Lea Hendry Valle
There’s just something about carrot cake; most adults love it, but most kids... just don’t. Until they taste it, at least. But getting them to taste it is often the biggest obstacle. That’s why we decided to call this “Harvest Cake” instead. The name sounds less intimidating than “Carrot Cake,” which can make vegetable-phobic individuals — like kids — break out in a cold sweat. Then, just to be devilish, we added apples and zucchini to the batter. The result is a moist, delicious, nut-free cake that will appeal to people of all ages, even kids. “Oh, you don’t want to eat your vegetables, sweetie? That’s okay! Here... have some Harvest Cake instead!” — Lea Hendry Valle, Sweet Paleo.
Preheat the oven to 350 degrees F. Use coconut oil to grease two 8-inch round cake pans and line the bottoms with parchment paper.
Sift the flours together with the ginger, cinnamon, allspice, cardamom, nutmeg, cloves, baking soda, and salt into a medium bowl; set aside.
In a food processor or high-speed blender, purée the dates with the maple syrup and apple juice until you have a smooth paste, stopping to scrape down the sides as necessary.
Separate three of the eggs and place the egg whites in the bowl of a stand mixer. Allow them to come to room temperature.
In a separate large mixing bowl, place the three egg yolks along with the three remaining whole eggs, add the date purée, oil, and vanilla and stir until combined.
Add the dry ingredients to the date mixture. Stir in the carrot, zucchini, and apple.
In the stand mixer, using the whisk attachment on medium speed, whip the three egg whites until frothy. Add the cream of tartar and continue to whip until you have firm peaks.
Gently fold the whipped egg whites into the batter and continue folding until well combined, taking care not to overmix and lose the airiness of the eggs.
Divide the batter between the two prepared pans. It will be thick. Spread it out evenly.
Bake until a toothpick inserted into the center comes out clean, about 30 minutes. Allow the cake to cool for 10 minutes in the pan, then turn out onto a wire rack to continue cooling. Frost or glaze as desired when completely cool.