Repeat after me – vegetables don’t belong in cakes. Who in their right mind decides to eat carrot cake when there’s a deliciously soft chocolate fudge cake right next to it? They’re CARROTS. Carrots are meant for your Sunday roast, not dessert.
And then people take it even further with things like parsnip cake and sweet potato cake. These are not cake flavours! Savoury foods should not play any part in baking.
So if you’re bored of Victoria sponge or lemon drizzle, don’t resort carrots. Instead, have a go at incorporating some is these less-mainstream cake flavours into your baking.
1) Chocolate and lime
Chocolate limes and lime truffles are things so we know the flavours go together. However, you never see chocolate and lime cake in cafes or restaurants. Why is that? It’s not hard to make.
All you need is your generic chocolate sponge cake recipe, some standard buttercream and a couple of limes. You shouldn’t need a new recipe to make this. But if you do, there’s one on the BBC Good Food website.
2) Raspberry Gin Fizz
So this one I made up myself. There’s no written recipe. Instead, just adapt a plain cake recipe. Basically, add a couple of tablespoons of gin to your plain sponge. Blend and sieve some raspberries, add them to a basic buttercream recipe and spread onto your sponge generously. For the ‘fizz’ part, scatter some popping candy around the cake when serving. (Don’t put the popping candy on your buttercream because it’ll pop before it’s in your mouth.)
3) Early Grey lemon drizzle
You can’t go wrong with a lemon drizzle but, admit it, they’re quite boring. Mix it up by adding Earl Grey. The process is simple. It requires a few tea bags and milk in a pan and a lemon drizzle recipe. Make sure to allow extra time because the infused milk will need to cool before you can bake with it.
Try these cute little loaves from a Great British Chefs recipe:
4) Apple crumble cupcakes
Apple crumble is great. Cupcakes are great. Combine them in this delicious new recipe. Apple isn’t the first fruit to come to mind when it comes to cake flavours but it makes for a nice change. These are quite autumnal but can obviously be served year round. Jane’s Patisserie is a great blog that has a brilliant recipe for these.
Another one I made up. Who doesn’t want to know what their favourite chocolate bar would taste like as a cake? This simply involves a swiss roll type process. Coat your swiss roll sponge with chocolate buttercream, caramel and broken up biscuits and roll tight. Then cover it in thick chocolate ganache.
I made this as my birthday cake and it went down so fast I didn’t get to take a photo.
6) Chocolate whisky
When my grandad was told by the doctors that he shouldn’t drink any alcohol, he really missed whisky. So, I bought some whisky flavouring and found a New York Times chocolate and whiskey cake recipe to cheer him up. I considered just adding a bit of the flavouring to my regular chocolate cake recipe but ultimately it was worth the extra effort of following the recipe for a fancier cake.
7) Lemon and blueberry
Blueberry muffins are great (apart from when you planned to a chocolate chip one and don’t find out it’s blueberry until you bite into it). But they’re so standard. Take them to the next level by making lemon and blueberry muffins. The Hairy Bikers have a great recipe for these:
8) Rose and pistachio Battenburg
Rose flavouring is like marmite. Some people love it, some think it tastes like chemicals. However, if you like it, try out this recipe that was a hit on the Great British Bake Off. The GBBO finalist put a spin on the traditional recipe, resulting in a prominent green and pink checkered pattern.
9) Pumpkin Spice
Pumpkin spice lattes might not be as #basic as they used to be. They’re definitely not as #basic as avocados (vegetables don’t belong in cakes!). However, a pumpkin spice lattes are still a classic. Perhaps better suited for an autumn bake, a pumpkin spice latte cake opens you up to a whole range of cute decorating ideas.
10) Mint choc chip
Here’s another take on a classic Battenburg. I’ll let the photo do the talking for this one.
Do any tickle your fancy? Well, click on any of the photos to head to the recipes and give them a go. Impress your friends and family with something new and unique.
What’s your favourite cake flavour? Leave a comment!
Feature image: greatbritishchefs.com
A reporter for the FA, Media Officer for a National League football team, and a journalism student.