Carrot Cake

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This is one of those classic cakes that can disappear for a year or two, but I would always welcome back a slice from time to time with an afternoon coffee, or even for breakfast. This recipe is my friend Anette’s. Every time she makes it people ask her for the recipe... so I did too.

Ingredients

  • 4 eggs, lightly beaten
  • 250 g (2 cups) caster (superfine) sugar
  • 185 ml (¾ cup) sunflower or light olive oil
  • 300 g ( cups) cake flour or plain (all-purpose) flour
  • ¾ teaspoon salt
  • 2 teaspoons baking powder
  • 1 teaspoon bicarbonate of soda
  • 2 teaspoons ground cinnamon
  • 400 g (14 oz) carrots, peeled and grated
  • 55 g (½ cup) chopped walnuts

Icing

  • 180 g (6 oz) butter, softened
  • 250 g (2 cups) icing (confectioners’) sugar
  • 180 g (6 oz) cream cheese
  • 3 drops vanilla extract

Method

Preheat your oven to 180°C (350°F/Gas 4). Grease and flour a 24 cm ( inch) bundt pan or springform cake tin.

Whip together the eggs and sugar until creamy, then whisk in the oil. Sift together the flour, salt, baking powder, bicarbonate of soda and cinnamon. Add to the egg mixture and whisk to combine. Add the carrots and walnuts and mix through quickly with an electric mixer to make sure it is all properly combined. Scrape out the batter into the tin. Bake for about an hour, or until a skewer inserted into the centre comes out clean. The cake should have risen up impressively high. Cool a little before turning out onto a plate.

While the cake is baking, make the icing. Whip together the butter and icing sugar, mashing it together at first with a wooden spoon and then whisking until it is stiff. Quickly beat in the cream cheese and vanilla to just combine.

When the cake is cool, spread the icing over the top and side with a spatula (you don’t need to spread it too smoothly, it looks better in peaks).

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