boil. Remove the pan from heat and stir in the maple flavouring. Set aside to cool slightly.
Place the icing sugar in a large bowl. Pour the butter mixture over the icing sugar and mix with a spoon for 2-3 minutes until the icing is smooth. Use the icing while it is still warm.
Place one layer of the cake on a plate and pour icing in the centre. Spread the icing out to the edges, then set the next cake on top. Repeat. Set the third cake on top and pour the remaining glaze over the cake.
Spread the icing to the edges and let it naturally drip down the sides or use a palette knife or spatula to frost the sides if you wish. Sprinkle the top with the almonds.
Let the frosting set for at least 30 minutes before cutting. This cake will store well for a few days at room temperature, wrapped tightly.