Green and orange Easter cake

Adam Liaw
Two-tone Easter cake with cream cheese icing.
Two-tone Easter cake with cream cheese icing. Photo: William Meppem

This four-layered cake is surprisingly easy to make. Both the orange and green layers use the same simple technique – blend the wet ingredients to a puree, then fold through the dry. Break out the blender and give it a crack!

Ingredients

Orange cake

3 medium carrots, peeled and roughly chopped

3 eggs

1 cup sugar

juice and grated rind from 1 large orange

½ cup light olive oil

1½ cups plain flour

2 tsp baking powder

½ tsp ground nutmeg

½ tsp salt

Green cake

3 eggs

1 cup sugar

150g baby spinach leaves

1 Granny Smith apple, peeled, cored and roughly chopped

1 tsp vanilla extract

½ cup light olive oil

1½ cups plain flour

2 tsp baking powder

½ tsp salt

Cream cheese icing

500g cream cheese, softened

250g unsalted butter, softened

juice and rind of 2 lemons

6 cups (1kg) icing sugar

Method

1. Heat your oven to 160C (140C fan-forced). Grease and line two 23cm-diameter round cake tins.

2. For the icing, combine the cream cheese, butter, lemon juice and lemon rind in the bowl of a stand mixer and beat well. Gradually add the icing sugar and continue to beat until combined. Transfer to a bowl and refrigerate until ready to use.

3. For the orange cake, place the carrots in a heatproof bowl with 1 tbsp of water and cover. Microwave for five minutes, then allow to cool completely. Transfer the cooled carrots to a high-speed blender and add the eggs, sugar, orange juice and orange rind. Blend to a smooth puree, then remove the lid of the blender and slowly pour in the olive oil while running the blender on low speed (as if making mayonnaise).

4. Sift the flour and baking powder into a bowl and add the nutmeg and salt. Add the liquid ingredients and fold together until just combined. Transfer to one of the cake tins and bake for about 50 minutes, until a skewer inserted comes out clean. Allow to cool for 15 minutes, then turn out onto a rack to cool completely.

5. For the green cake, place the eggs, sugar, spinach, apple and vanilla in a high-speed blender. Blend to a smooth purée, then remove the lid of the blender and slowly pour in the oil while running the blender on low speed (as for the orange cake).

6. Sift the flour and baking powder into a bowl and add the salt. Add the liquid ingredients and fold together until just combined. Transfer to the remaining cake tin and bake for about 45 minutes, until a skewer inserted comes out clean. Allow to cool for 15 minutes, then turn out onto a rack to cool completely.

7. Cut each of the cakes in half horizontally and place one green layer on your cake stand. Add one-fifth of the icing and place an orange cake layer on top. Add another fifth of the icing, then place the second green layer on top. Add another fifth of the icing and the remaining orange cake layer. Cover the whole cake in the remaining icing and chill until ready to serve.

Tip: Don't try to cook both cakes in one oven at the same time, as overloading the oven will change the evaporation rate and temperature dramatically.

Serve with my barbecued chicken with herb butter for a warm weather Easter lunch.

Find more of Adam Liaw's recipes in the Good Food Favourite Recipes cookbook.

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