While this cake may look humble in today's world of elaborate drip cakes, butter-creamed towers and unicorn fantasy cakes, please believe me when I say this humble cake is like your best friend - it will never let you down and when it comes to taste and that fresh, home-baked goodness and satisfaction - you can only get it from a cake like this!
I have made this cake for high teas, birthday parties and as a dessert for my parties and everyone always comments on how moist and delish it is, which of course always make me happy.
This cake also brings up some fun memories for me as I remember the first time my friend scoffed at the idea of carrots in a cake, however when they tried it without knowing it was a carrot cake (sneaky me) they loved it! Yes that is how good this cake is! My Mum is also a huge fan of this cake because of the generous amount of walnuts, real cream cheese frosting and the moist, flavorsome crumb.
Yes, this cake has so much going for it, fresh walnuts, a healthy dose of carrots and pineapple, warming spices, luscious cream cheese frosting but best of all - IT IS A ONE BOWL CAKE! It doesn't require any special tools or gadgets, results in a wonderfully moist cake and tastes absolutely delicious! You can't go wrong with this cake and I promise you, if you serve it, the compliments will never stop!
The original recipe is from an old Women's Weekly Magazine that my fellow foodie sister www.goodparsiwife.com shared with me many years ago. With a recipe like this that is already amazing it is best not to get too experimental however sometimes I do add a touch more pineapple and I have made this cake with white spelt flour (which is healthier and easier to digest) in place of plain flour before. I also like to sprinkle a little extra cinnamon on top of my cream-cheese frosting, I feel it just adds that little something extra.
This recipe is generally fool-proof and will give you perfect results every time however there is one helpful tip I can share with you!
YOU WILL NEED
270g | 9.5 ounces peeled and grated carrots
180g | 6 ounces drained and crushed pineapple
280g | 9.8 ounces caster sugar
175ml | 6 ounces vegetable oil
2 eggs at room temperature
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
100g | 3.5 ounces chopped walnuts
200g | 7 ounces plain flour (or white spelt flour)
1½ teaspoon bicarbonate of soda
1 teaspoon ground cinnamon
½ teaspoon ground ginger
80g | 3 ounces cream cheese at room temperature
40g | 1.5 ounces unsalted butter (or lightly salted) at room temperature
½ a lime (lemon juice also works)
160g | 5.6 ounces sifted icing sugar
50g | 1.5 ounces walnuts (optional - for decoration and nut lovers!)
Extra ground cinnamon (optional)
1. Preheat your oven to 170°C/340°F.
2. Lightly grease and line your 21cm/8 inch baking tin or muffin pan and keep aside.
3. In a large bowl add grated carrot, crushed pineapple, caster sugar, vegetable oil, eggs and vanilla essence and the walnuts and stir until well combined.
4. Add the sifted flour and bicarbonate of soda, cinnamon and ginger and mix until nicely combined and pour the mixture into your prepared tin.
5. For a whole cake bake for 55-60 minutes. (Check after 50 mins and add more time as needed in 5 minute increments to ensure you do not overcook).
6. For cupcakes check after 20 minutes. (After 20 mins and add more time in 5 minute increments if needed).
7. Remove from oven and allow to cool.
8. Put cream cheese, butter, lime juice and icing sugar in a small mixing bowl and beat until very smooth.
9. Turn out cake onto your serving dish. Cover the top of your cake with the icing, and sprinkle on a little more cinnamon and some walnuts and serve.