As it’s been raining cats and dogs recently, we’ve been busy staying in and baking. Keen to share our sweet treats, we proudly brought this allotment cake into the Eden office, where it wasn’t very long before a hungry mob of horticulturists came over to closely inspect the quality of our carrots, tomatoes and peas!
Inspired by a recipe found in Fiona Cairns’ wonderful Birthday Cake Book, baking this cake is a lovely way to spend a Sunday – especially if you have kids desperate to be entertained.
For the cake base
- 350g light muscovado sugar
- 350ml sunflower oil
- 280g grated carrots
- 6 eggs, lightly beaten
- 200g raisins (cheekily soaked in port and Cointreau first)
- Grated zest of 1 large orange
- 350g self-raising flour
- 2 tsp bicarbonate of soda
- 2 tsp ground cinnamon
- A good grinding of fresh nutmeg
Cream cheese icing
- 70g butter
- 200g cream cheese
- 400g icing sugar, sifted
- A rice-sized amount of brown colourpaste
- 2 tubs chocolate vermicelli
- 2 boxes Matchmakers
- Red colourpaste
- Yellow colourpaste
- Blue colourpaste
- Brown colourpaste
- 1 tsp smooth jam
- 500g white sugarpaste
1. Preheat the oven to 180c. Line the base and sides of a 30cm x 22cm cake tin with baking parchment.
2. Mix the sugar, oil and eggs together, then stir through the grated carrots, boozy raisins and orange rind.
3. Combine the flour, bicarbonate of soda and spices and sift this mixture into the egg bowl. Lightly stir the ingredients until everything comes together nicely and you have one runny, sticky batter.
4. Pour the mixture into the prepared tin and bake for 45 minutes, or until it feels springy in the middle and the cake tester comes out completely clean. It should start to come away at the sides too. Allow the cake to cool on a cooling-rack.
5. Combine all the icing ingredients until you have a brown paste, and smooth this all over the top and sides of the cake.
Tips for creating your own allotment
Make your vegetables by mixing together the colourpaste with your white sugarpaste until you have a colour that you’re happy with. You may find a small knife and a wooden toothpick helpful to help you mould your shapes.
Now all that’s left is to pop the kettle on and get stuck in – trowel cake server optional!