Carrot and pecan cake with
a cream cheese frosting
Such a good combination of spice and nutty pecan crunch – this classic carrot cake is a great afternoon tea treat. This recipe makes two large cakes that are sandwiched together. Feel free to half the recipe if you want a smaller cake.
Time: 10 minutes preparation | 1-hour baking
Serves: 12-16 (depending on the size of slices)
For the cake
2⅓ cups flour
2 teaspoons baking powder
1 teaspoon baking soda
3 teaspoons ground mixed spice
1 teaspoon cinnamon
1⅓ cups tightly packed brown sugar
4 cups grated carrots (approximately 4 large carrots)
1 cup canola oil
6 free-range eggs, beaten
1⅓ cups milk
2 cups pecans, chopped
For the cream cheese frosting
250g (9oz) tub cream cheese, room temperature
100g (5 tablespoons / 3.5oz) butter, softened
2 tablespoons lemon juice
4-4 ½ cups icing sugar
Optional to decorate
David Austin roses
Store-bought meringues, crushed
A few pecans
Preheat oven to 180°C (350°F). Line the base of two 20cm (8") springform cake tins with baking paper and grease the sides with butter. Dust with flour and bang out excess.
In a large bowl, sift the flour, baking powder, baking soda, mixed spice and cinnamon together. Add the brown sugar, carrots, oil, eggs, milk and pecans, and mix until just combined. Divide the mixture into the prepared cake tins and smooth out the tops. Bake for 50-60 minutes in the centre of the oven, rotating the cakes once, or until a skewer comes out clean when tested. Stand for 10 minutes before removing and cooling completely on a wire rack.
For the frosting, combine the cream cheese and butter in the bowl of a stand mixer (or use an electric hand mixer) and beat for 2 minutes. Add the lemon juice and 4 cups of icing sugar and beat for 5 minutes or until thick and fluffy. If the icing isn’t thick enough, add the remaining ½ cup of icing sugar and beat well.
To finish the cake, put a third of the frosting on top and then sandwich it together with the second cake. Cover with remaining frosting, and then decorate with flowers, crushed meringues and pecans.