Little carrot cakes

11 07 2010

Confession: I’m not much of a baker. First, I’m much more into savoury than sweet.  Second, I’m what you might politely call an organic cook. It’s about the vibe, dude, not the measurements. Two things which don’t lend themselves particularly to making piles of cakes and biscuits. Edible ones, at least.

Still and all, my grandmother was famous across the Southern Highlands for her pavlova, and famous across my childhood for her cakes and slices, so it’s theoretically possible that I have baker’s DNA. Right? Right?

The book has a whole pile of sweet recipes which need baking and similar actions. Urgh. But one of them is for little carrot cakes, which I used to make as a kid. Plus, I ate a lot of that Sara Lee sheet carrot cake (you know the one, with the walnuts and the cream cheese icing) from the primary school tuckshop. That’s practically a pastry chef qualification right there. So carrot cake is where I started.

To up the stakes, I decided to make these for my farewell afternoon tea at work. Yep. Hello, about-to-be-former-co-workers. Let me leave you with this final impression of my culinary (non) skillz.

The cake batter part was pretty standard. It all came together nicely. Then I put it in my muffin tin to make my little carrot cakes. Except, I don’t own a muffin tin. I only own a giant Texas muffin tin (all the better to make mini-quiches in, see?). So I made giant little carrot cakes.

And I only own one giant muffin tin. So I had to make a couple of batches of giant little carrot cakes.

Which was good, because it gave me plenty of time to sieve the huge and numerous lumps out of the icing and force it into some kind of smooth paste, as I imagine icing should be. Because even though the recipe said to use coconut cream and icing sugar, I used coconut cream powder and icing sugar and water. Did I measure the water? Not as much as I could have.

And the recipe said to use 3 cups of plain flour.  I only had two and a half left in the jar, so I chucked in half a cup of self-raising flour instead.

Baking powder? That’s just, what, bicarb soda with cream of tartar, right? I know science. If I make up my own, it’ll have mostly the same effect, right? Mostly?


As you might expect, they came up pointy and high, my Himalayan-shaped giant little carrot cakes. The icing was runny and thin. I lost half the caramelised carrot decoration when it got stuck to the paper towel it was ‘draining’ on.

…and they ate ’em and went back for more.

Someone even asked for the recipe.

So thanks, Granny. It can only have been supernatural intervention that made those suckers edible.




One response

10 10 2010

She was also famous (and one prizes for) her sponge cakes. Care to try it? xxx

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