I actually made (and photographed) this carob and plum cake last year but ended up holding off on posting as the season came to an end. Now the season is just coming in, so there's plenty of time to maximize your plum cake making. And you'll want to do that because, if you share the taste buds of our family, you're going to find this cake so OMG darned delicious!
You'll notice in the recipe below that the coconut flour is optional and I'll explain a bit more here. This cake makes seriously good eating in a couple of ways - as a pudding, in which case eat it warm; or as a cake so allow it to cool down and firm somewhat. The coconut flour helps with that. If you're having it warm then go without the coconut flour. Either way I know you'll be as crazy about this treat as we are.
New to tigernut flour?
Tigernuts have many strings to their bow: They are high in fibre, making them helpful in the elimination of waste; they are rich in vitamins, minerals, amino acid, enzymes and healthy fats which are, of course, vital for good health and wellbeing. And, despite the name, they are not nuts at all but small tubers that can be traced back thousands of years, qualifying them as true paleo food! Tigernuts are not GAPS/SCD friendly.
Tigernuts contain resistant starch
That means they act as a prebiotic, travelling through the GI tract undigested, then converting to short chain fatty acids in order to nourish the beneficial bacteria that live in the colon. Other prebiotic examples include jerusalem artichokes (sun choke), jicama, dandelion greens, asparagus and onions. I use and recommend this brand of tigernut flour.
What does resistant starch do?
Resistant starch plays many roles, but of particular note it can help lower inflammation and enhance the body's ability to assimilate and absorb nutrients. It can break down and eliminate toxins in the gut, as well as regulate motility. Resistant starch can also stabilise blood glucose levels and increase insulin sensitivity so these reasons alone are enough to make them highly useful in a gut healing diet.
What are the downsides of resistant starch?
Inasmuch as prebiotics are useful for so many digestive issues, they are not for everybody. If you have a particularly sensitive GI tract you may want to start with small amounts and build up your tolerance gradually. Many resistant starches are also high FODMAP foods and should therefore be avoided by those with gut issues such as SIBO (Small Intestinal Bacterial Overgrowth), however tigernuts are low FODMAP so experiment and see how they work for you.
How do you get on with tigernuts? Please do tell ...
carob and plum cake
Vary throughout the seasons with new and different fruits, but know that the juicier ones will yield the best results. I'm thinking the likes of apricots and ripe pears.
Print the recipe here
9-10 fresh prune plums, halved lengthways (stones discarded)
1 cup canned pumpkin purée
1/2 cup melted coconut oil
2 tbsp blackstrap molasses
1 tbsp honey
generous pinch crushed Maldon salt
1 cup tigernut flour
2 tbsp coconut flour (optional) *
4 tbsp carob powder
1+1/4 tsp baking soda
2 gelatin eggs, as follows
for the 2 gelatin eggs -
2 tbsp grass-fed gelatin
1 tbsp lemon juice
3 tbsp just boiled water
Place a baking sheet into the oven and preheat to 350F. Line a 7.5 inch square cake with parchment paper and arrange the plum halves on the base, alternating between cut side up, cut side down.
Put the pumpkin purée, coconut oil, molasses, honey and salt into a bowl and, using a stand or handheld mixer, combine thoroughly. Tip in the flours, carob and baking soda and mix again until combined.
Next, make the gelatin eggs. Put the gelatin into a small bowl and put the lemon juice and boiled water into another. Now pour the liquid into the gelatin, whisking quickly until melted and the mixture looks frothy. With the motor running, pour the gelatin eggs into the bowl and whizz again just for a couple of seconds or so, to fully incorporate.
Spoon the mixture over the plums, level the top and cook for 50 minutes or until firm to the touch. Allow to cool in the tin for 10 minutes, before turning out onto a serving plate.
*Note the coconut flour gives the cake a little more substance, however if you want to eat it as a more than fabulous pudding (move over sticky toffee pudding, we have no need for you now), you can omit this. There's no harm in omitting it anyway, it will just be more cake-like with the coconut.
Petra Chambers-Sinclair says
This looks seriously amazing, Kate. I don't usually go for AIP baking, but I feel an exception coming on!
Thanks Petra. I don't bake often but when I do it has to be worth it. This hits that spot, if you know what I mean 😉
Are the plums fresh or do I buy prunes? These look amazing!
Thanks Breanna, I love this cake so much. The plums are fresh, they are called "prune plums" - the ones in the photo above.
Unfortunately, I have to avoid everything coconut. What do you suggest instead of coconut oil? Once that problem is solved I will replace coconut flour with cassava flour and will make them with cherries, since they are in season. This will mimic my favorite chocolate-dry cherries cookies I can no longer eat. Your cake looks fantastic!
No worries about coconut oil, you can easily use palm shortening or lard for the cake. I can't comment on the quantity of cassava flour though I'm afraid, I haven't baked with that.
Enjoy your cherry cake 🙂
Sorry to be this annoying one Kate.. Black peaches instead of plums, and green banana flour instead of tiger nut? Can do?
Hehe, you're not annoying 🙂
I have never had black peaches and I desperately want one now. They would be fantastic I'm sure. I actually can't help with the flour though, I'm afraid I've never used it before. Hopefully someone else will be able to comment on that here.
Thanks Kate! I'll give the flour a go (only one I can eat anyway). I've just discovered black peaches ( red fleshed) apparently aren't found too many places in the world apart from France where they originate and here in NZ. Appallingly they are still known as black boy peaches. They are delicious!
Good luck with your flour, I'm sure the cake will be delicious anyway. Enjoy it with your interestingly named peaches - although I think "peche de vigne" sounds far more politically correct, and romantic which is certainly more in keeping with the cake 🙂
First, huge congrats on the professional certification and services launch! So exciting!
Second, this looks super yummy. There's probably an AIP reason that you've used carob vs cacao.
But would cacao work too? (I'm assuming that if so, that I also might need to bump up the honey a little.)
Hi Susan, thanks so much, it is very exciting 🙂
Cacao is not on the AIP list because it is a seed and therefore may irritate the gut lining. However if you are using it, then you should use the same quantity as for the carob. Carob is naturally sweeter so I think an extra tablespoon of honey would be a good idea.
Hope you're keeping well!
I was wondering if I could soak dried prunes and use them instead of plum halves?
Yes that would work fine. The juicier the better 🙂
Meagan Faeth says
Should the plums be ripe (sweet & juicy) or is a little firm OK? Thank you! Cant wait to try this!!
A little firm should be okay. If they are too firm they won't have as much flavour, or the juice to add to the overall yumminess. Mine weren't totally ripe, but definitely good enough to eat raw. Hope that helps.
Jaime Kay says
Oh Kate, these are SO good. I substituted green banana flour for tigernut, cacao instead of carob and used real eggs instead of gelatin. I also used a 6x8.5" pan and they were done in 35 min. I did not add extra honey, and even still found them sweet. I can not wait to do this again with cherries (and tigernut flour which I swore I had!).
Hi Jaime, I've never used green banana flour and I'm trying to imagine the texture. I must seek some out and experiment. Great to hear you had a successful cake - it will be incredible with cherries!!!
Looks yummy! Do you think it would work if I substituted flax eggs for the gelatin ones? Thanks!
Hi Laura, I actually have never used flax eggs (they're not AIP-friendly) so I can't help with this one I'm afraid.
This looks delicious although I'm not the biggest fan of carob - so I was thinking of trying it with ground ginger and pears! But here in Australia we don't tend to eat pumpkin from cans. I'm wondering whether it would work if I just steamed or roasted some pumpkin pieces and then pureed until smooth with a stick blender? Thank you so much for creating this recipe - I'm just about to embark on the AIP diet and admit to feeling a little nervous! Kind regards, Holly
Hey Holly, it's definitely fine to use your own pumpkin purée, just make it quite thick and compact (as in very little water content).
Hello, can I use a different flour than tiger nut flour?
I have only ever used tigernut flour but if you look further back in the comments you'll find the cake has worked well with green banana flour. Other than that it'll be trial and error but please let me know what works for you.
This looks ambsolutrly amazing! I was just about to make this cake and realised I have not got any lemons left , could I substitute it with something else or can I just omit it ?? Thank you
Hi Ewa, you can use one teaspoon of apple cider vinegar instead. The acid is there to react with the bicarb and get a bit of a rise and lighter texture.
I've not seen pumpkin puree in the shops here (Germany). Do you think apple puree would work, or might that be too sweet?
Hi Sarah, you can definitely use apple purée, in which case I'd remove the sweeteners. Enjoy!
Excellent, thank you!
Kate, this cake is amazing! I just made it today, and instead of making one large cake, I bought some 4oz aluminum baking cups and made 10 individual cakes. They looked a little bit lumpy when I pulled them out of the oven, but when I turned it over it looked like it had a caramel pudding on top and it was so wonderful. This was my first AIP dessert and I'm very happy with how it came out. I bought the individual cups so I could put lids on them and freeze them
Hi Sue, I'm so pleased it hit the spot and your first AIP dessert was a success. Thanks so much for sharing!
I actually forgot it's not my first AIP dessert, but my first one was also one of yours, the Meyer lemon fluff. I first had it when you and Mickey had the cooking class at Bastyr earlier this year (you may recall me as the woman with the oxygen). I made it once at home and really enjoyed it.
Yes I certainly do remember you Sue, I hope you're doing really well. It was wonderful to meet you at Bastyr and Ah, that lemon fluff
Jacinta Keeble says
Beautiful cake! Thanks for the recipe.
Thanks Jacinta. I love it with pears too, and will be making with cherries when summer comes 🙂
I get a reaction from carob.
It is a legume.
Hi Chris, I remember you left a comment before about this, and how you can't tolerate rooibos either. Though they're both AIP-compliant, it is recommended they’re consumed in moderation. With carob, we consume the ground up pod and not the seeds. Have a read of this post for more information if you like.
This cake is AMAZING — we loved it! Thanks so much — looking forward to making it again!
I'm so pleased to hear you love it. Thanks for the feedback 🙂