THE MOST PER­FECT CAR­ROT CAKE

The cake can be left as is, or topped with nuts, seeds or co­conut. I have used a caramel driz­zle all over the frost­ing and then topped with french vanilla sug­ared al­monds, chopped toasted wal­nuts, se­same seeds, and toasted shred­ded co­conut. Yum!

Say Yes To Adventure - - Fea­tures - RECIPE: Ash­leigh McMil­lan IM­AGE: Hol­lie Wood­house

Ash­leigh McMil­lan

2 cups brown sugar

4 eggs

1 cup whole­meal flour

1 cup plain / all-pur­pose flour 1 cup canola oil

½ tsp salt

2 tsp cin­na­mon

1 tsp mixed spice

1 tsp ground ginger

3 cups grated car­rot (about 3 medium car­rots)

2 tsp bak­ing soda

1 tbsp or­ange juice

Cream Cheese Frost­ing

250g room tem­per­a­ture but­ter

250g cream cheese (I find Philadel­phia works the best)

2 cups ic­ing / con­fec­tioner's sugar

1. Pre­heat oven to 150 ºC on fan bake. Line the base of two 23-cen­time­tre loose bot­tom spring­form cake pans with bak­ing pa­per. I ac­tu­ally don't grease the sides as I find it helps the cakes rise evenly (run a but­ter knife around the edge be­fore turn­ing the cakes out of the pans to loosen).

2. Place eggs and sugar in the bowl of a cake mixer and beat un­til light, fluffy and slightly pale in colour. While on a low speed, add the oil un­til com­bined. Add both flours, salt, cin­na­mon, mixed spice, ginger and mix slowly un­til mostly com­bined (don't worry about some specks of flour etc., you'll get that soon).

3. Take the bowl off the mixer and grab a rub­ber scraper. Add the grated car­rot and give it a cou­ple of stirs in the bowl. Dis­solve bak­ing soda in the or­ange juice and add to the mix­ture. Now use your scraper to com­bine it all mix­ing only un­til it is com­bined. Scrape around the sides of the bowl and through the mid­dle of the mix to make sure there aren't any pock­ets of flour.

4. Di­vide evenly into pre­pared tins and bake un­til the top bounces back when pressed and a skewer in­serted into the cen­tre comes out clean (40-50 min­utes). Pull the cakes out as soon as the cen­tre is set to avoid a dry cake. This should stay moist and de­li­cious for days! Al­low the cakes to cool for 15 min­utes be­fore tak­ing out of the tins. Let them cool com­pletely be­fore lath­er­ing them with the cream cheese frost­ing.

Cream Cheese Frost­ing

1. In a mixer, add the soft­ened but­ter and cream cheese and beat for three-tofive min­utes un­til light and fluffy. Care­fully add the ic­ing sugar on a low speed un­til com­bined. Then turn the mixer up to high and let it whip for a good five min­utes. You will oc­ca­sion­ally need to stop the mixer and scrape down the sides of the bowl. I of­ten add vanilla bean paste, ex­tract or pow­der as well, how­ever this is op­tional.

2. Us­ing a rub­ber scraper or off­set spat­ula, take half of the frost­ing and spread evenly over the first cake, then place the sec­ond cake on top and use the rest of the frost­ing to re­peat. You can use the frost­ing to com­pletely cover the cake if you would like a more pol­ished fin­ish.

3. This cake is best kept in the fridge if it's be­ing eaten over a cou­ple of days. En­joy!

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