Kirsty Cake – cheese, raisin and nut

I’ve recently given up refined sugar and as many products as I could that contained it. I’m still using maple syrup as it’s not processed and it has a distinctive taste without tasting sweet. 

I’ve really missed cake but I know if I return to eating it then I’ll be eating sugar as it it’s going out of fashion again so I decided I needed to come up with a savoury cake so here it is.

Cheese, raisin and nut cake

Preheat your oven to 180 degrees and grease and base line a 2lb loaf tin. If you prefer then cut a piece of greaseproof paper that will line the whole tin. This may make the outside of the cake a slightly irregular shape but it won’t alter the taste.

Sieve 250 grams of self raising flour and add 100 grams of lightly chopped large raisins. I use the jumbo raisins from ASDA which are flame, black and yellow. Add to the flour and raisins 75 grams of shelled and chopped unsalted pistachios or your nut of choice. Some nuts are sweeter than other so it really depends on your individual taste. Next chop 150 grams of extra mature Cheddar cheese into about 1/2 centimetre cubes – I used Tickler as it has a good bite but if you can get some from the cheese company in Cheddar village then a mix of their mature and blue cheese would be perfect. I added a little double Gloucester for colour but I’ll leave it out next time.

Beat 4 eggs until they are pale and fluffy. The point of this is to get the air that will make your cake light and it may be wise to use an electric hand beater though I prefer to use a balloon whisk.

Beat lightly together 150 millilitres of olive oil – the paler ones are best otherwise the cake will taste overwhelmingly of the oil – with 100 millilitres of milk and 50 grams of Greek yoghurt or Skyr. Add to this a teaspoon or so of freshly ground salt and half a dozen turns of black pepper.

Mix the dry ingredients in the flour so that they are coated with the flour. This will ensure that they don’t sink to the bottom of the cake. Then stir the liquid into the flour and raisin, cheese and nut mixture with a metal tablespoon until it is well mixed.

Pour into the batter into the prepared tin and bake in the oven for 30 – 40 minutes. A metal skewer will come out clean when the cake is baked. I did the skewer test after 30 minutes and it was perfectly baked.

A slice of cheese, raising and pistachio cake

Cool in the tin for 10 minutes then transfer to a rack. Cool for a further 10 minutes in the paper and then remove the paper gently and wait until it’s completely cold.

I’m not sure how well this will freeze as I doubt mine will last long enough to get to the freezer.