I can’t believe I’ve not made a carrot cake yet to write about! I’ve tried a couple of different recipes in the past but I think this is the nicest one I’ve made – plus I have to find recipes that avoid sultanas or raisins as my husband doesn’t like them…is it normal for carrot cake to have these in? I’m not sure! Anyway, this recipe is from my M&S recipe book again so I’ve no link unfortunately.
- 125g / 4.5oz self raising flour
- pinch of salt
- 1 tsp ground cinnamon
- 125g / 4.5oz soft brown sugar
- 2 eggs
- 100ml / 3.5fl oz sunflower oil
- 125g / 4.5oz carrot, peeled and grated
- 25g / 1oz desiccated coconut
- 25g / 1oz walnuts, chopped
- walnut pieces, to decorate
- 50g / 1.75oz butter, softened
- 50g / 1.75oz full-fat soft cheese
- 225g / 8oz icing sugar, sifted
- 1 tsp lemon juice
First things first, heat the oven to 180C / 350F / Gas 4 then lightly grease a 20cm / 8in square cake tin, lining the base with baking paper. Now this recipe makes almost a cake bar size so I think its worth doubling up on the cake ingredients to make a 2 layer cake. Its up to the baker though!
Sift the flour, salt (I’d say this is optional as I never use salt – thoughts?) and ground cinnamon into a large bowl then stir in the brown sugar. Add the eggs and oil then mix well. I actually mix this cake by hand rather than using an electric mixer or whisk. Next, add the grated carrot, desiccated coconut and chopped walnuts and mix these through.
Pour the mixture into the tin (or tins if you’ve decided to double up) and bake it in the oven for 20-25 minutes. Mine was in for 20 minutes but it depends on your oven! When its done it will be firm to the touch. Leave it to cool in the tin.
The next job is to make the icing. Beat together the icing ingredients until the mix is fluffy and creamy – the mixer did come in handy at this point as I usually end up getting icing sugar everywhere!
The recipe states that at this point the cake should be turned out and cut into slices before icing and decorating with walnut pieces. However I decided to cut mine in two and stack it so used half the icing in the middle and did the icing before it was sliced. There are no rules here though, you do with it as you wish!
I really like carrot cake – if you are worried you can’t hugely taste the carrot but it does keep the cake really nice and moist (for want of a better word!) The recipe is really simple and you don’t have the pressure of needing it to rise a lot…unless I’ve gone really wrong somewhere…