Although I was very happy with my original carrot cake, we had a big batch of carrots in the fridge, waiting (hopelessly) to be eaten. So my sister suggested me to make a carrot cake. But, like… a proper cake, so I saw an opportunity to make a new recipe. Even though there are millions of variations to this cake, with or without nuts, with pineapple, coconut or with apples even, I still like mine packed with carrots, just a bit nutty and with coconut flavour which I think goes really well with the carrots. This carrot cake is made with coconut oil instead of regular oil or butter, which adds sweetness and gives perfectly dense texture.
And with a few small variations to my recipe, one after another, came a lovely mini sized carrot cake with cinnamon frosting in the middle and around the sides (for a more serious sized cake double the recipe). It was a delicious winter treat and I honestly cannot say which version I like better. They are quite similar, but still different on many levels. After all, details are what matters in cooking, right?
preparation time: about 30 minutes
baking time: 35-40 minutes, 170°C/340 F
baking pan size: Φ16 cm/6,3 in
Ingredients for the cake:
150 g shredded carrots
50 g ground almonds
2 eggs, separated
120 g granulated white sugar
50 ml coconut oil
pinch of salt
120 g all purpose flour
1 tsp ground cinnamon
Ingredients for the filling:
50 g soft butter
100 g cream cheese
50 g icing sugar
50 ml heavy cream
1-2 tsp ground cinnamon
optional: a few tablespoons of ground coconut for garnishing
1. Peel and shred the carrots, then set them aside. Grind the almonds, but leave some chunkier if you prefer the texture.
2. Separate the eggs. Beat the egg whites using an electric mixer until stiff peaks form.
3. In a separate bowl, beat the egg yolks with sugar until the mixture looks really puffy and creamy and the sugar has completely melted. Add coconut oil and mix it in well.
4. Sift together flour, salt and cinnamon and add them to the mixture of egg yolks, sugar and oil. Mix everything shortly with a spatula. Finally, add shredded carrots and slowly mix them in, folding the mixture with a spatula.
5. Add beaten egg whites, again by slowly folding them in. As soon as everything is combined, transfer the mixture into a baking pan. I used my Φ16 cm/6,3 in baking pan with removable sides, so I covered only the bottom with some parchment paper. Bake in a preheated oven at 170°C/340 F for about 35 to 40 minutes, or until a toothpick inserted in the center comes out clean.
6. After the cake is done, let it cool completely at room temperature leaving it inside the pan. In the meantime, make the frosting.
7. For the frosting, whisk all the ingredients together – soft butter, cream cheese, icing sugar and ground cinnamon. When everything is smooth and well combined, put it in the fridge to cool.
8. Remove cooled cake from the pan and cut horizontally into 2 equal pieces. Put bottom piece on a serving plate and smear with about a third of the frosting. Cover with other piece of cake and then smear the remaining frosting all over the top and around the edges. If you want, sprinkle some coconut flakes on top after frsting the cake. It looks cute and festive. =)
9. Let the cake cool and set for several hours in the fridge and dig in. Although, it tastes the best and cuts the easiest the next day, so keep that in mind – you might want to make it a day ahead.