I love carrot cake. I can kid myself it's semi-healthy (300 grams of carrot surely counts as 1 of your 5 a day, right? RIGHT?), it always works and is sure to impress. It's perfect if you never baked a cake before, absolutely foolproof. Oh, and did I mention it's delicious? Not too sweet, moist, covered with a delicate and soft cream cheese frosting. Ah. So if you want to: impress your other half / get oohs and aaahs from people in your office / surprise someone for their birthday / feel like a smug little baker (tick appropriate option) make this cake. Ok. Thanks.
The recipe comes from my trusted source. I use a standard spring form tin with removable bottom and use 1.5 quantities of ingredients for a cake that can be cut in half and sandwiched with frosting. I double the frosting ingredients because, well, you can never have too much of cream cheese goodness. The cake itself can be made the day before, cooled and stored in the fridge. It also keeps amazingly well for a couple of days and doesn't dry out. It's a cake that keeps on giving. Ok, I'll shut up now, you get it, it's an awesome cake.
For the cake:
450 g plain flour
3 tsp cinnamon
1 1/2 tsp baking powder
1 tsp bicarbonate of soda
300 g soft brown sugar
375 ml oil (I use vegetable oil)
300 g carrots, finely grated
For the frosting:
250 g butter at room temperature
100 g icing sugar, sifted
500 g cream cheese (I always use full fat Philadelphia)
a few pecans for decoration
Preheat your oven to 150 C/ 130 C fan and line the bottom of the springform tin with baking parchment.
Sift flour, baking powder, bicarb, sugar and cinnamon into a big mixing bowl and stir to mix everything together.
Whisk eggs with oil, then add zest of lemon and two oranges.
Add grated carrots to the oil and egg mix and stir.
Add the wet mix to flour, sugar and cinnamon then fold through with a spoon or spatula until all the flour is incorporated.
Leave the cake to cool and make the frosting. Combine sugar and butter in a mixing bowl, beat with electric mixer until all the sugar is incorporated, then add cream cheese and whisk for a few more minutes until the frosting is smooth and well mixed.
Once the cake is cooled, cut it in half and sandwich with half the frosting. Spread the rest of the frosting on top, smooth with a knife and decorate with pecans.
Devour your slice and don't share :)
Apologies for the atrocious quality of the last picture - the cake was a leaving do present for my friend from work and the pics were taken with a phone.