Delicious recipe for a superb carrot cake. It’s moist and flavoursome with a scrummy vanilla cream icing.
And it’s made of carrots. Which means that eating this to-die-for cake actually counts as one of your five a day. Kind of.
This yummy carrot cake recipe is dedicated to my old schoolfriend Tristan. Tristan has decided to spend the whole of this year attempting to complete a series of 100 ‘challenges’ to raise money for Depression Alliance. The challenges include all sorts of interesting, difficult or downright bizarre things, and have been set by various friends and also by Tristan himself. Some of these are simple, for example Challenge #72 – ‘Eat an Orange’ (which he has never done, weirdly enough). But some of them are going to be really hard to accomplish, such as challenge #77 – ‘Meet David Beckham’. Tristan is keeping track of his progress on all of the challenges on his website, with photo or video proof of each one he completes. Some of them aren’t really appropriate to mention in a food blog, as they could certainly make you lose your appetite (#38, #33, #36 being prime examples), but in the spirit of gaining a rounded experience, Tristan has included several challenges which have a culinary aspect.
I said that I would offer some advice for challenge #22- to bake a cake and deliver it to a presenter on Sky Sports News. Not being much of a baker (combined with not knowing any Sky Sports News presenters) could prove to be an impediment to Tristan’s successful completion of this challenge. So what he needs is a delicious cake recipe that is easy to do and fairly fail-proof. (Sorry mate!)
I have made this tasty carrot cake countless times, and it always proves a big hit with everyone who has tried it. I have even converted quite a lot of French people (for whom the idea of putting a vegetable into a cake is laughable) to this excellent carrot cake recipe. It is pretty hard to mess up, which is why I feel it is the perfect choice for Tristan to attempt! (Again- sorry mate!) It tastes divine- the spicy cinnamon flavour blending perfectly with the creaminess of the vanilla icing.
So please show your support for Tristan’s laudable charity effort by helping him reach his £10,000 target for Depression Alliance. Or at the very least, have a look on his website for an entertaining account of his Twenty Twelve Century of Challenges.
The winning recipe for the best carrot cake in the world
Sadly I don’t have a picture of my own cake because I haven’t made it again today specially to write this post (the household cake ban is still in force in an attempt to squeeze into a bikini some time soon). However, if you do it right, it should end up looking something like this….
For the cake
290 ml vegetable oil
450 grams white sugar
2 teaspoons vanilla extract
290 grams plain white flour
2 teaspoons baking soda
2 teaspoons baking powder
1/2 teaspoon salt
2.5 teaspoons ground cinnamon
400 grams peeled and grated carrot (I peel them and then put them through the grating blade of my magimix for ease, but you can do it by hand)
For the icing
100g soft cream cheese (e.g Philadelphia)
220g icing sugar
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
2 x non stick cake tins (I think the ones I usually use are about 22cm in diameter)
- Preheat oven to 175 degrees C. Lightly grease the inside of the tins with butter, and cut a round of baking paper to line the bottom of each one.
- In a large bowl or electric mixer, beat together the eggs, oil, white sugar and 2 teaspoons of vanilla. Mix in the flour, baking soda, baking powder, salt and cinnamon. Stir in the carrots. Pour the mixture into the two tins, dividing it equally.
- Bake in the preheated oven for 40 to 50 minutes, or until a toothpick inserted into the center of the cake comes out clean. Let the cakes cool in the pan for 10 minutes, then turn them out onto a wire rack to cool completely.
- To make the icing: In a medium bowl, combine the butter, cream cheese, icing sugar and 1 teaspoon vanilla. Beat until the mixture is smooth and creamy.
- Put one cake onto a plate and cover the top of it with icing. Put the other cake on top and ice the top.