April 15, 2012

bake off.

mother nature is teasing us with what feels like autumn in the evenings but still sharing a taste of awkward (uncomfortable, annoying, you name it) humidity during the day. talk of spending my sunday afternoon baking turned to me thinking it would be a good idea to whip up something autumny with a hint of spice, perhaps a gingerbread loaf? i was soon outnumbered (thanks to our visitor for a few days) and so carrot cake it was. not just any carrot cake however, a much loved women's weekly recipe. i felt a little bit of pressure as baking is totally my thing but baking a good quality, well baked, tasty cake in my very old but new to me gas oven, now that's a different thing altogether. will it sink, will it be too wet in the middle, too dry too blah too not yummy?! oh the pressure. the idea that our afternoon visitors would be subjected to my cake effort made the weight on my shoulders even heavier. yes, i'm still talking about baking cakes here, stay with me. after careful watching, temperature moderation, some sweet whispers and a whooolllee lot of lemon cream icing, i can safely say (alongside my fellow taste testers) that this was THE best cake i have EVER made. i added a little extra carrot and mixed spice to make up for excluding the nuts and raisins (my roomie is allergic to nuts and really, raisins?) ta da!...a super delicious spicy autumn treat that should be devoured amongst the company of good friends alongside a pot of champagne praline tea (hit up your local tea centre for this god send.) it's one of the easiest recipes to follow and the kitchenaid was whipped out for the occasion even though this recipe was a breeze. prettiness makes for perfection in my books so do as you wish with the walnuts and raisins but make sure you tell me/show me your efforts. enjoy lovelies, i'm off to sample another slither (slab) myself. sweet dreams!

carrot cake.

1 cup oil
1 1/3 cups of brown sugar
3 eggs
3 cups of coarsely grated carrot
1 cup of chopped walnuts or pecans
1/2 cup chopped raisins
2 1/2 cups of self raising flour
1/2 tsp bicarb soda
2 tsp mixed spice


30g butter
80g cream cheese, softened
1 tsp grated lemon rind
1 tbsp lemon juice
1 1/2 cups icing sugar

kitchenaid optional but a darn good excuse to make your work bench pretty in the process.

beat oil, sugar, and eggs in a bowl with an electric mixer/kitchenaid until thick and creamy.

add grated carrot, nuts and raisins and stir.

sift in the dry ingredients.

use a spatula to combine ingredients well.

pour mixture into the prepared pan (loaf or round tin that is greased and lined with baking paper) and bake in a moderate (180 deg) oven for 45 mins. It says to bake for a further 45 mins after covering with foil but i kept an eye on mine for around 25 mins at 180 deg and then lowered the temp to 140 deg for the remaining 10-15mins or so. it depends greatly on your oven so give it a whirl whilst keeping an eye on it. it's a labour of love this baking thing.

stand on a wire rack to cool and top the cake with cream cheese frosting. beat butter, cream cheese, lemon rind and juice in a small bowl with electric mixer, beat until light and fluffy; gradually beat in sifted icing sugar.

not suitable for the microwave but can be frozen. store in an airtight container if there is any left over and enjoy!


Trudy Florence said...

YUM! I had chocolate banana cake this afternoon with cream cheese icing that was amazing and then read this. You have got me wanting to bake more!

Anonymous said...

Oh yum!! Carrot cake is my all time favourite yet I have not found a recipe that does it justice. Will definitely be trying this one :)

green tea and red nails said...

oh this looks super yum! i do love a good carrot cake - might have to give this a try xx

p.s - are you rummaging in may?

Anne@A Little Fur in the Paint said...

Beautiful! Lovely blog! I have just discovered you, and I'm a new follower!
Anne ♥

Katyha said...

I haven't had carrot cake in the longest time...might have to try this recipe very soon ;)

and Sydney's weather is about the same minus the humidity. It is wonderful during the day but so chilly at night, perfect for having a little fire and toasting marshmallows or snuggling up.

Hope you have been well xx

Kerryn said...

Cupcake, I had the same issuse with the gas oven in my new place! After a lot of playing around though I made cakes that were as good as my Nanna's. I think that carrot cake might need to get replicated and be brought along to work ;)

florence said...

looks great, and i trust you tastes delicious too. i love carrot cake but had never been recommended a recipe, so i must try it. but i will follow your advice about extra carrots as i have 2 kids who are allergic to nuts, and... i too am allergic to raisins!! well, sensitive to them. it's the sulfur in them. you can now tell your roomie there's another strange one out there! x

Bungalowgirl said...

Yum yumo yum. Will report back if i can get my kids to eat this one! melx