Carrot ‘cheese’ cakes

Carrot ‘cheese’ cakes

Queijadas de cenoura

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Makes
12
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Queijada literally means something made with queijo (cheese) – in this case, small cheesecakes. The queijadas from the town of Sintra are especially famous; my grandfather and I used to drive up to the mountains in his Citroën DS just to get a packet of them. This version was created by Diana Neto, our pastry chef at Taberna do Mercado and, ironically, the cheese has been omitted to give a lighter texture, while carrot has been added for flavour and substance.

Ingredients

Quantity Ingredient
660g carrots, peeled
70g butter, softened, plus a little extra for greasing
250g caster sugar
4 eggs
100g plain white flour
A pinch fine sea salt
1 lemon, Finely grated zested
1 orange, Finely grated zested

Method

  1. Preheat the oven to 220°C and grease a non-stick, 12-hole muffin tin with butter. Chop 500g of the carrots and coarsely grate the rest. Bring a pan of salted water to the boil and cook the chopped carrots until soft. Drain, then blend until smooth with a stick blender. Set aside to cool.
  2. In a large bowl, cream the butter and sugar until pale and fluffy. Fold in the puréed carrots until well combined. Add the eggs one by one and mix until smooth. Gently fold in the flour, salt, grated carrots and lemon and orange zest. Fill each muffin hole with 3 tablespoons batter. Gently pat the surface smooth with the back of a wet spoon. Bake for 25 minutes, or until a skewer comes out clean. Cool on a wire rack before serving.
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