| wadestown carrot cake

February 15, 2010

This recipe is from our friend Rosie’s mum, from the Wadestown School Cookbook (Wadestown being a suburb in Wellington, New Zealand). When Rosie was a teenager she started making this carrot cake too. It was always her favourite cake growing up – she used to eat the raw mixed ingredients – and it’s such an 80s cake. I remember carrot cake being ubiquitous at cafes and patisseries when I was a kid, but I haven’t seen one gracing a cake display cabinet since forever.

Carrot cake is wholesome, and is perfect for a starving afternoon snack. When Rosie was making this as a teen in New Zealand she would bake it for her older brothers. They’d just moved out of home, first year out of school, and lived in scummy student flats. Rosie describes their flats as ‘dens’. I can imagine a pretty fourteen-year-old Rosie walking into these dirty, boys-y, empty fridge-d flats with this amazing baked cake. Real food! A teenage Rosie with her pretty blond hair, pale skin and ‘rosy’ red cheeks herself a picture of wholesome.

Kate Ford, The Wadestown School Cookbook

2 cups raw sugar
2 cups mixed flour (white and wholemeal)
2 tsp baking soda
1 tsp ground cinnamon
1 tsp ground nutmeg
½ tsp ground cloves
4 cups carrot, grated
1 cup vegetable oil
4 free-range eggs

50g cream cheese
25g butter
1 cup icing sugar
1 tsp vanilla extract

A fancy variation on this icing is to use one tub of marscarpone with icing sugar sifted in to taste. This won’t keep as long though, and the cake should be refrigerated.

Preheat oven to 180C. Sift together all dry ingredients. Add carrot and oil and mix. Add eggs one at a time, beating the mixture well. Bake for 40 mins in a 30cm x 20 cm tin (this is quite a tall cake!). Ice when cool.

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Category: baking, cakes, recipes
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wadestown carrot cake: 20 comments

  1. sam Says:

    This looks so wonderful! My taste buds are having a little party in anticipation of me baking this little beauty!

  2. Rosie Says:

    I love your wholesome fantasy of me Romy, sadly this was not the case in my teenage years. Fake tan and bad hair dye Romy. The baking was wholesome though, yes indeed.

  3. Romy Says:

    Wholesome! Fake tan? AMAZING.

  4. Lou Says:

    I made this cake last night. It was delicious! Although I thought it was a little bit sweet, next time I’ll reduce the amount of sugar a bit. Thank you for this delicious recipe.

  5. Samuel Says:

    Oh yes, this cake is very good. And I love the backstory.

  6. Another Saturday morning special | Text Bent Says:

    […] made way too much banana bread over the past few months I’m thinking about switching to carrot cake for a week or two, you know, to spice things up a little. Plus everyone needs a little butter cream […]

  7. Kelly Says:

    I am about to cook this for my boyfriend’s birthday, but I’m unsure about finding a tin that tall, should I make 3/4 worth or similar for an average sized cake tin?

    Thanks – LOVE the blog

  8. romy Says:

    Hi Kelly. I think it should be fine to reduce the amounts. You could even just halve it, it is a very big cake! Happy birthday to your boy!


  9. Phoebe Says:

    This is a really lovely carrot cake, i’ve made it a few time sand my brothers love it too. I had never made a carrot cake without walnuts before and i thought i would be missing them but this is cheaper and just as yummy.

  10. Phoebe Says:

    Also thankyou for your inspiring blog.

  11. daniela Says:

    I made this cake on afternoon after studying for my half yearly’s it was a massive cake but was absoloutely delicious. It was also a good budget cake and my family devoured it. The backstory is so lovely which made me enjoy the cake even more. Thankyou

  12. Yun Says:

    Just wondering if I can make this to cupcakes/muffins…? Do you think I’ll need to change anything


  13. romy Says:

    Hi Yun,

    I think these would work well as cupcakes. I think you should try reducing the cooking time though, maybe just bake for 30 minutes? See how you go!

  14. bridget Says:

    YUM. i love carrot cake.

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  16. Stevie Says:

    I’ve made this cake three times now and every time it has been absolutely delightful! Thank you for this blog – i absolutely love the recipes you post!

  17. Louisa Says:

    Hi ladies! I made this cake on the weekend for a birthday – I added some orange and lemon zest and put pecans all over the top. It was a massive hit! Thanks for the recipe!

  18. Samuel Says:

    HI! I’m Rosie’s brother. I’m so happy this recipe is online as I often make it and usually ring up mum and get her to dictate it form memory over the phone. I think you have nailed the ratios here (though I add a bit more spice to mine).

    One thing; I’m pretty sure it should be baking powder. When we made this with baking soda it tasted a bit odd. If you substitute the soda for 3 teaspoons of baking powder you avoid getting the funny bad PH balance thing. Or you need to dissolve the baking soda in something acidic/mix with some tartaric acid.

    3 teaspoons of baking powder made a top notch cake for us in our last attempt anyway so I thought I’d share.

    I love your blog!


  19. romy Says:

    Hi Samuel,

    ooohhh, maybe you’re right, we will make it next time with the baking powder and test. Thanks so much!

  20. Ellen Says:

    Hey wonderful women. I just came back to this recipe for the zillionth time and wanted to let you know that it has graced the table of countless birthday feasts in our household. Plus, mother’s and father’s days and the occasional off-season treat. It has never failed me or failed to impress. Thank you!! xxx

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