Grow Your Own Carrot Cake
Makes: 8-inch later cake; serves 8 to 12
  • 200g/7oz peeled carrots
  • 2 tbsp natural yogurt
  • 1 tbsp orange juice
  • 330g/11oz plain flour (all-purpose)
  • 300g/10oz light brown muscovado sugar
  • 2 tsp ground cinnamon
  • 1 tsp ground ginger
  • 1½ tbsp baking powder
  • 180g/6oz unsalted butter
  • 3 eggs
Candied carrot:
  • 1 peeled carrot
  • 70g/2½oz caster sugar (superfine)
  • 70ml/2½fl oz water
  • 300g/10oz icing sugar (confectioners' sugar)
  • 150g/5oz unsalted butter
  • 3 tsp lemon juice, to taste
  • 1 lemon, zest
  • 75g/2½oz walnuts and/or pecans, toasted
  1. For the cake, preheat the oven to 170°C/325°F/gas mark 3. Grate the carrots, then blitz in a food processor or blender with the yogurt and orange juice to form a rough purée. Set aside. Sift the flour, sugar, spices and baking powder into a large bowl, then beat in the butter until it has coated the dry ingredients and the mix looks like breadcrumbs. Beat in the eggs until just incorporated, and then the carrot purée for 2–3 minutes. Divide between the two tins. Bake for 30 minutes, or until a skewer comes out clean. Then remove from the oven and turn out the cakes to cool on a wire rack.
  2. For the candied carrot, using a zester or small knife, pare long, thin strips of carrot into a small saucepan. Then add the sugar and water. Bring to a simmer over a medium heat and cook for about 5 minutes, until a thin syrup has formed. Hook out the carrot strips and leave to cool on a wire rack.
  3. For the buttercream, sift the icing sugar and beat with the butter to combine, then add lemon juice to taste. Beat for 5–10 minutes until light and fluffy.
  4. To Assemble: Use half the buttercream to sandwich the two layers of cake together, and the other half to cover the top. Grate over the lemon zest and finish by sprinkling over the toasted nuts and candied carrot.
Recipe by Bakepedia at