Tuesday, 3 September 2013

Courgette, cardamon and rosehip cake with mascarpone icing

courgette, cardamon and rosehip cake

It's time for a bit more baking I feel.  Inspired by the welcome return of The Great British Bake Off and my love of cardamom, rosehip and seasonal courgettes it was time to put these flavours together in a big cake.  I am all for a bit of kitchen flavour experimentation and being creative in your cooking.  Recipes for me are only the starting point - it's much more fun to play around with flavours and add your own twist.  

Carrot cake has always been a family favourite and courgette cake is a close relative, and although it's been around for ages, is new to my baking repertoire. The courgette acts in a similar way to carrot; adding moisture and sweetness to the cake, and works really well with the fragrant cardamon and rosehip syrup.  The mascarpone icing is the perfect topping and completes this cake - the zesty orange complementing the fragrant cardamon and rose flavours.  

I was sent this delicious rosehip syrup by rose caf√©.  It's packed with vitamin C, sharp and tangy with a lovely soft rose flavour.  I remember my Polish gran collecting bags of rosehips to make bottles of this pink, flowery syrup that we drank as a cordial in our childhood.  I wasn't a huge fan of floral flavours when I was younger but my taste buds have changed and I now often love using rosewater and orange blossom water in sweet and savoury dishes. I find there is often a sense of remembrance and nostalgia in our home comfort cooking.  When I think about why I like certain flavours or ingredients I am often brought back to tastes of my childhood.  

I hope you give this cake a try and let me know what you think.  Your comments and thoughts are always most welcomed.  Happy baking!  

preparation time:  10-15 minutes
cooking time:  50-60 minutes

recipe by:  chip butties and noodle soup 

Courgette, cardamon and rosehip cake with mascarpone icing 


300g plain flour
200g caster sugar
1 tsp baking powder
1/2 tsp bicarbonate of soda
200-250g grated courgette
4 eggs
250ml sunflower oil
1 tsp vanilla extract
crushed seeds of 5-6 cardamon pods or 1/2 tsp of ground cardamon
zest of 1 orange
pinch salt 

mascarpone icing:

200g mascarpone cheese
2 tbs icing sugar
zest of 1 orange

cardamon pods to garnish (remove before eating!) 

  1. preheat the oven to 150C and grease and line a 20cm deep cake tin
  2. whisk the eggs, oil and sugar together until light and airy 
  3. add the rosehip syrup, vanilla extract, orange zest and cardamon and mix
  4. sieve in the flour, baking powder, bicarbonate of soda and salt and fold in gently
  5. next stir in your grated courgette until just combined - don't over mix!
  6. pour the cake into your prepared tin and bake for about 45-60 minutes
  7. it is ready when lightly golden and a skewer comes out clean
  8. leave in the tin for about 5 minutes before removing to a cooling rack
  9. while the cake is cooling whisk up the mascarpone icing ingredients until well combined.  
  10. when the cake is fully cooled top with the lovely mascarpone icing, cut yourself a slice and enjoy with a big mug of tea.  

If you like this recipe check out my carrot, orange and caraway cake - my cross between a traditional seed cake and a carrot cake. 

I have entered my courgette, cardamon and rosehip cake with mascarpone icing onto Love Food Hate Waste and NEFF's Unusual Baking Challenge 

Four Seasons Food

I have also entered this recipe onto Four Seasons Food hosted by Delicieux and Chezfoti


  1. Thanks for sharing.
    I want to eat it.

  2. Mmmm, this sounds lovely. What a great little twist on Courgette cake by adding the cardamon and rosehip syrup. I am bookmarking this one as I am up to my neck in courgettes right now! Thanks for entering this into Four Seasons Food x

    1. Thanks again. Have you tried my instant pickle recipe? Is great with courgettes :-)

  3. I was attracted by the use of cardamon, but you had me completely at the point where the mascarpone icing made its appearance. Should I have have a try at using courgette for cake, I will be trying this recipe.

    1. Thanks. I love cardamon - great in baking. Do let me know if you give it a go.

  4. I love unusual veggies in sponge cake (beetroot & chocolate is a favourite) I think that William Sitwell did some sort of campaign (!) in last month's Waitrose about using vegetables in baking. Courgette & Cardamom sounds like a beautiful combination though.

    1. You're right about beetroot and chocolate - a great combination- I make an awesome brownie with these - not on the blog yet, but thanks for the reminder ;-) Thanks for your lovely comments - it's much appreciated.

  5. Thank you from Canada for the lovely recipe!! I just made lots of rosehip syrup and I am going to whip one up!! :)