Carrot Cake


I wanted to use up a surfeit of those cheap bags of “basics” carrots I found hiding in the bottom of my salad box. It seemed like such a good idea in the supermarket, what with everyone fighting over the reduced cabbages, the ubiquitous recession mentality rife in the fruit and veg aisles. Then you get home and all you really want is steak and chips.

There’s a great recipe in Delia’s Vegetarian Collection, but after a bit of research I found that the best “tried and tested” recipes seem to rate vegetable oil over butter and definitely golden syrup as well as sugar. I also added a drop of vanilla essence and a touch of nutmeg. I had some pecans that needed using up so threw those in too. It was perfect eaten straight from the oven with slices of cheddar. This will keep in an airtight container for a couple of days (if you can resist it for that long). Even a couple of days later it was still moist and crumbly.

  • 12½ oz carrots
  • 2 oz pecans
  • 4 oz self-raising wholemeal flour
  • 4 oz plain wholemeal flour
  • 2 teaspoons of cinnamon
  • 1 teaspoon ground ginger
  • ½ teaspoon nutmeg
  • 1 teaspoon bicarbonate of soda
  • 8 fl oz vegetable oil
  • 6 oz soft brown sugar
  • 4 free-range eggs
  • 2 tablespoons’ golden syrup

Ingredients for the topping

  • 7 oz cream cheese
  • 2 oz softened butter
  • 2 oz sifted icing sugar
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla essence

These quantities make a 9” round cake.

  • Start off by grating 12½ oz carrots and chopping 2 oz pecans (this is easier if you have a food processor).
  • Sieve the flours into a large mixing bowl along withthe cinnamon, ground ginger, nutmeg and bicarbonate of soda.
  • In a seperate bowl, whisk together the vegetable oil, soft brown sugar, eggs and golden syrup. (Heat the spoon first and the syrup should slide off more easily).
  • Add this to the dry ingredients and mix until smooth. Stir in the carrots and pecans.
  • Tip the mixture into a greased lined tin and cook at 160oC for an hour, or until cooked.
  • Combine the topping ingredients and leave at room temperature until the cake is ready.
  • Allow the cake to cool and then add the topping

This cake will keep for a few days in an airtight container.

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