This recipe is the absolute best (even if I do say so myself) and it probably can count as one of your 5-a-day. Winning.
Adapted from the Hummingbird Bakery Cook Book, a recipe which 3 separate people told me about. A girl I spent 4 weeks travelling around Asia with (a former chalet chef) told me she liked to add orange to the icing. As soon as I got back to the UK I tried this out and OH MY GOD it tasted amazing.
If you want a fail safe recipe that your family/friends/co-workers will love and that will become a firm favourite, continue reading…..
300g soft light brown sugar
300ml sunflower oil
300g plain flour
1tsp bicarbonate of soda
1tsp baking powder
1tsp ground cinnamon (plus extra to decorate)
1/2tsp ground ginger
1tsp vanilla extract
300g carrots, grated
A few shelled walnuts to decorate
For The Cream Cheese Icing:
450g icing sugar, sifted
190g cream cheese
Zest and juice of one large orange
Preheat the oven to 170ºC and line two 20cm round cake tins.
Mix the sugar, eggs and oil together (I use an electrical hand whisk) until well incorporated (it doesn’t have to be mixed for very long) then, gradually add the flour, baking powder, bicarbonate of soda, cinnamon, ginger, salt and vanilla extract. Mix and then finally add the grated carrots. The cake batter is ready (it’s so easy and fail proof!).
Pour the mixture into the prepared tins, bake in the oven 170ºC for 20-25 minutes until the cake springs back when touched/ you can insert a skewer and it comes out clean. Allow to cool before icing.
While the cake is cooking you can prepare the icing: beat the butter and cream cheese together with the orange zest, juice and icing sugar until it forms a smooth mixture.
When the cakes are cold, place one on a cake stand and spread about a third of the icing over it and place the second cake on top. Use the remaining icing on the top of the second cake and decorate with walnuts, cinnamon and some spare orange zest. I sometimes like to make mini fondant icing carrots to decorate too. And finally, cut a slice and enjoy!