Sublime carrot cake

Paul Merry - Food Development Director
Serves 8–10
Prep time: 
20 mins
Cook time: 
1 hour
  • 50ml Aspall dry cider
  • 100g sultanas
  • 250ml rapeseed oil
  • 4 eggs
  • 300g plain flour
  • 1 teaspoon baking powder
  • 1 teaspoon bicarbonate of soda
  • a pinch of table salt
  • 350g soft dark brown sugar
  • 80g walnuts, roughly chopped
  • 80g pumpkin seeds
  • 125g coarsely grated (cored but unpeeled) eating apples
  • 250g coarsely grated carrots (preferably with their skins on – wash well and pat dry before grating)
  1. Preheat the oven to 160°C/Gas Mark 3 and grease and line a 24–25cm springform cake tin. Put the cider and sultanas in a small saucepan and cook over a medium heat for 5 minutes, then remove from the heat and set aside for 10 minutes to allow the sultanas to soften. In a small bowl or jug, whisk the rapeseed oil and eggs together.
  2. Sift the flour, baking powder, bicarbonate of soda and salt into a large mixing bowl, then stir in the brown sugar, walnuts, pumpkin seeds and grated apples and carrots. Add the oil and egg mixture and the soaked sultanas and cider to the flour mixture and stir together lightly with a wooden spoon until combined. Transfer the mixture to the prepared tin and level the surface.
  3. Bake in the oven for about 1 hour or until risen and deep golden brown and a skewer inserted into the centre of the cake comes out clean. Remove from the oven and leave the cake to cool in the tin for 10 minutes, then carefully turn it out on to a wire rack and leave to cool completely.
  4. The carrot cake will keep in an airtight container in a cool, dry cupboard for up to 3 days. This cake also freezes well – wrap the cold cake in a double layer of foil or cling film and freeze for up to 3 months. Defrost at room temperature overnight before serving.