Archive | September 2012

Butternut squash cake with apple, currants topped with Almond streusel

Butternut squash cake with apple, currants topped with Almond streusel

By Kira

Recently, I decided to participate in Wimbledon baking group, where everyone has to bring one home made cake. Each meetup has a theme and this month’s theme is ‘A bake with a story’. Being my first meetup, I was wondering what to make. Finally, I decided to retry my very first attempt to make a cake for my exact equals birthday.

Here goes my story… My baking adventure started of a couple of year back in London. Before that I never baked in my whole life. Thats right you are reading it right. When I moved to London, I use to enjoy the BBC program for children ‘I can cook’ by Kathy. I started trying recipes from that program and slowly started of with cup cakes, muffins and cookies. By then I got the basic knowledge of baking, I wanted to try cakes. I was looking for recipes to make dinner with butternut squash, to my surprise I came across a cake recipe using butternut squash. I was surprised as well as excited by the thought of adding vegetable to a cake.

I never follow a recipe to a ‘T’, I always improvise with my basic knowledge and personal twists. I made the cake a day ahead of my exact equals birthday, to give me enough time for the backup plan. After I finished baking, my house was filled with pleasant smell. All is well at the end, now I have the trouble of hiding the cake for a another day.

I really surprised him on his birthday, presenting with my very first perfect cake. Oh my goodness, the cake was so light and tasted delicious with bits of apple, currants and top of all was the almond streusel. The cake also had taken the nice yellow colour from the butternut squash puree.

Here is the picture of my Butternut squash cake with apple, currants topped with Almond Streusel.

Prep time: 20 mins
Cook time: 45 mins
Total time: 65 mins

Dry Ingredients:

  • Plain flour – 140 g  (14 tbsp – level tablespoons)
  • Golden granuated raw cane sugar – 137 g (10.5 tbsp – level tablespoons)
  • Baking powder 1.5 tsp
  • Table Salt a pinch
  • Red apple, medium size 1
  • Juicy currants – 50 g (5 tbsp – I used Whitworths juicy currants)

Wet Ingredients:

  • Eggs, medium size, room temperature 2
  • Sunflower oil – 65 ml (4.5 tbsp  – I used Flora sunflower oil)
  • Vanilla essence 1 tsp
  • Nutmeg 0.25 tsp (I used freshly grated nutmeg)
  • Ground Cinnamon 0.50 tsp
  • Butternutsquash puree – 80g (8 tbsp  – level tablespoons)

Streusel Topping:

  • Whole Almonds 100 g (10 tbsp finely chopped almonds)
  • Golden granuated raw cane sugar – 33 g (2.5 tbsp)
  • Unsalted Butter, room temperature 20 g


Butternut squash Puree:

  • Cut the medium size butternut squash in lengthwise, scoop out the seeds. Place it in the roasting tray with cut side down.
  • Pour little water into the base of the roasting tray.
  • Bake at 180C fan in the preheat oven for 35 mins or until the butternut squash is tender.
  • Remove the butternut squash from oven and let it cool completely.
  • Scoop out the flesh of the butternut squash. Puree it in the food processor until it has smooth texture.
  • The puree stores well in fridge and freeze. I usually make the puree a day before I plan to make the cake. Measure the amount that is needed for the cake and keep that in fridge. Freeze the remaining puree for later use.

Dry Bowl:

  • Shift the plain flour into a large mixing bowl.
  • Add the sugar, baking powder and salt to the mixing bowl.
  • Give everything a good mix using a spatula and keep it aside.

Wet Bowl:

  • Have the electric hand blender with balloon whisk attachment ready.
  • In a medium mixing bowl, break the eggs and whisk it until it looks pale yellow in colour and foamy.
  • Add the oil to the egg mixture and whisk a few seconds until its mixed evenly.
  • Add the vanilla essence, nutmeg and cinnamon to the mixture and give a good mix.
  • Add the butternut squash puree to the mixture and whisk at low speed for a minute until its well blended.

Streusel Topping:

  • Place the whole almonds in the food processor and pulse until the almonds are finely chopped.
  • Transfer the chopped almonds to a bowl, then add the sugar and butter. Mix it with your finger tips until the mixture looks like a crumble.

Final steps:

  • Preheat the oven at 170C fan.
  • Line the 7 inches round deep cake tin with baking sheet.
  • Peel, core and cut the apple into cubes of 1cm pieces. Add the apple pieces and currants to the dry mixture bowl and give it a good mix.
  • Add the dry mixture into wet mixture bowl. Fold the mixture gently with a spatula, because you don’t want to knock out all the air bubbles produced by beating the eggs. Fold it until everything is well incorporated.
  • Fill the cake tin with the mixture. Sprinkle the streusel topping over the cake mixture. Very gently press the streusel to level it evenly.
  • Cover the top of the cake tin with aluminium foil. The foil cover prevents the almonds from burning. Bake at 170C fan for 25 mins.
  • Remove the aluminium foil and bake for further 22 mins or when a toothpick inserted in the center of the cake comes out clean.
  • Remove the cake from oven and let it cool for 10 mins before releasing it from the cake tin.
  • Transfer the cake to a cooling rack and let it cool completely.