Ingredients (serves 10)
2 cups (300g) self-raising flour
1 1/2 cups (225g) plain flour
1 tsp bicarbonate of soda
2 1/2 tsp ground cinnamon
2 1/2 tsp ground nutmeg
2 cups (440g) caster sugar
3 1/2 cups coarsely grated carrot
100g walnuts, roughly chopped
1 1/4 cups (310ml) vegetable oil
5 eggs, lightly beaten
300g sour cream
2 tsp vanilla extract
Cream cheese frosting
500g cream cheese, softened
1 tsp vanilla extract
3 1/3 cups (500g) icing sugar
1 large carrot, shredded lengthways using a zester, plus 1 small carrot
1 cup (220g) caster sugar
1 green jelly snake, cut into thin strips
1. Preheat oven to 180°C. Grease and line a 25cm round cake pan with baking paper.
2. Sift flours, soda and spices into a large bowl. Add caster sugar, grated carrot and walnuts and stir to combine.
3. In a separate bowl, whisk oil, eggs, sour cream and vanilla until smooth.
Add to dry ingredients and stir until just combined. Pour into pan, smoothing top with a spatula. Bake in the oven for 2 hours or until a skewer inserted into the centre comes out clean. Stand for 20 minutes, then turn out onto a rack to cool.
4. For frosting, beat cream cheese using electric beaters until smooth. Add vanilla and beat well. Gradually add icing sugar, beating until smooth and creamy.
5. Split cooled cake into 2 layers. Spread bottom layer with half the frosting. Add top, then spread with remaining frosting.
6. For candied carrot, cut a 4cm piece from the end of the small carrot and use a vegetable peeler to make a small carrot shape. Place sugar and 1 cup (250ml) water in a pan over low heat, stirring to dissolve sugar.
7. Add the mini carrot and simmer for 1-2 minutes until just tender. Remove and set aside. Add the shredded carrot to the pan and cook for 3-4 minutes until candied and transparent. Remove and set aside. Turn heat to medium and allow liquid to bubble for 1-2 minutes until reduced and syrupy, then remove from heat. Add mini carrot and shreds and allow to cool. To decorate, drain carrot and shreds on paper towel. Spread shreds around edge of frosted cake. Place mini carrot in centre, then arrange snake strips as leaves.