Wednesday, August 19, 2009

Winter Indulgence

I've never liked carrots before. My mom used to juice them and force my sister R and I to drink it when we were younger. It's good for your eyesight she said..well, it didn't work. I've always thought they have a funny smell and taste.

Now I change my mind...when it comes to desserts, at least :D

It's winter in melb and I've been wanting to bake and eat(!) cakes that are earthy and warm. Last week, I made apple and cinnamon muffins. Today, I felt like making something earthy, something exotic, something I've never tried before. Pecans & maple...?dates & walnuts...?CARROTS & WALNUTS!

My cousin and her family just came in town and she referred me to Rachel Allen's Carrot Cake recipe. We both baked it and after worst enemy has become my best friend :)

The cake is moist, it's not too sweet and the spices smell so good ~ so here it is...

Rachel Allen's Carrot Cake
adapted from
(makes 2x20cmx2cm layers)

For the Cake
2 eggs
140ml vegetable oil

200g brown sugar

350g grated carrot (weight when grated)

100g raisins

100g walnuts, chopped

180g self-raising flour

Pinch of salt

½ tsp bicarbonate of soda

1 tsp ground cinnamon

½ tsp freshly grated nutmeg

1/2 tsp mixed spice

For the Orange Cream Cheese Icing
250g cream cheese (straight from the fridge)

50g butter, softened

1 tsp vanilla extract

250g icing sugar, sifted (can even be less)

Finely grated zest of 1 orange


  • Preheat the oven to 150ÂșC (300°F), butter 2 20cm springform pans.
  • Beat the eggs in a large bowl, then add the oil, brown sugar, grated carrot, raisins and chopped nuts.
  • Sift in the dry ingredients and bring the mixture together using a wooden or large metal spoon.
  • Pour the mixture into the prepared pans, smooth the surface and bake in the oven for 1 hour and 15 mins or until a skewer inserted into the middle comes out clean.
  • Allow to cool in the pans for about 5 minutes before removing. Cool completely on a wire rack before serving.
  • To make the icing, beat the cream cheese and butter together in a bowl until combined. Add the vanilla extract, icing sugar and finely grated orange zest and mix to combine. The icing should be smooth and quite thick.
  • To layer, using a palette knife, spread the icing evenly over one of the cooled cake. Top with the other and also spread icing evenly. Cut into slices to serve.


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