When the rain is lashing down against the window, it’s cold outside, and not long until it gets dark again, I just want to hibernate indoors. It’s crazy really, as I am spending practically every waking hour at my laptop working on my books. I should be relishing the chance to get out at the weekend. But now it’s autumn, I don’t. I want to stay in and do some therapeutic baking. This is a favourite cake to make, and is very well received by everyone I’ve made it for.
A very good carrot cake
Makes 1 x 8″ cake
For the cake:
- 150g butter, melted
- 150g soft light brown sugar
- 3 large, free-range eggs
- 200g self-raising flour
- 1 tsp bicarbonate of soda
- Pinch of sea salt
- 1 tsp ground cinnamon
- 1 tsp mixed spice
- Zest of 1 large orange
- 100g sultanas
- 200g carrots, peeled and grated
- 100g pecans
For the icing:
- 70g full-fat cream cheese (I use Philadelphia)
- 150g icing sugar, sifted
- 25g butter
- Zest of one orange
1) Preheat the oven to 180C fan. Grease and line an 8” round springform tin
2) Put the melted butter, sugar and eggs into the Kitchen Aid and whisk well until pale and bubbly
3) Sift together the flour, bicarb, salt and spices and then mix in to the wet mixture.
4) Fold in the remaining ingredients and pour the mixture into the tin. Bake for about 40-45 minutes until a cocktail inserted into the middle comes out clean. Cool in the tin for 20 minutes, before turning out onto a wire rack to cool fully.
5) Meanwhile, beat together the icing ingredients using the whisk attachment on the Kitchen Aid. When the cakes are completely cold, top one with half the icing, and place the other cake on top. Ice the top of the second cake, and scatter over the orange zest.
6) Serve a generous wedge of cake with a steaming hot cup of tea whilst browsing the Sunday supplements.