I am going to be direct in this one – I got hooked on this season’s Masterchef Australia. I wanted to start watching it earlier but somehow I didn’t find the time and now, when college stuff is over and I am spending my summer working in Zagreb (it’s food related so yaaay!), I have more time for myself and that means only one thing – more time to watch Masterchef Australia.
I have my favorite candidates, although I still didn’t catch up with the real-time broadcasting, I am only around 20-ish episode, so some of them may be out of the show already. Regardless of that, I think they are still the best cooks ever. The passion and the love they have for food is just amazing. Sometimes while watching them in the pressure test, I forget to breathe and I yell loudly at them but then again, they make it to the end almost every time and I am so grateful because that means I can continue breathing.
The reason I am writing all of this is because I was watching an episode just last night when the guest chef was Nigella Lawson and the three contestants had to prepare a cake for her and the super cute judges (they are soooooooooo cute, I can’t even…). Matt, the guy with the shiny diamonds in his ears, according to the judges and Nigella, made an amazing carrot cake that was just so appetizing I had to make it. You can be sure that it looked really good because I watch a lot of cooking shows and it doesn’t happen very often that I decide to make a dish right away. Plus, I am not that into cakes and sweet so I really surprised myself actually.
I kind off change it because it was Saturday night and the stores were closed so I didn’t make a cream cheese filling, I replaced the walnuts with hazelnuts and orange with peach. So it’s not really the same cake anymore, but it’s still so delicious and has so many flavors I just want to go to the fridge and cut myself another piece right now.
So what you have to do is make a carrot cake out of 1,5 shredded carrots, half of a cup of oil, one cup of flour (I used whole grain but any kind is fine), some shredded ginger (I am not sure if he made it with powder or fresh ginger, I did it with fresh and it gave the cake an amazing kick, it just wouldn’t be the same without it), 2 eggs, brown sugar as you wish, 2 tablespoon of sodium bicarbonate, 2 tablespoons of cinnamon and a bit of salt. Put that in the oven and bake long enough for the cake to rise a bit and get the crispy ends.
I made a marmalade out of a peach and shredded carrot so I used one big peach, three spoons of carrot, 2 spoons of sugar (my peach was super sweet so I could have used less), juice out of one lemon, a bit of cinnamon. I cooked that in a pan until the peach was completely soft so I could press it and make a mash.
Then I put some sugar and water in the pan and made a syrup out of it, toasted some hazelnuts and poured the caramel over the nuts.
I let it all cool a bit and then I cut through the sponge cake, fill it with some marmalade, put the lid on and then I just added some more marmalade on the top and sprinkled it with caramel hazelnuts.
It’s not as complicated as Matt’s cake and it sure doesn’t look as good, but it’s really tasty and you should all try it. It’s so lush and sweet and the hazelnuts on top are so crunchy that you just want to eat more, more, more. Now I have a kind of a feeling I am talking like one of the judges in Masterchef, that’s how much I watch them!
Plus, the cake is healthy because it has carrots and ginger and those are very healthy ingredients which you should eat a lot. In cakes or in salads, it doesn’t really matter.
Make it. Bake it. You’ll make yourself happy.
Thanks Matt, you’re the best. Well, almost 😉
Thanks for reading,
Lidia with a J.