Carrot & Walnut Halwa Cake

This is a recipe inspired by the super talented Saliha Mahmood Ahmed (Masterchef Winner 2017) from her latest recipe book ‘Khazana’. The original recipe contained a variety of different nuts as well as sultanas but I have adapted this slightly and used only walnuts in this recipe. The original recipe also asked for the cake to be cooked in 2 tins but I am quite lazy so ended up using only 1 deep cake tin (10′ round tin), which meant that the cooking time for my cake was a lot longer. If you split your cake batter into 2 tins, remember to reduce the cooking time accordingly.

Overall this was quite an easy cake to bake and it was enjoyed by everyone!

Carrot & Walnut Halwa Cake

Carrot & Walnut Halwa Cake



  • 200g light brown muscovado sugar
  • 3 eggs
  • 250ml sunflower oil
  • 50ml milk
  • 300g plain flour, plus extra for coating cake tin
  • 1 tsp baking powder
  • 1 tsp bicarbonate of soda
  • 50g butter
  • 100g caster sugar
  • 400g finely grated carrots
  • 1 tsp ground cinnamon
  • 1 tsp ground ginger
  • 100g walnuts, roughly chopped (plus extra for decorating)


  • 300g cream cheese
  • 125g icing sugar
  • 100ml double cream


Pre heat the oven to gas mark 4 and grease a cake tin with spray oil and flour. Set aside till needed.

Mix the muscovado sugar, eggs, sunflower oil and milk in a large bowl and whisk until all ingredients are well combined. In a separate bowl, sift the flour with the baking powder and bicarbonate of soda and set aside.

Melt the butter and the caster sugar in a pan till all the sugar has dissolved. When the butter has foamed, add the grated carrots and mix thoroughly. Cook for about 5 minutes till the carrots have softened and add the spices, mixing it well into the carrots. Remove the pan from the heat and add the chopped walnuts and let it cool slightly.

To finish the cake batter, mix the bowl with flour into the bowl of wet ingredients alongside the cooked carrots. Mix it thoroughly with a wooden spoon and pour the batter into the prepared cake tin.

Bake in the oven for around 75 minutes. After that time is up, check if the cake is done by inserting a wooden skewer into the middle of the cake. The skewer should come out clean if its done, if it doesn’t, then bake for a further 10-15 minutes till it is done.

Once the cake is baked, let it rest in the tin for a few minutes before removing it from the tin and let it cool completely on a wire rack before icing it.

To make the icing, put the cream cheese in a bowl and mix till it is smooth (this only takes a few seconds, try not to be tempted to over mix it or you could end up with runny cream cheese!). Add the icing sugar and the double cream and mix till it starts to thicken and it is smooth. Again don’t be tempted to over mix as you could quickly end up with a very runny mixture and you won’t be able to ice your cake.

Once your cake is completely cool, cut it in half and add some icing to the middle. Sandwich the cake together and use the rest of the icing to spread all over the top and sides of the cake. Use a palette knife to create a smooth finish. Use more chopped walnuts to decorate the cake.

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