Yes orange carrot cake , fruit and vegetable, right? Sounds healthy enough. But calories are there, coz all cakes have got their sugar, oil or butter and flour – no denying the fact that cakes are not really for your health, rather for your indulgence. But in small quantities, who says you can’t enjoy them once in a while?
The real reason why I baked this cake today, was to have some midnight snacks to accompany our world cup matches. Orange and carrot should give us enough ‘vitamins’ to refuel us through the night. If I have to stay up late, I confess I need the sugar.
It is a recipe from BBC Good Food, Mary Cadogan – being not a carrot cake fan, I like her version better as the cake was moist and light, rather than dense with too much of spice, nuts, raisins, pineapples, coconut.
- 175g light muscovado sugar
- 175ml sunflower oil (organic if available)
- 3 large eggs , lightly beaten
- 140g grated carrots (about 3 medium) – Organic if possible, why? Check this link
- 100g raisins or craisins (dried cranberries)
- grated zest of 1 large orange (organic or skin is not being treated with pesticides/preservatives, otherwise vigorous scrubbing may have to do)
- 175g self-raising flour (unbleached self raising flour would be best)
- 1 tsp bicarbonate of soda
- 1 tsp ground cinnamon
- ½ tsp grated nutmeg (freshly grated will give you the best flavour)
FOR THE FROSTING
- 150g icing sugar
- 2-3 tbsp orange juice
1. Preheat the oven to 180C/Gas 4/fan 160C. Oil and line the base and sides of an 18cm square cake tin with baking parchment. The easiest way to do this is to cut two long strips the width of the tin and put each strip crossways, covering the base and sides of the tin, with a double layer in the base.
2. Tip the sugar into a large mixing bowl, pour in the oil and add the eggs. Lightly mix with a wooden spoon. Stir in the grated carrots, raisins and orange rind.
3. Mix the flour, bicarbonate of soda and spices, then sift into the bowl. Lightly mix all the ingredients – when everything is evenly amalgamated stop mixing. The mixture will be fairly soft and almost runny.
4. Pour the mixture into the prepared tin and bake for 40- 45 minutes, until it feels firm and springy when you press it in the centre. Cool in the tin for 5 minutes, then turn it out, peel off the paper and cool on a wire rack. (You can freeze the cake at this point.)
5. Beat together the frosting ingredients in a small bowl until smooth – you want the icing about as runny as single cream. Set the cake on a serving plate and boldly drizzle the icing back and forth in diagonal lines over the top, letting it drip down the sides.