Carrot cake is the kind of treat that is a favourite all year round. You can pretend it’s good for you because it contains a lot of carrots, but really it is way too tasty to be that healthy! I love this recipe because it’s fluffy, decadent and moist, and the raisins and walnuts add texture and flavour so that you absolutely wal-nut be able to resist this!
- Unsalted butter, for greasing
- 275g plain flour
- 2 tsp baking powder
- 3 1/2 tsp ground cinnamon
- 2 1/2 tsp ground ginger
- 1/4 tsp ground cloves
- Grated zest of 1 medium orange
- 310ml vegetable oil
- 425g light muscovado sugar
- ¼ tsp salt
- 1 tsp vanilla extract
- 255g shelled eggs (about 5 medium)
- 320g grated carrot
- 70g raisins
- 105g toasted walnuts, chopped
- 115g salted butter, at room temperature, chopped
- 600g icing sugar
- 300g whole cream cheese
Preheat the oven to 170°C. Grease 3 x 18-cm cake tins, and line the bases with baking paper.
Mix the flour, baking powder, cinnamon, ginger, cloves and orange zest together in a bowl.
Add the oil, muscovado sugar, salt and vanilla to a stand mixer (or use a handheld electric whisk) fitted with a balloon whisk attachment and mix on high speed until there are no sugar lumps left. Add the eggs, one by one, beating well after each addition. With the mixer on low, add the dry ingredients to the wet, adding a third at a time.
Fold in the carrot, raisins and walnuts by hand, then pour the batter into the prepared cake tins. Bake for 35–40 minutes until a knife inserted into the centre of the cake comes out clean and the cakes have shrunk away from the edges of the tins slightly.
When the cakes are baked, leave them to cool in the tins for 5 minutes, then run a knife around the edges and turn out onto racks. Peel off the baking paper and leave to cool.
Meanwhile, make the cream cheese frosting. Place the butter in a stand mixer (or use a handheld electric whisk) fitted with a balloon whisk attachment and beat until smooth and softened. Add half the icing sugar and beat until combined. Add the cream cheese and the rest of the sugar and whisk until combined. Don’t overmix, or the frosting will become too soft. Transfer to a large piping bag and cut a large tip.
Make sure the cakes are cool before assembling. In between each cake layer, pipe the frosting. Continue until you have 2 layers of frosting and have placed the third cake layer on top. Pipe the frosting on top of the cake. Cover the sides with more frosting, or leave them naked, depending on how you are planning to decorate this cake. Chill in the fridge, or freezer if you’re in a rush.
From Baking with Kim-Joy (Quadrille, £18.99) Photography © Ellis Parrinder