Bye bye fresh tomatoes: Green tomato spice cake recipe

Green tomato spice cakeWith the recent freeze warnings we know the bulk of our growing season is coming to a close.  Most of us hate to see fresh tomato season come to an end with no more Saturday mornings at the farmers market choosing just-picked heirloom tomatoes or perhaps no lazy afternoons in the backyard garden harvesting the fruits of our own labors.  On the other hand, the gardeners among us know how overwhelming the sudden abundance of late-season produce can be especially when we look at all the green tomatoes still on the vine that just didn’t have a chance to ripen!

Any gardener in such a predicament knows that you can ripen green tomatoes in brown paper bags (checking every few days to make sure none get overly ripe) or that fried green tomatoes are a delicious treat as are dilled green tomatoes and tomato pickles.  Green Tomato Jam on toast is a lovely way to extend the tomato-eating season too but our all-time favorite way to use up a few of those lingering tomatoes:  Melissa’s Green Tomato Cake!

Don’t feel the need to tell your family that this cake is made with tomatoes because the truth is baked green tomatoes taste like apples!  The recipe also uses flax meal and applesauce to cut down on fat but still have a moist cake.  Using raw sugar lets you use less and by incorporating both the cherries and walnuts, there’s some “super foods” included too.

For an extra special treat add a handful of dark chocolate chips to the batter and serve with just a spoonful of non-fat whipped cream.  This isn’t something to eat every day for sure but it is just about the best way to say “see ya next year” to the tomato growing season.

Melissa’s Green Tomato Spice Cake

  • 4 cups chopped green tomatoes
  • 1 tablespoon salt
  • ½ cup unsalted butter
  • 1 ½ cups of natural raw sugar
  • 2 egg whites
  • 2 Tablespoons Flax meal
  • ½ cup of natural applesauce
  • 2 cups flour
  • 1 teaspoon each of cinnamon, nutmeg, baking soda
  • ¼ teaspoon of salt
  • ½ cup of dried Montmorency cherries
  • ½ cup chopped walnuts

Preheat oven to 375 degrees.  Grease and flour a 9×13 baking pan.  Toss the chopped tomatoes and tablespoon of salt together and let sit in colander for 15 minutes.  Rinse well and let drain in colander.  Combine Flax meal, egg whites and applesauce and set aside.  Stir together all dry ingredients including cherries and walnuts.

Cream butter and sugar until thoroughly mixed.  Add 1/3 flax meal then 1/3 flour mixture alternating wet and dry ingredients until mixed together.  Stir in tomatoes and pour into baking dish.  Bake for 45 minutes or until toothpick inserted in center comes out clean.

Nutritional Information (Makes 18 servings, about 3×2 each)
Per serving: 222 calories; 10 g fat; 13 mg cholesterol; 115 mg sodium; 32 g carbohydrates; 20 g sugars; 2 g fiber; 3.5 g protein

 

Melissa McDonald grew up in Harbor Springs and tends to her own organic garden.

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