sweet potato (or pumpkin) cake

After getting far too much pumpkin in the vegie box one week, I started casting around for other ways to get the family to eat it. So I made this cake and it was pretty good. Then we had an even bigger excess of sweet potatoes and this cake, made with sweet potato, is really, really good. On the day it's made, this cake has a fluffiness from the sweet potato that's just gorgeous. However, it also keeps for days in the fridge, which is just as well because it is a filling the cracks kind of cake. But the texture does become more solid. Still good, but solid and sturdy.

sweet potato cake

sweet potato cake, cooling


125g of butter
1 cup of brown sugar, or fine raw sugar for a more orange colour
1 to 1 and 1/2 cup of cooked but not too watery mashed sweet potato or pumpkin (I cook it in not too much water until soft and then drain well. Microwaving would also work well here.)
1/2 teaspoon each of cinnamon, freshly grated nutmeg, allspice and powdered ginger
1/2 teaspoon of vanilla
1/2 cup of yoghurt
1/2 cup of chopped walnuts
1/2 cup of sultanas
2 cups of self raising flour
2 eggs

juice of one lemon
icing sugar
a little butter

To make

  • Preheat oven to 180C. Grease and line a 22cm (or 24cm) springform cake tin.
  • Cream butter and sugar until well combined (no need to worry about it being pale and frothy).
  • Add the eggs and beat some more. Add the yoghurt and sweet potato and beat some more.
  • Add the flour, spices and vanilla and beat some more.
  • Stir in the sultanas and walnuts.
  • The mixture will be quite solid for a cake, but don't worry about that. Spoon into cake tin, smooth the top and bake for about an hour.
  • Remove from oven when cake tests clean or springs back to the touch. Sit in tin for about five minutes and then de-tin, remove paper and place on a cake rack. This is very important for this cake otherwise it develops an unpleasant pudding like texture.
  • Make a lemon icing with the juice of the lemon, about a teaspoon on melted butter and enough icing sugar to make an easily spreadable icing. Apply the icing while the cake is still a little warm for the dripping down the edges effect. A thin chocolate icing is also nice, but the lemon is better.