Carrot Cake

Carrot Cake

I have one week until I break up for my Easter break so I’m getting all Easter-y! I love baking for holidays and occasions such as Valentine’s Day and Christmas, Easter is no exception!

One of my all time favourite things to bake around Easter is, obviously, chocolate mini egg nests! Hopefully I’ll be able to post a recipe for them soon and they’re dead easy and student-friendly for those with very little baking equipment.

But for now, I’m focussing on Carrot Cake. Why is that Easter-y you say? Well…

Easter = Easter bunny = carrots = carrot cake, duh!

I adore carrot cake because it’s so unique in both flavour and ingredients! I know many people are put off carrot cake purely by the sound of “carrot”. I agree, putting carrot in a cake is as weird as putting pineapple on a pizza – but it works! I am yet to convert my boyfriend to carrot cake but I’m working on it…

Carrot cake is also very versatile. It’s one of those cakes that can take the form of cupcakes, sandwich cake or tray bake without any changes to the recipe other than scaling up or down on the ingredients! For my recipe I’ve used a 3 egg mixture. If you fancy making cupcakes scale everything down to a 2 egg mixture or if you fancy making a sandwich cake, simply double up!

Traditionally, carrot cake has raisins or sultanas in and walnuts too. I haven’t included these in mine because I don’t like raisins/sultanas, and I didn’t want to include any nuts because I baked these for our fortnightly Baking Society “Bring a Bake” meeting and some people might have been allergic! But if you fancy it, chuck a few of them in or decorate the top with walnuts!

MAKES: 16 scrummy pieces

ESSENTIAL EQUIPMENT:

Cheese grater

Large mixing bowl

20cm Square baking tin

Zester (optional)

INGREDIENTS:

For the sponge:

170g Light, soft brown sugar

170ml Vegetable oil

3 Beaten eggs

3 Medium-sized carrots, grated

Zest of 1 orange or 3 satsumas/clementines/tangerines (optional)

170g Self raising flour

1 tsp Baking powder

1 tsp Ground cinnamon

1 tsp Mixed spice

For the frosting:

70g Softened butter

200g Cream cheese

70g Icing sugar

1 tsp Vanilla essence

Decorative carrots (mine are from Lakeland)

METHOD:

Preheat the oven to 180 degrees and line the baking tin with greaseproof/baking paper

For the sponge:

  1. Mix the sugar, eggs and oil together in a mixing bowl with a wooden spoon
  2. Add the grated carrot and stir to combine
  3. Sift in the flour, baking power and spices, use the wooden spoon to mix everything together but do not beat the mixture – stop when everything is amalgamated
  4. Pour the mixture into the baking tin
  5. Bake for 40-45 minutes or until a knife comes out clean when pushed into the middle
  6. Remove from the oven and let cool in the tin until it is touchable (be careful not to burn yourself – obvs)
  7. Remove from the tin onto a wire rack or plate

For the frosting:

  1. Using a wooden spoon, beat the butter in a mixing bowl until even softer
  2. Add the cream cheese and stir to combine (be careful not to stir too much or the frosting will be too runny!)
  3. Sift in the icing sugar, add the vanilla essence and mix gently until it’s all incorporated
  4. Spread on top of the cooled cake
  5. Cut into 16 squares
  6. Add a decorative carrot to each square

Scum-diddley-dumptious! And just like that you get a delicious cake for £3.87! I don’t know about you, but I think this recipe is dead easy – you just bung everything in and mix! The benefit of this is that if you’re craving cake – you get it so much quicker!

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