Carrot Cake with Cream Cheese Frosting

I’ll give you cake guesses as to what I made in school this week. Umm I mean, eight guesses. Eight layer guesses.

Shoot.

Ahem. This week at school we made cake. Lots and lots of cake. And buttercreams and Bavarian creams and ganaches and fruit mousse and chocolate mousse and Marty Moose. It was delicious.

Cakes on parade:

Vanilla Genoise (Egg Foam Cake) with Vanilla Buttercream

Angel Food Cake

Chocolate Genoise Cake with Chocolate Ganache Glaze

Dacquoise Cake with Coffee Buttercream

Charlotte Russe, Pear Bavarian Cream

Marjolaine Cake

Lemon Loaf Cake

Charlotte Royale

Chocolate Cupcakes

…with chocolate fudge frosting

Fruit Miroir Cake

Chocolate Mousse Cake

Pecan Coffee Cake

Nice little lineup, huh? Maybe try this one:

Carrot Cake with Cream Cheese Frosting

I was never big into carrot cake, but I think it’s mostly because of the walnuts. Being as I’m allergic, I always shied away from walnut-clad cakes and, since most carrot cakes are choc full of that tricky nut, I never had the pleasure of enjoying this delightful treat. My version uses pecans, and is both dense and flaky, faintly sweet from the carrots and sufficiently tangy from the cream cheese frosting. I suggest you try it. Especially if you’re finding yourself fading in your early January resolution to “eat healthier this year.” I mean, come on – this thing is bursting with bright, health-inducing carrots. It’s like eating a salad. Except it’s way better. Because it’s cake.

Ingredients:

For the cake:

  • 125 grams cake flour
  • 1/2 teaspoon baking soda
  • 1/2 teaspoon baking powder
  • 1 teaspoon cinnamon
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 2 eggs
  • 220 grams granulated sugar
  • 170 grams vegetable oil
  • 60 grams pecans, chopped
  • 165 grams carrots, grated (about 1 large carrot)

For the Cream Cheese Frosting:

  • 450 grams cream cheese, room temperature
  • 180 grams butter, room temperature
  • 200 grams powdered sugar
  • zest of 1/2 lemon
  • 2 tablespoons sour cream
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract

Directions:

Preheat the oven to 350ºF. Butter and flour one 9-inch cake pan. Sift the dry ingredients together and set aside.

Whip the eggs and the sugar in an electric mixer until foamy and doubled in size. When you lift the whisk from the bowl, the egg/sugar mixture should fall in a thick ribbon from the whisk and keep it’s ribbon shape for a few seconds after it falls into the bowl.

Very slowly drizzle the oil into the egg/sugar mixture. Once the oil is fully incorporated, add the sifted dry ingredients and mix just to combine. Gently stir in the nuts and grated carrots.

Pour the batter into the prepared pan and bake the cake at 350ºF for 30-40 minutes, or until a skewer inserted in the center of the cake comes out clean. Immediately (and carefully! The cake will be fragile and crumbly) unmold the cake onto a cooling rack.

To make the frosting, cream together the cream cheese, butter, and powdered sugar until smooth and soft.

Add the lemon zest, sour cream, and vanilla extract.

Once the cake is cool, slice it carefully into two layers. Spread a small amount of frosting onto the bottom layer and cover with the top layer. Completely cover the layered cake with the frosting. This recipe makes a lot of frosting – you may have some left over. If you wish, pipe rosettes on the top of your cake using a star tip, and garnish with extra chopped pecans or marzipan carrots.

Note: This is a very delicate cake, so, if you have time, you might want to consider freezing it overnight before cutting and icing – the frozen cake will be easier to cut and assemble. The cake is best served the day it’s assembled/decorated.

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13 Responses to Carrot Cake with Cream Cheese Frosting

  1. 小豬 says:

    我只知道,假如我去愛人生,那人生一定也會回愛我..................................................

  2. BRG says:

    I'm not sure that I can translate that comment word for word, but I'm pretty sure that what she's generally saying is that this carrot cake is good in any language. Seriously.

  3. Nadine says:

    Mollyzinha, ur cakes r so beautiful! I'm super super super proud of you!
    I'll try to do the carrot cake this week and i'll send u a picture, but my baby carrot on top will never be as cute as yours…

  4. Jane says:

    i used to think i was a pretty good baker………until now.
    you put us all to shame!!!!!!!!!! can you come over and teach me how to decorate?????? carrot cake happens to be my favorite – -and jenny told me about the chocolate cupcakes………xoxoxoxoxo

  5. Anonymous says:

    Какой большой блог! I' m настолько радостный я нашел он полностью сверх здесь в Россия. Россия любит торты!

  6. Ursula says:

    Molly, I'm drooling over your cakes! I don't know what all goes into a miroir cake, but I literally (ok, well, maybe not quite so literally, but I'm really close to being literal)want to put on my snorkel and dive right into it! Y.U.M. If you'd ever be so inclined to post the recipe for the miroir cake and/or for that chocolate mousse cake you made (DOUBLE Y.U.M.), I'd definitely love to give either one a whirl (and try not to burn my house down in the process). Keep up the good work, you cake master!

  7. Anonymous says:

    I'm not a carrot cake guy either–if you're gonna eat cake, eat cake! However, this one looks good enough to bend the rules :)
    You've done it again, Chef Molly!

  8. Anonymous says:

    this is Beth K posting as anonymous… being as I am partial to cake, I love this post and the cakes are beautiful! would love to know how you make those chocolate imprints around the cakes!

  9. jonathan snow says:

    It's been 51 weeks since you were in my kitchen frying chicken for the superbowl and telling me how you were going to chef school. If you want to come to town next weekend, we can see how much you've learned…

  10. Anonymous says:

    Mooolly! magnifique! these are really something. Works of art! you go, girl! xoxoox

  11. Ashrita says:

    I just baked this cake and it is incredibly moist and yummy! You were right about it being delicate, so I have put it in the refrigerator and will ice it tomorrow with a little twist! Swiss Meringue Cream Cheese Buttercream!

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