English Carrot Cake

Recipe adapted from <Joy of Baking> at http://www.joyofbaking.com

Ingredients :
300g sugar
4 large eggs 
240 ml melted butter 
2 tsps pure vanilla extract 
260g all purpose flour 
1 tsp baking soda
1 1/2 tsp baking powder
1/2 tsp salt
1 1/2 tsp ground cinnamon
100g walnuts
340g raw carrots (coasely grated)
100g mixed fruits/raisins 
Cream Cheese Frosting 
57g unsalted butter, softened
227g cream cheese, softened
230g icing sugar, sifted
1 tsp pure vanilla extract
Garnish (Optional) 
Marzipan carrots 


Method :

1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees F (180 degrees C) and place rack in center of oven. Butter or spray two – 9 x 2 inch (23 x 5 cm) cake pans and line the bottoms of the pans with a circle of parchment paper.  

2. Toast the walnuts for about 8 minutes or until lightly browned and fragrant. Let cool and then chop coarsely. Peel and finely grate the carrots. Set aside.
3. In a separate bowl whisk together the flour, baking soda, baking powder, salt, and ground cinnamon. Set aside.
4. In bowl of electric mixer, beat the eggs until frothy (about 1 minute). Gradually add the sugar and beat until the batter is thick and light colored (about 3 – 4 minutes). Add the oil/melted butter in a steady stream and then beat in the vanilla extract. Add the flour mixture and beat just until incorporated. 
5. Fold in the grated carrots, chopped nuts and raisins. Evenly divide the batter between the two prepared pans and bake 25 to 30 minutes or until a toothpick inserted in the center comes out clean.   
6. Remove from oven and let cool on a wire rack. After about 5 -10 minutes invert the cakes onto the wire rack, remove the pans and parchment paper, and then cool completely before frosting.  
7. To assemble: place one cake layer, top side down, onto your serving plate. Spread with about one third of the frosting. Gently place the other cake, top of cake facing down, onto the frosting, and spread the rest of the frosting over the top and sides of the cake. Decorate the top of the cake with marzipan carrot (I used sugar candy carrots instead!)
Cream Cheese Frosting: In bowl of electric mixer, beat the cream cheese and butter, on low speed, just until blended with no lumps. Gradually add the sifted powdered sugar and beat, on low speed, until fully incorporated and smooth.  Beat in the vanilla extract.
Note : This is the standard recipe adapted from the website. However, I divide the cake recipe into half and had it made in two 7-inches cake tins for 2 layers. However, the cream cheese frosting quantity remains the same as half of it seems too little for me and the standard quantity is just nice for additional piping on the cake.

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