Carrot and Caraway cake with sour cream

Cake that works as a pudding and an afternoon treat.

“This recipe is one of the few in this chapter that is inspired by one of my favourite childhood sweet treats that I’ve developed into a more sophisticated dessert suitable for the modern, adult palate,” says food writer and Russian cookery author, Alissa Timoshkina.

“Although there was no shortage of baked cakes and cookies as I grew up, albeit in a limited variety, for some reason, I often opted for a ‘dessert’ of grated carrots mixed with sugar and soured cream.

“Ever since I started planning this book, I wanted to devise a dessert based on this childhood delight. Then one evening, I was lucky to be treated to the best dessert I’ve ever tasted. Rooted in Eastern European flavours, it was created by a dear friend and amazing baker, Henrietta Inman. So this carrot cake is inspired by Henrietta’s mesmerising dessert, and she also kindly helped me develop this recipe.”

(Makes 1 cake)

100g good-quality unrefined sunflower oil, plus extra for greasing
225g plain flour
125g golden caster sugar
135g dark brown soft sugar
1tsp baking powder
1tsp bicarbonate of soda
1/2tsp ground allspice
2tsp toasted caraway seeds
1/2tsp sea salt flakes
90g toasted walnuts, roughly chopped
200g peeled carrot, grated
Finely grated zest of 1 orange
3 eggs

To serve (optional):
Soured cream
Clear honey or sugar
Finely grated orange zest

Carrot and caraway cake from Salt & Time by Alissa Timoshkina (Lizzie Mayson/PA)


1. Preheat the oven to 160°C fan/Gas Mark 4. Oil a medium-sized (24cm) loose-bottomed cake tin and line the base with baking parchment.

2. Mix all the dry ingredients together in a large mixing bowl. In a separate bowl, whisk together the oil, carrot, orange zest and eggs. Add the wet mixture to the dry mixture and stir well to combine.

3. Pour the cake mixture into the prepared tin and bake for about 40 minutes until dark brown on top.

4. Let the cake cool slightly before serving. Enjoy with a big dollop of soured cream! I prefer mine plain, but you can always add some sugar, honey or orange zest to yours if you like.

Salt & Time: Recipes From A Russian Kitchen by Alissa Timoshkina, photography by Lizzie Mayson, is published by Mitchell Beazley


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