Courgette, Carrot and Orange Cake

Serves 12
150g courgettes
1 pinch salt
100g carrots
5 medium eggs
125ml oil
225g sugar
225g flour
3 level tsp baking powder
½ tsp bicarbonate of soda
75g butter
2 untreated oranges
200g double cream soft cheese
50g icing sugar
Greaseproof paper

Grate the courgettes coarsely. Place in a sieve, sprinkle with a pinch of salt and leave to drain. Peel the carrots and also grate coarsely. Grease the bases of 2 spring-form cake tins (20cm across) and cover with grease proof paper.
Beat 2 eggs, oil and 150g sugar with an electric whisk until the mixture is white and fluffy. Mix together the flour, baking powder and bicarbonate; sieve on to the egg mixture and combine. Stir in the courgette and carrot gratings. Divide the mixture between the two cake tins. Bake in a pre-heated oven (Electric: 175 ˚ C/Fan: 150 ˚ C/Gas Mark 2) for about 30 min. Remove from the oven, leaving in the tins to cool slightly then remove and let them cool on a wire rack.
For the buttercream and orange curd melt the butter in a pan. Wash the oranges in hot water and pat dry. Peel the skin thinly from 1 orange and remove just the zest from the other. Halve the oranges and extract the juice. Add the 3 eggs, 75g sugar and 125ml orange juice and peel to the pan and stir over a low heat to make a thick sauce. Leave to cool. Stir the cream cheese until smooth. Sieve the icing sugar over it and mix well. Stir in 1-2 tbsp of orange juice. Place one cake on a cake plate, spread with the orange curd and place the second cake on top, and decorate with the cream cheese and orange zest.

Other courgette recipes include:

• Courgette and goat's cheese quiche
• Courgette and tomato cheese gratin
• Courgette lasagne
• Spaghetti with creamy courgette sauce
• Courgette flowers in batter
• Courgette and mushroom bread