"This is the cake I made on The Gourmet Farmer show", says Matthew Evans. "I was trying to make a very Tasmanian cake, from the nuts to the oil and the flour."
- 4 eggs
- 220 g caster sugar
- 300 g (about 2 medium) carrots, grated coarsely
- 150 ml olive oil
- 120 g walnuts or other unsalted nuts, chopped
- 250 g wholemeal flour (better would be a half/half wholemeal plain flour mix)
- ½ tsp salt
- 2 tsp bicarbonate of soda
- 1 tsp ground cinnamon
Cream cheese icing
- 500 g cream cheese (buy the spreadable one)
- 50 g butter, softened (optional)
- 200 g icing sugar
- 3–4 drops real vanilla extract
Oven temperatures are for conventional; if using fan-forced (convection), reduce the temperature by 20˚C. | We use Australian tablespoons and cups: 1 teaspoon equals 5 ml; 1 tablespoon equals 20 ml; 1 cup equals 250 ml. | All herbs are fresh (unless specified) and cups are lightly packed. | All vegetables are medium size and peeled, unless specified. | All eggs are 55-60 g, unless specified.
Preheat oven to 190ºC.
Beat the eggs with the sugar until pale and light. Add the carrot, oil and walnuts and stir to combine. Sift together the remaining ingredients and stir into the egg mixture (add the husks from the sifted wholemeal flour to the bowl, too). Make sure there are no flour lumps. Spoon into a 22 cm cake tin or similar and bake for 50–60 minutes or until a skewer comes out clean. Cool and ice.
To make the cream cheese icing, finally, the bit you've been waiting for. Bugger the cake, you're only making it so you can eat this. Let the cheese warm to room temperature to make mixing easier, and you can add a touch of lemon zest and/or juice to give it a nice tang.
Beat the cream cheese with the butter, sugar and vanilla until light and smooth. Stop dipping your fingers in. Stop it. I said stop it, otherwise there won't be enough for the cakes. Now spread all over the cake. Scatter with crushed nuts, cinnamon or nutmeg if you fancy. (Makes more than enough for one cake.)
Image photography by Benito Martin. Styling by Lynsey Fryers. Food prep by O Tama Carey. Creative concept by Belinda So.