Tag Archives: courgette

Courgette and Yuzu cakes

My friend Lucy told me about this original recipe, from the Waitrose site.

I’ve adapted it, to include ground almonds, olive oil, and also tweaked with the icing. If you want to see the original recipe it’s here, otherwise here’s how I make it now.

Because I also like my treats to be contained, I make these in muffin cases and the recipe makes 16.

For those who have done the Zoe Trial, these score 59 per cake (“enjoy regularly” and I do!). They make very moist cakes that keep really well for about a week in the fridge and I think get even better as they age! These have become a real favourite int he house. Just make sure you eat them when they are really cool, or leave them for a day before eating.

200ml extra virgin olive oil

200g caster sugar

4 eggs

2 tablespoons of yuzu juice

125g self raising flour (I have also used white spelt and then a teaspoon of baking powder)

125g ground almonds

1 teaspoon of bicarbonate

250g courgettes – grated and put in a sieve for a bit then squeezed to get moisture out (there won’t be a lot)

pinch of salt


One and a half tablespoons of icing sugar

250g cream cheese

1 tablespoon of yuzu juice


Oven to 180C. Put muffin cases in a muffin tray (I have a 12 hole one and then a 6 hole one, or you could make these in stages).

Beat together the 200ml of extra virgin oil and the 200g of caster sugar for about two minutes with an electric mixer (whisk attachment). You want it to have thickened. Then add the four eggs, one at a time, the two tablespoons of yuzu juice, the 125g self raising flour (or spelt and baking powder), 125g ground almonds, 1 tsp of bicarb and a pinch of salt, then finally the courgettes.

Spoon carefully into the muffin cases and cook for about 25 minutes. It’s quite hard to see if they are cooked as these are a moist cake, but press down and there should be som resistance. If not cook for a few minutes more.

When completely cool, mix together the cream cheese and icing sugar (just with a fork or spoon it should take seconds) and yuzu juice and top each cup cake with icing.

Store in the fridge and enjoy one a day! I don’t have any pics yet as I am both greedy and lazy but will remedy this soon.

Cauliflower-crust pizza (gluten free)

I am not a fan of food, which, under the umbrella of ‘being healthy’, pretends to be something else and in so doing, delivers only disappointment. Courgette strips instead of pasta, yoghurt when you really need cream, vegetables in cake (which I admit can sometimes work)..cauliflower instead of pizza…

This isn’t anything like a pizza. I warn you now. But if, as I do, you like to have a lunch with a ‘base’ and lots of veg¬†then this is a really good, gluten-free, wheat-free and tasty (yes really) offering. To me, it didn’t taste like cauliflower at all, more like a lovely parmesan crust. My partner was a veggie for 20 years; he views such things with deep suspicion, having been offered beans, made into the shape of a lacklustre burger for many years. But he was impressed and delighted.

I got the recipe from Delicious Magazine (no link because it doesn’t appear to be online), and I’ve halved the ingredients to make it ideal for two, for lunch. I followed the recipe topping but obviously you can add whatever you want. We happened to have some pesto made by my eldest (she makes it better than I do, taking it off me and saying “here Mummy, let me show you”. I love how she is confident like this). You could, feasibly, leave the pesto¬†out and add a drizzle of olive oil or chilli oil, or just, you know, BUY SOME.

225g cauliflower florets
1 medium egg
75g ground almonds
25g grated parmesan
salt and pepper
1 courgette
2 slices of Parma ham
120g ricotta
Pesto and mint to serve

Heat the oven to 200C and put in a large baking sheet. Now, put the florets in a food processor and blitz so it looks like cous cous. Put in a bowl and add the egg (which you have lightly beaten), ground almonds, parmesan and a bit of salt and pepper (not too much salt as the parmesan is also salty). Stir together.

On a piece of baking parchment, spoon out two portions. I sort of shaped it by hand, into two round shapes. It was easy, no rolling and although the mixture is wet and you think it won’t work, it does.

When you’ve done this, take out the baking sheet (which will be hot!) and gently slide the baking parchment onto the baking sheet. Cook for about 20 minutes or until golden and firm to the touch. Check after 15 minutes.

Whilst that’s cooking, slice the courgette into ribbons.

When the bases are cooked, take out and keeping them on the baking sheet, scatter over the ricotta, courgette and ham. Cook for another five minutes and then, spoon a bit of pesto and scatter some mint leaves atop.

2016 update: I just love this dish. What I tend to do is spread a thin layer of chilli jam/caramelised onion/chorizo jam over the base, then layer on the courgette and ricotta but also add (ssssh) some slices of chorizo, which I love. This really is tasty! When it’s cooked I drizzle on some olive oil (extra virgin).