Thomas' Carroty Cake

When Thomas was just three years old, he told me this was his favourite cake. He loves to make it with me, and always ensures there is a thick layer of cream cheese icing in the middle and on top. 

Serves 6-8
Easy

Ingredients

250 g light soft brown sugar
250 ml sunflower or vegetable oil
3 large eggs, lightly beaten
2 tsp vanilla extract
250 g self-raising flour
1 tsp baking powder
½ tsp salt
1 tsp mixed spice
1 tsp vanilla extract
1–2 tsp grated orange zest
300 g carrots, peeled and coarsely grated
100 g sultanas
75 g walnut pieces (optional – Thomas would not allow these in his cake)
For the cream cheese icing:
150 g full-fat cream cheese
40 g unsalted butter, softened
1 tbsp orange juice
1 tsp vanilla extract
500 g icing sugar

Essential kit

You will need two 20-cm loosebottomed cake tins and a food processor or electric hand-held whisk.

Instructions

1 Preheat the oven to 170°C (325°F/Gas 3). Line two 20-cm loosebottomed cake tins with cake tin liners or use non-stick baking paper.

2 Put all the ingredients for the cake in the bowl of an electric mixer and mix until well combined, although Thomas mixes this in a large bowl with a wooden spoon.

3 Scrape the mixture into the prepared tins and bake in the preheated oven for 20–25 minutes until golden and firm yet springy to the touch.

4 Prepare the cream cheese icing. Put the cream cheese, butter, orange juice and vanilla into a bowl with half the icing sugar and beat well with an electric hand-held whisk; alternatively whizz in a food processor. Add the remaining icing sugar and whisk or whizz until smooth and fluffy – this will take about 3 minutes.

5 Remove the cakes from the oven and allow to cool before sandwiching together with the icing

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