What a shame that a slice of this carrot cake does not count as one of your five-a-day portions.
A generous hand with the spices gives the cake added zip. You can also throw in a handful of walnuts, but as it already stuffed with good things, I think I would draw the line at that.
300g finely grated carrots (measured after grating)
100g ground almonds
100g dessicated coconut
3 large eggs
200g dark, molasses sugar
100ml vegetable oil
100ml orange juice
1 tsp vanilla extract
300g plain flour
2 tsp bicarbonate of soda
1 tsp baking powder
2 heaped tsp ground cinnamon
2 heaped tsp ground ginger
1 heaped tsp ground allspice
Pinch of salt
for the Cream Cheese Frosting
125g unsalted butter, softened
175 cream cheese
450g icing sugar
Zest from 1 orange
● Pre-heat the oven to 180°C. Grease and flour two 20cm sandwich tins (with loose-bottoms).
● Place the carrots, raisins, almonds and coconut in a large mixing bowl. Set aside.
● Beat together the eggs and sugar.
● Stir in the oil, orange juice, buttermilk and vanilla extract.
● Sift the dry ingredients together and combine with the egg mixture.
● Mix this with the carrots and combine well so it makes a thick batter (use a large wooden spoon).
● Divide the batter between the two tins (the batter should fill about two-thirds of each tin).
● Bake for 30 minutes or until the top of each cake feels springy and an inserted skewer comes out cleanly.
● Cool for 10 minutes in the tin before turning out onto a wire rack.
● Beat the frosting ingredients well with an electric hand-mixer until thoroughly combined and the icing is smooth.
● When the cakes are cold, spread the frosting over one, sandwich with the other and cover the top with more icing. If wished, decorate with orange zest, cinnamon or marzipan carrots.