I made this cake for my mum for Mother’s Day. She has been trying new cake flavours recently, so I wanted to make her something a bit different to give her inspiration. Tradionally carrot cake has walnuts in it, but she doesn’t like them (and neither do I) so I decided to change the traditional recipe and add the zesty sweetness of orange instead. I’ve avoided carrot cake for years because I don’t like cooked carrots (I only eat them raw, yes I know, weird). However I tried some last year and was pleasantly surprised at how nice and non-carrot tasting it was. I put the recipe in the card I gave to my mum incase she wanted to try it again herself!
I started by grating 200g carrots. This was almost two medium sized carrots. Grating carrots is a bit of a faff, the bits of carrot fly everywhere. I had it on the floor, stuck to my socks and hands, and all over the work surface. Am I just messy or is this normal?
In my mixer I mixed up 3 eggs, 225g light brown sugar, 225ml sunflower oil and 1 tsp vanilla extract until it was lighter, but noticeably thickened.
I used kitchen towel to press the excess water out of the grated carrot, before adding it to mixture and folding in with a spatula.
I sieved in 175g self raising flour, 100g wholemeal self raising flour, 1 tsp cinnamon, 1 tsp ground ginger, and 1/4 tsp nutmeg. Once you’ve sieved in these ingredients, tip in any bran that is left in the sieve from the wholemeal flour.
Finally I added the zest of one orange, and folded it all in.
I poured into a lined and greased 22cm cake tin, and baked on 180C/350F/Gas Mark 4 for about an hour. I had to test it a few times as it took longer to cook than I expected.
I juiced the orange I had zested for the sponge and mixed in 1 tbsp caster sugar until dissolved.
When the cake was done, I stabbed a few holes in it using my cake tester (you can also use a skewer) then spooned the orange juice all over it. I left the cake to cool in the tin and let the orange juice fully soak in.
Once the cake was cool I cut it in half and spread fine cut marmalade on the bottom half.
To make the buttercream I mixed together 50g butter, 100g cream cheese, 300g icing sugar and 2 tbsp marmalade.
I spread it over the top of the cake. To be fair you can probably half the amount I made as I had quite a bit leftover. Or for a really rich cake you could put it in the middle with the marmalade!
I chose to decorate the top of the cake with these Just Bake butterfly sprinkles. The colour and shape is perfect for Mother’s Day and for a fresh spring feeling. Check out their website for more cupcake decorations.
The cake was really moist and delicious, my mum really liked so I was pleased! Unfortunately I wasn’t a huge fan of the marmalade, I found it quite bitter. If I make this again I will use a sweeter marmalade or orange preserve. The buttercream was very tasty though! I think if that went in the middle of the cake as well as on top it would definitely reduce the bitterness of the marmalade.
I hope you and your mum’s all had a lovely Mother’s Day!