Carrot Cake Serves 12

2 eggs

140ml vegetable oil

200g soft light brown sugar

300g grated carrot (weight when grated)

100g raisins

75g pecans or walnuts, chopped (optional)

180g self raising flour

Pinch of salt

1/2 tsp bicarbonate of soda

1 tsp ground cinnamon

1/2 tsp freshly grated nutmeg

1/2 tsp mixed spice
For the orange cream cheese icing:

250g cream cheese (straight from the fridge)

50g butter, softened

1 tsp vanilla extract

275g icing sugar, sifted

Finely grated zest of 1 orange
You will need a 13 x 23cm (5 x 9in) loaf tin.

Preheat the oven to 150°C (300°F), Gas mark 2. Oil and line the loaf tin with greaseproof paper.

Beat the eggs in a large bowl, then add the oil, brown sugar, grated carrot, raisins and chopped nuts.

Sift in the dry ingredients and bring the mixture together using a wooden or large metal spoon.

Pour the mixture into the prepared loaf tin, smooth the surface and bake in the oven for 1-1¼ hours or until a skewer inserted into the middle comes out clean.

Allow to cool in the tin for about 5 minutes before removing. Cool completely on a wire rack before serving.

To make the icing, beat the cream cheese and butter together in a bowl until combined.

Add the vanilla extract, icing sugar and finely grated orange zest and mix to combine. The icing should be smooth and quite thick.

Using a palette knife, spread the icing evenly over the cooled cake, dipping the knife into a bowl of hot water if the icing is hard to spread out.

Cut into slices to serve.