I’m into baking with vegetables in a big way at the minute, so when I was flicking through Peggy Porschen’s Boutique Baking the ‘scrumptious carrot cake’ immediately caught my eye.
It’s actually somewhere in between a traditional carrot cake and a hummingbird cake, as it has the addition of crushed pineapple in the sponge.
Given that I LOVED the hummingbird cake I made ages ago for a Clandestine Cake Club, I figured a hummingbird-carrot cake hybrid could only be a good thing, and switching the suggest buttercream and sugarpaste for an orange cream cheese frosting was quite literally the icing on the cake.
All the flavours work together perfectly, with nothing too overpowering. The deliciously sticky sponge is dense without being heavy, and the icing is just sweet enough sandwiched between the layers – I think if I’d covered the whole cake in icing it might have been too much, but I hear naked cakes are all the rage at the minute anyway…
If someone specifically wanted me to make them a carrot cake I think I’d still go with the traditional version, but this is a great way to change it up a bit and try something different so I would definitely recommend giving it a go!
Carrot, pineapple and orange cake (adapted from Peggy Porschen’s Boutique Baking)
- 200g light brown sugar
- 5 tbsp (75ml) vegetable oil
- 75g natural yoghurt
- 1.5 medium eggs
- 1 tsp vanilla paste
- 320g carrots, grated
- 1 tin pineapple chunks, drained and crushed (220g)
- 40g pecan nuts, chopped
- 290g plain flour
- 3/4 tsp baking powder
- 3/4 tsp bicarbonate of soda
- 1/4 tsp salt
- 3/4 tsp ground cinnamon
For the icing:
- 50g unsalted butter
- zest of 1 orange
- 125g cream cheese
- 250g icing sugar
Beat together the sugar, vegetable oil and yoghurt until well combined, then add the eggs one a a time, followed by the vanilla. Fold in the grated carrots, crushed pineapple and chopped pecans, then finally sift together all of the remaining dry ingredients and fold these into the mix too. Divide the cake batter between three 6″ round cake tins and bake at 180 degrees (160 fan) for 30-40 minutes, or until springy to the touch and starting to pull away from the sides of the tins.
While the cakes are cooking, make the icing. Beat the butter to soften, then add the orange zest and the icing sugar, a little at a time. If it won’t come together, add 25g of the cream cheese and beat again. Once the butter and sugar has been creamed, add he cream cheese and beat on a high speed for about 3 minutes, or until light and fluffy, then chill in the fridge for an hour or so.
Assemble the cake by levelling the tops of the cakes if they’ve domed, then by layering sponge and frosting. Slice and serve!