On a miserable, rainy Sunday afternoon there is nothing I love better than keeping cosy indoors, and one of my favourite things to do on such afternoons is bake. I was recently challenged by BakingMad.com to recreate one of the recipes from the site. I deliberated over finding the perfect cake recipe and decided on the 'Best Carrot Cake'. I absolutely love carrot cake, especially at this time of the year. As the recipe makes two loaves, I decided to change it up a little and make one loaf and 12 carrot cake cupcakes! There's a brilliant video on Baking Mad which demonstrates how to make cupcakes, which really helped.
To make this carrot cake, you will need:
350g Light Muscovado Sugar
400ml Ground Nut Oil
400g Self Raising White Flour
400g Grated Carrot
200g Chopped Walnuts
For the cream cheese frosting you will need:
250g Unsalted Butter
100g Cream Cheese
600g Golden Icing Sugar
The recipe is very straightforward to follow:
1. Preheat the oven to 150C or Gas Mark 2 and grease 2 regular loaf tins with butter and baking paper (I only lined one and filled a muffin tin with cupcake cases)
2. Add the sugar, eggs and oil to a bowl and whisk until combined. Mix the carrots into the mixture with the walnuts and sultanas.
3. In a separate bowl sieve the flour, cinnamon and nutmeg. Fold the flour into the egg mixture until combined.
4. Pour the mixture into the loaf tin(s) and bake for 40-45. Halfway through cooking, use a sharp knife to cut lengthways along the top of the loaf to create a dome like effect. Once cooked, remove from tins and allow to cool on a wire rack,
5. For the frosting, cream together the butter and cream cheese. Add in the icing sugar and pop into the fridge to firm up.
6. When firm take a palette knife, and holding the loaf in your hands, spread the frosting on, starting at the side and then piling high on top. Smooth over the frosting for an even finish.
My loaf ended up taking about an hour to cook - to ensure it's cooked, stick a cocktail stick through the middle of the loaf and when it comes out clear, the cake is cooked through. For the cupcakes, I baked them in the oven for 25 minutes - they will feel a little 'spongey' to the touch but this is normal. I beat my cream cheese icing together for several minutes to make sure it's extremely light and creamy.
As a cupcake, this recipe is extremely light where as it's a little denser as a loaf. The cake is filled with sultanas and walnuts, giving the cake texture however, you could easily omit either of these according to your tastes. Also, for the cupcakes, I decorated them with a walnut and a sprinkling of cinnamon.
There are lots of new recipes I want to try from Baking Mad - their chocolate brownie recipe looks delicious!
Lots of Love