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Sunday Magazine Recipe: Double layer carrot and pecan cake with nutmeg icing

This impressive carrot cake is loaded with sultanas and crunchy pecans, and laced with warming spices. The nutmeg cream cheese icing, which is generously slathered between the layers as well as on top, is sweet and comforting.

DOUBLE LAYER CARROT AND PECAN CAKE WITH NUTMEG ICING
Serves 12

3 organic eggs
175ml rice bran oil (or light olive oil)
¼ cup full-fat unsweetened Greek yoghurt
1 tsp vanilla extract 
zest of 1 orange
200g plain flour
50g ground almonds
200g soft brown sugar
50g desiccated coconut
1 tsp nutmeg
1 tsp cinnamon
1 tsp baking soda 
1 tsp baking powder 
300g grated carrots
100g chopped roasted pecans
80g sultanas 

Icing:
150g butter, softened
½ tsp vanilla extract
2 cups icing sugar
125g cream cheese
2 tsp nutmeg powder 

Decoration:
handful roasted pecans, chopped

Preheat oven to 180C fan bake. Line 2 x 22cm tins with baking paper.

In the bowl of an electric mixer, beat eggs, oil, yoghurt, vanilla and orange zest until smooth. Gradually add flour, ground almonds, sugar, coconut, spices and raising agents. Stop your mixer once just combined – do not over mix.

Fold through grated carrots, pecans and sultanas. Divide batter evenly between the 2 cake tins.

Bake for about 40 minutes. The cakes are ready when golden in colour, springy to the touch and a skewer inserted in the centre comes out clean. Allow cakes to cool for around 10 minutes before turning out onto a rack.

Meanwhile, make the icing. In the bowl of an electric mixer, beat butter and vanilla until smooth and then gradually add icing sugar. Add cream cheese a little at a time and continue to beat until light and fluffy. Finally, fold through nutmeg.

Once cakes are cool, spread a layer of icing onto one cake and place the other directly on top. Apply a neat coating of icing to the top of the cake and decorate with chopped roasted pecans. Serve at room temperature. Store in an airtight container in the fridge for up to 3 days.

Happy baking!

xx