I’m breaking all my rules of trying to not use sugar and making this cake because frankly, I LOVE naughty carrot cake. (I promise to try making the non sugar version for a taste comparison at a later date)
I found this recipe in You Magazine from the Daily Mail when I was staying with my mum in Scotland. I changed a few items due to what she had in her cupboard. She doesn’t do much baking these days so I said I would make this cake so she could cut into quarters and freeze. Much nicer to give people home made cake when they come for a cup of tea and all she needs to do is take it out a few hours in advance and add a little icing. This cake actually tastes so delicious and moist it doesn’t even need any icing. It reminds me a little of a ginger cake, dense enough to give a satisfying ‘I ate cake’ feeling, but not so dense that you feel like you ate a lump of dough.
The best bit about this recipe is that you can shove it all in the food processor and then pour it into your pre-prepared tin.
400g carrots, peeled and roughly chopped
120g mixed nuts (I used almonds, brazil nuts and pecans)
175g brown sugar
110g caster sugar
225g plain flour
1 tsp baking powder
1 tsp bicarbonate of soda
2 tsp ground cinnamon
125ml vegetable oil
70g plain yoghurt
2 medium eggs
2 tsp vanilla extract
250g cream cheese (take out of fridge an hour before using)
50g plain yoghurt
1.5 tbls lemon juice or orange
lemon or orange zest for top
55g icing sugar
Turn on oven to 160 degrees and prepare a 22cm round or large square springboard tin. (Line with baking paper and grease with a little butter or oil)
Place the carrot and nuts and pulse till finely chopped. Then add both sugars, flour, baking powder, bicarbonate of soda, cinnamon, oil, yoghurt, vanilla and process till just combined. Then pour the mixture into your baking tin and place into the oven. After 45 minutes check and if still very wet put up to 180 for 10 minutes, then bring back to 160 for 5-10 more minutes and if you stick a skewer in to the middle and it comes out dry the cake is done. If a tiny bit sticky I would be inclined to take it out at this stage as the cake will keep cooking as you leave it in the tin to cool and I think it makes a tastier take but it is up to you if you prefer a more moist or fluffy cake.
For the icing, mix it all together with a hand held whisk or kitchen add till light and fluffy and cover the top of the cake once cooled and removed from the tin.
(no image of icing as this one was frozen and it is best to freeze your cake without icing)