Welcome to the first ever Cake Date blog. I thought it would be only fitting to share how my love of all things cake began.
I started making this carrot cake 10 years ago. I had just sold my Hairdressing salon, moved to Adelaide and decided to take the year off. What else was I going to do but bake? I baked everyday and while not everything I made was good, my carrot cake always came out well. The original recipe was from an old Good Taste magazine and while I really liked it, I knew it could be improved. So I began experimenting with different ingredients and adjusting the quantities until I felt it was "just perfect".
When the Adelaide Royal Show rolled around I decided to enter my carrot cake in the baking competition. A very brave move for someone who had never done any competitive cooking. I must have made at least 30 practice carrot cakes in the lead up. I was entering the Adelaide Royal Show to just participate, I wanted to win!
The day entries had to be submitted was very exciting. I remember taking my one little carrot cake and joining the line to hand in my cake. When I looked around, I realized that everyone else has multiple cakes to submit. They all had big boxes and stacked Tupperware containers full of cakes that look amazing and there I was with my one carrot cake. My heart sank- I had no idea the competition was that stiff. I submitted my entry and left feeling quite despondent.
The next day the Royal Show started and I went to see the results. There is the glass cabinet for the Carrot Cake class with a blue ribbon around it was my cake. I actually couldn't believe it at first. So I looked away and then took another look- my carrot cakehad come first. I was so happy I even cried. I was hooked. Competitive baking was my new thing. This carrot cake has also come first at the Perth Royal Show.
What I really love about this recipe is that it's super easy to make and you don't need any fancy equipment or ingredients. It's hold well under fondant and I have used it for fondant wedding cakes as well as tiered naked cakes. I hope you enjoy it as much as I do.
300g plain wholemeal flour
2tsp bi-carb soda
1 1/2 teaspoons ground cinnamon
1 1/2 tsp mixed spice
375g raw sugar
4 large eggs- lightly beaten
200ml grapeseed oil
1 tin crushed pineapple in juice-drained well
100g toasted roughly chopped walnut
400g peeled and grated carrot
Lightly grease and line the base of a 22cm cake tin. Sift flower, bi-card and spices into a large bowl, add sugar and mix well. Add eggs and oil and mix until well combined. Add pineapple, walnuts and grated carrot and mix well. Pour batter into prepared tin and bake at 150 degrees for 1 hour 15min or till a fine skewer inserted into the middle of the cake comes out clean. Leave to cool in pan.
To finish this cake I make a very simple cream cheese icing.
Whisk 250g of cream cheese with 80g of icing sugar, 1/2 tsp of vanilla bean paste and the zest of an orange, lemon or lime.