Last weekend I decided to make a carrot cake and it was more than 10 years since I made one so I don’t know my ingredients but thanks to the internet I can easily search for the ingredients that I needed. I checked some posts that came in the first page of Google search but was not convinced as some look so sweet and others look to dry, I just took note of the amount of flour, carrots and amount of wet ingredients on those posts and that will serve as the base of my recipe. Initially I was a afraid of making my own recipe as baking is not like cooking where you can adjust as you cook, once it’s in the oven then that’s it but for the love of food I told myself I have to do it and create something suited for me. So after two hours and some adjustments with the time needed for it to cook I had made the best carrot cake I ever tried, its moist inside, with crisp sides and crust, not too sweet combined with a great nutty and fruity taste. It was so good the cake did not last 24 hours and it’s just three of us in the household, so now I am sharing this to you, it still not late to make this for Christmas.
Now before we go with the ingredients lets learn about this cakes history. Carrots since the medieval period have been used in sweet cakes as an alternative to sweeteners which was scarce and expensive during that time. Though it was used in some pastries before it was in Gothenburg, Sweden where the real first carrot cake was created, the cake that closely resembles the modern version. It was then popularized in Britain due to the food rationing in World War II. Then in the 1960′s it became commercially available in the United States, it easily became a favourite. It became really popular, in fact it was also one of the top 5 fad food during the 1970′s.
Ingredients (Carrot Cake)
3 cups carrots, grated
1 cup walnuts, chopped
1 cup raisins
2 cups flour
1 1/4 cups butter, melted
1 1/2 cups brown sugar
2 tsp vanilla extract
2 tsp baking soda
2 tsp baking powder
1/2 teaspoon salt
2 tsp ground cinnamon
Ingredients (Cream Cheese Icing)
1/4 cup butter, melted
1 packet cream cheese, softened
2/3 cup confectioners’ sugar
1. Preheat oven to 180C.
2. Grease a 9 inch diameter cake pan.
3. In a bowl mix together eggs, butter, brown sugar and vanilla.
4. In a separate bowl, mix together flour, cinnamon, baking soda, baking powder and salt.
5. Mix together dry and wet mixture then once it has an even consistency add carrots, walnuts and raisins.
6. Pour into the baking pan then bake for 1 to 1.5 hrs. or when the middle part is already cooked. On the first hour try to check the middle part with a skewer, it should come out dry, if not try checking every 10 minutes. Once it comes out clean then remove the cake from the oven.
7. Once cooked let it cool before applying your icing.
8. To make the icing just mix all of the Cream Cheese Icing ingredients except for the lemon zest in a bowl and using a hand mixer beat until mixture is smooth. I used 2/3 cup but you can adjust the sweetness to your liking by adding 1/3 cup at a time. Note I used less compared to what I saw online and I liked the flavour well, it’s a good contrast to the sweet taste of the carrot cake and saltiness of the cream cheese.
9. Coat the carrot cake with the icing then top it with pumpkin seeds and dried apricots.