Carrot cake, do you love it or loathe it?
A couple of weeks back, The Pom and I had a rather intense debate and things got heated up over... that's right, the humble carrot cake. We were at the local cafe and from all the sweet treats behind the glass cabinet, I decided to order a slice of carrot cake. Yes, it was rather unusual for me to order something that didn't contain chocolate or caramel, but instead filled with orange vegetable! The Pom argued that you simply don't put vegetable in a dessert, full stop. Well, he also doesn't like rhubarb either.
I probably would have agreed with him that carrot cake is generally dull and just some beautified "rabbit food", but then most of the carrot cakes I've had were also store bought, so I can't really vouch that I've tried the best carrot cake in my life until recently. My recent trip to South Africa had shone a new light and changed my attitude towards this humble cake, it was definitely, if not the most delicious carrot cake I've ever tasted. And the secret is easy, *drum rolls please* ... simply by soaking the cake in Amarula.
Amarula is same same but different to Baileys, the flavour is very similar but the cream liqueur is actually made from the fruit of African marula tree. So if you do not have a bottle of Amarula at home, you are more than welcome to substitute it with Baileys or any other creamy liqueur. Apart from using the liqueur in the cake mixture and icing, we also going to soak the cake with it, hence you should expect a moist cake rather than the texture of a fruit cake (blegh!)
As I was filming the video for this recipe, The Pom, aka hand model, aka guinea pig, was always more than happy to stand in and taste test the cake for me. He wolfed down a big slice of the cake during filming and agreed that it is a better carrot cake that he had and is more suitable to his taste.
I reckon if you are just as skeptical as us, then why not give this recipe a try. And to help you to make that perfect carrot cake, how about whisking up this recipe in a brand new BOSCH food processor MCM4100AU? Keep reading to see how you can win and take this baby home.
Amarula Carrot Cake
4 large eggs at room temperature
1¼ cups (300g) castor sugar
1¼ cups (310ml) grapeseed oil
2 cups (about 3) grated carrots
1 canned pineapple, grated and drained well
1 cup chopped pecan nuts
¼ cup Amarula Cream, plus extra ¼ cup for soaking later
½ cup (125ml) apricot jam
2 cups (240g) plain flour.
2 tsp baking powder
1 tsp bicarbonate of soda
1 tbsp mixed spice
1 tsp salt
Extra chopped pecan nuts and pistachio, for garnish
Cream Cheese icing:
125g cream cheese, room temperature
¼ cup (100g) butter, room temperature
2 cups sifted icing sugar
1 tbsp Amarula Cream
1. Beat the eggs in a food mixer (or handheld mixer) for 3 minutes until thick, add the sugar gradually and whisk for another 2 minutes until the mixture is pale and thick. Add the oil slowly and beat for another 2 minutes. Pour mixture into a mixing bowl.
2. Add carrots, pineapple, nuts, Amarula and apricot jam and stir well with a spatula. Sift the dry ingredients into the mixture and fold in with a spatula until well mixed.
3. Preheat the oven to 180°C (350°F). Line and grease a springform tin then pour the mixture into the prepared tin and for 1 hour and 10 minutes or until a skewer inserted into centre of the cake and came out clean. Once ready, remove from oven and allow to cool in the tin for 10 minutes before turning out onto wire rack, and leave to cool completely.
4. Use a skewer stick, poke tiny holes all over the top of the cake. Use a spoon and slowly pour amarula and let it soak into the cake. Make sure the liqueur is evenly spread through the cake and do not over soak it.
5. Add cream cheese and butter into a mixing bowl of a mixer, beat on high speed until creamy. Turn the speed to slow, gradually add the icing sugar a tablespoon at a time until all blended in. Pour amarula cream and give it another quick mix.
6. Ice the cake with the cream cheese frosting, from side first, then the top. Grab a handful of chopped pecans and in a clockwise rotation, stick the nuts onto the side of the cake. Finally decorate the top with whole pecans, and sprinkle pistachio on top.
WIN a BOSCH food processor MCM4100AU
1 X BOSCH food processor MCM4100AU.
How to Enter
Answer the following question by leaving a comment below:
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2. Entry will be judged on humour, creativity and honesty.
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4. Entries are opened to Australian Residents only. 5. It is non refundable or in exchange for cash.
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