Sunday, 26 February 2012

I Like it When My House Smells of Cake at the Weekend

I really like making cakes. Although I have a really sweet tooth, I could venture to say that it is the making of the cake that I enjoy the most, eating it is just an extra :) Carrot cake is one of my favourites, and really easy to make, I guess it could be labelled "fool proof". Initially I used to make it without the icing - I would simply sprinkle icing sugar on top. Yet, I must admit that the icing definitely gives the cake the finishing touch, and fantastically complements the flavour.

For the cake you need:
3-4 large, sweet carrots (the quality of carrots is crucial here - they can really spoil the cake if they aren't sweet enough)
1 apple
2 large cups of flour (250 millilitres)
1 large cup of sugar
1 large cup of oil
4 eggs
2 teaspoons of baking powder
1 heaped teaspoon of cinnamon

Peel and finely grate the carrots. Mix flour, sugar and baking powder and cinnamon in a large bowl, add the eggs and oil, stir in grated carrots. Mix all the ingredients well, until the mixture is smooth. Line a baking tray with baking paper (I usually use a 24 cm, round tray). Preheat the oven initially to 100C, then gradually increase the heat to 170C. The cake needs about an hour in the oven, however it is a good to check with a stick if it is ready (put a kebab stick into the middle of the cake and check if it comes out dry (nearly dry, as the cake is quite wet) - if it comes out covered with unbaked cake mixture it needs more time in the oven). If you don't want to use the icing wait until the cake cools down and sprinkle some icing sugar on top.

For the icing you need:
100g of creamy cheese (Philadelphia type)
400 g of icing sugar
50 g of butter

Blend the cheese and butter with a mixer, gradually add icing sugar (add a spoonful or two, keep on mixing, when the mixture is smooth, add more sugar, and so on).
Cut the cake horizontally into two more or less equal parts. Spread half of the icing between the two parts of the cake, put the top half on, and cover the top with the rest of the icing. Put the cake into the fridge so as the icing hardens a bit, or you can eat it straight away.

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