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How to make an energy-saving dessert in 9 easy steps

We can’t all star in the Great British Bake Off like eco-friendly baker Ian Cummings (pictured right) – but we can all help to save energy when we cook.

Ian is celebrating Earth Hour 2017 (25 March) by sharing his energy-saving favourite recipe – delicious Mojito cakes.

These clever cakes are cooked in the microwave, not the oven, so they’re a great choice for anyone looking to cut their climate impact.

Where possible, remember to source your ingredients locally too for the most climate-friendly dessert you’ll ever taste.

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Ian’s energy-saving Mojito cakes

Ian Cummings, Great British Bake Off finalist, enjoys his energy-saving Mojito cake - by SmartEnergy GB

Ian Cummings, Great British Bake Off finalist, enjoys his energy-saving Mojito cake – by SmartEnergy GB

“These microwave cakes are full of fresh and zesty flavours, and cook to perfection in just 2 minutes. With the vibrant green hints of mint and lime, it’s the perfect treat to celebrate Earth Hour 2017”. Ian Cummings, finalist, GBBO 2015


  • Ian’s energy cost: 2 p*
  • Makes: 2
  • Prep: 5 mins
  • Cook: 2 mins per cake

Mojito cake ingredients

For the cakes:

  • 60 g self-raising flour
  • 80 g caster sugar
  • 30 g ground almonds
  • 70 ml veg or sunflower oil
  • 1 egg
  • Zest of 1 lime
  • Juice of 2 limes (keeping 2tbsp to one side)
  • 2 tbsp rum

For the lime drizzle topping:

  • 30 g Demerara sugar
  • 2 tbsp fresh lime juice
  • Zest of 1 lime

For the mint cream to serve:

  • 75 ml double cream
  • 10 g caster sugar
  • 3 tsp finely chopped mint
  • 2 tsp rum (optional)
  • Sprigs of fresh mint to serve

How to make a Mojito cake in 9 easy steps

  1. Combine the self-raising flour, caster sugar and ground almonds in a bowl. Then add the rum with the lime juice and zest.
  2. Beat in the oil and the egg until you have a smooth batter.
  3. Divide the mixture into 2 portions (approx. 160 g) and pour into deep mugs, or wide coffee cups.
  4. Cook each cake separately in an 800 Watt microwave, on high power, for 2 mins. Adjust the time according to the power of your microwave.
  5. Meanwhile, mix the Demerara sugar with the remaining lime juice and zest to make a drizzle topping.
  6. As soon as each cake is cooked, spike it a few times with a skewer and evenly pour over half the lime drizzle.
  7. Allow to cool for a few minutes.
  8. Combine the double cream, caster sugar and chopped mint with the optional rum for an extra kick. Whisk until just going stiff.
  9. Serve the cakes with a dollop of mint cream and a sprig of fresh mint.

“Having spent a lot of time producing complicated cakes in the past, I was amazed to discover you can whip up a range of scrumptious cakes in a microwave. Baking cakes in the oven or steaming puddings on the hob both require lots of energy, but with a cooking time of less than 2 minutes, this Mojito microwave cake really is a ‘green’ indulgence.” Ian Cummings, finalist, GBBO 2015

Ian's smart meter

Ian’s smart meter

Be a climate-friendly cook all year round with these 3 easy tips:

1. Be wise about warmth 

“I’m going to be more resourceful with heat this year – leaving the oven open as it cools, melting butter and defrosting bread in natural sunlight or on top of a radiator, and making use of steam generated from cooking.

“I’ve even been thinking about what I could cook in the natural warmth generated by my compost heap,” says Ian.

2. Cook smarter 

This year I’m focusing on integrating lots of small energy saving tricks I’ve discovered with my smart meter, such as cooking pasta in pre-boiled water with the heat switched off, using pans with a bigger surface area, cooking whole meals in my slow cooker, and whipping up cakes and bakes in the microwave.

“Smart meters show you how much gas and electricity you’re using in pounds and pence, helping you to live smarter and save energy. Contact your energy supplier today about installing your smart meter – and find out more about smart meters at,” says Ian.

3. Eat Better

Don’t forget to choose more sustainable ingredients to minimise your impact on the climate whatever you’re eating.

You can sign up to Eat Better with Friends of the Earth below and keep yourself stocked up with climate-friendly food all year round.

*Energy tariffs and prices vary




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