Luxurious Carrot Cake

Luxurious Carrot Cake with Pineapple and Sultanas
Oh how I love a nice moist carrot cake with cream cheese icing. My version of carrot cake is packed full of extra ingredients that give it a wonderful texture and a fantastic taste. Crushed pineapple and orange zest for fruityness, chopped roasted nuts for crunch, and sultanas for... well, just 'coz I like them.

Of course if you're fussy you could leave the extras out, but you will still need to add the carrots! There's no escaping the "hidden vegetables" in this cake!

You can decorate the top of your cake with a sprinkle of cinnamon, orange zest, walnut halves, chopped nuts, or just leave it plain.


275g plain flour
2tsp baking powder
1tsp bicarbonate of soda
1tsp salt
2tsp ground cinnamon
1tsp ground ginger
200g soft dark brown sugar
100g caster sugar
4 large eggs
250ml sunflower oil
2tsp vanilla extract
3 large carrots (about 350g), peeled & finely grated
400g tin of crushed pineapple, well drained (sieve then press with kitchen roll)
125g mixed nuts, toasted and chopped
100g sultanas
Grated zest of 1 large orange

For the icing
75g unsalted butter, softened
180g cream cheese, cold
1tsp vanilla extract
450g icing sugar

Preheat the oven to 180C. Lightly oil 3 x 20cm round baking tins and line the bases with a circle of baking parchment. 

Sift the flour, baking powder, bicarbonate of soda, salt, cinnamon & ginger into a large bowl. Make a well in the middle.

In a jug, measure out your oil, then beat in the vanilla & eggs. Pour this mixture into the well. Gradually beat together, drawing in the flour from the sides until you have a smooth batter.

Stir in the grated carrots, drained pineapple, chopped nuts, sultanas & orange zest.

Split the mixture between the three tins. It helps to weigh them to make sure all that each tin has an equal amount of mixture in it. Bake for 30-35 minutes, or until firm to touch and a skewer comes out clean. 

Remove from the oven and leave to cool a little before removing from the tins. For flatter and even layers, turn your cakes out onto a wire rack and leave to cool upsidedown. Once cool, remove the parchment paper.

For the icing, beat together the cream cheese, butter & vanilla until no lumps remain. Gradually add the icing sugar and whisk for about 5 minutes until it is pale and fluffy. If it is too wet, add more icing sugar, too stiff, add a drop of milk. Layer up your cake by spreading a little icing on each layer, then finally over the top of the cake. Refrigerate for one hour to allow the icing to set, then serve. 

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